Friday, March 16, 2012

Return of the River: ACA helps to fund a film about the removal of the Elwha Dam

The ACA is proud to announce that John Gussman, paddler, photographer, and cinematographer, is a recipient of this year's ACA Club Fostered Stewardship Grant Program, funded by L.L. Bean. His film, Return of the River, is a film about the largest dam removal project in the history of the United States. "It is the story of a river unleashed after a century of impoundment, and the extraordinary community effort to set it free... It is a story about the power of water, and the power of people who love a place."

The Elwha River is the ancestral home of the Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe, who witnessed firsthand the effects of the 108-foot high dam on the river and all life that depended upon it. Build without fish ladders, the Elwha dam, which began construction in 1910, served as completely impenetrable barrier to fish migrations. For the first time in over 100 years, due to the tireless work of the Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe, countless activists and conservation organizations, the salmon run has been restored on the Elwha. 

"I am so excited that the American Canoe Association has provided me with this grant to help in the final production of my film," says Gussman. "It is such a great feeling to know you are not alone in the fight to help save our natural environment, and it takes many voices to make a change."

“The ACA is thrilled to be able to help John Gussman bring Return of the River to life," said Cate Huxtable, ACA Stewardship Coordinator, about the grant award. "Capturing the largest dam removal project in the history of the United States and the community efforts that made it possible, Gussman’s film stands as a testament to the extraordinary power of activists on behalf of a river and should serve as a beacon of stewardship for the rest of the country."

Take a look at other 2012 CFS Recipients

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