River group sets info session

Published 9:57 pm Monday, September 12, 2011

As part of its River Talks series, the Nansemond River Preservation Alliance will host a discussion on the river for downtown Suffolk residents.

The second of its River Talks will take place Sept. 20 from 6 to 7 p.m. at the Hilton Garden Inn on East Constance Road. The talk is free and open to the public.

NRPA executive director Elizabeth Taraski said after the first River Talk in North Suffolk, the group wanted to get feedback from people who live further down the Nansemond.

Email newsletter signup

“It’s to reach out to the people in downtown Suffolk,” she said. “I would very much like community participation, and the more we go out and have these events, we learn so much from the residents.”

Attendees will get an overview of the group’s State of the Nansemond River Report, which was released earlier this year, and they will get a chance to ask questions and give input.

Also, members of the NRPA water quality committee will be at the event to present information and answer questions.

Taraski said the group learns a lot about the river’s history from individuals whose families have been in Suffolk for many generations, and she thinks NRPA stands to learn a lot from downtown residents.

“A lot of individuals, especially those who live in downtown Suffolk, have families that go back many generations,” she said. “It’s a wonderful history reference they provide to us.”

Downtown also provides a different point of view about the health of the river, because NRPA’s study found the southern part of the river is more impaired than it is downstream, in the northern part of Suffolk.

“You don’t have that natural cleansing motion (there) that you have in the northern part of the river,” Taraski said.

Taraski added by attending the River Talk, resident can learn more about preserving Suffolk’s waterways.

“Everyone loves the water,” she said. “They would be interested in this (talk) to ensure they can participate in ensuring the health of the river.”