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Water Conservation - Make It Fun

Water Conservation - Make It Fun and Discover the Rewards

Students having fun at the Ark River Water FestivalEach spring, three conservation districts in southwest Kansas, combine their time, talent, and volunteers to host the Annual Ark River Water Festival. The festival is hosted by the Finney County Conservation District and participating districts are Gray and Kearny. Over 1,500 fifth and sixth grade students take part in the Water Festival each year. The students gather at two middle schools located in Garden City for the day-long presentations.

The festival is an environmental science workshop that offers a diverse range of activities. It is designed to heighten students' awareness about water and other natural resource concerns as well as define their role in helping to protect them. Teachers were given the opportunity to gain a wealth of up-to-date information on the topics presented and learn new innovative approaches to teaching these concepts in their classrooms.

The Science The students attend conservation-related presentations throughout the day which include a Rain Simulator, Groundwater Flow Model, EnviroScape, Stream Model Trailer, Long Haul, Thunderstorms, The Water Cycle, Incredible Journey, and the student favorite The Science "Man" iac.

The goals of the Ark River Water Festival are to:

  • Provide education to students on how to promote water quality at home, school, and in the community.
  • Provide information to the families of these students, to heighten awareness of best management practices for water conservation.
  • Provide hands-on activities to students, including natural resource management.
  • Provide an overall understanding of how complex the conservation of water has become.

Water resources are of vital importance to southwest Kansas and also to the future generations who will call it home. Young people need to understand how dependent we are on water; the direct effect it has on daily life; and how activities like agriculture, recreation, local industry, and wildlife habitat are all connected to water conservation. The Ark River Water Festival is a vital part of this conservation education.

Anyone interested in starting a district festival is invited to become a volunteer to learn first hand what is needed to produce a successful educational event.