Jackson Hole Science Media Awards Names Colorado State University’s Volunteer Precipitation Monitoring Network a Finalist

Note to Reporters: To see the video on YouTube, go to http://youtu.be/ZzY5-NZSzVw. Photos are available with the news release at http://www.news.colostate.edu/.

Colorado State University’s award-winning volunteer precipitation network has been selected as a finalist in the inaugural Jackson Hole Science Media Awards.

The program, called the Community Collaborative Rain, Hail and Snow Network, or CoCoRaHS, has been named a finalist in the Best Short Program category for a video about the water cycle called “CoCoRaHS Presents: The Water Cycle Community.” The educational video was created by CSU and Noah Besser.

The Science Media Awards Competition is part of the Jackson Hole Wildlife Film Festival. Entries included 280 films entering more than 450 categories to compete for 18 special awards.

The Howard Hughes Medical Institute and Holt Productions are among the competitors in the Best Short Program category. The winner will be announced on September 6 at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science as part of an industry conference Sept. 5-7.

The CoCoRaHS network was created by CSU state climatologist Nolan Doesken after a devastating 1997 flood in Fort Collins to help scientists track major differences in precipitation within a community or even within one block. That information assists meteorologists and scientists nationwide by gathering accurate data on precipitation.

CoCoRaHS now boasts 16,000 volunteers in all 50 United States and in Canada.

CoCoRaHS was honored earlier this year with a major national award from the Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities, known as APLU, for the West region. The program will compete for a national title in Denver in November. In 2007, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration honored Doesken as one of 10 "Environmental Heroes" nationally for creating the network.

This summer, CSU and CoCoRaHS are reaching out to organizations statewide, and have received enough pledges to donate one gauge per Colorado school. Teachers interested in obtaining a gauge and training should contact education@cocorahs.org for more information.