Rainwater harvesting workshop set for Thursday

Special to Leader-Press 

Copperas Cove residents interested in learning about how to harvest rainwater will have the opportunity to do so on Thursday, March 29.
The workshop “Rainwater Harvesting for Homeowners” will be hosted as a joint effort among the Lampasas River Watershed Partnership, Keep Copperas Cove Beautiful, Texas A&M AgriLife Research, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service, and the Texas State Soil and Water Conservation Board from 6 p.m. - 8 p.m. on Thursday, at the Copperas Cove Public Library, located at 501 S. Main St.
The workshop itself is free, but participants will have the opportunity to build their own rain barrel to take home for $50. Light refreshments will be served.    
Keep Copperas Cove Beautiful is sponsoring $25 of the costs for first 25 barrels reserved. Preference for the discount will be given to participants that have not received it at a previous rainwater harvesting program. This is the only rainwater harvesting workshop scheduled in Copperas Cove this year.  
Space and barrels are limited, so preregistration is required for the class by contacting Lisa Prcin, the AgriLife Research watershed coordinator for the Lampasas River Watershed, at (254) 774-6008 or at lprcin@brc.tamus.edu.  
“Rainwater harvesting is an innovative and efficient means of utilizing water,” said Prcin, “This process collects rainwater, stores it and uses it when needed. It is extremely useful as it lessens the demand on existing water supplies and saves for times when it is needed.  It also reduces flooding, erosion and contamination of surface water.”   
Dotty Woodson, AgriLife Extension water resources specialist will be traveling from Dallas to teach the class. 
“Participants will learn about the benefits of rainwater harvesting and how to build an effective system,” Woodson said.
Silvia Rhoads, Keep Copperas Cove Beautiful executive director, added, “We are excited to offer this program for our community. We hope to fill all 25 barrels available and believe in the benefits rainwater harvesting provides.”  
Prcin also talked about the area benefits of rainwater harvesting.
“Not only does rainwater harvesting help provide an additional source of water, it also helps mitigate contamination of surface water due to stormwater runoff by allowing the rainwater to be filtered more than it typically would if it just drained directly into the local waterways. Rainwater harvesting was identified by the Lampasas River Watershed Partnership as a way for homeowners to help improve water quality in Lampasas River watershed. This workshop is part of the outreach and education strategy of the Lampasas River Watershed Protection Plan.” 
The Lampasas River watershed includes parts of Mills, Hamilton, Lampasas, Coryell, Burnet, Bell and Williamson counties.
The facilitation of the Lampasas River Watershed Partnership and development of the watershed protection plan is funded by the Texas State Soil and Water Conservation Board through a Clean Water Act §319(h) grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.  

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