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749 Hopmeadow St.
Simsbury, CT 06070

Farmington River Watershed Association Otter Mascot

About Us – Farmington River Watershed Association

There's more to protecting a River than meets the eye.

Founded in 1953, the Farmington River Watershed Association has been working six decades to protect the River that connects us all and to restore the natural resources of the watershed. We invite you to join us and become a part of this important effort.

The FRWA is a citizen-based, non-profit 501©(3) organization at the forefront of restoration and conservation issues such as water quality, water allocation, recreational usage, open space, and wetland and floodplain protection. We work with federal, state and local governments, business and industry, and the people of the watershed’s 33 communities to protect the river and the region’s natural resources. Our staff.

FRWA in Action

FRWA has developed a wide range of Research, Education, and Advocacy programs to protect the Farmington River and its watershed forever:


  • The Farmington River Resource Center, the clearinghouse of Farmington River and natural resource information. Housed in our offices, the center offers over 3,000 publications, mapping services and staff to help with your inquiries and information needs. The Resource Center conducts Natural Resource Inventories and Build-out Analyses for watershed towns (see New Hartford Build-Out Analysis), and reviews town 10-year Plans of Conservation and Development. This is an ongoing project area which provides data for our State of the Watershed Report and Farmington Valley Biodiversity Project.


  • River guide and newsletters. Our Farmington River Guide (the only one available) offers a wealth of up-to-date information on boating, fish and wildlife, historic features and geologic structures. We also produce the FRWA News, a quarterly newsletter reporting on current river issues and opportunities to get involved in our work.
  • Canoe trips. For over twenty years, we’ve hosted an interpreted annual canoe trip series with archaeologists, botanists, ecologists, historians, and ornithologists lending their expertise to provide special opportunities to experience, enjoy, and learn about the river.
  • River cleanups. On the first Saturday in October, hundreds of FRWA volunteers collect and recycle trash found along the river and its tributaries. In 2005, 250+ volunteers collected over 6,800 lbs. of trash from the banks of the Farmington and Pequabuck rivers. Day’s end is celebrated with a pizza party for river enthusiasts to meet and socialize.
  • Salmon Stocking. Each spring the FRWA, in conjunction with the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection’s Atlantic Salmon Restoration Project, helps to organize volunteers to stock literally millions of salmon fry in the Farmington and other key potential salmon-bearing rivers around the state.


  • Wild and Scenic Designation, the strongest federal river protection available. FRWA worked for 10 years to achieve this designation on 14 miles of the Upper Farmington to ensure that no federally funded or permitted project would degrade river resources. We are an active member of the Wild & Scenic management committee on the Upper Farmington River (known as the Farmington River Coordinating Committee), and we are advocating for similar designation in the Lower Farmington River (from Canton to Windsor) and Salmon Brook (in East Granby, Granby, and Hartland).
  • Water allocation. We have served on the state’s Water Allocation Task Force as well as on the Board of Rivers Alliance of Connecticut to be actively engaged on ways to better manage freshwater supplies. We pioneered the statewide water diversion law, and strongly support the new statewide minimum stream flow policy that is designed to ensure adequate flows in all rivers and streams of Connecticut.
  • Town Land-Use Hearings. We encourage the development and implementation of well thought-out local land use regulations. For example, we promoted the adoption of river protection overlay districts (a form of zoning) in five upper river communities. We also continually monitor local land use board agendas and comment on land use issues that may affect the river and the region’s biodiversity.

We Need Your Support

Member support is critical to our work - and the Farmington River's future. So jump in and join FRWA today! When you join, you will receive our newsletter with up-to-date information on river issues and information on FRWA events and volunteer opportunities.

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