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Friends of the Reedy River (FoRR) recognized outgoing Greenville City Councilwoman Gaye Sprague as the 2017 Best Friend of the Reedy River at this year’s Annual Meeting. The designation honors individuals whose support for protection, restoration, and enhancement of the Reedy River has been exemplary. Keynote speaker Lisa Wells, Environmental Engineer with the City of Greenville, discussed the work at McPherson Park thanks to EPA Clean Water Act Section 319 grant funding. This year’s Annual Meeting took place at Sears Recreational Shelter from 6 pm to 8 pm on Thursday, November 9th and was open to the public.
Councilwoman Sprague completed eight years of service as an at-large member of the City Council. “Gaye Sprague has always been a champion of the River,” said Nikki Grumbine, FoRR President. “She has shown her commitment to the River by challenging construction on the river banks in downtown Greenville and by advocating for the appropriate use of stormwater funds.” The Best Friend of the Reedy River award was initiated in 2014. Previous honorees include: M. Jill Cox, for her donation of the Cleveland Park Stables property to the City of Greenville; Brad Wyche, founder of both Friends of the Reedy River and Upstate Forever, for his sustained advocacy of the Reedy River and the entire watershed; and Joe and Gretchen Erwin, for their financial support of FoRR and for helping with FoRR’s rebranding efforts.
The Keynote presentation highlighted park improvements including stream restoration, regenerative conveyance structures, and installation of green infrastructure practices such as bioretention and pervious pavement. It might sound technical but attendees learned first hand how these initiatives are setting the stage for how the City hopes to improve water quality for the City and the Reedy!