TMU Biology Field Station to host fundraising concert to support Ohio River conservation

Thomas More University’s Biology Field Station will host a fundraising concert this summer to raise support for its conservation, education, and outreach programs along the Ohio River.

‘Raisin’ Hellbenders on the River: a Concert for Conservation’ takes place on Saturday, July 27 from 3-9 p.m. at the Thomas More University Biology Field Station, located at 8309 Mary Ingles Highway in California, Kentucky.

“This concert is an exciting opportunity for the Thomas More Biology Field Station to highlight the rich aquatic biodiversity of the region while building awareness and support for our Ohio River research, education, and outreach programs,” said Molly Williams, Thomas More Biology Field Station manager.

‘Raisin’ Hellbenders’ includes live Bluegrass music from Sweet William, Maria Carrelli, The Montvales, Tangled Roots, and Ma Crow and Company. The family-friendly event will also include free kayak rentals, guided hikes along the Biology Field Station floodplain nature trail, food trucks, and tours of the Field Station labs, facilities and lodge.

The event’s name refers to eastern hellbenders (Cryptobranchus alleganienses), North America’s largest salamander species, which are native to the Ohio River basin and indicators of water quality. Hellbenders, along with freshwater mussels, are two of the primary species on which the Biology Field Station focuses its conservation efforts.

Alongside its conservation work, the Thomas More Biology Field Station monitors the Ohio River, in order to protect this drinking water source and safeguard public health.

“Through our close partnerships with state, local, and federal agencies, corporations and nonprofit organizations, we’re able to play a strategic role in monitoring and protecting water quality for communities throughout Northern Kentucky and greater Cincinnati, while developing the next generation of STEM professionals,” said Chris Lorentz, Ph.D., director of the Biology Field Station and the Center for Ohio River Research and Education (CORRE), which is housed there.

Lorentz is a University faculty member with the department of biological sciences, specializing in aquatic biology and environmental science.

“With events like ‘Raisin’ Hellbenders,’ we hope to share the work we are doing along the Ohio River with an even wider audience,” Lorentz said. “We want to let our neighbors know that we’re here – right in their own backyard – working to protect our region’s most valuable natural resource.”

Registration is required and can be completed online at The suggested ticket donation price begins at $15. Food, soda and alcoholic beverages are available for purchase and water is provided free of charge. Outside food or drink — including coolers — are not permitted. Parking instructions will be provided to registered guests the week of July 21.

If you would like to support the Field Station but are unable to attend the concert, you can become a Friend of the Field Station by visiting

For more information about the Thomas More Biology Field Station, visit

Thomas More University

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