The Watershed Center Receives $167k Grant to Improve Kids Creek
| August 29, 2018 | 12:15 pm | News & Events | Comments closed
Contact:
Shelli DiFranco
The Watershed Center
sdifranco@gtbay.org
231.935.1514 ext. 5

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

THE WATERSHED CENTER RECEIVES $167K GRANT TO IMPROVE KIDS CREEK
FUNDS ALLOW FOR ENGINGEERING PLANS AND HABITAT RESTORATION,
CHART PATH FOR ADDITIONAL FUNDING

TRAVERSE CITY, Michigan – August 29, 2018 – The Watershed Center Grand Traverse Bay has received a $167,313 grant from the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Fisheries program and the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative to create engineering plans to replace four road-stream crossings and to restore habitat for native species along a 3,000-foot stretch of Kids Creek.

Kids Creek is the only waterway in the Grand Traverse Bay watershed that is listed on Michigan’s Impaired Waters List. The Watershed Center has been working to improve the creek for the last 15 years.

“We are thrilled to have this investment from NOAA to prepare engineering plans to kick off work on this section of Kids Creek,” said Sarah U’Ren, Program Director at The Watershed Center. “This project will improve fish passage, stream stability, habitat for aquatic insects, and water quality along this stretch of a cherished urban stream.”

The habitat restoration work will focus on a 3,000-foot section between U.S. 31 and Silver Lake Road, where Kids Creek flows through a degraded wetland almost entirely comprised of reed canary grass, an invasive plant. The grant also funds engineering plans to be drawn up for four Kids Creek road stream crossings within the City of Traverse City that are undersized and are slated to be replaced with larger, open bottom structures.

“These road crossings are critical infrastructure pieces and major rehabilitation and replacement is recommended since they are nearing the end of their useful life,” said Marty Colburn, City Manager for the City of Traverse City. “This project is a win-win. We wanted to replace them with correctly sized crossings with natural stream bottoms, which will also be great for our fishermen as it will create better habitat for native species, like the Michigan state fish, brook trout.” The City of Traverse City is also matching the grant with $166,500 of in-kind staff time to design and oversee construction efforts for the road stream crossing improvements.

This grant lays the groundwork for an additional $2.2 million of NOAA funding in the coming years to cover construction costs for the habitat restoration and road stream crossings. Engineering design and construction oversight for the in-stream habitat improvements will be completed by Environmental Consulting & Technology, Inc.

For more about the past, present, and future of Kids Creek, visit www.gtbay.org/kidscreek.

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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 www.gtbay.org.

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Results from the 2018 Swim for Grand Traverse Bay
| August 13, 2018 | 8:11 pm | News & Events | Comments closed

Congratulations to all our 2018 Swim for Grand Traverse Bay swimmers! Below are the results from the 2-mile open water swim on Saturday, August 11, 2018. You can see a searchable PDF here.

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Seeking Input for Grand Traverse Bay Watershed Protection Plan
| June 29, 2018 | 3:50 pm | News & Events | Comments closed
As part of our work to update the Grand Traverse Bay Watershed Protection Plan, we need input from you! Residents, visitors, employees, business owners — your thoughts on our watershed are valued. The online conversation below should take 5 minutes or less. The link will be open from June 29-July 31, 2018.
 
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The Watershed Center Announces Inaugural Kids Swim for Grand Traverse Bay
| June 28, 2018 | 7:11 pm | News & Events | Comments closed
Contact:
Shelli DiFranco
The Watershed Center
sdifranco@gtbay.org
231.935.1514 ext. 5
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

THE WATERSHED CENTER ANNOUNCES INAUGURAL KIDS SWIM FOR GRAND TRAVERSE BAY

HALF-MILE OPEN WATER SWIM AIMED AT YOUTH AGES 12-17

TRAVERSE CITY, Michigan – June 28, 2018 – The Watershed Center is pleased to announce the inaugural Kids Swim for Grand Traverse Bay, a fun half-mile point-to-point open water swim aimed at swimmers ages 12-17 on August 10 at 6pm. Registration opens Friday June 29 at 8am at https://runsignup.com/kidsswimforgtbay. The registration fee is $25 per swimmer and $5 per support paddler. Swimmers are required to have parental consent and are encouraged to have a parent or adult serve as their support paddler.

The Kids Swim for Grand Traverse Bay is a family-friendly companion swim to the Swim for Grand Traverse Bay. It was launched in response to community interest for a fun, yet challenging, youth-oriented swimming event. The half-mile swim will start at West End Beach and end at Volleyball Beach in Traverse City.

“We are really excited to host the Kids Swim as we believe it is important to foster a love of clean water with the next generation,” said Christine Crissman, Executive Director of The Watershed Center. “Our region and state have many competitive youth swimmers, whether they swim at their local YMCA, swim club or with their school district. The Kids Swim will be a fun way to connect a new group of people with the bay we love and work to protect.”

Additional information on the Kids Swim for Grand Traverse Bay can be found at www.swimforgtbay.org.

 

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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 www.gtbay.org.

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The Watershed Center to Host Community Meetings on Watershed Protection Plan
| June 15, 2018 | 3:17 pm | News & Events | Comments closed
Contact:
Shelli DiFranco
The Watershed Center
sdifranco@gtbay.org
231.935.1514 ext. 5
 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

THE WATERSHED CENTER TO HOST COMMUNITY MEETINGS ON WATERSHED PROTECTION PLAN

MEETINGS WILL BE HELD IN ANTRIM, GRAND TRAVERSE, AND LEELANAU COUNTIES

 

TRAVERSE CITY, Michigan – June 15, 2018 – The Watershed Center Grand Traverse Bay will host three community meetings to discuss updating The Grand Traverse Bay Watershed Protection Plan with a focus on shoreline communities. The meetings are free and open to all residents, business owners, and visitors.

The meetings will be held:

  • Thursday, June 28: 6-7pm at the Suttons Bay-Bingham District Library, 416 Front Street, Suttons Bay
  • Thursday, July 12: 6-7pm at the Woodmere Library’s McGuire Room, 610 Woodmere Avenue, Traverse City
  • Thursday, July 19: 6-7pm at the Historic Elk Rapids Town Hall, 401 River Street, Elk Rapids

“We are excited to be updating this critical watershed document,” said Christine Crissman, executive director of The

Watershed Center. “The current plan was last revised in 2005 and much has changed in the watershed in the last 13 years. From development to the impacts of climate change, we need to take a current look at our water quality conditions and identify opportunities and threats we need to focus on.”

The revised Grand Traverse Bay Watershed Protection Plan will have a stronger focus on shoreline communities in Antrim, Grand Traverse, and Leelanau counties. The Boardman River and Elk River Chain of Lakes sub-watershed plans are nearing completion and will also be incorporated into the Grand Traverse Bay plan. The Watershed Center staff have been collecting and analyzing water quality data from throughout the watershed as part of their work.

During the community meetings, attendees will hear from The Watershed Center staff about the current plan, progress made thus far in updating it, and have their chance to provide input on the new plan. In addition to the community meetings, The Watershed Center is planning on online form that residents, business owners, and visitors are encouraged to participate in to share their thoughts on watershed priorities and concerns. The form will be available later this summer and will be posted on The Watershed Center’s website and Facebook page.

“Updating the Watershed Protection Plan is important for the overall environmental and economic health of our region,” said David Mengebier, president and CEO of the Grand Traverse Regional Community Foundation. “Grand Traverse Bay is a cornerstone to our community and we need to understand the current and future threats to it to ensure we are doing all we can to protect it.”

These updates to the Grand Traverse Bay Watershed Protection Plan were made possible by funding from the Community Foundation Land Use & Conservation Planning Endowment, the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, and individual donations. The final plan is expected to be completed by the end of 2019.

 

# # #

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 www.gtbay.org.

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