Big Creek Connects (Friends of Big Creek)

Name of Non-Profit Organization *
Big Creek Connects (Friends of Big Creek)
Today’s Date: * Thursday, April 13, 2023
Organization’s website
EIN / 501(C)(3)Number *
What year did your organization receive it’s non-profit status? *
Address *

P.O. Box 609272 4352 Pearl Road, Suite C
Cleveland, Ohio 441090
United States
County *
Your Name * Mary Ellen Stasek
Your Title *
Board Chair
Your email address *
Your Phone Number (216) 650-1926
Executive Director’s Name *
Bob Gardin
Executive Director’s email address *
What is the mission of your organization?
To conserve, enhance, and bring recognition to the natural and historic resources in and around the Big Creek Watershed and develop a recreational trail network that connects these resources to each other and the community.
Which social causes (up to 3 choices) does your agency address through its programming? *
  • [6] Environment
Any comments about your selections you would like to share with the student philanthropists?
– Improved conditions of Big Creek and the natural environment throughout the watershed.
– The connection of existing greenways such as the CanalWay Towpath Trail west and south to the Big Creek Reservation at Brookpark Road.
– Improved, safe, equitable, and convenient access to the natural environment throughout the Big Creek watershed with increased educational and recreational opportunities.
– Successful promotion of the benefits of a healthy watershed, as well as important historical events, structures and sites within the watershed.Projects include conservation measures, stream restoration practices, and bio-retention, bio-swale, permeable pavement, and retrofits. These “stormwater retrofits” are green structural stormwater practices designed to mitigate erosive flows, reduce pollutants, and promote conditions for improved aquatic habitat that are retrofitted into developed watersheds. BCC looks for opportunities for green infrastructure projects that remove stormwater from the combined sewer system through the Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District’s Green Infrastructure Grant Program—with more than $600,000 funding for projects to date.The Big Creek Stream Monitoring Program provides in-person water quality field trips to the creek for students. Activities focus on water quality and how our actions affect our environment.

The Big Creek Signage Project resulted in 96 signs along major streets that mark the watershed’s boundaries and stream crossings to enhance the public’s awareness of the watershed and valuable streams and encourage good stewardship.

BCC has developed studies and plans, and works to conserve parcels in the watershed, opening opportunities for restoration and for an expanded trail and greenway system. BCC co-founded and co-sponsors the successful Greater Cleveland Trails & Greenways Conferences (

Does your organization have volunteer opportunities available for students? *
Yes, Grades 6 – 12
List possible volunteer opportunities -or- a link to where they can be found on the web.
Stream cleanups, invasive plant removal, planting. Many projects are in partnership with Cleveland Metroparks.
Volunteer coordinator Bob Gardin
Volunteer coordinator’s email address
Volunteer coordinator’s phone number (216) 264-9780