This is Our Story

The Friends of the Blackstone (FOB) was founded in 1990 and led the way by getting local residents involved in cleanups beginning with the Captain Wilbur Kelly House, now the centerpiece of the Blackstone River State Park. The largest cleanup involved 278 volunteers at multiple sites including the Fanning Wilderness Area in Valley Falls. This site turned into a multi-year project and required our removing 10,000 tires and tons of debris from the Valley Falls marsh.

The success of these cleanups revolved around partnerships with local residents, businesses, and governments at both the state and federal levels. The FOB also urged the RI Department of Environmental Management Fish and Wildlife Division to stock the river with trout and to begin a diadromous fish study to bring herring back to the Blackstone River by building a series of fish ladders from Pawtucket to Cumberland.

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Our Programs

BRWC/FOB is one of the three core supporters (Blackstone River Headwaters Coalition, Blackstone River Watershed Association, and Blackstone River Watershed Council/Friends of the Blackstone) of the Blackstone River Coalition’s bi-state Water Quality Monitoring (WQM) initiative.Together we have recently completed a 15-year testing program. Nearly 90 volunteers gather water samples at 70 sites in the main stem and tributaries of the river in RI and MA on a fixed schedule from April to November.

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Riverlutionists Make a Huge Difference

By volunteering for one of our cleanups, or offering to support the water quality monitoring program or helping to lead a group of school children on a canoe trip, you’ll become a vital part of our community. Dedicated volunteers are rewarded by knowing that they have made a difference not only in their community but to their environment.

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You Can Help

Becoming a member is like making a financial gift to BRWC/FOB and is an effective way to join the riverlution. All donations fund BRWC/FOB activities and not salaries or benefits because we are an all-volunteer organization. Our members and donors fund our fight to keep our river and watersheds clean and hold polluters accountable.

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Events

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May 25 Eastern Medicine Singers Indian Powwow Eastern Medicine Singers is an Algonquin Drum Group from Providence
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May 26 Eastern Medicine Singers Indian Powwow Eastern Medicine Singers is an Algonquin Drum Group from Providence
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June 08 Water Quality Testing Nick Wentzell, Field Coordinator