Category: News & Events
Grand Traverse Bay Officially Frozen
| February 13, 2019 | 5:16 pm | News & Events | Comments closed

Contact:
Shelli DiFranco
The Watershed Center
sdifranco@gtbay.org
231.935.1514 ext. 5

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

GRAND TRAVERSE BAY OFFICIALLY FROZEN
SIXTH TIME THE BAY HAS FROZEN IN THE LAST 20 YEARS

TRAVERSE CITY, Michigan – February 13, 2019 – Grand Traverse Bay officially froze on Wednesday, February 13, according to The Watershed Center Grand Traverse Bay. The bay is considered frozen when west bay freezes up to Power Island for at least 24 hours.

In 2018, the bay was declared frozen on February 11 and remained frozen for 14 days before thawing. This marks the sixth time the bay has frozen over in the past 20 years, according to Heather Smith, Grand Traverse BAYKEEPER® at The Watershed Center.

“Back in the early to mid-1900s the bay froze 70-90% of the time,” said Smith. “Around 1990, we started to see fewer years of ice cover. Annual variation in ice cover is due to weather patterns, with changes in climate impacting the long-term trends. This decrease in ice cover is not unique to our region. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reports that annual average ice coverage declined 71% from 1973 to 2010 in all five of the Great Lakes and Lake St. Clair.”

Besides providing recreational opportunities such as ice fishing and skating, wildlife can reap the benefits of the frozen bay, too. “Ice coverage can be helpful for some fish species, such as white fish, whose eggs may be protected from winter storms,” said Smith.

There will be variations in the thickness of the ice. As such, Smith urges extreme caution on all bodies of water, including east and west bay.

The Watershed Center will continue to monitor conditions on the bay and will keep the official log of the number of frozen days through the season.

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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.

 

Seeking Community Engagement Intern
| February 8, 2019 | 5:13 pm | News & Events | Comments closed

POSTING DATE
February 8, 2019

POSITION IDENTIFICATION
15-20 hours/week for 12-14 weeks from mid-May to mid-August; a stipend of up to $600 is available 

POSITION SUMMARY

The Community Engagement intern will support a range of communication and marketing activities related to The Watershed Center, which has a mission to advocate for clean water in Grand Traverse Bay and act to protect and preserve its watershed. S/he is primarily responsible for supporting the Director of Community Engagement in planning and executing the Kids Swim for Grand Traverse Bay and the Swim for Grand Traverse Bay August 9-10. The Watershed Center strives to provide interns with a well-rounded experience, so s/he will also spend approximately 10% of their time learning about and supporting local advocacy and on-the-ground projects that protect water quality. This position requires a genuine enthusiasm for The Watershed Center’s mission and the ability to project that enthusiasm to others. Strong attention to detail as well as interpersonal and communication skills are essential to effectively interact with and build trust and confidence among our audiences.

RELATIONSHIPS

  • Reports to: Director of Community Engagement
  • Supervises: none
  • Works with: Grand Traverse Baykeeper®, Executive Director, Program Director
  • External stakeholders: Swim and Kids Swim for Grand Traverse Bay participants, donors, volunteers, elected and appointed officials, general public

RESPONSIBILITIES

  • Support all marketing and promotions efforts related to the Swim events
  • Create original content and layout for Swim eNewsletters
  • Create original content for the Swim and Watershed Center social media channels
  • Support efforts that facilitate Swim participants to meet and exceed fundraising goals
  • Obtain new financial and in-kind Swim sponsors, communicate with sponsors as needed
  • Support fundraising platform for swimmers and perform regular data entry
  • Create new content for the Swim and Watershed Center websites
  • Support media relations efforts
  • Assist with other essential tasks as needed, including water quality monitoring, volunteer coordination, data entry, advocacy tracking, and watershed education.

PREFERRED KNOWLEDGE AND EXPERIENCE

Related Experience

  • Experience in business copywriting, editing, and proofreading
  • Experience with graphic design and production of marketing materials

Skills

  • Extremely detail-oriented with strong organization skills
  • Excellent prioritization and multi-tasking abilities
  • Exceptional time management skills and ability to meet deadlines
  • Demonstrated ability to work independently and as part of a team
  • Professionalism with superior social and interpersonal skills
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • Strong experience utilizing social media, specifically Facebook and Twitter
  • Able to work flexible hours, including Friday, August 9 and Saturday, August 10

TO APPLY:

Please email Application for Employment_Internship, resume, and cover letter stating your suitability for this position to Shelli DiFranco, at sdifranco@gtbay.org.  Application materials must be received no later than 5:00pm Eastern on Friday, March 1.

The Watershed Center is an equal opportunity employer and will not discriminate in employment, promotions, or compensation on the basis of sex, age, race, religion, color, national origin, marital or veteran status, or disability.

Discovery Center Great Lakes to Host Volunteer Open House on February 2
| January 25, 2019 | 9:16 pm | News & Events | Comments closed

Contact:
Shelli DiFranco
The Watershed Center
sdifranco@gtbay.org
231.935.1514 ext. 5
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

DISCOVERY CENTER GREAT LAKES TO HOST VOLUNTEER OPEN HOUSE ON FEBRUARY 2

EVENT WILL FEATURE FIVE WATER-FOCUSED NONPROFITS

TRAVERSE CITY, Michigan – January 25, 2019 – The Discovery Center – Great Lakes is hosting a volunteer open house on Saturday, February 2 from 11am – 3pm. The event is free and open to the public, and attendees are encouraged to visit each participating nonprofit’s location on campus.

“We are thrilled to gather together to promote volunteering in our community,” said Tom Maynard, Impact Manager at the Great Lakes Children’s Museum. “Our hope is that anyone with an interest in volunteering and a passion for the Great Lakes can find an opportunity to use their talent and time in 2019.”

There will be five water-focused nonprofits in attendance: The Great Lakes Children’s Museum, Inland Seas Education Association, Maritime Heritage Alliance, Traverse Area Community Sailing, and The Watershed Center Grand Traverse Bay. Volunteer opportunities will range from individual events to regular commitments.

“Volunteering is fun and is a great way to really engage with your community and meet new people with similar interests,” said Heather Smith, Grand Traverse BAYKEEPER® at The Watershed Center. “We have a number of volunteers who donate their time and energy as a way to express their passion for clean water.”

The volunteer open house will take place at 13240 SW Bay Shore Drive in Traverse City.

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The Discovery Center’s mission is to create and maintain a collaborative educational facility where children, youth, and adults can learn the value of historic preservation, the importance of environmental stewardship, the joy of discovery, and the pleasure of water-based recreation as well as to provide support to the member water related charitable organizations for their respective operations and missions. For more information, visit www.discoverycentergreatlakes.org.

Healthy Beaches Program Concludes for 2018 Season
| October 15, 2018 | 5:36 pm | News & Events | Comments closed

Contact:
Shelli DiFranco
The Watershed Center
sdifranco@gtbay.org
231.935.1514 ext. 5

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

HEALTHY BEACHES PROGRAM CONCLUDES FOR 2018 SEASON

SAMPLES WERE WITHIN WATER QUALITY STANDARDS 96% OF THE SUMMER

 

TRAVERSE CITY, Michigan – October 15, 2018 – The Watershed Center’s Healthy Beaches program, which monitors Great Lakes and inland beaches for E. coli bacteria, has concluded its 2018 season.

“All in all, we had a spectacular season for our Healthy Beaches program,” said Sarah U’Ren, program director at The Watershed Center. “We saw 12 beach advisories on five different days this summer that were mainly due to strong storms with heavy rainfall moving through the area. This means that 96% of the samples taken were well within water quality standards.”

The Healthy Beaches program included taking samples from 32 beaches during the thirteen week season. The longest advisory was for Sunset Park beach in Traverse City and lasted for two days in early August.

“We had a very wet August,” said U’Ren. “With rainstorms, we usually expect to have some advisories posted at beaches located next to storm drains.  This is because the rain washes pollutants like oils, trash, and bacteria off the roadways and parking lots into the storm drains and out into the bay.” Sunshine kills the bacteria and nearly all beach advisories are lifted the following day after being re-tested.

Funding for the Healthy Beaches program comes from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency BEACH Act Funds as well as the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality’s Clean Michigan Initiative, the City of Traverse City, and Acme Township.

 

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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.

Freshwater Summit Registration Now Open
| September 17, 2018 | 1:06 pm | News & Events | Comments closed

Contact:
Shelli DiFranco
The Watershed Center
sdifranco@gtbay.org
231.935.1514 ext. 5

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

11th ANNUAL FRESHWATER SUMMIT PLANNED FOR OCTOBER 26, 2018

REGISTRATION AVAILABLE THROUGH THE WATERSHED CENTER

 

TRAVERSE CITY, Michigan – September 17, 2018 – The Freshwater Roundtable is proud to announce the 11th Annual Freshwater Summit. The Summit will be held on Friday, October 26 from 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. at the Hagerty Center at Northwestern Michigan College.

“Michigan’s past, present, and future are deeply connected to its clean, healthy water,” said Christine Crissman, executive director of The Watershed Center. “For our region, that’s especially true. We are looking forward to tapping into local expertise for our 11th annual freshwater gathering.”

Presentations include understanding drivers of change in Great Lakes water levels, planning to be a resilient Great Lakes community, and measuring the economic impacts of the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative.

“In Michigan, and especially in this region, our lives are defined by water; commercially and recreationally.” said Dennis McCauley, president of the Great Lakes Environmental Center, Inc., one of the sponsors of the Freshwater Summit. “We feel it’s valuable to bring together professionals and interested residents alike to talk about water quality and water use issues that are impacting our economy, our shorelines, and our lives.”

Registration is available online at https://www.gtbay.org/our-programs/freshwater-summit/. Cost is $35/person or $15/student, and includes lunch.

The Freshwater Summit is a product of the Freshwater Roundtable and is organized by The Watershed Center, Great Lakes Water Studies Institute, Michigan Sea Grant Extension, Great Lakes Environmental Center, Inc., Inland Seas Education Association, NOAA’s Office for Coastal Management, and the Grand Traverse Conservation District.

 

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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.