Centennial Initiative

Centennial Vision

In celebration of the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service in 2016, America invites the world to discover the meaning of national parks to their lives and inspires people to both experience and become devoted to these special places.

On August 25, 2006 – the 90th anniversary of the National Park Service – Secretary of the Interior Dirk Kempthorne launched the National Park Centennial Initiative to prepare national parks for another century of conservation, preservation and enjoyment. Since then the National Park Service asked citizens, park partners, experts and other stakeholders what they envisioned for a second century of national parks.

A nationwide series of more than 40 listening sessions produced more than 6,000 comments that helped to shape five centennial goals. The goals and vision were presented to President Bush and to the American people on May 31st in a report called The Future of America’s National Parks.

Every national park staff took their lead from this report and created local centennial strategies to describe their vision and desired accomplishments by 2016. This is just the first year, and there are many great things to come as the National Park Service prepares to celebrate 100 years!

To keep up with the Centennial Initiative and to experience the interactive version of The Future of America’s National Parks and special features please visit the centennial website at https://www.nps.gov/2016.

Trees, water, sand, a log and a turtle make up this river scene
The water going by affects and is affected by the land.


St. Croix National Scenic Riverway is one of the many parks that proposed projects for 2008, to be included in the Centennial Challenge . Attached you will find the Centennial Strategy for 2008. One of the projects submitted has been included among the 201 Certified Eligible Centennial Challenge Proposals.

Protect Water Quality of the St. Croix National Scenic Riverway. This project is to produce a computer model to predict nutrient and sediment loading in the St. Croix River Basin and train water resource professionals throughout the basin in how to apply the model at local, county and subwatershed levels. This work is needed to realize the goal of reducing phosphorous and nutrient loading in the St. Croix National Scenic Riverway by 20 percent by 2020. This goal is science-based and was established through extensive research of the interagency St. Croix Basin Water Resources Team (NPS, USGS, MN Pollution Control Agency, MN DNR, WI DNR, Twin Cities Metropolitan Council, Science Museum of Minnesota Watershed Research Station, and other partners).

It is widely assumed that the water quality of the St. Croix is pristine, because of its status as a Wild and Scenic River and because river users have historically enjoyed high-quality water. However, recent studies carried out by the National Park Service and Basin Team partners document that water quality is threatened by increasing nutrients and sedimentation. Three tributaries (the Apple, Willow and Kinnickinnic) are the largest contributors of suspended sediments and nutrients during base flow and storm runoff events. Scientists at the St. Croix Watershed Research Station have developed a Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT), a computer model that predicts nutrient and sediment loading. It has been piloted and fine-tuned in the Willow River of Wisconsin and is ready to be applied on the basin scale.

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources will be partnering with the Riverway in funding this project. Information on additional matching funds from other partners is likely, with the expectation that the project could be extended beyond 2008.

See Press Release on St. Croix's Centennial Initiative.

The Riverway has received news that we are the receipient of one of the Centennial Initiative Grants see press release...

Last updated: April 10, 2015

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Mailing Address:

401 North Hamilton Street
St. Croix Falls, WI 54024


(715) 483-2274

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