According to the Chinese calendar, 2019 is the Year of the Pig. But for watershed watchdog Raritan Headwaters Association (RHA), it’s the “Year of the Brook Trout.”

Why? Because native brook trout thrive in clean, cold water, and for 60 years RHA has been working to protect water resources, restore forests and preserve open space in the upper Raritan River watershed.

On the evening of Saturday, Sept. 21, Raritan Headwaters will hold a festive 60th anniversary celebration at its headquarters, Fairview Farm Wildlife Preserve, located at 2121 Larger Cross Road, Bedminster, NJ.  The “country-chic” evening will include live music by Maribyrd, delicious food by BEX Catering and Metropolitan Seafood, and a live auction conducted by auctioneer Nick Dawes of Heritage Auctions and Antiques Roadshow.

“Our celebration theme is the Year of the Brook Trout.  This beautiful native fish is symbolic of our 60 years of success protecting clean water in local rivers and streams,” said Cindy Ehrenclou, Raritan Headwaters’ executive director.

To add to the milestone celebration, all attendees will receive a commemorative book covering RHA’s history, present-day stories, and a vision for the future.

Raritan Headwaters is now accepting reservations and sponsorships for the celebration. Learn more and purchase tickets and sponsorships here.

For more information, please contact Blake Putnam, Director of Development, at or 908-234-1852, ext. 320.

Raritan Headwaters History

Raritan Headwaters was formed by the 2011 merger of two nonprofit conservation groups, the Upper Raritan Watershed Association (URWA) and the South Branch Watershed Association (SBWA), both founded in 1959 to engage New Jersey residents in safeguarding water sources and natural ecosystems.

URWA and SBWA were established at a time when few laws existed to protect clean water and air. The momentum to create the two organizations grew out of a series of grassroots meetings organized by citizens who were concerned that the area’s natural resources were being destroyed by the fast pace of development.

Over the years, URWA and SBWA successfully fought to protect the watershed region from poorly planned land use proposals and threats to the health of water resources. Both groups were pioneers in environmental education, preserved key watershed properties, and monitored water quality in the regions streams.

Today, Raritan Headwaters is known as a leader in environmental education and outreach, local and statewide advocacy, water quality monitoring, ecological research, habitat restoration, land preservation and stewardship. RHA is the watchdog for the 470-square-mile North Branch and South Branch Raritan River watershed, which encompasses 38 municipalities in Hunterdon, Somerset and Morris counties.

For more information on Raritan Headwaters and its programs and events, visit the RHA website at or call 908-234-1852.