River Health Boosts Commerce

The new Odyssey Chicago dinner cruise boat is a great indicator of how much Friends' efforts to improve the Chicago River are paying off not just for people and wildlife but also the economy according to a story in the Chicago Tribune business section today.  “The river is growing in popularity, and it’s certainly much cleaner than it was five, 10, 15 years ago. And there’s been an enormous amount of public and private development. All of that added to the attraction,” said Dan Russell, regional vice president at Odyssey parent Entertainment Cruises.

“New boats coming onto the Chicago River demonstrate that the river has become part of what we have to offer the people who live, work, and visit Chicago; it’s no longer second fiddle,” said Margaret Frisbie, Friends' executive director.


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September Turtle Tagging

In order to understand how turtles are using the restored sites that Friends cleared to improve their reproductive success, Friends is working with the Forest Preserves of Cook County to track and tag them. In September Maggie Jones, Friends' conservation specialist and Margaret Frisbie, Friends' executive director, worked with FPCC biologist Chris Anchor to measure, weigh, draw blood from and tag the turtles before letting them go back into the river system.

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All Wet in the Chicago River

On September 16, 2017, Friends of the Chicago River and Metropolitan Water Reclamation District Commissioner Josina Morita were joined by elected officials from every level of government for Josina and Friends’ Big Jump into the Chicago River.

Representing the U.S. House of Representatives, the State of Illinois, Cook County, and the City of Chicago as well as partners from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District and Friends, the 15 jumpers took the plunge to highlight our collective success in improving the river’s water quality and to demonstrate our commitment to making the Chicago River swimmable for all.

Thanks to all who help us make a big splash in the work we do every day!

Photo courtesy of the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District.

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Friends Recognized with City for Urban Excellence Award

In September, Friends of the Chicago River was among the recipients of a silver medal for Urban Excellence in Design from the Rudy Bruner Foundation for the 2017 Rudy Bruner Awards which recognize transformative places that contribute to the economic, environmental, and social vitality of American cities. 

Friends has been a catalyst for riverfront protection for nearly 40 years and was a part of the Chicago Riverwalk design process from the very beginning.

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