Most water trails are created, promoted, and maintained through the energy and dedication of local citizens, working individually and through organizations to support the trail. Community involvement and volunteerism are the keys to developing a sense of trail stewardship, promoting the trail within the community, encouraging respect for the trail’s natural and cultural heritage, and ensuring that local governments support the trail’s existence. Through love of place – and of good times – volunteers bring hard work and celebration to the water trail community.
The Allegheny River Clean-up is a five-day event held every September the exemplifies the volunteerism principle. Allegheny Outfitters partners with the US Forest Service, the Conewango Creek Watershed Association, PA DCNR, Western Pennsylvania Conservancy, US Army Corps of Engineers, Whirley Industries, Northwest Bank, and Friends of Allegheny Wilderness among other organisations. Every local business in the community has also participated in various ways over the nine years the clean-up has been occuring. Guided by Allegheny Outfitters, volunteers ransack a 31-mile stretch of the mighty Allegheny River Water Trail. To date, they have pulled more than 100,000 pounds of metal alone from the river - not to mention recyclables, tires, and actual trash. An incredible community effort of volunteerism!