[ Service Abroad GERMANY A Pied Piper of Biking Beckons The Pied Piper story is set in the ancient town of Hamelin, Germany. That makes Lion Paul Fasse of Hamelin a kind of Pied Piper. He wants Lions to come to Hamelin. But the payoff he offers is en-tirely beneficial: fellowship with Lions, celebrating the Lions’ centennial and getting in some exercise while enjoying the beautiful German countryside. German Lions hope to attract 100 Lions worldwide to ride in the Gran Fondo bicycle ride in Hamelin on Sept. 3. The ride in Germany is one of 14 Gran Fondo races worldwide in 2017. Participants can ride 80 or 100 miles or even divide the race between multiple riders. Last year, Fasse, a 58-year-old veterinarian, rode in the Gran Fondo New York race. Fasse can be reached at: paul@gfnydeutschland. com. A Gran Fondo bicycle rider pedals in Germany last year. JAPAN Salmon Repopulated in Precious River Poisoned by the nearby Ashio Copper Mine, the once majestic Watarase River that flows through Sano City be-came known as the “river of death” by 1900. Fish died by the tens of thousands, and farm crops were ruined by the pollution. But today, after 35 years of environmental action, the river has made a startling comeback. A key component of its revival has been the release of hundreds of thou-sands of young salmon into the river. The Sano Chuo Lions Club chartered the same year the salmon initiative began in 1982 and has provided funds and hands-on help for the salmon repopulation since its founding. Last year alone, backed by the Lions club and a citi-zens’ group dedicated to the river, 20,000 young salmon, called fry, were released into the river in a single day. Res-idents had hatched the fish eggs at home before carefully transporting them to the river for the epic release. The fry have been able to survive—and eventually migrate to the ocean before returning to fresh water to spawn—because the river has been cleaned up. Last year, more than 500 salmon ascents were verified in the river. The detail-oriented Sano Chuo Lions smooth the way 16 LION LIONMAGAZINE.ORG for residents’ environmental actions. They even cut the grass on the river embankments so that children can safely walk down to the water. Children and adults in Sano City release young salmon into the Watarase River.