LSCA Applies For 2018 Lake Champlain Basin Program Grants

Hello good folks in the LSC community.

Today, we'd like to let you know about an excellent opportunity for Lake St. Catherine. Yesterday, the LSCA applied for 4 Lake Champlain Basin Program grants, totaling $49,000. Trustee Martha Pofit has been coordinating the LSCA's effort to apply for these grants for the past month - and we are happy to report that they have been submitted!

About the Lake Champlain Basin Program:

"The Lake Champlain Basin Program (LCBP) works in partnership with government agencies from New York, Vermont, and Québec, private organizations, local communities, and individuals to coordinate and fund efforts that benefit the Lake Champlain Basin’s water quality, fisheries, wetlands, wildlife, recreation, and cultural resources.

These efforts are guided by the plan Opportunities for Action. The LCBP works with its program partners, advisory committees, and local communities to implement this plan through a variety of federal, state and local funds. Core funding for the LCBP is through the US Environmental Protection Agency."

The 4 grants the LSCA applied for include:

A. Pollution Prevention & Habitat Conservation

As part of this grant application, we plan to use these funds to work with the Poultney Mettowee Natural Resources Conservation District (PMNRCD) on the upcoming LSC Stormwater Master Plan to mitigate runoff. We will also be engaging with Lake residents to have their property evaluated for the Lake Wise program. Lake Wise is a program that helps property owners manage their landscaping and shoreline to protect the Lake. Properties that meet all the criteria will be given the Lake Wise Award.

B. Aquatic Invasive Species Spread Prevention

As part of this grant application, we plan to use these funds to expand our milfoil control program - and our boat launch monitoring program.

C. Education and Outreach

As part of this grant application, we plan to use these funds for eduction and outreach to local residents and governments, the state government, and other lake associations and organizations.

D. Organizational Support

As part of this grant application, we plan to use these funds to expand our outreach to the lake community though our website, social media, and mailings & newsletters in an effort to retain, recruit and expand our membership.

Martha did a great job outlining how the LSCA would use these funds to benefit Lake St. Catherine with an integrated plan incorporating all 4 grants. Great job Martha!

As you may know, the LSCA spends over $125,000 a year for the preservation, protection and maintenance of Lake St. Catherine through our various programs and projects, including (but not limited to): milfoil control, boat launch monitoring, water testing and boating safety. Finding and applying for grants, along with retaining and expanding our membership base is extremely important to fund these important programs for the Lake. The LSCA is constantly working to raise money to fund these projects through grants, state and local government support and contributions from the Lake community.

LSCA President, Jim Canders, had this to say in our grant applications:

"The four grant applications address Clean Water and a protected Watershed, Healthy Ecosystems and prevention of Aquatic Invasive Species, Thriving Communities through outreach, education, partnerships and the sharing of best practices; and an Involved Public through a more robust Lake Association with social media tools and communication strategies and great involvement of Lake residents and the local communities.

The purpose of this Comprehensive Plan reflected in these 4 applications is to leverage the good works of the LSCA to date, and to make even greater strides in positioning the LSCA for the future."

Grant award notifications will be made by March 2019. Keep your fingers crossed :) 

We'll let you know when the announcement is made.

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LSCA Participating In 2018 Giving Tuesday

Hello LSC fans.

We'd like to let you know about an excellent opportunity to help support the Lake St. Catherine Association in 2019.

This year, we'll be participating in Giving Tuesday (#GivingTuesday) on our Facebook page. 

From the Giving Tuesday website, #GivingTuesday is:

"...a global day of giving fueled by the power of social media and collaboration. Celebrated on the Tuesday following Thanksgiving (in the U.S.) and the widely recognized shopping events Black Friday and Cyber Monday, #GivingTuesday kicks off the charitable season, when many focus on their holiday and end-of-year giving."

By participating in #GivingTuesday on our Facebook page, we have the opportunity to DOUBLE your yearly contribution to the LSCA.

How it works:

On Tuesday, November 27th, starting at 8 AM, Facebook and PayPal have pledged to donate up to 7 million dollars to 501(c)(3) charities by matching donations made through the charity's Facebook page.

How is the LSCA participating?:

Each year starting in late February, the LSCA reaches out to the lake community for membership dues to help fund the good work of the LSCA for the season. 

This year, we're asking you to consider making your 2019 contribution of $100 or more a few months early to take advantage of this program. 

How will this help Lake St. Catherine and the LSCA?:

Well, as you may know, the work the LSCA performs each season, including - but not limited to: milfoil control, water testing & monitoring, boat launch monitoring, lake buoy and marker maintenance and boating safety classes - costs over $100,000. Membership contributions make up over 40% of our funding each year. Your funding support is vital for the LSCA's work each season.

Let's set a goal. If we can collect 10% of our membership contributions on #GivingTuesday, we'd receive approximately $5,000 from members - which would be DOUBLED to $10,000 total! That would be amazing.

How can you participate?:

On the morning of Tuesday, November 27th, starting at 8 AM, you can go to our Facebook page and click on the blue Donate button at the top of our page. A screen will appear for you to type in your credit card information and contribution amount:

This makes your 2019 contribution eligible for matching by Facebook and PayPal! Your $100 (or more) could be doubled to $200! The LSCA will then send you your 2019 thank you package which will include a receipt, a LSCA window card, a LSCA Euro oval sticker and, of course, a note from our treasurer Elaine.

Please note: you will need to have a Facebook account to be able to participate.

When should you make your contribution?:

Facebook and PayPal have committed to matching up to 7 million in funds - so the amount available for matching is limited. So, to maximize the chance that your contribution will be matched, please go to the LSCA Facebook page as soon as you can on Tuesday, November 27th, starting at 8 AM.

So, we hope you'll consider making your 2019 contribution a little early this year - on #GivingTuesday, through our Facebook page - to potentially double your generous donation. 

But, we certainly understand if you prefer to not make a credit card payment online - we'll be kicking off our traditional membership drive when mailings go out in February of 2019.

Please save the date!

We'll keep you up-to-date on our #GivingTuesday efforts - and we'll be sure to remind you as we get closer to the big day.

If you have any questions about #GivingTuesday, please let us know - send us an email: [email protected]

Thank you for your support!

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Website Photo Updates

Hello LSC fans.

Today, we've updated the homepage of with some AMAZING photography from around the lake by Karen Velsor and Ben Nicolson. Take a look!

You'll see photos from the Little Lake, the Big Lake and the Lily Pond, including some close up images of the various wildlife living on the lake.

Karen and Ben often post their images in the Lake St. Catherine - Vermont Facebook group.

You can see more of Karen's photos on her Fine Art America page.

You can see more of Ben's photos on his Facebook or Instagram page.

We'd like to thank them both for sharing their photos - we hope you enjoy them!

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Natural Shoreline Erosion Control Certification

Calling all Landscapers, Contractors, and Site Workers that work on Lake St. Catherine... We'd like to let you know about a certification program being offered by the Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation.

From the DEC's Natural Shoreland Erosion Control Certification website:

"This Certification Course covers shoreland Best Management Practices, including techniques for erosion control, stormwater management, bioengineering and wildlife habitat protection. Lakeshore owners often rely on professional contractors, landscapers, engineers or other site workers to advice and help them manage their property. The NSECC course teaches contractors both the science for using BMPs and the science of how they work to protect the lake while remaining attractive and appealing to homeowners. All workers certified through this six hour training course will be listed on the Agency of Natural Resources web site and the list will be shared with lakeshore property owners. Those certified through this course will also be given preference for grants and contracts awarded through the new Vermont Clean Water Initiative, and are eligible for professional development credits, including four non-soil credits for Licensed Designers."

2018 Training Locations and Dates:

Monday, November 5 - Castleton University
Wednesday, November 7 - Lake Champlain Sea Grant and UVM Extension
Friday, November 9 - Associated General Contractors of Vermont

To register and for general questions, please contact David Addeo at [email protected].

For questions about curriculum please contact Amy Picotte at [email protected].

The course costs $20 to attend.

If you complete the certification - or if you have already, please let us know! We'll list your Natural Shoreland Erosion Control certified business on our website.

To read more about this important program, please read the "Vermont Natural Shoreland Erosion Control Certification Program - 2018 Legislative Report".

It is extremely important to protect our lake shoreline to prevent stormwater runoff which can... "contain nitrogen and phosphorus pollutants from fertilizers, pet and yard waste. Because stormwater flows over hard surfaces directly into a water body or storm drain, there is no opportunity for soil and plants to filter out pollutants." - US EPA. Keeping these pollutants out of the lake will help with water quality and will help to minimize a nutrient supply for weeds.

Please spread the word. Thank you!

Flyer for the upcoming dates:

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A Plaque In Memory Of Martin Greenberg

Hello LSC,

Back in December, we informed you that long-time LSCA trustee Martin Greenberg had passed away. You can read about Martin's 15 years of service to the LSCA by clicking here.

Today, we want to tell you about a new plaque that was just placed on the Welcome To Lake St. Catherine sign. But first, a little bit of history about the sign.

Former LSCA President Phil Alden provided this photo of the original sign being constructed. He notes: "The principal architect of the first sign was Don Willbrandt, ably assisted by the Binghams."

Current LSCA Presidet Jim Canders recalls, "At a time after the sign was installed, a car came down the hill from North Steet and ran it over. At that point Martin became involved."

Matrin worked with a company in Rutland to reproduce the sign and fix the damage to the area and the flowers & plantings.

After Martin's passing, LSCA trustee Rand Burgner suggested that we should place a plaque at the sign, in memory of Martin. The board unanimously agreed - and Rand and Jim started researching.

They eventually contacted Sheldon Slate in Middle Granville. The owner, Peter Tatko, was extremely generous - as he donated the plaque to the LSCA. Thank you Peter!

Last Saturday, Jim and John Belnavis placed the plaque on the sign, and we took some photos:

Jim described Martin as, "...a man for all seasons, and the best time of all for him was spending the entire summer at Lake St. Catherine with his wife Ellen at their cottage on Bert’s Nest. We thank Martin for his love of the Lake and his 15 years of service to the LSCA."

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A LSC Blast From The Past

Hello LSC,

We'd like to share this blast from the past with you - an article about Lake St. Catherine from the 1997 Summer edition of Vermont Life magazine entitled "A Family Kind Of Place - Lake St. Catherine's Appeal Spans The Generations" by Nancy Boardman, photographed by Jerry LeBlond.

We've scanned it and created a PDF for you to be able to read it and view the photographs.

Take a look!

[ click the link above or the cover image below to view the PDF article ]

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Invasive Species Recently Found In VT Lakes

Hello LSC,

We'd like to let you know that invasive species have been recently discovered in two nearby Vermont lakes - zebra mussels in Lake Memphremagog and spiny water flea in Lake Champlain.

On zebra mussels: Zebra mussels are an invasive species; they are a small freshwater mollusk that attaches to firm surfaces and can clog pipes and other underwater infrastructure. They are also filter-feeders, consuming microscopic aquatic life that is the base of the food web for our lakes. Their feeding habits can impact the native species that also consume those food sources.

On the spiny water flea: Dr. Tim Mihuc, Director of the Lake Champlain Research Institute, states, “This is truly a sad day for Lake Champlain. The spiny water flea has potential to severely impact the planktonic food web and will be a huge nuisance to anglers. Unfortunately, now Lake Champlain has joined Sacandaga Lake and Lake George as a major hub for future invasions into the Adirondacks and Vermont waters.”

You can read more about these unfortunate discoveries in these press releases:

Zebra Mussels Identified in Magog Bay, Lake Memphremagog

Spiny Water Flea Confirmed in Lake Champlain

It is illegal in the state of Vermont to transport aquatic invasive species. Act 67, which came into effect in 2017, states that if a certified attendant at a watercraft decontamination station identifies a vessel or trailer as requiring decontamination, boaters are obligated to comply. Failure to do so can result in fines and the involvement of law enforcement.

Each season, from Memorial Day to Labor Day, the LSCA works with the Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation to staff the LSC boat launch with well-trained inspectors called Greeters. They are paid personnel of the LSCA. These Greeters inspect incoming and outgoing watercraft looking for invasive species of plant and animal life. Through their efforts, we can closely monitor and prevent other invasive species like Asian Clams, Spiny Water Fleas, Water Chestnuts and Zebra Mussels carried on visiting boats, from invading Lake St. Catherine.

We want to make sure these invasive species do nto make it into Lake St. Catherine. It is so important to inspect your boat and trailer for invasive species before launching your boat into the lake.

You can learn more about aquatic invasive species on the Vermont DEC website's Aquatic Invasive Species page.

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Meeting Of The Board Of Trustees - 08/25/2018

On Saturday, August 25th, the Lake St. Catherine Association held their fourth and final meeting of the 2018 season.

The Trustees gave their reports on many topics - Click here to see the full meeting agenda. Meeting minutes compiled by Elaine Bagley, James Canders and Jerremy Jones.

August 25th 2018 Meeting of the Lake St. Catherine Board of Trustees
Lake St. Catherine Country Club, 8:30 AM

Meeting called to order by President Jim Canders at 8:30.

Present: Jim Canders, Mary Jo Teetor, Frank Callahan, Ken Abt, Phil Pope, Jerremy Jones, John Belnavis, Elaine Bagley, Bob Williams, Ed Laird, Martha Pofit

Absent: Jeff Crandall, Rob Goldman, Rob Nesbit and Kemi McShane.

* Beck Sinclair – Reviewed and explained what he’ll need to address next years DASH program along with a review of the current year. 766 20 gallon buckets of milfoil removed. Ken Abt said that we had to work closely together with SOLitude Lake Management with regard to the Spring milfoil review. Beck said that they can show great results and take most advantage of their time addressing larger patches of milfoil. He will available by May 8 or 10 next season to conduct review. Need to purchase a new silt screen for next season - $300, after that, a new hose.

I. July meeting minutes approved.

II. Treasurer’s report - reviewed budget and expenditures.
• Expect invoice from SOLitude for fall plant survey in order to finalize 5 year permit.
• Make report on how many people pay more than $100.00, how much more?
• Get addresses from Wells and Poultney of addresses that we may be missing
• DEC Watershed Grant could be applied for this fall – Boat Launch Monitoring?

III. Annual Meeting 2019 - Board Members will assist in breaking down and setting up tables for dinner. Otherwise, we will use the same game plan in 2019. 75+ attendees.

IV. Milfoil - Can’t survey sooner than plants begin growing. If we do not use herbicide, we do not need a permit for Suction Harvesting. However, the 5 Year Plan may not be offered in the future and we may have to file for a one year plan each year. If a person wanted to have a company clean up around their dock, no permit is needed?

V. Boat Launch - 614 boats processed during July 2018. This was a weather related slump. Since the fireworks draw such a big crowd - many boats - it may be wise to have the greeters work late on that day. Up to an hour to get your boat out of lake after fireworks this year.

* Discussion of Town Hall Meeting - Feeling is that State treats us as two bodies of water because of treatment of State personnel by CF, going over their head to the Governor. Jerremy proposed “Town Hall Meeting” format. In the meeting questions could be presented and accurate answers given. Some Board members are reluctant to have a meeting of this nature with the CF involved due to the toxic attitude.

* Discussion of Phil Hicks’ paper: “Saving the Waters of Lake St Catherine” has been finished in a first draft form and sent to the Trustees for their review. Reference information is being added to the paper. Everyone to proof read again to see if any incorrect thoughts are included. Turn any discrepancies in to Martha within 30 days.

VI. Water Testing - Cyanobacteria was handled very quickly and the State Health Department has issued an all clear. Mary Jo also said that the water clarity is very good, the Secchi disc reading recently taken was 6.4 meters.

VII. Publicity - Jerremy presented the Fall Newsletter - copies were taken for distribution to Wells Country Store, Otto’s and other possible locations.

VIII. Lake Safety - Frank Callahan. Said that Peter Bagley assisted with the wrapping of several buoys. Volunteers to include John Belnavis will assist in removing buoys and markers from lake shortly after Labor Day and through to October. The warmer season has been lasting longer, so some buoys are left longer.

* Zebra Mussels discussion - are in Lake Bomoseen and just discovered in Lake Memphremagog.

IX. Bob Williams - We are short one trustee. Thought is to find someone on the LL as Frank Callahan is the only trustee on the LL. Rand’s position has not yet been filled.

X. Government - [Clarification: Phil Pope, Mary Jo Teetor and Martha Pofit are representatives to FOVLAP. Phil’s name was inadvertently left off when the Agenda was being typed. Our apologies.] The next FOVLAP meeting is in September. Currently, Mary Jo is the Recording Secretary for FOVLAP.

XI. Old Business

Boat Parade - Need new Chairperson for 2019. Lila and Rand did a great job developing and carrying on the event, but someone has to step in to her footsteps. Lila will advise the new person. Jerremy currently has her notes and information fro past parades.

Poultney Day - Rob and Jennifer set up our booth at this event and various people participated, staffing the booth through the day. No specific report was presented, but comments about the event were favorable.

Plaque for Martin Greenberg is ready. Pete Tatko, the owner of Tatko Bros Slate Company in Middle Granville (518- 642-1640) has donated the plaque. All we have to do is pick it up. I thanked Pete for his generosity. He said that he was glad to do it because he has always been a fan of the LSCA. Possibly we can give him a free advertisement in the spring Newsletter?

Ed Laird made comment that our insurance was in good order and that he does not see any issues as we head into the fall.

John Belnavis brought up the request from the Granville Rescue Squad. It was decided to leave it tabled as we can’t afford the items/equipment that they need.

Along these lines it was suggested that we have a conversation with the Wells Select Board on the working of the 911 in our area. It takes 20 minutes for the Granville rescue to get here, by this time in a drowning, it is more of a recovery operation.

The next meeting is scheduled for May 25, 2019 at 8:30 AM, to be held at the LSCCC.

President Jim Canders called for the meeting adjournment at 11:00 AM. Motion for adjournment was made and seconded. Meeting adjourned at 11:00 AM.

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2018 Milfoil Suction Harvesting - End Of Season Report

Hello Lake St. Catherine. Today, we'd like to give you an end of season report on our 2018 suction harvesting program. 

Each year, the LSCA works with 2 contractors to battle the milfoil in the lake, keeping it under control. In mid June, SOLitude Lake Management applied the herbicide Renovate to 5 locations around the lake. Then, throughout the summer, our other contractor Beck Sinclair performed suction harvesting (referred to as DASH - Diver Assisted Suction Harvesting) in other problem areas. Suction harvesting involves a diver hand-pulling the milfoil by the root from the lake bottom. The milfoil is then suctioned through a tube, up to the surface.

You may have seen Beck working on the lake in the LSCA suction harvesting boat:

Last Saturday, Beck provided his end of year report to the board - and we'd like to share that information with you.

This season, 766 containers (20 gallon buckets) were filled with suction harvested milfoil. This is a little more than half of what was removed last season. Beck reported that the amount of milfoil he viewed and worked on was the lowest he'd seen in his 5 years of working on the suction harvesting program. He also observed that milfoil was not as dense or tall. That, along with a reduction in total hours worked, contributed to the difference in the bucket count from last year.

Beck also reported that he was very happy to speak with folks as they would swim, paddle or boat by, thanking him for his work. He suggested that the LSCA should take some time to make sure that we are educating everyone about what milfoil looks like - and how it's different from other native plant species. Milfoil looks like this:

This is the weed that we can suction harvest and target with the spot herbicide treatments. 

It is VERY IMPORTANT to remove them by the roots and to make sure no fragments are created. In the illustration image above, even that small piece of milfoil on the right side can float away, sink, and create a new plant - potentially leading to the creation of a whole new bed of milfoil. 

The LSC 'old-timers' will remember the way the lake looked back before 2004... Beds of milfoil near the shorelines had created thick mats of weeds on the surface. The LSCA is working very hard to keep it under control each season utilizing this balanced combination of spot herbicide treatments and suction harvesting. We simply cannot let the milfoil get back to the levels we saw before the milfoil control program began in 2004 with the first herbicide treatment.

With this in mind, we'd like to make sure you are aware of some of the ways you can help out:

• First and foremost, your financial support in the form of the yearly dues you contribute to the LSCA are crucial to help fund this program. If you are not currently a member, please consider joining! You can do so easily via our website here: Become A Member, or you can print and fill out our membership form: 2018 Membership Notice and include a check, or you can click here to: Make A Donation.

• Near your shoreline, you are permitted to hand-pull any weeds (including weeds other than milfoil) to clean up your area. Swim down to pull them up by the root, or use a rake to assist pulling them up from the bottom. Be sure to remove the weeds you pull from the lake and bring them on shore to dry out. You can then dispose of them as you would with brush from your yard.

• If you see patches of floating milfoil, grab them - and get them out of the lake. As mentioned above, these floating fragments will eventually sink - and they have the potential to seed new beds of milfoil. So, if you can, get as much milfoil out of the lake as possible.

Finally, we'd like to tell about the amount of garbage that Beck collects from the bottom of the lake as he is suction harvesting the milfoil. Take a look at this very small sample:

Bottles, cans, plastic cups - all kinds of garbage. Beck reports that each season, he removes 2 extremely large bags of garbage from the lake bottom. 

Does this make you angry? We hope it does - it sure makes us angry. 

Here's a photo I took of the garbage I picked up after a recent paddleboard ride along the shoreline near my camp:

We're showing you this to make you aware of the amount of junk that ends up in the lake. We ask that you:

- take a look on your shoreline and in your immediate water area to see if there is any junk you can pick up and remove.
- be careful when your are out on the lake to make sure things like bottles, cans and cups don't fall into the lake.
- keep an eye out for people throwing junk into the lake - call them out and let them know that it's not acceptable.

We all need to do our part to make sure we keep this beautiful lake clean. 

At the end of each July, the State of Vermont promotes Clean Water Week as a celebration of Vermont’s 800 lakes and ponds, 23,000 miles of rivers and streams, and 300,000 acres of wetlands. Next year, the LSCA will look to coordinate and sponsor a shoreline cleanup on Lake St. Catherine. We hope you'll volunteer and join us!

We'd like to thank Beck for his efforts this season in helping to keep the milfoil under control - and for cleaning up the garbage he found along the way. Thanks Beck - we all appreciate it!

If you have any questions about the LSCA's milfoil control program, please get in touch at [email protected].

Are you a member yet? Maintaining the lake costs approximately $100,000 annually. Grants, membership dues and contributions make up the majority of our funding. If you'd like to help, please consider becoming a member or making a donation. The LSCA is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit organization and any contribution that you make is tax deductible.

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The LSCA Fall 2018 Newsletter

Hello good folks of the Lake St. Catherine community.

We'd like to let you know that the LSCA Fall 2018 newsletter is now available. 

In an effort to save on printing and mailing costs, we've decided to only print a short run of copies and distribute them to Otto's Cones Point General Store and the Wells Country Store. If you'd like a printed copy, please feel free to pick one up when you are out and about in Poultney or Wells. Thank you to Otto's and WCS!

The digital version is now available online via our website through this link: Click here to view the Fall 2018 Newsletter, or click on the image below. You will be able to read through the newsletter and/or save a copy to your computer.

We hope you'll enjoy this edition of the LSCA newsletter.

We welcome your comments: [email protected].

Thank you for your support!

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