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L.A. River Pioneer Recognized

George Wolfe is keeping his fingers crossed about a boating program along Echo Park's Glendale Narrows this summer.

One of the Los Angeles River's biggest friends got big boost earlier this week.

George Wolfe, who led the first paddle down all 51 miles of the river, got a 2012 River Heroes Award. 

The award recognizes exceptional efforts to protect rivers and other watersheds.

Wolfe's pioneering paddle in 2008 led to the River's being declared a "navigable waterway" by the federal government, opening up funding and recreational options.

That paddle is featured in an upcoming documetary, Rock the Boat: Saving America's Wildest River. (See trailer above.)

Wolfe was also key in developing the first paddling program on the River, last summer at the stretch near the Sepulveda Dam in the Valley.

Wolfe says he's keeping his fingers crossed about this summer's boating program, which could include a leg along the Glendale Narrows in the Elysian Valley near Dodger Stadium.

The River Heroes Award is sponsored by Tom's of Maine and the River Network.

Susan R May 10, 2012 at 11:36 PM
We want peace and quiet for residents that live along the river and clean air! http://lametrolinktrains.com
Susan R May 10, 2012 at 11:38 PM
We want peace and quiet for residents that live along the river and clean air! http://lametrolinkpollution.com/
Anthea Raymond (Editor) May 10, 2012 at 11:40 PM
@Susan--Would a paddling program bringing folks through there be helpful in raising awareness about the issues for residents in the Elysian Valley and Cypress Park?
Will Campbell May 11, 2012 at 02:18 PM
Some call it a nitpick but pardon my geographical point of order. The LA River's Glendale Narrows is at best Echo Park-adjacent. It courses directly along and through Atwater Village and Elysian Valley.
Anthea Raymond (Editor) May 11, 2012 at 03:28 PM
@Will-Nitpicking can be fun, especially when you are technically correct, though I always consider Elysian Valley part of Echo Park. Here are photos of our journey down that stretch of river in September 2010: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/anthea-raymond/lapfd-flotilla-takes-la-r_b_709268.html
Susan R May 12, 2012 at 02:42 AM
Elysian Valley is not part of echo park. It is a separate portion along the river. It is not connected or near echo park. It is actually closer to Elysian Heights and Silverlake and Atwater Village. Anyone that bicycles or walks along the river should have heard the loud train horns and seen the train pollution. But then those are only visitors. We need to care about those that live along the river.
Anthea Raymond (Editor) May 12, 2012 at 03:28 AM
@Susan- You are right! I suspect also that that area will change dramatically very soon and I wonder who is looking out for the interests of current residents there. The transition will sound many of the same themes we hear in Echo Park--displacement, change, over(?)-development.
Susan R May 12, 2012 at 05:26 AM
Right now the only development I see is on Taylor Yard. There is nothing going on in Elysian Valley, but you never know. Elysian Valley is a very special area that should be protected against development.
Anthea Raymond (Editor) May 12, 2012 at 06:13 AM
I agree. You can hear the water running from your house there I bet.
Susan R May 12, 2012 at 03:09 PM
Actually no. The water is quiet. I can hear the loud train horns night and day.
Susan R May 12, 2012 at 03:27 PM
It has not been an easy fight trying to get Greater Cypress Park Neighborhood Council on board trying to get the train horns quiet. They refused to allow me to start a "no noise" committee. Why would a "no noise" committee be so dangerous? Because it would include their noisy church. And, they could not have that.

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