4th grade classes at Riverside Elementary West have rolled up their sleeves through the years and conducted their own spring cleaning of the river. Some of the bigger items of debris Riverside students and staff have removed through the years include a bath tub, car mats, even a couch. But through the years they've done such a good job on this river that they're poised to make it river of the year. "Due to the fact that we've been cleaning it for ten years, it's become a lot cleaner and also the (Lackawanna) Heritage Valley Authority implementing the trail here it's gotten a whole lot wider," said Mr. Murphy.
The plan is to finish off the head of the trail in Taylor in the spring. That's also when current 4th graders will lend a helping hand to cleaning up the river banks. "Our school name is Riverside so we are on the side of the river and we need to make sure we take care of it," said Riverside Elementary West 4th Grader Nevica Molinaro. Fellow 4th grader Emily Taylor added, "People should just stop polluting the river because it will just go into other rivers."
Riverside School District and Riverside Elementary West Principal Paul Brennan nominated the Lackawanna River for the award. "This isn't a Riverside thing. This is a great honor if we were to win for our area," said Mr. Brennan.
The River of the Year contest is sponsored by the Pennsylvania Organization for Watersheds and Rivers and the state Department of Conservation and Natural Resources. You can cast your ballot for the Lackawanna River by logging onto http://pawatersheds.org/vote/. The on-line voting for river of the year ends January 18th.