River Center Welcomes Visitors From Near and Far

Dozens Stop By to Learn About the Lockhouse, the Potomac, and Plants and Animals Around the Canal


According to River Center Guide Tim Shank, you never know who will cross the canal at lock 8 to visit our River Center. In the past everyone from Buddhist monks to the Secretary of the Interior have crossed the threshold of our restored lockhouse to explore the exhibits about the Potomac inside.
July’s River Center Open House was no exception. On a steamy Saturday morning, Patty came down to the lockhouse to see the place that her grandfather called home until the 1960s. Patty’s grandfather was one of the last people to live in the lockhouse. Luckily, Judy Welles, the woman who quite literally wrote the book on Cabin John, Maryland, was at the Open House and able to show Patty some photos of her grandfather in and around the lockhouse. 

Patty was one of just 115 people that stopped by the River Center on Saturday. We met a Boy Scout troop from Mt. Holly Springs, Pennsylvania, that was on the very last leg of a five-day bike trip down the Great Allegheny Passage from Pittsburgh to DC. We met some adorable dogs, energetic kids out for bike rides in the neighborhood, and a fisherman that was on the hunt for the perfect catch.
River Center Guide Doug Halverson talked to many of the visitors about how he managed to capture so many amazing photographs of the plants, fungus, and animal life all around the Canal. River Center Guide Randa Steblez was also on hand with examples of invasive plants found around the River Center and information about the threat these invaders pose to our native plant and animal life. 
We were also fortunate to have Officer Peter Martel from Montgomery County Animal Services and Adoption Center onsite to answer questions about encountering wildlife on the river. 
If you missed this Open House, have no fear! We will be out again on September 19th for part 2. We will have an instructor from Orvis teaching you how to fly fish! Keep an eye on potomac.org/events for more information and a schedule of events.

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