Montrose, CO – Mayor Judy Ann Files is joining mayors across the country in asking residents to make a long-term commitment to manage water resources more wisely by taking part in the annual National Mayor’s Challenge for Water Conservation. Residents can win $5,000 toward their home utility payments, water saving fixtures, and hundreds of other prizes. Plus, one lucky charity will receive a 2018 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid to serve the community.The annual challenge, April 1 through 30, is a non-profit national community service campaign, to see which leaders can best inspire their residents to make a series of informative and easy-to-do online pledges at mywaterpledge.com to use water more efficiently, reduce pollution, and save energy."Partially this year, because we know with the of lack of snow fall it's important to conserve what we have and it's important to protect our agricultural water for our Vally, because agriculture is so important for this valley and this community," Files said. A complete list of Montrose Earth Week activities can be found online here: http://cityofmontrose.org/623/Earth-WeekLast year, residents from over 4,800 cities in all 50 U.S. states pledged to reduce their annual consumption of freshwater by 2.2 billion gallons, reduce waste sent to landfills by 52 million pounds, and prevent more than 114,000 pounds of hazardous waste from entering our watersheds. The Challenge goes beyond recent drought issues and looks at the ways our water use will affect the future of our communities — from how we grow food to reducing polluted runoff.Files described water as one-of-the-most precious resources to the Uncompahgre Valley, and having the valley's residents aware of, and engage with better water conservation practices will help everyone including future generations."Water conversation helps all of us in this community and our planet," Files added.To participate, residents enter online at mywaterpledge.com, and then make a series of online pledges to conserve water on behalf of Montrose, Colorado. Cities compete in the following population categories: (5,000 to 29,999 residents, 30,000 to 99,999 residents, 100,000 to 299,999 residents, 300,000 to 599,999 residents, and cities with over 600,000 residents). Cities with the highest percentage of residents who take the Challenge in their population category are entered into drawings for hundreds of eco-friendly prizes, including home improvement gift cards, home irrigation equipment, and the Grand Prize $5,000 Home Utility Bill Payment.The Challenge also gives residents a chance to nominate a deserving charity that would benefit from receiving a 2018 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid, and features additional resources for residents to take their commitment of conservation even further, from regional water and energy resource issues to cost-saving tips at home.The 7th National Mayor’s Challenge for Water Conservation is presented by the Wyland Foundation and Toyota, with support from the U.S EPA WaterSense, The Toro Company, National League of Cities, Conserva Irrigation, and Earth Friendly Products (makers of ECOS).About the Wyland FoundationFounded in 1993 by environmental artist Wyland (best known for his series of 100 monumental marine life murals), the Wyland Foundation, a 501c3 non-profit organization dedicated to promoting, protecting, and preserving the world’s ocean, waterways, and marine life. The foundation encourages environmental awareness through community events, education programs, and public art projects. www.wylandfoundation.org.