Be a Water Watch Volunteer

Water Watch Image

How clean is your stream?  Is it clean enough for fishing, wading, swimming and boating?  Kentucky River Watershed Watch is asking for volunteers to help to answer these questions.

Volunteer stream samplers will learn how to conduct water quality surveys on the waterways of the region, through both on-site water chemistry testing and the collection of samples for laboratory analysis

We want to find volunteers who live close to a stream, or who have some background in science, or who just want to help protect their chosen waterway,” said Ken Cooke, Kentucky River Watershed Watch Chair.

The data collected by the volunteers will guide plans to enhance the streams for uses, such as fishing, swimming, wildlife habitat and drinking water supply. Participants will also be asked to provide direct input to resource management agencies at a community watershed conference to be held in the fall of 2017.

“It is great to see people getting out into the region’s streams, rivers and lakes to directly experience and learn about the health of our invaluable water resources,” said Malissa McAlister, the group’s Data Manager and board member.

Volunteers for the project will be asked to attend a free training workshop in the area in April or May. (See workshop schedule below.)

Volunteers will start their survey work in May, then continue with sample collections in July and September, resulting in findings for pathogens, nutrients, heavy metals and chemical conditions.

The results will be available through an online database and will be discussed at a conference in the fall.  Federal, state and local agencies, as well as the public, will be invited to attend the conference to discuss the project’s findings with the volunteers.

Those interested in participating in the project can call 502-782-7032 to sign up, or register on-line at

We will need to know a mailing address, how we can reach you by phone and/or e-mail, and what stream or river you are interested in,” said JoAnn Palmer, Volunteer Coordinator for the project. “Great way to learn about the waterways in your area. Bring your waders and be ready to be in the creek at the training!” said Palmer.

There is no charge for participating. Call the phone number, visit, or e-mail, if you have questions.

Workshop Schedule:

  • Wednesday, April 5th (evening) – Lexington
  • Saturday, April 8th (morning) – Danville
  • Wednesday, April 19 (evening) – Beattyville
  • Saturday, April 29 (morning) – Richmond
  • Other workshops will be added as interest is shown in a particular community.

Local Community Contacts: 
The following individuals can be contacted in your local community for more information about participating in Watershed Watch.

  • Letcher – Alex Beer, Regina Donour – 937-657-5780
  • Perry – John Hoppe – 606-439-3911
  • Breathitt – Chet Sygiel – 606-666-5552
  • Leslie, Clay Angela Muncy – 606-275-5251
  • Lee. Owsley – Sandy Gay – 606-560-1865
  • Wolf – Tricia Coakley –
  • Estill, Powell – Jack Stickney – 606-975-2255
  • Madison – Alice Jones – 859-622-1424
  • Clark – Lanny Evans-859-808-0898
  • Fayette – Ken Cooke – 859-940-8234
  • Jessamine – Mary Miller – 859-858-9983
  • Lincoln – Jane Vanhook – 859-326-1870
  • Garrard – Malissa McAlister – 859-324-0845
  • Boyle – Rose-Marie Roessler – 859-238-5311
  • Mercer – Pamla Wood – 859-351-3142
  • Franklin, Owen – Jo Ann Palmer – 502-782-7032
  • Scott – Cindy King – 502-316-1619
  • Carroll – Bill Osborne – 502-525-0456
Kentucky River Watershed Watch is supported by:
  • The Kentucky River Authority
  • Kentucky Water Resources Research Institute
  • Kentucky Geological Survey
  • Midway University Biology Department
  • Eastern Kentucky University Environmental Research Institute
  • The Virginia Environmental Endowment
  • Lexington Fayette Urban County Government
  • Kentucky Division of Water

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