Archived Outdoors

Pigeon River grants announced

The latest round of Pigeon River Fund awards provide 10 grants totaling $234,241 to fund water quality projects in Haywood, Buncombe and Madison counties. 

Grant awards include:

  • $45,000 to the Haywood County Soil and Water Conservation District for developing a flood mitigation plan for the Upper Pigeon River and Hominy Creek areas. This award is contingent upon securing other needed funds. 

  • $30,000 to The Conservation Fund to support efforts to protect the West Prong Headwaters property in Haywood County.

  • $30,000 to Maggie Valley Sanitary District to help acquire and permanently protect the Brown Ridge property in Haywood County.

  • $25,000 to Southern Appalachian Highlands Conservancy toward acquisition costs associated with the permanent conservation of the 411-acre Pisgah Creek property within the Cruso community.

  • $7,161 to Haywood Waterways Association to repair two failing septic systems in the Pigeon River Watershed.

  • $12,080 to MountainTrue to continue its Swim Guide, a weekly water-quality monitoring program focused on sampling for E. coli bacteria at popular river accesses.

  • $35,000 to RiverLink to restore Haith Branch and an ephemeral stream on the campus of A-B Tech Community College. This award is contingent upon securing other needed funds.

  • $30,000 to Asheville GreenWorks to strengthen and expand the French Broad River Litter Prevention Program, with an emphasis on expanding the Trash Trout program, river and roadside cleanups, and single-use plastic reduction.

  • $10,000 to Buncombe County Soil and Water Conservation District to help pay registration fees, travel and other expenses associated with Camp WILD and Envirothon participation.  

  • $10,000 to Laurel Community Center Organization to offer an Aquatic Insect Ecology Workshop for teachers and Citizen Science Coordinators. 

Since 1996, the Pigeon River Fund has distributed more than $8.7 million in grants.  The money comes from Duke Energy in exchange for the company’s damming the Pigeon River for hydropower. The fund is managed by the Community Foundation of Western North Carolina, with grants available for projects in Haywood, Buncombe and Madison counties. The next application deadline for grant funds is Sept. 15. Learn more at

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