Camp Evelyn Dam Removed
Using grant money, the Manitou Council were able remove the dam, and begin bank restoration above the former dam. The SRBP donated $5,000 towards the engineering and permitting work.
Work at the site is by no means complete. Sediment stored upstream of the dam needs to stabilize to the point where it may be shaped, seeded and stabilized.
Some sediment is expected to move downstream with spring runoff, benefiting some areas downstream of the dam previously “starved” of sand and soil particles needed for insects and other aquatic invertebrates micro habitat. All in all, the Mullet River will emerge a much healthier ecosystem for trout and other cold water organisms as a result of the dam removal. Contributing to the removal of this damn is one way that SRBP has been working to restore the health of waters in our area.
View our latest newsletter, Bits from the Basin.
Sheboygan River Basin Clean Up – May 21
(The following article appeared in the May 19, 2016 issue of Sheboygan Weekend)
On May 21, 2016, Sheboygan County residents are invited to join corporate groups, individuals, families and clubs to take part in the 10th an- nual Sheboygan River Basin Clean Up. Volunteers will set out on canoes and by foot to pick up garbage and debris from various sections of the Sheboygan River from Johnsonville all the way down to the Sheboygan Harbor.
Hosted by the Sheboygan River Basin Partnership, Camp Y-Koda, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Great Lakes Restoration and University Wisconsin-Extension, the annual event is designed to not only bring the community together to clean up the area’s waterways, but to also educate a new generation about the importance of caring about what flows into the river – and where it comes from.
Organizers ensure that it’s not too late to sign up. Efforts begin at 10 a.m. at various locations along the Sheboygan River.
Other ways to help include photographing the event, serving as a landing host, or helping serve lunch after the cleanup.
“Every little action that people take to help our environment adds up to make a big difference. This event impacts our community in many ways because it creates awareness that there is a need to clean up litter along the river and this changes people’s attitudes and behaviors as well,” said Sarah Dezwarte, director of education at Camp Y-Koda and Sheboygan River Basin Partnership board member
Jon Gumtow, a 15 long-time volunteer on the Sheboygan River Basin Partnership board of directors, agreed, “It’s important that people have that awareness. Maybe (because of their efforts they won’t) litter or throw things out the window when driving. They are learning something new and maybe training their behaviors.”
He explained that because rivers and lakes are often the lowest point in a neighborhood all the water from fields, homes and parking lots wind up in the waterways – this includes the trash that is dumped alongside the roads, left on lawns and carelessly discarded out car windows.
Despite there always being new “stuff” to clean up, proof of everyone’s annual commitment can be seen. “When we first began doing river clean ups, we collected over two tons of garbage on the day of the cleanup. Every year, we find a little less garbage, so we are noticing a trend that indicates that this cleanup is making a difference,” said Kendra Kelling, program director for Camp Y-Koda and president of SRBP.
Continued cleaning is necessary as the river works to heal from the damage done due to misuse and chemical spills from the industrialization era through the mid-1970s.
Gumtow explained that while the river is the cleanest it’s been in decades, there are still lots of problems and that the Sheboygan River is lack- ing proper nutrient input due suspended solids, and runoff from watershed, parking lots and urban areas. “Water quality not what it should be,” he said.
Kelling encourages as many people as possible to take part in the day’s cleaning efforts because it’s fun, allows youth and adults to take ownership of their environment, and it enables them to see how a day’s worth of work can make positively impact the community. Plus, there is a free lunch.
To prepare for the outings participants should plan to dress in layers, accommodating for the day’s weather, and bring water. Note that shoes are likely to get wet or muddy; sunscreen and bug spray are recommended.
There is no minimum age requirement to help with the cleanup efforts, however children under 18 do need to be accompanied by an adult.
For more information call Camp Y-Koda at 920-467-6882 or register by emailing Sarah.