The 2010 Clark Fork Symposium will be held at The University of Montana on Thursday and Friday, March 4-5.
For 25 years, residents of the Clark Fork Basin have met every five years to discuss conservation science and actions in the basin. This year's symposium events are designed to look back 25 years and think forward 25 years.
Invited speakers and panelists will explain recent and ongoing studies guiding actions planned or taken to conserve and restore the Clark Fork Basin. Posters and slideshows will be offered by watershed groups, scientists and other people interested in the basin.
Events begin Thursday with the Clark Fork Watershed Roundtable, featuring reports by local watershed groups, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on the third floor of the University Center. The roundtable will be followed by a 2 to 5 p.m. field trip to local streamside developments and the Milltown site.
The symposium's keynote "State of the River Report" will take place from 7 to 9 p.m. Thursday in the University Center. The keynote event is free and open to the public. Speakers from UM, the Clark Fork Coalition and other agencies will describe how the basin has been transformed, and author Rick Bass will help those present envision what the basin can become.
The symposium resumes at 8:45 a.m. Friday with a brief welcome and a panel titled "Bringing Back the Upper River." Panelists are representatives of the many agencies and citizen groups working to restore the upper Clark Fork. The panel will be followed by several keynote talks on 30 years of Flathead Lake studies, a 10-year nutrient reduction program recently completed and 25 years of cleaning up Butte soils.
More than 20 posters and displays and more than 30 short talks about studies and actions in the basin will be offered Friday afternoon. Organizers say this is a good time for public school students to visit the symposium.
Registration information and a complete 2010 symposium schedule are online at http://www.clarkfork.org/cfsymposium. All symposium events are free to students.
Symposium co-sponsors include the UM President's Office, Watershed Health Clinic, Environmental Studies Program, Department of Geography and the Clark Fork Coalition, Clark Fork Task Force, Bitter Root Water Forum, Rhithron Associates and Watershed Consulting.