South County is already known for water to swim in. Now, we can boast of our tasty drinking water, too.
The Atlantic States Rural Water & Wastewater Association (ASRWWA) held its Annual Drinking Water Taste Test competition at Wright’s Farm Restaurant in Harrisville, RI on April 27, 2011. There were four entries in the Water with a Disinfectant Division and six entries in the Water without a Disinfectant Division.
The University of Rhode Island won the Water with a Disinfectant Division while Yawgoo Valley Ski & Sports Park captured the Water without a Disinfectant Division.
The University of Rhode Island (URI), Kingston Campus owns and operates its own water system. The system draws water from three, high volume, gravel packed wells located on the Chippuxet ground water aquifer. The wells and associated pump stations pump the water through a 16 inch main that feeds into the one million gallon elevated storage tank. The average daily water usage during school sessions is approximately 600,000 gallons per day. This is a second win for URI. David Lamb, Utilities Engineer, URI Facilities Services Department was excited to win the disinfected water category again.
The water from the Yawgoo Valley Ski & Sports Park comes from an approximately 50-year-old, 20-foot hand dug well. Jim Garlick does a little of everything to keep things running at this four-season resort that features ski slopes, snow tubing, a water park and day care facility. He has had his operator's license for 10 years now and provides water operator back-up services for his boss and owner of the park, Max, a grandfathered operator.
And, no, the water for the waterslides does not come from the well - treated water is trucked in. When asked if he had any words about the award he quipped: “Because I had to get back here to install newly arrived waterslides I missed out on the presentation of the award but what I missed even more was the all-you-can-eat chicken dinner!”
In vigorous head to head competition Yawgoo Valley Ski & Sports Park brought down top honors and will represent Rhode Island in the 2012 National Great American Taste Test in Washington, D.C.
The South County Tourism Council is delighted to have another aqueous source of pride and reason to promote the area. “Visitors come here to swim at our beaches, kayak down our rivers, now they can enjoy our naturally delicious waters,” said President and CEO Myrna George.
The taste test competition judges included, Cecilia Harris, USDA Area Specialist, Paul Whittemore, Executive Board Member for National Rural Water Association and Leanne Peckham, Office Manager of the Kingston Water District.
The Atlantic States Rural Water & Wastewater Association is a private, non-profit organization that represents water and wastewater systems through training, technical assistance and advocacy. The Association’s goal is to provide safe drinking water and protect the environment at an affordable cost to the user.
The South County Tourism Council is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting the towns of Charlestown, Coventry, East Greenwich, Exeter, Hopkinton, Narragansett, North Kingstown, Richmond, South Kingstown, West Greenwich and Westerly as a single leisure travel destination known as “South County.” For more information, please visit www.southcountyri.com.
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