Lake-O-Gram Vol. IV, Issue 6: Adventures in lake-land

Thank you to everyone who came out to the Clean Lakes Festival, including the nearly 300 riders who looped Lake Monona by bike! The weather was perfect for recreation, relaxation, and exploration of all that our lakes have to offer. The photos speak for themselves: take a look at festival highlights here.

Consider joining us for a Yahara Lakes 101 presentation on “Blue-green algae in Lake Mendota: the mystery of the missing nitrogen” with Dr. McMahon on Thursday, August 14th, and a volunteer day at Olbrich Park on Thursday, August 21st. Also, we encourage you to support our lake education programs by becoming a lake buddy.

In the meantime, keep getting out on the lakes, and don’t forget to send us pictures. We’ll keep you up-to-date on our adventures.

In Partnership,

The Clean Lakes Alliance team

Table of Contents
Lake Explorer Camp
Yahara Lakes 101 with Dr. McMahon
Olbrich Park volunteer day
Clean Lakes Festival recap
Loop the Lake recap
“We need to redefine our allies” – TEDxMadison
Community Events and Opportunities

Lake Explorer Camp – Celebratory Field Day

On Wednesday, August 6th, 180 Boys & Girls Club of Dane County students will arrive at Wingra Park for a lake-centered field day. The students will paddle around Lake Wingra, explore lake history on a pontoon boat, learn to net and identify fish, and try their luck at fishing.

The field day will celebrate the completion of the first annual Lake Explorer Camp. This pilot program was designed to increase understanding and appreciation of our lakes, and teach valuable lake recreation and investigation skills. As part of the camp, Boys and Girls Club students learned about and played on Lake Wingra with trained staff, including a bilingual instructor. Students investigated fish biology, read topography maps, identified lake macroinvertebrates with a microscope, and gained paddling, boating, and fishing skills.

The camp is the result of a partnership between the Clean Lakes Alliance, Wingra Boats, the Boys & Girls Club of Dane County, and the generous support of Downtown Madison Rotary and the Wingra Boats Duck Dash.

To support the Clean Lakes Alliance’s lake education programs, donate to become a lake buddy. Through our lake education programs, we seek to take advantage of the strengths of our partners and make connections to help foster the next generation of lake advocates.

Yahara Lakes 101 with Dr. McMahon

Join us on Thursday, August 14th for Yahara Lakes 101 – this month, we will learn all about cyanobacteria (blue-green algae), with Dr. Katherine (Trina) McMahon. The presentation topic will be “Blue-green algae in Lake Mendota: the mystery of the missing nitrogen.”

The element nitrogen seems to affect how blue-green algae forms and produces toxins in unexpected ways. Dr. McMahon will give us insight into the research on cyanobacteria that is currently underway at UW-Madison and through the North Temperate Lakes Long Term Ecological Research program. Dr. McMahon will also explain the role of water quality buoys in monitoring blooms, and give a preview of some exciting new genomics-enabled insight into Mendota’s blue-green algae.

Please register online (required).

Dr. McMahon is a Professor at UW-Madison with joint appointments in Civil and Environmental Engineering, and Bacteriology. She has been studying the Madison-area lakes since she arrived here in 2003. Her research focuses on the role of microorganisms in determining water quality, in both lakes and wastewater treatment plants. She is also currently a citizen member of the Dane County Lakes and Watershed Commission.

Come volunteer with us at Olbrich Park! (Thurs., Aug. 21)

Here’s your chance to meet some CLA staff members and other lake lovers while volunteering on the lakeshore of the beautiful Olbrich Park. Tools and supplies will be provided… all we need is your presence and enthusiasm! Sign-up to join us on August 21st from 6 – 8 p.m. for beach maintenance and lakeshore cleanup at Olbrich Park.

What a day! Clean Lakes Festival 2014 recap

We are proud to announce that the 2014 Clean Lakes Festival raised $X for our lakes. We were happy to see people of all ages having fun in and out of the water, enjoying great food, good company, stellar views, and plenty of lake education and recreation.

The CLA lake exploration booth was a special hit with young scientists. Thanks to our great staff and equipment on loan from the UW-Madison Center for Limnology and Zoology Department, festival attendees of all ages got to observe first-hand what lives in our lakes.

And of course, thank you to the sponsors that helped make the day free and low-cost for all: Alliant Energy Foundation, Betty Lou Cruises, The Burish Group – UBS Financial Services, Ho-Chunk Gaming – Madison, InterCon Construction and Energy Services, Lands’ End, Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company, Spectrum Brands, and Wickcraft Company, Inc.

Loop the Lake – recap

Thank you to the near-300 riders who looped Lake Monona with us on Saturday – it was the biggest ride yet, and raised $X for our lakes!

Energy was high throughout the ride and we are proud to say that even the littlest of us made it back to the finish line at the Clean Lakes Festival. Good thing the Madison Water Utility water wagon was on hand for refreshment and rehydration, and the Kiwanis Club of Downtown Madison was ready with a freshly grilled lunch.

Thanks to the sponsors that helped make the day run smoothly: American Transmission Company (ATC), Dentistry for Madison, Hooper Foundation, Lands’ End, Plastic Ingenuity, Schwinn Bicycle Company, Spectrum Brands, and Woodman’s Markets.

“We need to redefine our allies” – TEDxMadison

Back in June, CLA’s Director of Policy & Communications Elizabeth Katt-Reinders presented her “idea worth sharing” at TEDx Madison, an independently-organized TED event. Elizabeth was one of nine speakers from the community, and their videos are now online for viewing and sharing. Elizabeth spoke about “redefining our allies”, and she shared stories that illustrate how CLA strives to find opportunities for connection and collaboration rather than see competing interests. Check out her TEDx talk here.

Community Events and Opportunities

Yahara in situ – Water Sustainability and Climate blog:

We’re in love with the new “Yahara in situ” blog, courtesy of the UW-Madison Water Sustainability and Climate project. The posts are chock-full of insight into local water quality research, full of photos, and very reader-friendly. Check out two of our favorite recent posts:

“New program, old tricks for eliminating phosphorus”

“Geoengineering: Parallels between the Global Climate and the Madison Lakes”

About the blog:

Yahara in situ is a new blog about the Yahara Watershed and, more specifically, about how social and environmental change might affect the region’s water and the many benefits its residents get from nature. Run by the UW-Madison’s Water Sustainability and Climate (WSC) project, the blog is a collection of research updates, reflections, and images from the project’s diverse team of scientists. Since their research is place-based, they are doing things “in situ.” Learn more about the WSC project at https://wsc.limnology.wisc.edu/.

MSCR Pontoon Boat Program (until lake September)

Have you ever looked at the beautiful lakes in Madison and wanted to get out on the water? The MSCR Pontoon Boat Program was created just for you! MSCR offers drop-in boat rides, boat rentals and specialty trips and events. For pricing and to reserve a ride, please visit the MSCR website and fill out the Pontoon Rental Request Form. The program begins in May and continues on until late September, and trips begin at Tenney Boat Pier at 1615 Sherman Avenue. 

Brittingham Boats SUP Cup (summer Thursdays)

Get out on the lakes with the SUP Cup! On Thursday nights this summer at Brittingham Boats, check out the Stand Up Paddleboard race series for the recreational and competitive paddlers among you! We’re happy to see CLA Community Board member and owner of Brittingham and Wingra Boats, Tyler Leeper, getting more people out on the lakes.

IRONMAN Wisconsin (Sunday, September 7)

The IRONMAN Wisconsin is looking for boat and personal water craft volunteers. Please mention that you are volunteering on behalf of the Clean Lakes Alliance when you sign up. Register to volunteer online!

Call for Badger Bioneer Nominations

Each year, Sustain Dane honors three Badger Bioneers, local champions working to move the Madison Region toward a more sustainable future, at their annual Badger Bioneers Conference, to be held on November 18, 2014. Click here to nominate someone for this distinguished title.



Volume IV, Issue 6

August, 2014

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