Did you know that the Great Lakes are the biggest freshwater source in the world? Lake Erie is the most productive for fishing of all the Great Lakes. Your support helps make our streams clean, clear and healthy so they can support this complex ecosystem. By donating to PCS, you help us reach our goals of restoring rivers that lead to Lake Erie beaches that promote fishable and swimmable conditions for generations.

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CYSregisternowTired of all the trash along the streams? Be part of the solution with the 19th Annual Clean Your Streams Day event, northwest Ohio’s largest river cleanup! Registration is now open. The excitement starts with check-in between 8:00-8:30am. A brief orientation begins at 8:30am followed by cleanup instructions, safety tips and supply distribution. Following that, your group will leave the kickoff site to go to your assigned site to clean until 12:00pm. After cleaning the streams, volunteers are invited to our Appreciation Picnic to enjoy lunch (provided by Deets BBQ), door prizes, raffle baskets (so bring some cash), cleanup results, and much more. During the cleanup, we plan to collect tons of trash out of our local streams and rivers making a large impact on the waterways. Please fill out the required registration online before Wednesday, September 9th to let us know you will be joining us. What are you waiting for? We need your help! Get started and register now!

ChallengewinnerIt is that time of year again to round up the troops and promote clean, clear, and safe waters in your local community. Clean Your Streams (CYS) is bigger and better than ever, celebrating its 19th year of successfully removing debris from streams, river banks, and watersheds in Toledo and surrounding areas. And we strive to recognize Corporate, Collegiate, Youth, and Organizational groups that work hard and make a difference!

Although CYS is an exciting and gratifying event in itself, our most productive cleanup groups have the opportunity to win up to three different Challenge Competition Awards. The friendly competitions between Youth, Collegiate, Corporate, and Organizational groups is a fun way to motivate all volunteers in making the largest positive impact possible on our waterways. During the cleanup, participating volunteer groups will keep track of how many bags they fill on a challenge form, which is then submitted at the end of the event to determine Challenge winners.

Youth, Collegiate, Corporate and Organizational groups all have the chance of winning awards including Battle of the Bags, Awesome Effort, and Most Volunteers. Battle of the Bags winners are dependent upon the total number of bags your group collects throughout the cleanup, whereas Awesome Effort winners are determined by the most bags per person for each group. Challenge winners for the Most Volunteers competition are those groups with the most volunteers (and you need to complete your entry form).

Change for Change is yet another opportunity for your CYS group to benefit our local rivers and streams. Start collecting your teams’ loose pocket change now and bring it with you to the Appreciation Picnic after the cleanup for a weigh-in. Dump your piggy bank, pick up that penny on the street corner, and empty those car cup holders! The group with the heaviest combined amount of change will win the Change for Change Challenge and receive a Mystery Award.

As the number of CYS volunteers grows each year, so does the positive influence we have on our local streams, river banks, and watersheds. Last year, 1,109 volunteers participated in the 18th Annual Clean Your Streams. We want to blow this number out of the water this year! The more friends, family members, and colleagues you encourage to join CYS, the bigger impact we will have on our waterways. Help us promote the vitality of clean waterways in the Toledo area by registering for Clean Your Streams right now!

Partners are wonderful, especially when one new partner snowballs into three great new partnerships! Sometimes, we have certain donors that step up and answer our call for help in an extraordinary ways. The most recent donors to step forward come in a combination of Charles Boyk Law, GreenSweep, and Deets BBQ. From a simple connection from one of our Board members to a small sponsorship and newsletter feature to stepping up to a large donation and making two new productive connections for us, these companies quickly blossomed into full Partners for Clean Streams! In brainstorming with them, we discussed all the things that Partners for Clean Streams struggles with; people knowing our message and name, acquiring private donations, and ongoing, repeat volunteers. The companies took their community responsibility seriously and provided more than monetary assistance. You can thank Deets BBQ for lunch at Clean Your Streams, Charles Boyk for opening doors, sponsoring fishing line recycling bins, and for spreading our name, and GreenSweep for providing resources for Clean Your Streams Day and Get the Lead Out. We are excited to see where our budding relationship will lead.

Our largest event, Clean Your Streams Day, serves as a large community effort to clean rivers, an awareness building event, fundraising for Partners for Clean Streams and a crucial trash removal for our rivers. There is still time for you or your company to donate and sponsor Clean Your Streams. For a $250 cash donation, you could be listed on our event shirts, on our website, posters and more. The deadline is August 28th so don’t delay. For more information about sponsoring Clean Your Streams, check out our Donor Information Page or contact us. We would love to have you join us.

WaterQualityBoatcruiseOn Sunday August 2nd, 48 passengers joined Partners for Clean Streams and Lucas Soil and Water Conservation District for a fun and educational afternoon on the Sandpiper. On this expedition along the Mighty Maumee, residents of the greater Toledo area learned various facts about the river including economic importance, water treatment, water conservation, agricultural influence and resulting water quality issues. This day also marked the one year anniversary of the Water Crisis and while we discussed the issues related to algal blooms, this cruise acted as a more broad educational opportunity for Toledo residents to learn more about water quality challenges and solutions and what they can do, personally, to Give Water A Hand. There were a variety of water quality professionals along for the ride, allowing different perspectives on the water quality issues in the greater Toledo area.

Passengers enjoyed trivia about Lake Erie and participated in educational activities while enjoying plenty of sunshine along the way. After the boat cruise, passengers stuck around to examine the water test results, taken straight from the Maumee River. They were able to see the results and discuss the impacts from the measurements of turbidity, nutrient readings and more. This special event received coverage on 13 ABC along with a great article published in the Toledo Blade. We have received many compliments and were even asked to have another cruise like it next year. PCS would like to thank everybody who participated. If you couldn’t make it, check out our photo album here!

newgrantNational Fish and Wildlife Foundation recently awarded us a highly competitive Five Star and Urban Waters Restoration grant to partially support Clean Your Streams and to expand the prevention side of the program in 2016. Our grant was one of only 64 awards made nationally and the only one in Ohio. This grant program requires “a high degree of partnership between local government agencies, elected officials, community groups, businesses, schools and environmental organizations for improving local water quality and restoring important fish and wildlife habitats,” according to the press release from National Fish and Wildlife Foundation. Our Clean Your Streams program certainly exemplifies strong partnerships and visible improvement on water quality on our communities in the greater Toledo area.

We will continue to partner with the City of Toledo, City of Oregon, Lucas County, The Olander Park System, the University of Toledo, Metroparks of the Toledo Area and others to plan, organize, and oversee Clean Your Streams Day and to roll out a new prevention program called Trash Amnesty Weeks. Trash Amnesty Weeks will provide roll off bins with free trash disposal, and educational materials in targeted zones around Toledo, enabling residents to intercept trash before reaching the rivers and streams. Through these programs aim to prevent and clean up stream litter, we will involve 850 volunteers in cleaning at least 25 miles of rivers and streams in northwest Ohio, removing at least 15,000 pounds of stream litter in the urban communities in and around Toledo. We will also educate at least a thousand people on the importance of clear, clean and healthy rivers and riparian areas, including proper disposal of litter.

We are excited to receive this grant and thank our partners, our other donors, and of course, our volunteers. Without you, we can’t continue to lead such a successful and impactful community programs. We also look forward to continuing to grow our Clean Your Streams program beyond the one-day cleanup and into a year-round education, outreach, and engagement program aimed at building clear, clean, and safe waters for all of us who live, work, and play in Northwest Ohio. The Five Star and Urban Waters Restoration grant from National Fish and Wildlife Foundation will help us on our path towards this goal.

Currents: August 2015

Your donation, no matter how small, can make a huge difference in the long run. Every penny goes a long way in protecting your water.


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Get the Lead Out River Clean Up





Patrick Lawrence, Ph.D.
President of Board
Associate Professor, Chair of Department of Geography
University of Toledo

Tim Schetter, Ph.D.
Vice President / Secretary
Director of Natural Resources, Metroparks of the Toledo Area

Colleen Dooley
Attorney, Private Practice

Philip Blosser
Board Member
Market Development Manager
Perstorp Polyols

Andrew Curran
Board Member
Assistant Scout Executive, Boy Scouts of America

Denise Fonner
Board Member
Private Citizen

Shawn Reinhart
Board Member
Environmental Manager, Johns Manville

Terry Shankland
Board Member
CEO, Shankland's Catering

Kyle Spicer
Board Member
Private Citizen

Partners for Clean Streams Inc. is striving for abundant open space and a high quality natural environment; adequate floodwater storage capacities and flourishing wildlife; stakeholders who take local ownership in their resources; and rivers, streams and lakes that are clean, clear and safe