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Friends of James River Park
December 2013 - In This Issue:


Join in and celebrate the season with the Friends



Saturday, December 14 

Come early but the parade begins about 6  

No, this isn't the "Tacky Lights Tour," though that's fun too... This is, well, a James River Advisory Council (JRAC) sponsored event that was the brainchild of a private citizen. Mr. Harvey Price floated his decorated boat on the James back in 1989. [Quick, who was president then?] You can view this parade of beautifully decorated boats from historic Libby Hill Park at 28th and E. Franklin St. We, the Friends, will be teaming up with the James River Outdoor Coalition (JROC) to greet spectators with hot chocolate and goodies. Come early, the actual parade begins around 6:00. Stay tuned to our Facebook page for updates since there is the possibility of this event being canceled! Dress for the weather -- uh, we know, we know, in Richmond that is sooo unpredictable. 


Saturday, December 21 - 5:00 p.m.

Stay in touch with nature's "wild side!" Meet up with the Friends and Nathan Burrell (JRPS Superintendent) at 5 p.m. on the Belle Isle side of the footbridge. There we'll enjoy a bonfire (JRPS-approved!), share home-baked holiday cookies, read a poem or two, sing seasonal carols... Move Your Spirit at our JRPS Winter Solstice Celebration! Leashed dogs welcome!



We have Wonderful news here! Our over-worked Park staff has been increased by two -- count 'em, two -- new (sort of), dedicated (totally), and hardworking (always) members! You probably already have met Mike and Matt in the Park, with Nathan or on their own, working on trails, keeping up with maintenance of all varieties, and generally making JRPS "The Place to Be". Now you can congratulate them on having full-time City jobs. This brings the number of boots-on-the ground JRPS staffers to four!

Michael Gee, Operations Manager

Matthew Mason, Volunteer Coordinator


Welcome them when you see them in the Park!

Did you hear the news? Richmond has made the Frommer's list of top ten travel destinations for 2014. We're cool, according to Frommer's Web site: "Richmond is coming into its own as a choice regional destination with a growing slate of breweries, farm-to-table restaurants, and even white-water river rapid activities cutting right through downtown. While you weren't looking, Richmond got cool."

But we already knew that! Could it be that our beautiful urban wilderness Park had more than a bit to do with it! Read the article on

The Friends will make good on our New Year's Resolution! We resolved to offer you - Members and Friends - more ways to get involved with the JRPS! Your task is to hold us to it! On the 3rd Saturdays of the Months, we will have Volunteer Days. Please come, help, and join us in our efforts to improve the JRPS. Community Service hours are available for anyone who needs them. In January, on 1/18/14, join us at the North Bank parking lot, 9:00 AM. We'll be working until about 1 PM. The primary task will be to build stairs -- but we also will be sprucing up the area, which can include cleanup, invasive plant removal, painting, mulching, and other activities. Join in and hold us to our collective resolution to fix up the Park!


Hey, did you know, that according to, the most popular New Year's Resolutions are... Drink Less Alcohol, Eat Healthy Food, Get a Better Education, Get a Better Job, Get Fit, Lose Weight, Manage Debt, Manage Stress, Quit Smoking, Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle, Save Money, Take a Trip, Volunteer to Help Others? Make "Volunteer with the Friends" one of yours!



Wow! This is a big one! Thanks to generous gifts from JROC, Bank of America and FoJRP, in spring, when the weather gets warm and all of us River Rats (Humans, Dogs, etc.) get thirsty, look for newly installed water fountains at three Park locations, Reedy Creek, North Bank and Great Shiplock. Not only will they provide us a drink, but they'll have a spigot for filling water bottles (fabulous for our biker dudes and dudesses) and a spot for our K9 friends to slurp up nature's best hydration -- right from the James itself!



Are you coming to the Solstice Celebration? If so, you may catch a final glimpse of an older JRPS kiosk, slated for demolition. The Friends are purchasing a new information kiosk for the landing spot on the Belle Isle side of the footbridge. The old kiosk just isn't up to par for JRPS anymore. Oh, and on a related note -- once this beauty is installed, please look out for it's safety and well-being. Vandalism is not a part of our Park. If you see damage done to any structure, please give a call at (804) 646-5100




Are you scratching your head trying to think of the perfect gift? Not to worry shoppers, we have a cool solution! How about giving the river lover in your life a gift membership to FoJRP? Or a FoJRP t-shirt? Or a JRPS license plate? Or all of the above? You could even make a tax-deductible donation to the Park in their name! See, we are here to help you out! Now get shopping! Find your gift at

Our Mission
The Friends of James River Park is an all volunteer 501(c)(3) organization created by a dedicated group of citizens in 1999. Our mission is to provide an ongoing source of citizen support for the conservation, enhancement, and enjoyment of the 550-acre James River Park System and its natural and historic environments.