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Education & Outreach Program

The goal of the program is to increase community understanding and awareness of issues facing the Blue River and offer hands-on training to empower people to take action. Stewards will have the opportunity to help strengthen Heartland Conservation Alliance's Missouri Stream Team #5145. Photo by Sarah Benal

On Saturday, April 9 the Green Guard Stewardship Training Program began. The series of workshops is funded by KC Water and are being held at the Trailside Center. Ian Fannin-Hughes, the Water Quality Specialist at Johnson County Public Works, led the instruction. He walked the Green Guards through important components about water quality testing such as identifying macroinvertebrates and stream visual assessment protocol. The Stewards explored Indian Creek to look for macroinvertebrates and conduct their own stream visual assessment. The water quality testing materials were provided by the Missouri Department of Conservation.

Every weekend in April the Kansas City Museum is screening The Blue River Documentary in JE Dunn Construction Theater. The film is free and showings are at 10:15 a.m., Thursdays – Saturdays, and 12:15 p.m., Sundays.

The documentary promotes positive outdoor experiences and reminds people of the river’s proud past and inspires them about its future. In 2020 it won a Mid-America EMMY in the Public Affairs – Special/Program category. Local renowned filmmaker, Michael Price, English Landing Films, captured the beauty and the challenges of the river in all seasons. He is best known for his films seen on KCPT Evicted and A City Divided. His latest film, The Hidden Pandemic, focuses on the lives of Kansas Citians navigating mental illness.

On Saturday, April 30, HCA is hosting the Heartland Nature Celebration at the HOP as part of the Greater Kansas City Metro Area City Nature Challenge. The event is open to the public and will include environmental education opportunities and guided flora and fauna identification hikes. Every discovery made on the hikes will contribute to the greater Kansas City Metro Areas' City Nature Challenge effort. The City Nature Challenge is a world-wide collaboration that offers an opportunity to connect with nature in the Kansas City Metropolitan Region.

Learn more and register on the Heartland Nature Celebration webpage.

The next Renew the Blue Restoration workday is Saturday, April 23, 9:00 a.m. – Noon at Blue Valley Park. Join the team to take down honeysuckle and pick up trash. You can find more dates and register on HCA’s Community Calendar.


The next Education & Outreach Work Group is 5/12/22, 10:00 - 11:00 a.m., followed by the Outdoor Education Work Group, 11:00 - 11:30 a.m. If you are interested in joining a Work Group, contact Sarah Benal at

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