• 63°

Mapping of Symmes Creek next goal for preservation group

CHESAPEAKE — There may be something new at this summer’s Symmes Creek Canoe Capers.

Recently the Symmes Creek Preservation Committee, made up of volunteers wanting to keep the creek clean, received a $2,121 grant from the Foundation for the Tri-State Community.

The money will fund a map specially designed for those who use the creek for recreation.

“The grant provides funding to develop and publish a Symmes Creek Canoe Trail Map to both educate the Tri-State community and encourage access and use of the 30-mile canoe trail by community residents and tourists,” Hayward Chappell, committee member, said.

The committee is working with ILGARD or the Institute for Local Government Administration and Rural Development out of Ohio University. The institute offers technical assistants to government and other organizations.

“We have given them the information and we are doing a layout,” Chappell said. “We would like to have the maps in time for the Canoe Capers.”

What the board wants mapped are the six launch sites on the 30-mile trail that starts from Waterloo to Chesapeake, where the creek flows into the Ohio River by Huntington, W.Va.

Aug. 14 is the date for this year’s Canoe Capers starting at 9:30 a.m. at the Chesapeake boat launch. There enthusiasts will clean up that section of the creek.

“It is a time where we help to clean up the ramp and enjoy the fellowship,” Chappell said. “A local Boy Scout troop comes and participates.”

The event is also a fundraiser with raffle tickets for a canoe donated by the Wild Turkey Federation.

A free lunch is served at noon and T-shirts are provided.

“Part of the purpose of the committee is to clean up and keep Symmes Creek clean and educate area residents on the proper stewardship of the creek,” Chappell said. “Earlier this year, with Workforce Development, over 18 major log jams were cleaned out of the creek. That makes the trip down much easier.”

The goal of the map is to have it available at tourist spots throughout the Tri-State from bait shops to libraries.

“Every one of the launch sites will be on it with GPS locations for anyone out of state to find information about the creek about each location,” Chappell said.

The preservation committee meets the first Monday of each month at 11:45 a.m. at the OUS Nature Center at Lake Vesuvius, except for July, when the committee will meet on July 12 because of the holiday.

Raffle tickets can be purchased from Hayward by calling 740-377-4550 or Grayson Thornton at 740-643-0522.