Seen a Great Blue Heron Lately? Look up…or look down!

Julie Slavet
Dec 22, 2017

Storm Drain Marking: 2017 in Review

Blog by Marcus Paul, Community Organizer

You can look down at a lot of places in our 30 square mile watershed and see: a decal with a Great Blue Heron! In 2017, TTF increased our efforts to connect people to their creeks through our friendly and fun Storm Drain Marking activity in partnership with the Partnership for the Delaware Estuary and the Philadelphia Water Department.

Students from Bishop McDevitt High School, reminding Cheltenham residents that only rain should go down the drain!

We host storm drain marking training to encourage community members and local organizations to learn about drains and the importance of our behavior in keeping pollution out of our creeks. We hosted four training sessions in Germantown, Olney, and Cheltenham in the spring and fall, distributing over 25 kits. These kits contain all of the materials needed to mark drains: a Storm Drain Marking Guide, 15 Storm drain markers, glue adhesive, one safety vest, two pairs of vinyl gloves, a wire brush, information cards for handing out and placing in doors, and posters for businesses/store owners to display.

The TTF team has also led six storm drain marking events with two High Schools in Philadelphia and Montgomery County as well as summer camp groups in Olney and Germantown, collectively marking over 200 storm drains with 80 volunteers.

Participants from Lonnie Young Recreation Center’s Summer Camp, marking drains in Germantown

In 2017, over 500 storm drains were marked with the help of more than 150 volunteers logging over 300 hours! Thank you to the partners that made this possible:

Cheltenham Democrats

Olney Christian School, Philadelphia

Philadelphia Parks & Recreation Recreation Centers:

Olney Recreation Center Summer Camp

Lonnie Recreation Center Summer Camp

Simons Recreation Center Summer Camp

Ziehler Recreation Center Summer Camp

Bishop McDevitt High School, Cheltenham

Cristo Rey High School, Philadelphia

Dave Bell, Glenside

Anilda Davila, Philadelphia

Emma Montroy, Jenkintown High School

Ed Lichstein, Cheltenham

Arlene Lishinsky, Cheltenham

Commissioner Ann Rappaport, Cheltenham

Philadelphia Naval Support Activity

Northeast Frankford Boys and Girls Club

Storm drain marking is important not only to improve the health and vitality of the Tookany/Tacony-Frankford Creek, but the larger Delaware River watershed, which provides drinking water to over 15 million people. By marking drains in the TTF, we’re acting locally, but thinking globally!

Interested in leading a storm drain marking event or want to pick up markers for your neighborhood? If you’re in Philly, contact If you’re in Abington, Cheltenham, Jenkintown, Rockledge, or Springfield, contact


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