Region 1 Updates + Newsletter Submissions

Submitted by Naomi Alhadeff (MT) - Naomi/Montana: 

Last year, my beautiful sister Heather LeAnne Alhadeff passed away from Leukemia and left a void in my life I may never fill. She was an avid traveler, so my partner Ryan and I are dedicating more of our time to seeing the world. In the midst of dealing with my sister's passing, I was fortunate enough to take an amazing trip to Norway and Ireland with Ryan and his family, for a Norwegian wedding. The stunning landscapes and vibrant cultures of these countries left me in awe. In Norway, we swam in fjords, ate delicious foods, and of course, the wedding went off with a hitch! Pictures attached. Afterward, we traveled to Ireland, we explored the vibrant cities and charming countryside, sampling delicious food and drinks along the way. Annoyingly, I got Covid while there so tasting my first home-poured draught Guinness…was underwhelming. 

 Back in August, as we all know, we gathered for our annual Project WET Conference in Spokane, WA. Where not only did I get to see, Come From Away with some amazing coordinators, but also spent some time with old friends. Lookin’ at you Diahne (WA)! In December, I stumbled upon a furry bundle of joy who changed my life forever. I adopted a new kitten and we named her Menorah. She has quickly become the light of my life (Jewish pun intended) and brought so much happiness and joy to my days. Menorah is a playful and mischievous kitten who loves to explore and climb. Her antics have provided me with endless entertainment and helped alleviate the grief of losing a big sister, even if for a little while. 

 Ryan and I took a trip to La Jolla, San Diego, California for my birthday this February to escape the cold. This coastal gem is known for its stunning beaches, breathtaking sunsets, and charming village feel. We spent our days walking on the beach to, exploring the local shops and restaurants, and taking in the beauty of the coastline. Overall, these experiences have taught me to cherish life’s little moments and never take anything for granted. Whether it's a furry friend like Menorah, a beautiful destination like Norway and Ireland, or a charming coastal town like La Jolla, the world is full of wonders just waiting to be explored. 

 As for Menorah, my new kitten, no water-related news directly involves her. However, it's always important to ensure that pets have access to clean water for drinking and hygiene purposes. Additionally, it's important to keep cats indoors to prevent them from preying on wildlife, which can disrupt fragile ecosystems. Despite her cuteness and tiny claws, she’s not too interested in the 40-mile-an-hour winds and -270F she’s experienced in her short life, thus far. 

naomi pics


Submitted by Joni Scharfenberg (AK) 
Fairbanks Soil and Water Conservation Spring newsletter 


I took a 10 day trip to Thailand in early February 

joni pics


Announcements or kudos 
Submitted by Jack Hilgert (NE) 

Wetlands of Nebraska Outreach and Education project--- Announcing the release of final products! 

See the links below for information about a new Wetlands Project in Nebraska. 

Several of my partners/facilitators have been involved in this. Excited for them that it has come together, 

Nebraska Game and Parks, in collaboration with the Platte Basin Timelapse project, released expanded wetlands educational content on World Wetlands Day, Feb. 2. 

These new resources offer the opportunity to learn about Nebraska's five diverse wetland types, as well as grow one's understanding of their importance to the state, its people and its wildlife. 

Expanded content includes: 

  • Five documentary films about Nebraska’s wetlands and the wildlife and people who depend on them. These films, created by Platte Basin Timelapse at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, highlight Nebraska’s sandhills, playas, saline, riverine and urban wetlands. Viewers take a journey across the state, meet people working to conserve these spaces, and see landscapes and wildlife few get to experience; 

  • An updated “Guide to Nebraska’s Wetlands and their Conservation Needs,” available in print and PDF form. The full-color publication covers in-depth 14 Nebraska wetland systems; 

  • A new booklet, “Wetlandology,” a child-friendly, activity-filled publication on Nebraska’s wetlands and the plants and animals that love them; 

  • Five digital stories from PBT producers Mariah Lundgren, Ethan Freese, Grant Reiner, Dakota Altman and Brooke Talbott. These ESRI StoryMaps integrate maps, text, photos and video to generate an interactive learning experience; and 

  • An educator guide to the products and two educational videos with paired lesson plans, which are nearing completion and will be shared soon. 

Find all of these resources and more at

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