Three tri-state area men raft the Mississippi for a cause - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Three tri-state area men raft the Mississippi for a cause

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BELLEVUE (KWWL) -- In light of the ongoing Gulf oil spill, three men decided to turn a childhood dream into an adventure for good.

Justin Dworak will be seeing a lot of water during the next month or so.

"Water, water everywhere, and not a drop to drink, right?" Dworak joked as he and his travel partners prepared the supplies.

He and two friends, David Kolck and Matt Bergmann, had been planning for the past two weeks to raft the Mississippi.

Kolck said it started as a fun idea when the trio got hold of a raft, but soon blossomed into a desire to do good.

They searched for and settled upon an organization - Lower Mississippi RIVERKEEPER, based in Baton Rouge. The plan is to raft from their Wednesday morning Bellevue launch point to Baton Rouge within 30 to 50 days.

"They're an organization that deals with mainly wildlife and clean-up of the river itself, so we decided, since we live along river, you know, that showing some help up here, down there, would make it all the better."

While Kolck said the organization doesn't deal directly with the Gulf, he and his friends wanted to give back to a system that eventually leads into the Gulf.

The friends went so environmentally far as to choose a motor that doesn't need gasoline.

"Basically, these are just solar chargers for the batteries," Bergmann explained, pointing out the motor's components.

The adventure was a draw, too.

"It's every boy's dream to do this, isn't it?" Kolck said.

"Just the adventure, floating down the Mississippi River," Dworak said. "It's like ancient Mark Twain, Lewis and Clark."

With adventure can come uncertainty.

"Granted, we have food, we have supplies, but, still, we're at the helm of mother nature," Dworak said.

The men said people can donate to Lower Mississippi RIVERKEEPER be done through the organization's Web site HERE - or click the link on the left.

People can also track the trio's progress via their Facebook page, The Mighty Missislick Trip 2010. They decided upon the name Missislick as a reminder of the Gulf oil slick.

Online Reporter Becca Habegger

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