Conservation Currents

In This Issue

Farm Bill's Fate To Be Decided in Next Two Weeks

Tractor plowing fieldIt's tough trying to figure out where things stand in the negotiations surrounding the 2013 Farm Bill. Critical conservation issues – including conservation compliance and a national Sodsaver program – are still "in play." With the end of the 2013 legislative session looming, Congress has only a few weeks to iron out differences between the House and Senate bills and pass a comprehensive, five-year Farm Bill.

The next two weeks will be critical to the outcome. If your Representative and/or Senator is a member of the Farm Bill Conference Committee (check the list on the League Web site), please consider making an appointment for an in-district meeting or sending a letter to the editor of your local paper. This does make a difference. Need tips on what to say? Contact Bill Wenzel at, the League's Agriculture Program Director, for talking points.

If your Representative and/or Senator is not a member of the Farm Bill Conference Committee, you can still help. Encourage him or her to sign on to the "Dear Colleague" letter supporting conservation compliance co-written by Senators Thune (R-SD) and Tester (D-MT) and Representatives Fortenberry (R-NE) and Thompson (D-CA). A copy of the letter is available on the League's Web site.

Failure to pass a Farm Bill benefits no one – not the politicians, not the farmers, not the environment, and not those needing support to feed their families. We must continue the fight for a Farm Bill that works for all Americans.

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Park Service Recognizes Missouri River Water Trail

Clay County ParkWith the strong support of the Izaak Walton League, the National Park Service (NPS) has added the Missouri National Recreational River Water Trail to the National Water Trails System. It is one of only three water trails established this year – bringing the total number to 14 nationwide.

National water trails are the pathways of rivers, lakes, and bays that increase access to water-based outdoor recreation and contribute to the livability and economic vitality of local communities.

The Missouri National Recreational River Water Trail takes visitors along more than 147 miles of the Missouri River, including wild and scenic stretches of the river and areas that Lewis and Clark recorded in their journals more than 200 years ago. The water trail extends from Ft. Randall Dam near Pickstown, South Dakota, to Sioux City, Iowa.

The Izaak Walton League is part of a committee of local and state organizations that helped establish the Missouri National Recreational River Water Trail and developed trailhead signs at 27 different public access points. Each sign provides information about surrounding natural resources and cultural history. You can find more information about the water trail, including maps and water conditions, on the Missouri National Recreational River Water Trail Web site.

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Bring Outdoor America to Your Next Event

Outdoor America cover, 2013 issue 4Outdoor America is the League's flagship publication – a quarterly magazine filled with conservation and outdoor recreation news. It makes a great addition to any member recruitment or tabling event at public venues such as a chapter open house, new member orientation, outdoor sports or gun show, conservation meeting, or local convention.

We have recent back issues of Outdoor America available for your use. We'll cover shipping expenses for up to 250 copies (2 cases). For larger requests, all you pay is the UPS shipping cost. Contact Marybeth Garrett by e-mail at or by phone at (800) 453-5463 x211 to place your order today.

To request 2014 issues of Outdoor America in bulk, e-mail Earl Hower at at the League's national office by these dates:

  • Issue 1 (winter) by December 15, 2013
  • Issue 2 (spring) by March 1, 2014
  • Issue 3 (summer) by June 1, 2014
  • Issue 4 (fall) by September 1, 2014

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Resource of the Month: Chapter Leader's Training Module DVD

Chapter Leader's Training Module DVDIf you are a newly-elected leader in your chapter and would like more information to assist you in your new role, contact to request a Chapter Leader's Training Module DVD. Topics on the DVD include League leadership; finance, legal, and fundraising issues; membership growth and retention; conservation programs and projects; outdoor recreation and activities; and communications and marketing. Developed in 2011, this training tool complements the IWLA Chapter Manual published and distributed to the then-chapter presidents in 2008.

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Protect Outdoor America While You Work

Earthshare logoCheck CFC #10620 on your workplace giving form if you are a federal employee. Or look for EarthShare in your workplace giving campaign materials if you work for a private corporation or local government agency. It's one of the easiest ways to conserve outdoor America for the future generations!

For more information or to start a workplace campaign, contact

Simplify the Holidays: Give the Gift of Conservation

Simplify the Holidays Searching for the right holiday gift? Try making a gift of the outdoors!

Make a donation in honor of a family member or friend or give them a gift membership, which includes four information-packed issues of Outdoor America and our monthly Conservation Currents e-newsletter.

Contact Information

If you have any questions about this newsletter or other IWLA programs, please contact:

Dawn Merritt
Communications Director
707 Conservation Lane
Gaithersburg, MD 20878
(301) 548-0150 ext. 220

Founded in 1922, the Izaak Walton League of America protects America's outdoors through community-based conservation, education, and the promotion of outdoor recreation.

PHOTO CREDITS: Corbis-Fotosearch (1), IStock (1), Izaak Walton League of America (2), Izaak Walton League of America/Paul Lepisto (1)


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