While vision documents vary greatly in scope and detail, the main purpose is to collect the fundamental ideas and priorities of local stakeholders and establish goals to serve as guiding principles for future planning and management activities.

Over the course of a three month period between August and October 2010, more than 100 stakeholders of the Conewago Creek Watershed Community provided input that generated a vision for their home, community, and watershed. The consensus building approach used in this visioning process established multiple priorities aimed to achieve and maintain a healthy Conewago Creek Watershed. These priorities include clean water, viable and productive agriculture, green open spaces, vibrant and well planned communities, and enhanced outdoor recreational opportunities. Each priority is interrelated to the other priorities and reflects the connectivity between the community and the watershed. The consensus building approach promoted by the Conewago Creek visioning process, which included a public kickoff breakfast, development of a multi-stakeholder Conewago Vision Team, and a public A Vision for the Conewago Conference, integrated many different perspectives into the decision making process.  The vision is the product of a constructive, inclusive process that identified unique opportunities in the watershed to be valued and protected and issues that need to be addressed.

The following statement captures an overall vision for the future of the Conewago Creek Watershed. It is an idealized version of the future, but one that we should strive to achieve:

The Conewago Watershed Community has envisioned a future that establishes the restored Conewago and its tributaries as a centerpiece of pride and a treasured asset in a rural landscape.

This vision includes a strong agricultural community and productive farmland, community recreation areas and vibrant, well planned communities. Pristine landscapes will be protected while providing sustainable uses of natural resources, clean water and streams, and educational opportunities for generations to come.

The goals identified through the Conewago Creek Watershed visioning process include:

  • Strengthening Community
  • Preserving Rural Landscapes and Agriculture
  • Establishing Sustainable Land Use Practices and Principles
  • Enhancing Recreational Opportunities
  • Restoring and Protecting the Natural Resources of the Watershed

By building a vision for the Conewago watershed, the community has created a blueprint that the partner organizations in the Conewago Initiative will allow us to work proactively in the watershed. Collaborating to pool resources, skills, and ideas, the Initiative partners will work with farmers, homeowners, business owners, and municipal officials to help implement the vision for a healthy Conewago.