To celebrate 25 years of work to protect one of the most dynamic river bodies in Southern California, the Friends of the Santa Clara River are scheduled to host a gala and fundraiser on Sunday, September 16. “It’s important to realize this is a river that connects us all in its surrounding area,” said Lynne Plambeck, who’s part of the Friends of the Santa Clara River board of directors. The river stretches 83 miles long, originating in the San Gabriel mountains and traverses Ventura County, crossing the Santa Clarita Valley. The river, which drains over more than 1,000 square miles, is the largest river system in SoCal and remains in a relatively natural state, according to the California Waterboards website. Friends of the Santa Clara River, established in 1993, has conducted outreach work with the Santa Clarita Organization for Planning and the Environment, habitat restoration and wildlife conservation. “Protection of the river and its tributaries is key to protecting the plants and animals that live in the watershed,” the Friends of the Santa Clara River website reads. Plambeck added that big projects, including the Newhall Ranch development, could affect the lower watershed. The project involves the construction of 21,000 homes and commercial development along several miles of the river, which several environmental groups have achieved to challenge the project, including reducing its size. “A river doesn’t know a county line and it doesn’t know where a city starts or ends,” said Plambeck. “Animals don’t know that either. Its a responsibility for all, we are one community.” To help educate others on the Santa Clara River and its history, the 25th Silver Streams Gala Celebration and Fundraiser will feature speakers like Friends of Santa Clara River founder Ron Bottorff. The event will also offer attendees appetizers, local wines and beers and other sustainably-grown foods from the Santa Clara River Valley. The event will take place from 3:30-6:30 p.m. on Rancho Camulos, located at 5164 East Telegraph Road, in Piru. To learn more and to purchase tickets, visit fscr.org/25th-anniversary.