Watershed Network Gathering

Received the following from the Dane County Office of Lakes and Watersheds:

In 2011, the Dane County Office of Lakes and Watersheds conducted a survey of local groups throughout Dane County to learn more about their outreach and communication activities designed to raise awareness and inspire action to protect and restore water quality, habitat and other aspects of watershed health. Attached you will find a summary of those findings.

Respondents indicated an interest in collaborating. To that end, we have scheduled a Watershed Network Gathering for Friday, April 26, 2013, 1–4 p.m. in Conference Rooms A&B at 5201 Fen Oak Drive (formerly One Fen Oak Court), Madison, WI.


  • Introductions (including your group’s priorities, challenges and successes)
  • Show-n-Share of outreach tools and materials
  • Needs/Yields Collaboration (what does your group need most; what can your group share to help others)
  • Capacity Building Brainstorming (ideas of ways to address group needs to expand capacity)
  • Future Directions

PDF of Survey Results

Aquatic Plant Management Public Information Meeting

When: Tuesday April 16, 7:00 p.m.
Where: McFarland Municipal Center — Training Room, 5915 Milwaukee Street, McFarland, WI

County staff and other aquatic plant experts will present information about recent plant survey results, review the goals and recommendations of current aquatic plant management plans (all available at http://danewaters.com/management/AquaticPlantManagement.aspx), and invite public comment on ideas for changes to existing plan goals and objectives, and observations about 2012 harvesting.

This meeting will focus on:
Lake Waubesa
Lake Kegonsa
Yahara River
Upper Mud Lake
Lower Mud Lake
Jenni and Kyle Ponds
Verona Quarry

After the meeting, county staff will post (at http://danewaters.com/management/AquaticPlantManagement.aspx) the presentation slides.  Public comment can also be provided to lakes@countyofdane.com through April 19.

Top 5 News Stories of 2012

The Herald Independent has announced their top 5 stories of 2012 and the Lake Monona Water Walk came in at number 5!

Mayor Bob Miller declaring the year 2012 as the Year of Water in Monona, and from that stemmed not only The Natural Step Monona’s Water Conservation Challenge, but a three-day once in a lifetime event.

The Lake Monona Water Walk, held July 6-8, brought hundreds of people as well as internationally renowned water activists First Nations Ojibwe Grandmother Josephine Mandamin and William Waterway Marks to Monona.

Monona business owner Dianné Aldrich was at the helm for this event that combined music, education, fun, and a whole host of cultures together to celebrate water.

“The water issue is such a powerful, potent passion for me,” Aldrich said during the planning stages for the event. “Until there is that sacred relationship created with that element, people will continue to take it for granted or look at it as a resource or commodity, and not that which truly gives life.”

Inspired by Mandamin’s previous walks around the five great lakes, Aldrich planned a walk around the shores of Lake Monona as the focal point of the three days. The event brought together so many different cultures and beliefs – all for which water is a sacred element – and helped people find a renewed appreciation for the life-giving element.

This story, which we reported on quite a bit leading up to the Water Walk, makes the list because it truly was once in a lifetime. Who knows if such an event will ever happen again in Monona, in Dane County, or Wisconsin.

“2012 is the Year of Water in Monona,” said Dianné Aldrich, coordinator of the Lake Monona Water Walk. “There are no plans for next year. The question is there, but … it’s not about next year. [Grandmother Josephine and Marks] will be here this year. We don’t know if we can create that again.”

Monona Water Conservation Challenge Celebration

The Monona Water Conservation Challenge Celebration is just around the corner!

Come to the Monona Community Center to cheer on the Water Conservation Challenge winners as they are announced. Prizes will be awarded to the conservation winners and the innovation winners. You’ll hear from local water advocates, our “Gallon” sponsors, and our mayor, and even be treated to a couple of songs penned for and about the Water Conservation Challenge. Celebrate the closing of the 2012 Year of Water with song, cookies, learning, and fun.

Where: Monona Community Center
When: January 30th, 2013
Time: 7:00pm – 8:30pm

Book Dedication to City of Monona and Monona Public Library

The City of Monona and the Monona Public Library were presented with two books by William Waterway by the coordinator of the Lake Monona Water Walk, Dianné Aldrich. Water Voices From Around the World and The Holy Order of Water with a dedication that reads:

Dedicated to the City of Monona and the Monona Public Library in honor of all the collaborators, sponsors, volunteers and water souls who ensured the success of the Lake Monona Water Walk 2012! In Beauty May We Walk, For Love of Water, Dianné Aldrich, Lake Monona Water Walk Coordinator. Signed also by William Waterway Marks.

Tour of Water

For their last day in Madison Betty Lou Cruises took Grandmother Josephine Mandamin and William Waterway Marks on a gratitude cruise of Lake Monona! It was a wonderful tour of the lake. The evening brought everyone together one final time for a feast provided by Bunky’s Cafe and Glass Slipper Homes.

Thanks to all of our Sponsors, Collaborators, and wonderful Volunteers! Special thanks to Country Inn & Suites Monona for providing rooms to Grandmother and William while they were here. There wouldn’t have been a Water Walk without all of you.

So begins a new adventure for all of us.

Stay tuned for pictures and video of the Lake Monona Water Walk!

The water has circled Lake Monona.

In case you weren’t following along on Twitter or Facebook yesterday, the walk was a success! 17.35 miles all the way around, leaving Frostwoods Beach shortly after 10am and returning the water to the same place at 4:30pm. Thank you to all of the walkers for taking this journey with us!

We want to make a special mention of the Brittingham Bash at Brittingham Beach, put on by The Journey Community of Madison. Thank you for so generously giving to our walkers! Many said they could not have made it around without the food and water you shared with them.

We’d also like to say a special thank you to Bloom Bake Shop, Stalzy’s Delicatessen, Monty’s Blue Plate Diner, Willy Street Co-op, Weary Traveler Free House, and Glass Slipper Homes for providing food and refreshments for the potluck celebration!

The Water Expo was a day of learning and fun

There was so much to do today that it’s hard to summarize it! Grandmother Josephine Mandamin and William Waterway Marks spoke to us about their paths and journeys that brought them to a life of water advocacy. Michael Mucha from the Madison Metropolitan Sewerage District (MMSD) talked again about the importance of what happens to water after it goes down the drain in our house. MMSD processes 44 million gallons of waste water a day. That’s enough to fill Camp Randall!

The expo tent was bustling with all the exhibitors. I couldn’t stay away from the USGS Stream Table.

At the gazebo Karen Wendt, Gerri Gurman, Ken Lonnquist, Mark Croft, and Skip Jones entertained young and old alike.

While the sky didn’t give up any rain, it did cool down considerably for the showing of Waterlife. It was, dare I say, nice outside!

Thank you all for coming out and participating with us!

We’d also like to say a special thank you to Bloom Bake Shop, Stalzy’s Delicatessen, Salad Creations Monona, Willy Street Co-op, and Weary Traveler Free House for providing food and refreshments to our special guests and staff. Lastly a very big thank you to Heidi Uhrig from Glass Slipper Homes for a masterful dinner with fish donated by the Seafood Center.

First day of the Lake Monona Water Walk weekend a success!

Thanks to everyone who came out in the sweltering heat! The Unitarian Dance Fellowship welcomed us all with a performance. It was a pleasure to watch the Whitehorse family sing, drum, and dance our spirits high. Be welcomed by Monona Mayor Miller and Madison Mayor Soglin. Listen to Grandmother Josephine Mandamin speak to us about our mission to preserve and clean our waters. William Waterway Marks reminded us how big of a part Wisconsin has played in protecting our waters and wildlife from pesticides like DDT.

The night was closed out with performances by Art Shegonee, the Red Feather InterTribal Youth Drummers, Carell Casey, The Raging Grannies, Joe Fred and Friends, and the Prairie Bayou Cajun Band.

Tomorrow will be an even bigger day of learning and exploration. Probably some sweating too if it stays this warm!

We’d also like to say a special thanks to Salad Creations Monona and Willy Street Co-op for providing food and refreshments to our special guests and staff.

Bike Recycling Drive

Do you have bicycles or bike parts that you would like to donate to a good cause? Working Bikes Cooperative, a non-profit organization that gives new life to old bikes and independence to those who ride them, needs your bikes and they will be at Winnequah Park Saturday, July 7th during the Expo!

Your donated bike will be kept out of the landfill, recycled, and sent to countries throughout the world to provide sustainable development. Last year, Working Bikes Cooperative shipped over 5000 bikes to Africa, Central and South America and some US urban communities including New Orleans and Chicago.

Sponsored by Unity Church of Madison. For more information, contact Jeanie or Bill at 608-226-8738.