Much like its Egyptian namesake, Memphis, TN is situated in delta along a river that is of economic and environmental importance. While it’s been years since I’ve taken an Ecology class, I do recall that smaller rivers and streams feed into larger rivers that eventually empty into the ocean.
As fate (and science) would have it, that’s just the case here in the 901. Thanks in large part to the great work of the folks at The Wolf River Conservancy, nearly everyone in our fair city is familiar with the Wolf River. However, this is only half of the story as it relates to water in Memphis. In fact, the Conservancy was established to prevent the Wolf from suffering a similar fate to the Nonconnah Creek.
Running from Bill Morris Parkway through the entire southern half of Memphis and emptying into McKellar Lake and ultimately into the Mississippi, Nonconnah Creek serves as the watershed for an entire half of our city. Its journey to the Mississippi passes through residential, commercial, and industrial corridors. This includes neighborhoods in Collierville, East Memphis, Hickory Hill, South Memphis and Whitehaven.
In partnership with the Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT), Clean Memphis is launching the Nonconnah Corridor Education and Engagement Project (NCEEP). Employing a three-part approach over three years, the project is focused on raising awareness and providing opportunities for neighborhoods, schools, and communities to positively engage with Nonconnah Creek.
By providing in-class presentations and coordinating Service Learning Projects in Nonconnah Creek, NCEEP aims to engage students at all grade levels. Additionally, Clean Memphis will hold routine litter “sweeps” in high-profile areas along Nonconnah Creek to prevent litter and debris from entering the Creek. Lastly, community organizations from neighborhood associations to churches will be engaged through adult education and volunteer days of service.