It’s time to get outside and support the Housatonic River Watershed with Explore-a-thon

The Housatonic Valley Association’s (HVA) Explore-a-thon event invites outdoors enthusiasts, families, friends, community members, and anyone who loves nature to participate in its inaugural Explore-a-thon—a month-long, virtual fundraising event that kicked off June 1 and lasts the entire month.

Explore-a-thon encourages people to explore any part of the 2,000 square-mile, tri-state Housatonic River Watershed.  HVA is hosting this fundraising and awareness event as a means of achieving its mission: to conserve the natural character and environmental health of the entire Housatonic Watershed for this and future generations.

Let’s go

Adventure solo or team up with others and select an activity from a list of enticing options that includes hiking the most miles with your dog; paddling the scenic waterways; visiting the most sites in the watershed; snapping the best selfie or bird photo, and beyond.

Prizes include a guided overnight trip on the Housatonic river; a pair of Tecnica hiking shoes; Patagonia and REI gear; a weekend canoe experience; SingleNest Hammocks; a summertime evening at Troutbeck—a 250 acre Hudson Valley estate hotel in Amenia, NY; and more.

After registering, all you have to do is head outside in whatever section of the watershed that is your “Housatonic Happy Place” and just do it! While having fun and reveling in the great outdoors, participants have an opportunity to win great prizes.

Through HVA’s partnerships with several local breweries, those who aren’t interested in being in nature but still want to support HVA, can enjoy a beer with friends and know that they’re doing their share to keep our environment healthy. The list of participating breweries includes Housatonic River Brewing in New Milford, CT; Candlewood Brewing in New Milford, CT; Big Elm Brewing in Sheffield, MA; Reverie Brewing in Newton, CT; Great Falls in Canaan, CT; and The Lantern Inn in Wassaic, NY. For a complete schedule of events and places to explore, visit:

The details

Visit and Explore-a-thon website and register: Simply select your registration level. Registrants at the $25 level will receive an HVA water bottle. All registrants at $50+ will receive an Explore-a-thon t-shirt, and the first 50 men and 50 women who register at that level will also receive an HVA “Race Day Running Cap,” courtesy of Trailheads in Kent, CT. Your donation will go a long way in supporting environmental health. Another perk: you’ll automatically become a member of HVA.

Participants have until July 1 to register as an individual or start a team (teams are limited to 10 members). If starting a team, feel free to invite others to join anytime. You don’t need to gather in person—teammates can join from anywhere by registering and searching for your team.

Those who are participating in the Explore-a-thon will also be given an opportunity to create their own fundraising page, which is a great way to spread the word. Let friends and family know what you’re doing and encourage them to pitch in with a donation.

Check out the variety of individual and team competitions for enticing prizes on HVA’s Competitions and Prizes page here: To qualify, individuals must raise or donate at least $50 and teams must raise or donate at least $100; your registration fee counts toward these totals.

Pop-up prizes will also be announced throughout the month-long journey. Find out about them by following @hvatoday on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.


HVA’s Advancement Director Beverly Bond is the visionary behind Explore-a-thon. She was inspired by Tennessee’s TennGreen Land Conservancy—the oldest accredited statewide land conservancy in Tennessee.

“The Housatonic Valley is a magical place and when it comes to keeping it clean and healthy, everybody makes a difference,” said Bond. “That’s why we’re so excited that anybody can participate in Explore-a-thon if they just get outside! You can do something athletic like hiking or you can visit a cultural site or photograph beautiful local birds. All you have to do is sign up on our website and enjoy our special part of the world to qualify for all kinds of prizes donated by terrific local businesses.”

Learn more and register today by visiting or clicking on this link: