News from RiverLink

February 22, 2013

Adopt-a-Stream teams committed to improving WNC water quality
RiverLink’s greatest asset is the group of people who dedicate their time and efforts to making the French Broad and Swannanoa Rivers a better place for the community. 

Everyday pollutants such as trash, used oil, pesticides, fertilizers and yard wastes reach our urban streams. Although some pollutants are easily detected, some go unnoticed without the watchful eye of concerned and involved citizens. Adopt-a-Stream Teams are crucial in protecting our rivers, creeks, and streams and in reporting water pollution problems. 

RiverLink is proud to continue the Adopt-A-Stream program in 2013 and welcome new teams who are committed to improving water quality in Western North Carolina. Our first new team for 2013 is the UGA Asheville Dawgs Alumni Association.

According to team leader, Collin O’Berry, “We were looking for a way to work as an organization to have a positive impact on the local environment and community; and we felt that adopting a  stream would be a great fit. We are excited about adopting a section of the Swannanoa River where there are obvious pollution issues due to its proximity to two major roads and our efforts will truly make a difference.”

The Adopt-a-Stream program is a hands-on way for local residents and businesses to get actively involved in improving the water quality of the French Broad River Watershed. This is a very flexible program that gives you the tools and knowledge to make a difference in your watershed by cleaning up your local stream.

Anyone who is concerned about water quality within the French Broad River watershed can participate! Adopt-a-Stream Teams may include: individuals, communities, families, student organizations, youth and church groups, scout groups, civic organizations, businesses and industries.  

French Broad River Blend Coffee benefits RiverLink 

Coffee lovers can help RiverLink make a difference in cleaning up the French Broad River over a cup of coffee without having to leave the comfort of the warm house. Appalachian based micro-roaster Blue Smoke Coffee Roasting Company offers its French Broad River Blend, a vibrant medium roast, with $1 from every bag sold donated to RiverLink to support its mission for the revitalization of the French Broad River. Blue Smoke has been donating to RiverLink since 2007 when they first started their coffee support program for area non-profits. The French Broad River Blend is available at the French Broad Food Coop (90 Biltmore Avenue in Asheville) and Greenlife Grocery (70 Merrimon Avenue in Asheville).

“Giving back is the main reason we started Blue Smoke. We now donate at least 5 percent of sales to environmental and humanitarian causes. We like to do things that make a difference in our region and we love what you all are doing,” says Kevin Price, owner/roaster of Blue Smoke Coffee Roasting Company. In addition to supporting local environmental organizations like RiverLink, Blue Smoke Coffee Roasting Company employs a sustainable and socially responsible approach in developing their coffee blends from 100 percent organic, shade-grown and fair trade beans through using green renewable energy.

Blue Smoke Coffee Roasting Co. also donates at least 1 percent of their annual sales to 1% For The Planet, an alliance of businesses committed to leveraging resources to create a healthier planet. 1% for the Planet, of which RiverLink is a member, aims to prove that taking environmental responsibility is good for business. “We are a small regional coffee roaster wanting to give back and it was long overdue that we threw our support behind a non-profit that directly benefited Asheville since Asheville has been so good to us,” says Price.

“Donating like this is so important to organizations like RiverLink,” said RiverLink Executive Director Karen Cragnolin, “And it’s good for the French Broad River watershed, because RiverLink will take that money and invest it in creating greenways and improving water quality.”

More information about the Adopt-A-Stream team can be found at or by emailing