Map is great resource

Published 10:37 pm Friday, October 19, 2012

Suffolk’s waterways, including the Nansemond River and various creeks, streams and lakes, do more than provide obstacles for bridges to overcome.

They hold natural beauty and centuries of history. They provide recreational opportunities and attract hundreds of species of wildlife. They provide a livelihood for seafood vendors and others who ply their craft aboard a boat or along the shoreline.

But they are far too under-utilized and misunderstood by many of the citizens who live in the city, perhaps driving over a bridge or two every day and never giving further thought to the power of the rivers.

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But the Nansemond River Preservation Alliance and Suffolk River Heritage groups hope to change all that. After years of work, the collaboration has produced a beautiful, professionally designed map that gives viewers a wealth of information on public access points, historical sites, animals and plants that can be found in and around the river, and more.

The map fits into a larger project currently in development, the Captain John Smith Chesapeake National Historic Water Trail, a National Park Service-designated water trail map. The map will track Smith’s voyages, which included the Nansemond.

The new map, which will be available at visitor centers throughout the state of Virginia, will be a boon to Suffolk. Local folks are sure to learn something new about local history or geography and be better informed about where and how they can use the river for enjoyment. Visitors from out of the area will perhaps be attracted by the map and be able to enjoy the city more fully while they’re here.

The map is an incredible resource for the city, and we thank the two groups and their volunteers for their hard work in putting it together.