Ride the River - a Wash in 2002
There were high hopes in local Sierra Groups across Indiana for this yearís Ride the River, but one by one, each groupís efforts were drowned in the swiftly flowing flood waters tearing across the entire state.
The plan was for each group to host Ride the River on May 18 in its local river, using the past successes of the chapterís Ride the River as a guide. From the Dunelands Group in the north, to the Winding Waters Group in the south, the event was to be a statewide celebration of our riversóa fun and educational ride down our scenic (and some not-so-scenic) stretches.
We had coffee and doughnuts donated for the tripís beginning and big cookouts planned at the takeout points. And we had a number of noted environmentalists lined up with some quick talks on the issues threatening the quality of Indianaís waterways.
But we had to consider the safety of our members in one of Indianaís wettest spring seasons on record. Each group was forced to cancel.
The Winding Waters Group, one of our chapterís new groups, had over 30 people ready to go. The committee put off making the decision to cancel as late as it could. But by Wednesday, with the waters still high and more rain in the forecast, it was obvious that the waters would not recede in time. And to drive the nail in the coffin (canoe?), the weather service was forecasting rain for Saturday, the day of the event.
There was some talk in the Winding Waters Group of having the cookout anyway, but the pavilion donated by their canoe outfitter where they had planned the party was well under water.
Each of the groups did gain the experience necessary to plan such a major event. And we have identified local businesses that are willing to donate to environmental causes. Hopefully Mother Nature will be more cooperative next year with one of her major supporting organizations!
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