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Four Mile Run Documentary
Four Mile Run: Reviving an Urban Stream

In 2001, a Falls Church, Virginia, filmmaker named Dave Eckert completed a documentary on Four Mile Run. The film has been released in several versions from a two-hour version in four 30-minute parts, to a one-hour version, and a six-minute version. It is narrated by National Public Radio's Frank Stasio. Produced, written, and directed by Dave Eckert, Virginia Village Productions, 2001. 

Download a QuickTime format of the short version here.

The following text is from the film's intro at the 2002 DC Environmental Film Festival Program:

Four Mile Run is a nine-mile long urban stream that drains its Northern Virginia valley with 200,000 residents--adjacent to Washington, DC. The history, current resources and problems, and future possibilities for revival of this urban stream can be generalized as the story of thousands of urban streams throughout North America. Jim Fowler, the wildlife wrangler of Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom, grew up along Four Mile Run in the 1930s and developed his love for the natural world there. Fowler returns to his home for the first time since 1946 to host this film and to provide a context for viewers to appreciate and seek to revive these abused, piped, channelized, and polluted urban waterways. The stream's surprising history and the bold plans for its future provide hope that our urban streams can be revived.


  • Arlingtonians for a Clean Environment
  • Audubon Naturalist Society
  • Friends of Four Mile Run
  • League of Women Voters, Arlington Chapter
  • Northern Virginia Regional Commission
  • Northern Virginia Regional Park Authority
  • Virginia Native Plant Society, Potowmack Chapter

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