Save the American River Association

$17,241 raised by 83 donors

100% complete

$16,000 Goal

The American River Parkway receives nearly eight million visits annually, making it the most heavily used river for recreation in California. 

The Lower American meanders through the 6,160-acre Parkway in some of the most densely populated areas of the country. No other urban area in the West has a comparable resource. Save the American River Association is the only local volunteer organization with the primary mission of protecting and, when necessary, fighting for the public interest in land and water issues concerning the Lower American River and the Parkway. 

SARA relies on membership donations to fund our annual program costs. These contributions support efforts to:

  • Increase water flow and temperature controls in the Lower American where drought conditions have caused fish kills and the evacuation of newborn salmon and trout from the Nimbus Fish Hatchery.
  • Provide appropriate access and facilities so that present and future generations can enjoy the amenities and resources of the Parkway.
  • Preserve, protect, interpret, and improve the natural, archaeological, historical, and recreational resources of the Parkway, its migratory and resident wildlife, and diverse natural vegetation.
  • Mitigate adverse effects of activities and facilities adjacent to the Parkway.
  • Provide public safety and protection within and adjacent to the Parkway.


Some of our achievements and responsibilities include:

  • Serving as advocate in cases where publicly owned Parkway property or zoning ordinances are threatened by private and commercial interests.
  • Serving as the American River advocate on the Sacramento Water Forum, a diverse group working to ensure a stable water supply through the year 2030, while protecting the resources of the river and the Parkway.
  • Providing representation on many local agencies and advisory boards with an interest in the river and its assets.

At times, SARA's Board of Directors has needed to resort to legal action in order to further our advocacy on behalf of the Lower American River. For example, SARA was a plaintiff with Sacramento County and the Environmental Defense Fund in a lawsuit against East Bay Municipal District to prevent their diverting the American River 23 miles upstream from the American's confluence with the Sacramento River. That became a 17-year legal battle resulting in a landmark decision setting minimum flow standards acceptable for fishery and recreational needs for the Lower American River.


Our mission is to protect and enhance the wildlife habitat, fishery, and recreational resources of the American River Parkway. Our volunteer, non-profit group of members and Board of Directors work to ensure that the American River Parkway will survive and prosper for the benefit of future generations.


In 2023, we will be involved in a number of public processes including attending hearings, preparing testimony, and analyzing Environmental Impact Statements/Environmental Impact Reports. We may be hiring a legal intern and a communications intern to help us with various issues.

We want to recruit more volunteers to help with program needs and outreach for new members.

We need to upgrade our office computer system. The current system is more than ten years old.

Organization Data


Organization name

Save the American River Association

other names


Tax id (EIN)


Mission Category


Operating Budget

$50,001 - $100,000

Organization Need

Funding: Unrestricted, Volunteers, Technology

Local Counties Served



8836 Greenback Lane Suite C
Orangevale, CA 95662

Service areas

Sacramento, CA, US

Folsom, CA, US

Carmichael, CA, US

Fair Oaks, CA, US

Rancho Cordova, CA, US



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