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Dan River Basin Association presents award to Eden

EDEN, N.C. -- When it come to environmental education and river promotion, Wayne Kirkpatrick, with the Dan River Basin Association, says no one does it better than the Rockingham County city of Eden.

"The city has a way of doing that more efficiently. So we have a wider reach of letting people know of the natural world and how important it is to care for it and be aware of it," Kirkpatrick said.

That's why the river boosters presented Eden with its Municipal Partners Program Award. The two groups have built greenways and river access points across the area. Mike Dougherty, Eden's economic development director, says the team is getting ready to take on its next challenge.

"We want to increase the number of trails because that's tied to drawing people to your community. Younger people want trail access," Dougherty said.

"Our long term goal is to interconnect them so people can enjoy their walk" Kirkpartrick said.

And while they are walking, they might have a chance to point out wildlife to their grandkids. That's what Michael Hedgepeth enjoys doing.

"Teaching him about wildlife. We saw a turkey, deer and big turtles in the river," Hedgepeth said.