Celebrate the 2022 River of the Year: The French Creek

The Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Secretary Cindy Adams Dunn and Janet Sweeney of the Pennsylvania Organization for Watersheds and Rivers jointly announced that French Creek in northwestern Pennsylvania has been selected as the state’s 2022 River of the Year.

“The River of the Year highlights Pennsylvania’s amazing waterways annually and we are excited to recognize French Creek as the 2022 winner,” Dunn said. “Our waterways are a great way to connect to nature for recreation and relaxation. They also provide a great opportunity to learn about the regions through which they flow. I am hopeful that more people will consider experiencing French Creek and its beauty as a result of this prestigious honor.”

DCNR and Pennsylvania Organization for Watersheds and Rivers (POWR) will work with the French Creek Valley Conservancy to create a free, commemorative poster celebrating the French Creek as the 2022 PA River of the Year. 

The French Creek Valley Conservancy will receive a $10,000 Leadership Grant to help fund a slate of year-long 2022 River of the Year activities.

“We are delighted to have French Creek selected as Pennsylvania River of the Year,” said French Creek Valley Conservancy’s Executive Director, Brenda Costa. “Many thanks to DCNR and POWR for this program and this honor. French Creek has incredible biodiversity, flowing through beautiful natural landscapes, and it provides many wonderful recreational opportunities. It is a common thread that joins so many small communities in northwest Pennsylvania with a sense of pride and passion, and we are grateful to the thousands of people who voted for French Creek. People often share stories with me about their experiences and family memories surrounding French Creek, and I look forward to having more people discover our community treasure.”

A wide range of activities will be planned to celebrate the French Creek as the 2022 PA River of the Year. Additional Information on those activities, once planned can be found on our calendar here:  Calendar or the French Creek Valley Conservancy 

The 2022 River of the Year kick-off sojourn is being planned and is scheduled for June 18th. Information on how to register will be posted soon.

About The French Creek

French Creek is one of the most biologically diverse waterways of its size in the United States, meandering 117 miles from its headwaters in southern New York through four Pennsylvania counties to the Allegheny River. The creek is home to 27 species of freshwater mussels, more than 80 species of fish, and numerous waterfowl and songbird species, including bald eagles and four Audubon-designated Important Bird Areas (IBAs). French Creek is also home to the Eastern Hellbender, the largest species of salamander in North America, which was recently named the official amphibian of Pennsylvania.

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