Beach Testing Begins June 14
| June 12, 2017 | 12:35 pm | Community News | Comments closed


TRAVERSE CITY, Michigan – June 12, 2017 – The Watershed Grand Traverse Bay will begin its annual beach testing on June 14. Seventeen area Great Lakes beaches will be tested every Wednesday through September 6.

Beach test results will be available by noon on Thursdays and posted shortly thereafter on the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality’s BeachGuard website as well as The Watershed Center’s Facebook page, and the Grand Traverse County Health Department website. If test results show high bacterial levels, beaches will be posted as necessary by local Health Departments and immediately re-tested.

Elevated bacteria levels, including E. coli, at beaches pose a threat to public health and cause illness, especially in young children and people with comprised immune systems.

“We’re proud to continue to offer this service within our watershed,” said Sarah U’Ren, program director at The Watershed Center. “Testing bacteria such as E.coli is an important part of keeping our residents, visitors, and beaches healthy. By comparing the information we collect this summer with that of the last 15 years of data, we’re able to better predict which beaches may see elevated bacteria levels after rain events, thus protecting public health.” The Watershed Center also uses this data to support restoration projects to reduce bacteria levels at local beaches.

Funding for beach monitoring comes from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency BEACH Act Funds as well as the City of Traverse City and Acme Township. Testing will be conducted at the following beaches:

Grand Traverse County:

  • West End Beach
  • Clinch Park
  • Bryant Park
  • East Bay Park
  • Traverse City State Park
  • Acme Bayside Park
  • Senior Beach
  • Sunset Park
  • Volleyball Beach
  • Sayler Park
  • Dock Road

Benzie/Leelanau County:

  • Empire Beach
  • Frankfort Beach
  • Northport Beach
  • Suttons Bay South Shore Park
  • Suttons Bay Marina Park Beach
  • Greilickville Harbor Park (Elmwood Park)

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The Watershed Center is a non-profit organization that advocates for clean water in Grand Traverse Bay and acts to protect and preserve its 1,000-square mile watershed, which covers portions of Grand Traverse, Leelanau, Antrim, and Kalkaska counties. Learn more at

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Seeking volunteers for upcoming tree plantings
| June 5, 2017 | 3:26 pm | News & Events | Comments closed

The Watershed Center is proud to be involved with two local tree planting efforts, one in Northport on Saturday, June 10, and another in Elk Rapids on Saturday, June 17. The tree plants are part of an effort lead by ReLeaf Michigan, a non-profit tree organization through the U.S. Forest Service, and aims to increase local tree canopy and have a positive impact on water quality.

ReLeaf Michigan tree experts will be present to teach volunteers how to properly plant trees. All ages are welcome. Please wear closed-toe shoes and bring a shovel if you have one; event will occur rain or shine.

RSVP’s requested but not required:

  • Elk Rapids: Please RSVP to Brad Kluczynski at or 231-264-9971
  • Northport: Please RSVP to Barb Von Voigtlander at or 231-386-5182 ext. 13



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Swim for Grand Traverse Bay – August 12, 2017
| May 15, 2017 | 3:30 pm | Community News | Comments closed

Registration is now open for the Second Annual Swim for Grand Traverse Bay! The swim will be held Saturday, August 12. Details and registration are available at

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TWC Welcomes New Board Members and Staff, Hosting Open House on June 2
| April 26, 2017 | 6:05 pm | Community News | Comments closed

The Watershed Center Grand Traverse Bay is pleased to welcome two new members to the Board of Directors as well as announce the director of community engagement.

“The first quarter of 2017 was a time to build our capabilities for the future,” said The Watershed Center’s executive director Christine Crissman. “As we think about the future of our region, as well as what the value of clean, healthy water in Grand Traverse Bay means for our community, we wanted to build our bench of board and staff members to meet those needs.”

Joining the Board are Eric Keller, regional coordinator for the Michigan League of Conservation Voters, and Tom Klein, independent strategic marketing consulting. Keller brings his extensive public policy, campaign, and government experience, which will be beneficial as The Watershed Center works with policymakers at various levels of government. Klein’s background in business and marketing will help bolster the nonprofit’s relationships with key audiences.

The Watershed Center also welcomed Shelli DiFranco as the director of community engagement. DiFranco brings over 10 years of communications, public relations, and community engagement experience. DiFranco will be leading communications and marketing and supporting The Watershed Center’s philanthropic efforts.

The Watershed Center will host a public open house at their office at 13272 S. West Bay Shore Drive in Traverse City on Friday, June 2 from 8-10am for the community to meet Keller, Klein, and DiFranco.

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Thank you to our 2016 Honor Roll of Donors
| April 13, 2017 | 4:33 pm | Community News | Comments closed

Our 2016 Honor Roll of Donors is now available. Thank you to those who supported us in 2016, your help is invaluable.

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