Gary Swick

A Watershed Moment in Our Watershed

For over 30 years, Friends of the Fox River (FOTFR) has been building a watershed of caretakers. Part of that effort is defining the term watershed (as a drainage area) and delivering this concept as a management strategy. That path has been marked by a few watershed moments; a watershed moment is a turning point, … Read more

No Joke – Free Oak Trees

Possibly and probably the most important single act of being a better Friend to the Fox River, is to introduce an Oak tree to the watershed. No, that is not an April Fool’s joke. Nor is it a joke that Friends of the Fox River (FOTFR) is offering you an oak tree (or a couple) … Read more

Earth Day Every Day

April is Earth Month, and Earth Day is officially on April 22nd. The concept of Earth Day is to recognize human dependence upon earth systems and to honor our mother, Earth. This tradition has been around for fifty-two years. In 1970, the developed world was just beginning to realize the impacts of our consumptive culture. … Read more

THINKING Like a Watershed

The Fox River is a fine demonstration of Barry Commoner’s Laws of Ecology. Law #1 is that all things are connected. This is evident in the definition of a watershed; it is the entire land area that drains to a common place. The Fox River Watershed covers over 2600 square miles of land that drain … Read more

A Year in the Rearview Mirror

If hindsight is 20-20, we can see we could have managed a few things differently in the year 2020. Friends of the Fox River (FOTFR) executed necessary pivots, operational adaptations, and reassessed goals when they became a moving target. We made only a few mistakes. Since we  couldn’t go to the schools, we developed a … Read more

November is a Time for Memories and Giving

Many of us in this region have fond memories of our childhood in November. For me, they include big piles of leaves in the yard seemingly created for jumping in, the smell of burning leaves, sitting under giant oak trees listening to the roar of the wind through the canopy, and kicking through knee deep … Read more