RSVP Here! https://goo.gl/forms/IO8yfXElWCKMDgtg1

 Come join us for the 2nd Annual Paddle Assistant Workshop! If you have your own kayak and want to join us as a Paddle Assistant on our Kansas River Paddle Trips, then come learn about how you volunteer, what we do and meet the crew!

Some of the things you can expect…..learn how to help us on the river, how to read the river, and this year we will have instruction on how to throw a rope and what to do when a boat tips in the river!

Admission is FREE….just a willingness to learn about how you can volunteer with FOK…and have fun!

fok pa



IMG_1507As part of our current Johnson County Stormwater Education Grant we are recruiting and training volunteers for three Stream Teams to test water in three tributary streams of the Kansas River.  We need 4 to 6 volunteers for each Stream Team and we tentatively plan to test the water quality of Turkey Creek, Mill Creek and Cedar Creek.  The training for the Stream Teams will be on Sunday, April 2 from 1:00 to 4:30pm at the Pickard Conference Room at the Johnson County Central Reserve Library at 9875 W. 87th Street, Overland Park, KS 66212.

The training workshop will be taught by our Educational staff and you will learn to perform non-chemical and chemical tests, and also the procedure to seine and identify macro invertebrates (insects that live in the water.) At 2:30 teams will travel to their test sites with an educational staff member and perform the water quality tests and record the results.  Teams will choose dates to meet again in May, June and July to perform the tests again and compare the results. Friends of the Kaw will provide all the testing equipment for the Stream Teams.  For more information or to reserve a spot for the training email Laura at friendsofthekaw@gmail.com or call 913 963 3460.




IMG_2117 (1)As part of Friends of the Kaw’s EPA Environmental Justice Small Grant, we are holding a training for volunteers to help us with future Kids About Water (KAW) classes on Tuesday, March 7 from 4:30 to 6pm in the 2nd floor conference room of the Bethany Medical Building at 21 N. 12th Street, Kansas City, Kansas. The workshop will be held before the monthly Kansas City Kansas NAACP meeting.

For more information or to make a reservation for the training or KAW class please call Laura Calwell, our Education Director, at 913 963 3460 or email to friendsofthekaw@gmail.com You will learn how to assist trained instructors help students do non-chemical and chemical tests, and also the procedure to seine and identify macro invertebrates (insects that live in the water.) Friends of the Kaw education staff will assist our high school interns from J.C. Harmon and Wyandotte High Schools (also a project sponsored by our EJ grant) train volunteers on March 7.


Manhattan Town Center Community Fair

Manhattan Town Center Community Fair

Come see Friends of the Kaw at the Manhattan Community Fair on Saturday, February 4 from 10:00 am to 3:00 pm at the Manhattan Town Center!  We hope to see you there!

Manhattan Comm Fair

Kaw Valley Eagles Day 2017!

Kaw Valley Eagles Day 2017! 

Come see Friends of the Kaw and join the fun at the 21st Annual Kaw Valley Eagles Day on Saturday, January 21, 2017 from 8:30 am to 4:00 pm.  Admission is free….located at FREE STATE HIGH SCHOOL, 4700 Overland Drive, Lawrence, Kansas.  See you there!

Kaw valley eagles day

Support FOK with your end of year gift!

Happy New Year to our FRIENDS of the KAW!  We wish you all a very healthy and happy 2017!  Thank you for joining us in this last year.   We were very busy working to educate, advocate and monitor the river for suspected pollution.  Read on to learn about what we accomplished this year!

2016 FOK Accomplishments:

Friends of the Kaw’s first priority is to physically monitor the river, report suspected pollution and mediate a solution.


  • Documentation and monitoring of sand dredging operations by visually monitoring dredge sites and communicating with the Corps of Engineers. Following progress and publicized decision for new Environmental Impact Statement.  Advocated for public comments for the EIS.


  • Responded to six pollution reports including questionable discharges, sewage spills, fish kills and milky discharges.
  • With assistance from Westar’s Green Team, cleaned up metal in the river below Bowersock in Lawrence; completed 4 cleanup floats, and 3 riparian cleanups.
  • Kansas Riverkeeper is a member of the Governor’s River Recreation Committee charged with promoting the Kansas River National Water Trail and the Kansas Regional Advisory Committee representing recreation.
  • Provided input for the Vision for the Future Water Supply in Kansas via the Regional Advisory Committee and a consortium of Kansas environmental organizations.


Our goal is to increase awareness of the Kaw as a drinking water source for 800,000 Kansans and access to the river.

  • Organized and led 17 educational float trips for over 400 people.  Took 256 paddlers on the Kansas River for the Little Apple Paddle as part of the Manhattan Convention and Visitor Bureau’s Paddle Event!
  • Provided nine Boys and Girls Club paddling experiences for over 270 kids and 50 volunteers in conjunction with day camps organized by the National Park Service and Freedom’s Frontier.  Thanks to our volunteers who spent the morning paddling with the kids!
  • Worked with the KS Department of Parks, Wildlife and Tourism and the National Park Service on promotion of the KS River Water Trail.
  • Provided 50 KAW (Kids About Water)  5-unit classes with approximately 1,200 kids and 90 volunteers.
  • Presented at 37 educational outreach events at schools, outdoors shops, churches and community gatherings in the Kansas River valley, reaching over 8,500 people in the community.
  • Received eight grants for a total of $67,665 for WRAPS Programs, River Cleanups, Paddle Trips, KAW Classes (Kids About Water), ending in-river dredging and stormwater education (both urban and rural.)
  • Recruited volunteers for De Soto Rotary’s Winesong event and the Great Kaw Adventure Race.  FOK is a beneficiary of both events.
  • Fundraising Events: The Wild and Scenic Film Festival in both Lawrence and Leawood, Beers of the Kaw in Lawrence and the Wine & Astronomy Event at Middlecreek Winery.  MARK YOUR CALENDARS!  The Wild and Scenic Film Festival will be held on May 4 in Leawood at Prairiefire Cinetopia in Overland Park and on May 5 at Liberty Hall in Lawrence.  Beers of the Kaw will be back for the 2nd Year on Sunday, November 5, 2017!!!

Would you please considering supporting Friends of the Kaw and our work to protect and preserve the Kansas River with an end of year gift?  Your gift supports your hometown Kansas River and the Kansas Riverkeeper Program.  Thank you for following us on this journey and supporting our programs!  Come join us in 2017 at one of our events, education programs or on the river!  Contact the Riverkeeper if you wish to become an FOK Volunteer!

Friends of the Kaw

“Protect and Preserve the Kansas River” 

              Clean Water Creates Strong Communities – Support FOK

YES I will support the Kansas Riverkeeper in advocacy efforts to protect and preserve the Kaw River.

Your tax-deductible contribution to Friends of the Kaw will assure the Kansas Riverkeeper’s ability to spend maximum time on river protection efforts.

Please Consider Becoming a FOK Sustaining Member:

When you become a Sustaining Member, FOK takes a monthly donation from your credit card, debit card or bank account. This allows you to spread your support out over the year to make generosity easier on your budget. It also
gives FOK a steady stream of reliable income and reduces administrative costs so more of your money goes to the Kansas River!

As long as you are a Sustaining Member, you never have to renew your membership. Just let us know if you ever want to change the amount of your donation or need to update your information. You can also do this online.

Download our membership form here and mail your check to: Friends of the Kaw and mail to: P.O. Box 1612 Lawrence, KS 66044


If you would like to pay online, please go to www.kansasriver.org and make a donation at the top of the page.

Thank you for all you do for the river….and see you in 2017!  Happy New Year!

Public Meeting on Dredging the Kansas River



Lawrence Public Library, Lawrence, KS


Friends of the Kaw Members and Kansas River Supporters:

The Draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for Dredging on the Kansas River has been released. We are asking that you review the EIS and be prepared to submit public comment.  If you are on our mailing list, you will receive a postcard that you can sign and send.  Watch for that in the coming weeks and  please respond!   In the meantime, please come to the PUBLIC MEETING and ask questions about the Draft EIS, gather your comments that you want to make, talk to FOK Staff and Board Members to gain as much as information as possible and then submit your written comments by December 12.  It is very important that we have a good showing from our community at the PUBLIC MEETING!  Please join us!

The Public Meeting will be:

Thursday, November 17, 2016 from 4:00 PM to 7PM at the Lawrence Public Library in Lawrence, Kansas

We need your support! The Public Notice Posting from the US Army Corps of Engineers:

Public Notice and Draft Environmental Impact Statement for Kansas River Commercial Dredging

Renewal of Department of the Army authorizations to dredge sand and gravel for commercial purposes from the Kansas River in the State of Kansas. Master’s Dredging Company, Inc. and LBB, LLC Company have proposed new operations/sites and will require a new Department of the Army permit. If issued, the permits would authorize dredging of aggregate materials for a period of 5 years from the date of permit execution before a new analysis and environmental review of the work is performed. This notice is being provided to identify the proposed work and environmental consequences so that the Corps may consider all pertinent comments prior to determining if issuance of these permits would be in the public interest.

Public Notice Comment Period Expires – December 12, 2016

Kansas River Commercial Dredging Public Notice

KS River Dredging Draft Environmental Impact Statement


Successful Cleanup Project

Thank you to VOLUNTEERS from FOK and Westar Energy’s Green Team for a successful CLEANUP of the KANSAS RIVER below BOWERSOCK on Saturday, November 5, 2016!

Thank you to Douglas County Natural and Cultural Heritage Grant for funding this great project!  

This project involved the removal of old metal from a bridge that was cased in the sandbar below Bowersock.  In partnership with Westar Energy’s Green Team, we removed the metal and have recycled it for use in a art sculpture piece with KU Professor Matt Burke!

Special thank you to The Bowersock Mills & Power Company for loaning their jon boat and also for working with us on the water flow while we completed this cleanup!

IMG_1205 IMG_1194IMG_1043 IMG_1066 - Copy

Beers of the Kaw


Thank you for coming to our 1st Annual event and supporting Friends of the Kaw, our Riverkeeper Program and our work for the Kansas River!

Beers of the Kaw - BEER IMG_1231

Super big thank you to ABE & JAKE’S LANDING and Mike Logan for their generous donation of the beautiful space along the river and for all of their guidance for this wonderful event!

Thank you to the BREWERIES :

Free State ~ Yankee Tank ~ 23rd Street ~ Boulevard ~ Tallgrass ~ Blue Skye

LB Brewing ~ Blind Tiger ~ and…Kansas Territory Brewery!

And Food Vendors:  Draskos Food Truck, Fine Thyme Food

and Terrebonne Cafe!

Thank you to our SPONSORS!!!!

Landmark National Bank ~ Croomwell Solar ~ Sunflower Outdoor & Bike ~

Lucia Beer Garden & Grill ~ Grandstand ~ Westar Energy Green Team ~

Kansas Alliance for Wetlands & Streams ~ Up A Creek Canoe & Paddle ~

and….Dirty Girl Adventures!

Special THANK YOU to BOWERSOCK POWER & MILL CO. for all of their donations, sponsorship and to Sarah Hill-Nelson to her dedication to this great event for FOK!

Thank you to Lisa Grossman​ for her extra help…and to the FOK Board and FOK Volunteers for a super job!  Together, we can do great things!

See you all NEXT YEAR!  


Amazon Smile for FOK

Use AMAZON “SMILE” to donate to Friends of the Kaw!


Use your Amazon account to support Friends of the Kaw!  Do you buy books, music, or other items you can’t find locally on Amazon.com?  If so, please consider using Amazon Smile, and select “Friends of the Kaw” as your charity.

You can follow this link to sign up today!

When you use your Amazon Smile account, you shop as you normally do and Amazon will donate .5% of your purchase to a charitable organization of your choice at no added cost to you….so please select Friends of the Kaw today and have those dollars directed towards our work to protect and preserve the Kansas River!