The Westport Fishermen’s Association is pleased to announce Connor Brown has received the WFA $650 Merit scholarship for 2017. This award is based on academic and civic excellence.
Connor is a 2017 graduate of Westport High School and he plans to attend the University of Rhode Island, majoring in biomedical engineering. In addition to being President of the National Honor Society, Connor challenged himself with numerous AP courses during his high school career. He is active in the community and a three sport athlete, as well as lifeguard at Horseneck State Beach. In addition, he performed a field study on the Westport River for his senior biology project, testing for the amount of nitrates and phosphates present in the water.
The Board of Directors would like to extend their congratulations and wish Connor much success in the future. In addition, the WFA would also like to recognize and thank all of our generous members, sponsors and community friends who contribute to our scholarship fund throughout the year.
In addition to the merit scholarship to graduating high school students, the Westport Fishermen’s Association also awards continuing scholarships to support students throughout their college career. More information is available on the WFA website at http://westportriver.org/scholarship/
Despite the intermittent rain, we had a great turnout at the WFA’s 13th annual “Run for the Water” with over 140 participants coming from ten states. In fact, a woman flew in from Michigan the night before to compete specifically in the 10K. She is doing a race in all 50 states this year and picked the WFA’s event because it supported a good cause. Proceeds from this year’s event will help fund the WFA’s scholarship program and support our advocacy efforts.
This year we swapped out the 8K course for a 10K distance and Matt Moussamih from Swansea won it in 40:22. Lauren Galiardi of Cumberland, RI was the women’s winner, coming in at 46:59. Top finishers in the 5K Fun Run were Dan Murphy of Westport and Katie Knapp from Brooklyn, NY. Complete results can be found HERE.
The Buzzards Bay Coalition (BBC) and the Westport Fisherman’s Association (WFA) filed a 60-day Notice of their Intent to Sue U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt and Acting Regional Administrator Deborah Szaro under the federal Clean Water Act (CWA) for their failure of perform their nondiscretionary duty to approve or disapprove the Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) for the Westport Rivers Estuary within the statutorily-mandated time period. The TMDL is a CWA-required cleanup plan designed to reduce nitrogen pollution and restore water quality in the rivers.
Read the full notice: PressRelease-WestportTMDLNoticetoSueEPA042717
Our spring newsletter has been mailed to all current members and is now available online. Check out all the latest news and event information. We have the Road Race coming up and then a shipwreck exhibit at the Lifesaving Station this summer.
Advocacy updates, the latest new catch, information about river herring, and photos from the annual meeting are also featured, along with columns from Cap’n Cukie and WFA President Jack Reynolds.
In 2016 the Westport Fishermen’s Association sounded the alarm about rapid degradation of salt marsh islands, particularly those in the West Branch of the Westport River. Salt marsh islands are a characteristic feature of both branches of the Westport Rivers. These productive coastal wetlands are important because they protect properties from storm surges, remove nutrients from the water and carbon from the atmosphere, and provide critical habitat for fish, shellfish, and shorebirds. In response, we teamed up with the Buzzards Bay Coalition, the Marine Biological Laboratory Ecosystems Center, and the Buzzards Bay National Estuary Program to measure the rate of salt marsh loss and try to identify the causes.
The data are in and the news is not good at all. The Westport River is losing salt marsh islands at an accelerating rate and they are projected to entirely disappear within 60 years if nothing is done. Read the summary report here: Saltmarsh_loss_report_FINAL
Additional detail is in the full report: Westport Marsh Final Report_Mar2017
Horseneck Beach SR – 2017 Seasonal Park Interpreter Job Posting
The state DCR has posted a seasonal job opening for Horseneck State Beach Park Interpreter for the summer of 2017 (June to Labor Day weekend). Duties include staffing the WFA’s Horseneck Point Lifesaving Station. Check out the job description above and contact Amy Wilmot at [email protected] for more information.
The Westport Fishermen’s Association is hosting their 13th Annual Run for the Water on May 6, 2017. We are featuring a new 10K course length this year, with cash awards and medals for top male and female finishers. The 5K Family Fun Run/Walk returns, with fun prizes for top individuals, families and teams. Free t-shirt for all pre-registered entrants. Post race feast too!
You are invited to this year’s Oyster Stew Supper and Annual Meeting on February 14, 2017. Celebrate Valentine’s Day and take the chill off the winter by joining us for a delicious dinner at St. John the Baptist Church, 945 Main Road, Westport MA. Doors open at 6:00 pm, stew is served at 6:30 and the Annual Meeting follows immediately after the dinner.
Dinner tickets are $15 each.
The evening’s feature presentation will be a screening of “The Last Bay Scallop?” by Nantucket filmmaker John Stanton. Westport’s scallop harvests have already been decimated. Now, the waters around Nantucket that host the last commercially viable bay scallop fishery on the East Coast may also face the same fate due to loss of the scallops’ eel grass habitat, Harbor pollution, particularly excess nitrogen that fosters algae overgrowth, is the main culprit. See how fishermen and scientists alike are fighting to protect this island’s cultural and economic staple and what lessons Westport can learn from them.
Be sure to check out the Winter 2017 newsletter, which features a report on the results of this summer’s salt marsh study. The six marsh sites that were evaluated show an alarming 46% decline in total area since 1934.
Advocacy updates, the latest new catch and photos from the clambake and boat show are also featured, along with columns from Cap’n Cukie and WFA President Jack Reynolds.
Bill and Susan Barker have generously donated an 11’6’’ Beverly Sailing Dinghy to the WFA in support of our efforts to protect the Westport River and its marine habitat.
- This roomy and well balanced sailing dinghy with a simple rig and ample flotation for safety is a popular all-round sailboat. The boat for sale was designed by Sidney DeW. Herreshoff and built in 2005. When new the price was $4900.
- Length 11′ 6″
- Depth 1′ 7″
- Weight with sail 207 lbs
We are accepting bids through the winter. Please send inquiries and offers to [email protected].