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Colorful leaves fall into the water of Fourpole Creek on Thursday, Oct. 15, 2020, in Huntington.

HUNTINGTON — Fourpole Creek Watershed Association, a local volunteer organization, has won the first Watershed Education Award for its outreach efforts at the inaugural West Virginia Watershed Symposium, held virtually Nov. 5-6.

The award was given by the West Virginia Watershed Network.

Fourpole Creek Watershed Association (FCWA), which re-formed in 2013, works to inform, educate and empower citizens who live within the watershed of Fourpole Creek in Huntington. Its outreach events have included “Catfish in the Classroom,” where volunteers worked with local elementary schools to raise catfish while teaching students watershed principles, ecology and environmental stewardship. This cumulated into releasing the catfish into Fourpole Creek as approved by the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources.

The group also has built a 3-D Virtual Sandbox Watershed model that it has used to teach about watersheds at multiple water festivals, as well as to members of the state Legislature during the Environmental Day.

FCWA has also participated in other events such as the Canine Carnival to spread knowledge about watersheds’ impacts on local waterways.

The WV Watershed Symposium (formerly Watershed Celebration Day) is hosted by the WV Watershed Network. The biennial event is held to provide resources to watershed groups’ work, raise consciousness about watershed groups and recognize the efforts and accomplishments of watershed groups in West Virginia.

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