Gila Topminnow Cocktails & Bike Decorating Party

June 14, 2018
All ages welcome
Bar food and drinks available for purchase


Celebrate the return of the fish (thanks to YOUR wastewater) to the Santa Cruz River with a commemorative cocktail, created especially in the fish’s honor by Vadi Erdal and Amy Rude-Smith at EXO.

Hang out on EXO’s patio to decorate your bike for the Gila Topminnow Returns Bike Ride along the Santa Cruz River/The Loop happening on June 16. We’ll toast to the fish at EXO and provide supplies and inspiration.

Use #GilaTopminnow to document your experiences and the fish on social media (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter). The fish won’t see it, but the people will.

Thursday, June 14, 2018
5:00 pm – 8:00 pm
403 N 6th Ave., Tucson, AZ



The Gila topminnow, a tiny Sonoran Desert native fish was discovered in the flowing stretch of the river (just north of Sweetwater Wetlands) in November 2017, after 70 years away. Its return is thanks to improvements to the Pima County wastewater treatment plants, which puts treated wastewater into the riverbed. Following a 2013 facility upgrade, the now cleaner water has created the preferred habitat for the fish, plus an improved flowing river for the rest of us!

In June, a new project brings artwork honoring the fish and its return to our Living River, to the Loop and to urban locations around town.

The project is a collaboration between local artist Kimi Eisele, the Pima County Office of Sustainability and Conservation, and the Sonoran Institute, with funding from the Center for Performance and Civic Practice’s Catalyst Initiative.