Friends of Riverbend Park

FORB Programs and Activities

While FORB’s membership is generally fewer than 100 people, we have been a very active organization, providing more than an incredible $125,000 in support for Riverbend Park, just since 2007.  Some primary efforts and donations are noted below.    

Native Plant Sale

Every Spring, FORB hosts a native plant sale at the Great Falls Grange.  Because native plants are adapted to local environmental conditions, they generally require less maintenance, less water and they provide vital habitats for wildlife.  We carry a variety of perennials, ferns, grasses, shrubs and trees.  This year's event will be Saturday April 29th from 8-11am.  We also are offering pre-orders to allow you to purchase larger quantities of native plants since we often sell out.  Click here to see more details.

Sponsoring Summer Interns

In 2016, Riverbend Park ran a total of 35 different camps including Insect Safari, Geology Rocks, Fishing Adventures, Paddle Away, Potomac Adventures and River Naturalist to name but a few. Each camp requires one park staff member and one summer intern sponsored by the Friends of Riverbend Park. FORB's support of these summer interns has enabled Riverbend to minimize costs to the public and offer a wider variety of camps. Historically, a number of interns have also come back to work at the park full time post college - an important factor in sustaining the workforce at the park.  

The Bluebell Benefit

Generously hosted by the Backus', this yearly event has brought together neighbors and supporters of Riverbend Park.  These events have contributed significant funding to park needs; in 2016 almost $10,000 was raised to support educational programs.  In 2017, we will be shifting this event to June - stay tuned for more details!

Funding Field Trips

FORB’s support for field trip scholarships has expanded greatly in recent years, and over the last five years it has provided scholarships totaling almost $5,000.  These scholarships enable Title I schools and students to have outdoor natural education and enjoyment experiences they would not otherwise have, and also provide incremental revenue to Riverbend Park, since, without these scholarships, field trips by some Title I schools would not be taken to Riverbend.

Donation of New Bass Boat

In 2015, FORB donated a new 16' outboard jet drive fishing boat.  In addition to generating a 25% Return on Investment in 2016, the fishing boat has been used to expand Riverbend’s educational offerings with respect to river and stream health, water quality, bird watching, fishing and fishing sustainability, and the environment.  The boat is also used as a back-up for river rescues. Click here to read about a local photographer's boating excursion at the park. 

Supplementing Equipment

Over the years, FORB has funded maintenance equipment including a snow plow, wood splitter, utility trailer, leaf blower, chainsaw tools and a tool box.  More exciting purchases include ten canoes and paddles from L.L. Bean to start the boat rental program at the park and a high-powered telescope for an astronomy program.

Friends of Riverbend Park is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. PO Box 1481 Great Falls, VA 22066-8481

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