NAME & PROFESSION: Christine Beish, Paralegal, Kerns & Kastenbaum, PLC
JAMES RIVER ORGANIZATION(S): Volunteer, Enrichmond Foundation
WHY YOU LOVE THE JAMES: For me, the James River is a great place to take my kids. They love jumping around on the rocks, exploring the trails, and searching for clams, snakes, fish and other wildlife. We visit the JRPS about once a month, and we like to encourage our friends to join us. There are so many different parks to enjoy, and since they are always changing with the seasons, we never seem to run out of new adventures. While we’re hiking, we’ll talk about the history of the area, the many ways Richmonders have been using the James for work and play for centuries, and what we can do as citizens to keep the river healthy. I’m hopeful that exposing my children and their friends to all the gifts the river has to offer will inspire them to fall in love with and be passionate about the James and its conservation and health.
HOW YOU HELP THE RIVER: I think keeping the James clean and healthy is one of the most important responsibilities we citizens have. In June of this year, I participated in the 11th annual James River Advisory Council river clean-up at Reedy Creek. This is a fantastic and well-organized event, and I was amazed at how much was accomplished in a such short amount of time with a clean-up effort of this size and scale.
Also, over at the Enrichmond Foundation, I’m working with executive director Noel McKenzie to establish some social media tools like Facebook and Twitter to communicate about various events, conservation issues and clean-up efforts in all of the City of Richmond’s parks, including the JRPS.
WHAT WOULD YOU IMPROVE OR CHANGE: I would like to see Richmond offer more opportunities for children to enjoy the James. Classes like paddling, boating and fishing could be offered, along with family friendly clean-up efforts, guided river walks, and conservation classes. Just to name a few! I’d also like to see more prominent signage and better access points for all age groups be incorporated in the parks.