AP NEWS

Pepperell teacher ready for Paddle Georgia

May 16, 2017 GMT

A teacher at Pepperell Middle School will have something to share with his students when he returns to school after summer break, thanks to a scholarship he won to participate in Paddle Georgia 2017, a week-long, 106-mile journey down the Etowah River.

Hunter Williams, a seventh-grade teacher at the school, was chosen to receive a $425 scholarship to participate in the annual canoe and kayak trip organized by Georgia River Network. During the event, Williams and other Georgia educators will receive environmental education training and become certified as a Georgia Adopt-A-Stream water monitors.

“They’ll take these skills and knowledge to the classroom, but they’ll also have some incredible stories to share about the Etowah River,” said Paddle Georgia Coordinator Joe Cook. “The journey is an educational adventure for all participants — not just the teachers.

The scholarship program is made possible by Georgia River Network and Coosa River Basin Initiative through generous support from the Mohawk Carpet Foundation and Williams Energy.

More than 350 people are expected to participate in the seven-day journey that starts near Dawsonville June 17 and ends in Rome June 23. More details and registration information can be found at www.garivers.org/paddle_georgia.

Along the way, paddlers will venture through Dawson Forest Wildlife Management Area, venture into the backwaters of Lake Allatoona, shoot through rock dams built by Native Americans 500 to 1000 years ago and visit historic sites like the Etowah Indian Mounds before finally drifting into historic downtown Rome on the trip’s final day.

Paddle Georgia is an annual canoe and kayak journey that takes place on a different Georgia river each year. In the event’s first 12 years, Georgia River Network has guided more than 4000 people down 13 Georgia rivers and generated more than $400,000 for river protection. Nearly 80 Georgia educators have participated in the scholarship program.

Georgia River Network is a non-profit 501c3 organization working to ensure a clean water legacy by engaging and empowering Georgians to protect and restore our rivers from the mountains to the coast.

For details contact Joe Cook at 706-409-0128 or joecookpg@gmail.com.