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Free Texas Watershed Steward Training Set April 29 in Junction
Wednesday, April 14, 2010 • Posted April 14, 2010

Program will focus on South Llano River Watershed

JUNCTION – A free Texas Watershed Steward training program will be held from 8 a.m.- 4 p.m. April 29 at the at the Llano River Field Station, located on the campus of Texas Tech University-Junction. The program is being sponsored by the Texas AgriLife Extension Service and the Texas State Soil and Water Conservation Board in coordination with the South Llano Watershed Alliance.

"The Texas Watershed Steward program is a great opportunity for watershed residents to get involved and make a difference in their community," said Jennifer Peterson, AgriLife Extension water program specialist. "It is designed to help them improve and protect their water resources by involving them in local watershed protection and management activities."

Peterson said Texas Watershed Stewards learn about watershed systems, water quality regulation and monitoring, methods to improve water quality, and community-driven watershed protection and management.

"The training also provides the basic knowledge and tools needed to form a watershed-action group, participate in and organize local watershed activities, and become more involved in protecting and enhancing your community water resources," she added.

Peterson said the training would emphasize water protection and management issues and strategies related to the South Llano River Watershed.

"The spring-fed flows of the South Llano River are legendary among outdoor enthusiasts and nature lovers alike," Peterson said. "The river serves as both a diverse and productive natural ecosystem, as well as a water-supply resource. Because it is such an integral component of the community, preserving its flows is not only an environmental issue, but also something that affects economic, social and other aspects of the area for which it provides water resources."

Peterson said participation in the training also would also help introduce people to the watershed preservation work being done by the area’s South Llano Watershed Alliance.

"The South Llano Watershed Alliance is an organization of landowners and interested stakeholders whose mission is to preserve and enhance the South Llano River and adjoining watersheds by encouraging land and water stewardship," she said. "This program will give area residents the opportunity to get to know more about that organization as well as the Texas Watershed Steward Program."

Peterson said program participants will receive a day of education and training, a copy of the Texas Watershed Steward Curriculum Handbook, prizes and gifts, and a certificate of completion. The program also provides seven continuing education units in soil and water management for certified crop advisors; seven Texas State Board for Educator Certification continuing professional education credits for certified teachers; seven American Institute of Certified Planners certificate maintenance credits for certified planners; and three general continuing education units for Texas Department of Agriculture pesticide applicator license holders.

Pre-registration is now available and required for program participation, Peterson said. For more information and to pre-register, go to the Texas Watershed Steward Web site at http://tws.tamu.edu or contact Jennifer Peterson at 979-862-8072 or jlpeterson@ag.tamu.edu .

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