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National Volunteer Month takes place in April and TVA is encouraging volunteerism throughout the month by offering opportunities for you to give back. It is also Earth Month and what better way is there to help give back than by visiting your Trail or Spot and picking up litter? If you need bags and gloves, please let me know.

Interested in doing a clean-up at your site or hosting an event for National Trails Day? We are looking for creative ways to involve our trail adopters.

Make sure you take some time to enjoy the beautiful spring wildflowers that are making their appearance. There are some beautiful TVA trails out there just waiting for you.

Thank you and have a great spring!

Did the high water leave litter and debris on your property or in your Tennessee Valley community? Are you seeing shoreline erosion? Find out what you can do.

Upcoming Opportunities

Looking for Earth Month opportunities for community service? Join some of our partners to help clean up the beautiful lakes and rivers of the Tennessee Valley.

Name: Earth Day at Monte Sano State Park
Date: 4/20/19
Time: 10:00 pm- 5:00 pm CST
Location: Monte Sano State Park 5105 Nolen Ave, Huntsville, AL 35801 (GPS Coordinates 34.797845, -87.001148)
County: Madison, AL
Description: Earth Day celebration including music, food, exhibits, and demonstrations. TVA will have an outreach display focusing on Natural Resources and land management activities. For more information, visit
Contact: Damien Simbeck at (256) 386-2534 or

Name: Boone Lake Association Clean-Up
Date: 4/27/2019
Time: 9:00 am – 3:00 pm EST
Location: Participants wanting to pick up litter along the shoreline meet at the Bluff City boat ramp or TWRA/11E ramp; by water, meet at one of the following: Boone Lake Marina; Davis Boat Dock; Rockingham Marina, Lakeview Marina; Jay’s Dock (Pickens Bridge Ramp).    
Description: Join Boone Lake Association and TVA in the Boone Lake litter clean-up. Trash bags will be provided. Clean-up participants are encouraged to take their trash to the marinas, docks andramps named above and get a door prize ticket for every bag of trash they turn in.  Each registered participant will receive a wristband for admission to the volunteer picnic and an event T-shirt.
Come to Winged Deer Park for free picnic. Food serving starts at 4 pm; prize drawings start at 5 pm. You must be present to win. Seating is limited, bring your blanket or a chair.
Contact: Boone Lake Association at (423) 360-5057 or Johnson City Parks & Recreation at (423) 283-5827        

Name: Athens Earth Day at Friendship Church
Date: 4/27/2019
Time: 10:00 am – 3:00 pm CST
Location: Friendship Church at 16479 Lucas Ferry Road in Athens, Ala. (34.797845, -87.001148)
County: Limestone, AL
Description: A family friendly festival featuring attractions, arts, crafts, and demonstrations. TVA will have an outreach display focusing on Natural Resources and land management activities. TVA will also lead a bird walk 8:00-10:00 am CST at the Marbut Bend Trail (GPS Coordinates: 34.911677 -87.106387).
Contact: Damien Simbeck at (256) 386-2534 or

Name: Cast for Kids on Fort Loudoun
Date: 4/27/2019
Time: 9:00 am – 1:00 pm EST
Location: Concord Marina, 10903 S Northshore Dr., Knoxville, TN 37922 (35.865305, -84.13187)
County: Knox, TN
Description: TVA and the Cast for Kids Foundation are hosting a day of boating and fishing for children with special needs. Participation is free and pre-registration is required. Participants must be ages 5-18 years old and accompanied by an adult. Participants receive a free rod and reel combo, tackle box, t-shirt and commemorative plaque with photo. Free lunch and t-shirts are provided for families and volunteers too.  
Contact: Jeff Barnes 256 310 4323 or

Cleaning up campfire and Leave No Trace Principles

Fire rings are not an unfamiliar site along the riverbank and in dispersed camping sites. People often enjoy a fire while they camp or fish to provide a source of heat and cooking. While we hope that visitors to public land are conservation-minded, oftentimes volunteers find trash heaped into fire pits, and rings knocked over. Please let us know if you have any questions on fire rings on your spot.

Our partners at Leave No Trace offer some advice on how to clean up fire rings and ways to minimize impacts:

  • Scatter unused wood as naturally as possible.
  • Push unburned ends of wood into the fire as it burns down so it is all consumed.
  • When the coals have burned to ash, soak well with water and make sure it is completely out.
  • Use water rather than dirt to put out the fire.
  • Collect the cold ash and scatter it over a large area well away from the campsite.

Fires built on the ground overheat the organic soil and kill the creepy crawlies living in it. It may take a very long time for anything to grow in the spot where a fire was built. An established fire ring is a sacrificed spot in which fires are accepted to prevent destruction of other areas.

There will be an impact to the area from any fire, but there are many ways to reduce and disguise the impact:

  • Use existing fire rings. In an established campsite, use the fire ring that’s already there.
  • If there is no fire ring, do not make one. Instead, build a mound fire.
  • Build small fires - create a fire just large enough to cook the food. Feed it fuel as needed.
  • Burn all wood to ash - stop adding fuel to the fire well before bedtime or departure time so it has time to burn itself out. This prevents having chunks of partially burned wood to disperse.
  • Gather firewood carefully:
    • Use wood that is down. Leave limbs on standing trees, even if they are dead limbs.
    • Use wood that is smaller around than an adult's wrist, that can be broken by hand - no saws or axes are needed.
    • Leave larger logs and limbs for habitat and to decompose into the soil.
    • Take a hike away to gather wood. Leave closer wood so it can decompose into the soil.
    • In the absence of fire rings, rather than creating a fire directly on the ground it is best to insulate the organic soil from the heat of your fire by using a camp stove, fire pan or mound fire.

Rules for public use of TVA land:

  • Campfires are prohibited in all caves, including within 200 feet from cave entrances.
  • Obey all fire restrictions. Do not leave campfires unattended. Campers are responsible for keeping fires under control. Fires may be limited or prohibited at certain times.
  • Campfires must be completely extinguished before leaving the area.
  • Use locally sourced firewood to minimize the spread of invasive pests (please check sites such as for more information).
  • Cutting live or standing trees on TVA property for firewood or other uses is prohibited.
  • Campfires must be contained in metal or rock fire rings.
  • All firewood must be pre-cut and not include construction debris or pallets. Do not cut, damage or drive nails into trees.  Do not burn trash in fire rings.

Volunteers at work

  • Welcome new volunteer Michelle Smith! Michelle will be helping out on Chickamauga Reservoir at Blythe Ferry.
  • The Five Rivers Mountain Biking Club recently participated in the first Team up for Trails, trail maintenance workshop. The workshop, hosted by TVA and the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency in Morristown, TN, focused on basic trail maintenance skills. Did you miss the event and are you interested in participating in trail maintenance activities? We will be holding another workshop soon. Email to be included in the next interest email. Team up for Trails is a program geared towards enhancing trail maintenance skills and providing growth opportunities for current and potential Adopt a Trail volunteers. We want you to get involved!

These places need your help!

We have several stream access locations on Elk River Scenic Floatway that need your help! Farris Creek and Chenault Ford are located near Tims Ford Dam in Moore and Lincoln County, TN.

Reminders and Upcoming Events

  • Adopt-a-Spot Volunteer, remember to fill out your Condition Evaluation Report and submit your volunteer hours to
  • Complete 4 site visits and you’ll earn a hammock. Complete 8 site visits and you’ll earn our new volunteer t-shirt. It is quick-dry and long-sleeved!
Join the fun!
We would love to see photos of your volunteer activities and stories.

Share your adventure on social media by tagging #tvafun to your posts

Share your volunteer story by emailing for a chance to be featured in the Volunteer Spotlight

Find out about volunteer events and opportunities on TVA public lands in other parts of seven states in the Tennessee Valley

Plan your next adventure on TVA lands
This newsletter is published monthly to keep TVA’s stakeholders informed about activities associated with work on the earthen embankment at Boone Dam.

Our mailing address is:
Tennessee Valley Authority
400 West Summit Hill Drive
Knoxville, TN 37902

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