Our mission is to keep the North Fork of the Shenandoah River clean, healthy, and beautiful through advocacy, community action, education and science.

Did You Know?

Monument Marks the Start of the North Fork of the Shenandoah River

Friends of the North Fork partnered with the Forest Service to locate the source of the North Fork in 1989, and erected a stone monument at the location on Earth Day 1990.

The monument reads:

This marks the First Spring of the North Fork Shenandoah.  Latitude - 38" 39' 20" N  Longitude - 79" 5' 20" W  Elevation - 3402 Ft.  A.S.L. Miles to Mouth N.F.S.R. 128.5  Placed by Friends of the North Fork Shenandoah River on Earth Day 1990.

Click here for a map and directions to the monument, but NOTE...the roads require four-wheel drive and are in very bad condition.


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    Advocacy - Hydrofracturing Updates


          Indian Springs entrance



April 26, 2014

National Drug Take Back Day

Once again, localities will be collecting your expired and unused prescription drugs. Seven national take back events have been held nationwide in the last several years resulting in the collection and proper disposal of more than 1,700 tons of pills and prescriptions. This means drugs are kept out of the hands of children and out of our streams and rivers, which is where they end up when they are improperly discarded in a toilet.

There are numerous drop locations in Shenandoah and the surrounding counties that will receive drugs from 10am to 2pm on Saturday, April 26. Drop off locations include:

  • Woodstock Town Office - 135 Main Street in Woodstock VA 22664
  • Strasburg Town Hall- 174 East King Street in Strasburg VA 22657
  • Martin's parking lot in Stephens City, VA - 240 Elizabeth Drive in Stephens City VA 22655
  • Winchester Elks Lodge - 466 Front Royal Pike in Winchester VA in Winchester A 22602
  • Broadway Drug Store parking lot - 169 East Springbrook in Broadway VA 22815

Additionally, Friends and Shenandoah County Family Youth Initiative have partnered to place drug take back boxes in local pharmacies in Strasburg, Woodstock, Mt. Jackson, New Market and Timberville. You can stop by the locations at your convenience to dispose of unwanted/expired prescriptions.

Fracking in the News

The final management plan for the George Washington National Forest is scheduled for release this year. Friends and our partners are concerned that the Forest Service will lift the current ban on horizontal drilling (fracking) that is currently in the plan.

"Proposed Fracking in National Forest Meets Broad Opposition," Neela Banerjee, January 22, 2014, Los Angeles Times. READ MORE...

"Fracking Limits for Virginia Forest Spark Debate on Water", Mark Drajem, Sept. 6, 2013 READ MORE...

“Energy Industry Heavyweights Arguing Against Outright Ban on ‘Fracking’ In National Park”, http://washington.cbslocal.com, July 4, 2013 READ MORE...


Mark Your Calendar!

Friends 26th Annual Meeting and Family Fun Day - Saturday, May 3, 2014 - 11:30 AM - 3:30 PM

Bring your family and friends down by the river at the Town Park in Strasburg, VA.  Enjoy an afternoon of great food and lots of water fun! Learn about local turtles from a researcher with the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute in Front Royal.   Hunt for macroinvertebrates (stream bottom critters), see native fish, and enjoy many other exciting and hands-on things to do!  This is truly a family day!  Lunch is provided by Boy Scout Troop 88 and there is no admission fee for this event.  However, registration is required by April 20, 2014. Read More...  Register here...


Read the Spring 2014 newsletter here!

View the 2014 Education Calendar here!

Volunteer and Educational Opportunities!

2014 Student - Teacher Workshops:
June 23-27: North Fork Shenandoah to the Bay Professional Development for Teachers.  Partnering with Chesapeake Bay Foundation Chesapeake Classrooms to hold a professional development for teachers in public and private schools in the North Fork watershed in Rockingham, Shenandoah, Warren and Frederick Counties in Virginia.  READ MORE...

July 7-11: 2014 North Fork Explorers Summer Camp.  A week-long summer enrichment environmental education opportunity for rising 6th-12th graders.  Registration will begin in May with the Shenandoah County Parks and Recreation Department, 540-459-6777 -- or call or email Cindy Frenzel at Friends for more information, 540-459-8550, cindy.frenzel@fnfsr.org READ MORE...

July 7-11: 2014 Shenandoah River Players Summer Camp.  A week-long student summer enrichment environmental education and dramatic arts opportunity for rising 1st-3rd graders.  Registration will begin in May with the Shenandoah County Parks and Recreation Department, 540-459-6777 -- or call or email Cindy Frenzel at Friends for more information, 540-459-8550, cindy.frenzel@fnfsr.orgREAD MORE...


Algae Monitoring Initiative…We Are Looking for Volunteer Monitors for 2014

As many of you know, the amount of algae in the North Fork has increased significantly over the last 8 years.  It has been choking out native grasses and impairing our enjoyment of the river when fishing, paddling and swimming.  While it is clear that the river is “impaired” by excess algae much of the summer, government action may be predicated on being able to measure the amounts of algae in various parts of the river.  With this in mind, the US EPA has funded an effort by the Interstate Commission of the Potomac River Basin to develop and test a river algae monitoring protocol.

We are in need of three to five teams of two or three people who are willing to help with this important work.  The effort will involve surveying algae growth at a selected transect of the river twice a month through October.  This effort requires wading across the river during each survey, so there is some risk involved. You would need to be comfortable wading the river and knowing when not to do so, due to river level or turbidity.  

Training of volunteers will occur in April and May.  If you do not have a partner for this effort, we will team you up with someone else.  If you are not up to this effort, perhaps you know someone who would be willing to help. 

Interested?  Questions? Please get in touch with John Holmes at john.holmes@fnfsr.org.


Raindrops Fill Barrels, and Barrels Fill a Map

Rain barrels are wonderful -- they capture, store and discharge rainwater that otherwise would flow off a roof, through gutters and downspouts/rain chains and become runoff.  River Network partnered with IMRivers to create the Rain Barrel Registry.  Read more...  Register your rain barrel now!

Friends' Education Coordinator, Cindy Frenzel, and members Jeff and Ali Carithers, Receive Awards  


At its annual awards luncheon, the Lord Fairfax Soil and Water Consrvation District recognized Cindy Frenzel, Friends' Education Coordinator, with the Outstanding Educator Award for increasing the Friends' education efforts. 

 Jeff and Ali Carithers, Friends' members, received the Conservation Partner Award for all the conservation practices on their land.

Read the full article here.



Federal Court Ruling Affirms Chesapeake Bay Blueprint

Press Release, September 13, 2013

(Annapolis, MD) Pennsylvania Federal Judge Sylvia Rambo today issued a ruling upholding Bay clean-up efforts, and rejecting the arguments of the Farm Bureau, the National Association of Home Buidlers, and other big agriculture interests.  The ruling affirmed that EPA, working with the states, has the authority to set science-based pollution limits.  READ MORE...

Indian Spring Wetland Receives 2013 Better Development Award from The Valley Conservation Council.  READ MORE...                                                  


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PO Box 746, Woodstock, VA, 22664     540-459-8550     friends@fnfsr.org

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