Lake-o-Gram Vol. IV Issue 3: Breakfast Recap, 2013 State of the Lakes Report

Mallards and loons and paddlers, oh my! As the weather warms up and the skies clear, there are plenty of opportunities for lake-lovers (like us!) to get outside.

Please read below for a brief digest of our upcoming programs & events, including a recap of the 3rd annual Save Our Lakes Community Breakfast and a link to the 2013 State of the Lakes report.

P.S. Be sure to watch the three new videos premiered at the Breakfast: The State of the Lakes; Schooling for Cleaner Lakes; Projects & Progress in the Watershed

Table of Contents

Save Our Lakes Breakfast Recap
Announcing the 2013 State of the Lakes Report
Summer Volunteer Opportunities
Yahara Lakes 101 – This Thursday!
Crazy 4 Lakes Run/Walk Recap
The Time is Now!
In the Community

Save Our Lakes Breakfast Recap

Over 600 community members joined us bright and early at the Monona Terrace on Friday, April 25th for the Save Our Lakes community breakfast. We are proud to announce that attendees at the breakfast generously pledged nearly $40,000 for our lakes. The Schooling for Cleaner Lakes fish-mobiles – created by over 80 school and community groups — looked incredible “swimming” overhead.

We heard from interesting and inspiring speakers on three main topics, with each talk followed by a video produced by Studio 88 (see links below).

The State of the Lakes

Steve Carpenter, Director of the UW-Madison Center for Limnology, spoke on “Trends and Surprises in the Limnology of Madison’s Lakes.” We learned that although rainstorms and manure have been trending up, runoff has remained relatively steady. Steve attributed the lack of an increase in runoff to strong phosphorus management in the watershed. He ended by calling on the community to continue to work to beat the trends, so that runoff (and the phosphorus that comes with it) will not just hold steady but decrease.

Schooling for Cleaner Lakes

Brennan Nardi, Editor-in-Chief of Madison Magazine and member of the CLA Community Board, spoke to the Schooling for Cleaner Lakes theme. Brennan discussed the many partners that are working together for cleaner lakes, and announced the community art project winners. Congratulations Lowell Elementary School, West High School, and Phil Gaebler! Brennan also presented the 2013 Watershed Stewardship Award, which went to Jon Standridge for his leadership in volunteering on the creation and expansion of CLA’s citizen monitoring program. Three new 2014 CLA partnerships were also announced: an education initiative with Earth Partnership for Schools; a summer lake education program with Boys & Girls Club of Dane County and Wingra Boats; and a crowd-source beach monitoring initiative with the City of Madison and 100state, announced by Madison Mayor Paul Soglin.

Projects & Progress in the Watershed

Dane County Executive Joe Parisi presented on “Dane County’s Clean Lakes Effort”, which highlighted the county’s commitment to funding and getting boots on the ground to clean up our lakes. The video features the county’s extensive work as well as projects by other partners in the watershed – click the link above.

Dave Lumley, CEO of Spectrum Brands, closed out the program with inspiring and motivational remarks on his vision and commitment to cleaner lakes, and a call to the community to make a pledge for our lakes. See our website for details about Spectrum’s commitment to the lakes and for the opportunity to get a special discount code for Spectrum Brands products valid until 5/26/14.

Announcing the 2013 State of the Lakes report

We presented the 2013 State of the Lakes report at the Save Our Lakes breakfast on Friday, April 25th. The report is now available online in four sections.

In the report, we present the 2013 State of the Lakes that aggregates information from many different government organizations and research institutions on the current status of water quality, highlights many of the phosphorus-reduction projects that were accomplished in the last year, and illustrates the progress we’ve made towards our goal. In addition, we provide more information about CLA and our efforts to engage the community and advocate for the lakes. Our intention is that the report will be a reference and a resource that highlights community progress towards cleaner, healthier lakes for all.

Yahara Lakes 101 – Emily Stanley, “Yahara Long Term Ecological Research: Trends & Patterns”

Please join us this Thursday, May 8, in welcoming Dr. Emily Stanley to Yahara Lakes 101 (YL101) for her presentation on “Yahara Long Term Ecological Research: Trends & Patterns”. Dr. Stanley is the lead principal investigator of the North Temperate Lakes Long Term Ecological Research program at University of Wisconsin, and is a professor for the UW Department of Zoology and the Center for Limnology. In addition, Dr. Stanley has active research projects that consider large scale and long-term changes in lake water quality and carbon cycling in streams.

DATE: Thursday, May 8, 2014

7:30 a.m. – coffee, pastries & fruit
8 a.m. – presentation
9 a.m. – Q & A

LOCATION: Bluephies Café at the Verex Plaza (150 E. Gilman St.), located on level B.

PRICE: Admission is $10 at the door or free to Friends of Clean Lakes. Become a Friend today for a minimum of $35. 

Dr. Stanley will talk about the North Temperate Lakes Long-Term Ecological Research Project, including the history of this program, what we study in the Madison lakes, and some representative examples of physical, chemical, and biological changes that have been unfolding in these lakes over the past and current decades.

The UW Center for Limnology is learning a great deal about changes in phosphorus loads to the lakes, and other trends are becoming apparent that may provide additional scientific and management challenges.

See the Yahara Lakes 101 page for more information about the series and for more details about the presentation, as well as where to park.

Summer Volunteer Opportunities

Lake-use Survey Conductors
We are looking for volunteers to help administer brief surveys at public beaches, boat landings and lakeside parks. The information will be used as part of a watershed-wide study to evaluate public perceptions and the economic value of our lakes to the larger community. Surveys will be conducted between Memorial Day and Labor Day. Lake-access locations, days and time blocks can be tailored to each volunteer’s availability. To learn more about this volunteer opportunity, contact Paul Dearlove at 255-1000 or paul@cleanlakesalliance.com.

Citizen Water Quality Monitors
CLA is expanding its highly successful beach and end-of-pier monitoring pilot program.  Launched in 2013, this initiative seeks to collect real-time information on near-shore water quality conditions around each of the five Yahara lakes.  We currently have a few volunteer openings left to fill.  If you’ve always wondered about the water quality off your pier or at your favorite swimming area, this is an opportunity you won’t want to miss.  Tap into your inner lake scientist and help CLA track blue-green algal blooms and other beach-health indicators.  Act soon because our training sessions are filling up fast.  If interested, contact Katie Van Gheem at 255-1000 or kathryn.vangheem@cleanlakesalliance.com.

Crazy 4 Lakes Team a success at CrazyLegs

We want to give a BIG thanks to all the Crazylegs Crazy 4 Lakes Team participants that supported CLA through the form of pledges and community engagement. We couldn’t have asked for better weather to run for our lakes — the day was filled with warm weather and sunshine. Prizes will be awarded to the team members that collected pledges ($35 minimum). To claim your prizes, please send your pledges and form to the Clean Lakes Alliance at 150 E. Gilman St., Ste. 2600 Madison, WI 53703.

The Time is Now!

Between now and May 26th, individuals who donate to CLA (by becoming a Friend of Clean Lakes or joining the 63Club, among other options) by using the link below will receive a special discount code for 30% off Spectrum Brands products valid until 5/26/14.

In the Community

Yahara 2070

What kind of future do we want for the Yahara Watershed? Join a discussion of our region’s future at the launch of Yahara 2070 on May 14, 2014.

Yahara 2070 is an exploration of possible futures for the people, lakes, and ecosystems of the Yahara Watershed, the region that shares Lakes Mendota, Monona, Waubesa, and Kegonsa. The project combines rigorous science, public input, and “out-of-the-box” thinking to create a set of ecological scenarios for the Yahara Watershed in the year 2070.

An investigation of the question “what if…”, the scenarios provide fictitious but plausible stories about the future of the region’s ecosystems and human well-being, based on a range of possible social and environmental changes. These stories can help communities and decision makers envision and plan for a desirable future.

This event is the debut of a suite of research results that will emerge over the course of 2014 and 2015. Yahara 2070 is part of the UW-Madison’s Water Sustainability and Climate Project, a five-year interdisciplinary project funded by the National Science Foundation.

Date: Wednesday, May 14th, 2014
Time: 3:00pm-5:00pm, reception with food and beverage to follow
Place: Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery, H.F. DeLuca Forum, 330 N. Orchard St. Madison

This event is free and open to the public.

Register here: https://wsc.limnology.wisc.edu/yahara-2070-launch

• Chris Kucharik, Lead Principal Investigator and Associate Professor, Agronomy and Nelson Institute Center for Sustainability and the Global Environment, UW-Madison
• Steve Carpenter, Principal Investigator and Director, Center for Limnology, UW-Madison

Following the presentation, a panel of local leaders will discuss the region’s future:
• Steve Carpenter, Director, Center for Limnology, UW-Madison
• Donald Heilman, President, Clean Lakes Alliance
• Melissa Malott, Executive Assistant, Office of Dane County Executive Parisi
• Brennan Nardi, Editor, Madison Magazine
• Moderator: Zac Schultz, Producer/Reporter, Wisconsin Public Television

Learn more about the Water Sustainability and Climate Project at https://wsc.limnology.wisc.edu/

Register for the Duck Dash

Join Wingra Boats and CLA for the first annual Duck Dash paddle and run — a family friendly “fun run” style event supporting the youth outdoor education programs of the CLA.  Start out paddling a canoe, kayak, or Stand Up Paddleboard (SUP) from Vilas Park to Wingra Park, then either walk 2k or trail run 8k through the UW Arboretum, ending back at Vilas Park.  Register today at: www.wingraboats.com/duck-dash.html.

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