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Get Involved

Come join us! Together we have the power to protect our future and our Great Salt Lake! Learn how you can engage and participate throughout the year.

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Thursday, May 30th at 6:30 pm.

Salt Lake City Public Library, Main Branch

This Watershed Moment: Envisioning Place-Based Futures

 

Join Utah Humanities and Save Our Great Salt Lake for a panel discussion and project kickoff, discussing the confluence of changing watersheds and courageous imagination.

Panelists include Forrest Cuch, Former Director of Indian Affairs for the State of Utah, author, educator, and member of the Ute Tribe; Bonnie Baxter, Director of the Great Salt Lake Institute at Westminster University; Olivia Juarez, Public Land Program Director with Green Latinos and Organizer & Podcast Host with Of Salt and Sand. The panel will be moderated by Brooke Larsen, Virginia Spencer Davis Fellow at High Country News and creative producer with Of Salt and Sand.

More information about the guidelines for submission, the publication and how to submit your work coming soonSubmissions will be open through September 22, 2024.

About the Project

Before we drew maps with rigid political boundaries and property lines, watersheds informed how we related to the land and to each other. Watersheds were both a source of life and a source of ethics. The flora and fauna that lived in a watershed influenced how people ate, built their homes, even the music they made. Who and what you lived upstream from governed how you lived on the land.

Though it is often no longer top of mind, watersheds are still a primary influence in our societies and our ethics. Nowhere is that truer than in arid watersheds like the Great Basin and the Colorado Plateau, and at no time is that truer than the era of climate change. As our environment shifts to provide less precipitation, our watersheds and way of life are threatened. We’re forced to ask ourselves, how can I live well in uncertain times; how can I stay in a place; how can I give back; how can I be a good neighbor?

We cannot bring about a future we cannot imagine. So we invite the citizens of this unique and endangered watershed to invoke their imaginations. What does your watershed look like in 150 years if we answer the charge of these times responsibly? If we answer the demands of climate change as caring citizens, lovers of the land, what would your watershed look like? What would it feel like? Smell like? Taste like?

This is an open call to all citizens of the Great Basin and Colorado River watersheds – elders who’ve lived by the lake for 80 years, youth who are anxious about the future, those whose roots in the redrock extend back generations, and those who are only recently calling this land home. We are opening this call to all manner of imaginative fiction, poetry, and art. Submissions will be judged and selections will be chosen for publication in a collection.

To ground the call, we’re convening panels of experts, visionaries, lovers of this basin. Scholars who can recount the ecological memory of this place and orient us to look toward a thriving future. We aren’t focusing on policy - this is a practice in visioning, in storytelling, in imagining an ethical future.

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