First Saturday Seminars

First-Saturday Seminars

CFRW hosts a FREE Educational Seminar by a guest lecturer the first Saturday of every month at Cape Fear River Watch Headquarters, located at 617 Surry Street. Seminars cover a diverse variety of topics, including local history, local birds, geology, fisheries, etc. We serve a FREE pancake breakfast at 8am and the seminar starts at 9am.  (But you can always bring a few bucks for the donation jar!)

2016 Schedule

  • February 6th – Our speaker was Chris Fonvielle and his topic was Fort Anderson.
  • March 5th – Andy Gould with NC Aquarium Fort Fisher will be presenting at the March  First Saturday Seminar and his topic will be Frog Watch. (The same day at the Cape Fear Museum he will be offering the full Frog Watch class from 12 to 4pm. Participants who take the full class at the Museum will be certified as volunteers for FrogWatch USA.
  • April 2nd – Join us April 2nd as we welcome Bonnie Monteleone. Her topic is Plastic Ocean Project – Gut Plastic?
    Plastic marine debris has been recently labeled the “apex predator” of the sea, killing more marine life than any other marine organism. Find out how plastic has earned that title and what Plastic Ocean Project, UNCW, and PK Clean Technology are doing about it.
  • May 7th – Our speaker will be Melanie Doyle and her topic will be invasive species.
    More about:
    Melanie C. Doyle  
    Adjunct Biology Instructor, CFCC / PhD Student Wake Forest University

    My education background includes a B.S. in Wildlife Biology from the University of Nebraska at Lincoln and an M.S. in Biology from UNCW.  (My thesis involved the study of the breeding behavior & ecology of Least Terns, which nest on our local beaches and a few rooftops).  I am currently enrolled in the graduate program at Wake Forest University pursuing a PhD in Botany where I study a species of invasive plant that I also work to control (Vitex rotundifolia).

    I have been working with plants for 27 years.  I started with the Nebraska Forestry Service working for an Extension and Research Forester.  I have worked in retail garden centers and with growers in both the Midwest and in North Carolina.  I spent a year and-a-half working as an environmental consultant delineating and mapping wetlands and conducting environmental assessments throughout the state.

    For fourteen years I was the Conservation Horticulturist at the Ft. Fisher Aquarium.  Currently I work as an adjunct Biology Instructor at Cape Fear Community College.

    I have been active in dune-restoration efforts, native plant propagation, and community outreach.  I serve as the state coordinator for the Beach Vitex Task Force, a group dedicated to the eradication of this exotic invasive species, as well as serving as President of the NC Invasive Plant Council.  I also am a proud member of the Wilmington Tree Commission and serve on the executive committee of the Cape Fear Arch Conservation Collaborative.


    My goals are to present plants to people as part of our ecological community as well as part of our gardens; to foster an appreciation of the important interactions between plants, animals and other life forms; to teach low-impact gardening practices; and to introduce gardeners to our native species that are both sustainable and quite pleasing in the landscape.

  • June 4th – Our speaker will be Walker Golder and his topic will be Colonial Nesting Waterbirds.
  • July 2nd – Our speaker is our very own Riverkeeper Kemp Burdette and he will be talking about his 200 miles paddling trip down the Cape Fear River.
  • August 6th – Our speaker will be Roger Shew and his topic is TBA.
  • September 3rd – Our speaker will be Jill Peleuses and her topic will be Fall Migratory Birds.
  • October 1st –  Our speaker will be Andy Wood and his topic is TBA.
  • November 5th – Jill Peleuses will join us again to discuss winter birds.
  • December 3rd -Our speaker is Dawn York and her topic will be: Restoring Migratory Fish in the Cape Fear River – Persistence is Key


Stop by our website and Facebook and/or Twitter frequently to learn about upcoming seminars or sign up for our eNewsletter to stay informed!