Currents | October 2016

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.

Support PCS - Donate Now!


October1In the week leading up to Clean Your Streams, the weather forecast was less than ideal. But the rain didn’t stop our volunteers from cleaning! Thanks to all 960 of them, we have now completed 20 years of Clean Your Streams! The PCS staff and CYS planning team are incredibly happy with the results of the 20th Annual Clean Your Streams Day, which would have been unreachable without the hard work and support of everyone involved. As a part of Ocean Conservancy’s International Coastal Cleanup, 960 volunteers left from 8 different kickoff locations and spread out to 67 cleanup sites across the greater Toledo area.  During the three hour cleanup, volunteers removed trash from 31.1 miles of stream bank along Swan Creek, the Ottawa River, the Maumee River, and other creeks and ditches flowing into Maumee Bay and Lake Erie. 26,136 pounds of trash was collected, including 730 bags, 311 tires, and many other large pieces of garbage! 

The list of trash items found is long and interesting, as always. Volunteers found the typical items like plastic water bottles, food wrappers, and grocery bags. Other, more unique, items found include a baby stroller, $20 bill, skateboard, several mattresses, a car exhaust pipe, a hot tub lid, and a drawer full of socks. We even encouraged volunteers to participate in the CYS 20 “Trash-ure Hunt” to see if they could find some of the most bizarre items founds in that last 20 years. Once volunteers were done pulling trash out of the rivers, we celebrated cleaner, clearer, and safer waters during the Appreciation Picnic at the Lucas County Fairgrounds. There, volunteers were thanked with a hot lunch, CYS t-shirt, educational activities from partnering orgainzations like Metroparks and Lucas Soil & Water Conservation District, door prizes, raffle prizes, music and entertainment courtesy of Denny Schaffer and Q105.5, and the awarding of CYS challenge winners. 

Everyone who volunteered for this year’s Clean Your Streams Day is a Partner for clean streams and we are so grateful for your support. Whether you participated individually or with a group, business, or organization, your involvement is essential for cleaner rivers now and in the future. Please send us your pictures from Clean Your Streams. You can email your pictures to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., post them to our Facebook page, or share them with us on Twitter and Instagram using the hash tag #CleanYourStreams419. Check out the online photo album of pictures we have so far! You can also still support future Clean Your Streams efforts by donating to Partners for Clean Streams' GoFundMe page or directly on our website.

A tremendous thank you goes out to the CYS 20 Planning Team, which includes Marilyn DuFour, Patrick Lawrence, Brian Miller, Bob Neubert, Tim Niederkorn, Matt Beil, Robin Parker, Andrea Beard, Don Nelson, Bill Buri, Paige Sloma, Kristin Jenkins, Shawn Reinhart, Eileen Mitchell, Cherie Blair, Terry Shankland, and the PCS Staff. Thank you again to our extremely supportive donors. See the complete list of donors on our website. We hope you join us again in 2017 for the 21st Annual Clean Your Streams! 

October2Congratulations to the Challenge Winners for the 20th Annual Clean Your Streams Day! These self-reported challenges encourage friendly competition between volunteer groups while inspiring them to have the largest positive impact possible on our streams.  This year, the Challenges were a little different than in years past. We awarded winners for both youth and collegiate groups in the following categories: Most Volunteers, Battle of the Bags, and Awesome Effort. We also awarded River Partner Certifications to corporate and organization groups based on the number of volunteers they brought with them on Clean Your Streams Day. Lastly, we recognized CYS Champions, or groups that have volunteered with or supported us over the past 20 years of Clean Your Streams. See the list of CYS Champions here. And check out the official list of our challenge winners and River Partners on our website

October3One of our main goals at PCS is to remove trash from local streams and rivers. Even though volunteers remove tons of trash every year during Clean Your Streams, trash accumulates quickly in our waterways. Unfortunately, this reoccurring problem is more widespread than Toledo. Marine debris, or trash in waterways, is an issue around the world. However, there are actions we can take to prevent trash from reaching the waterways and PCS is working to initiate those actions year round.

Consider registering a group for a Clean Your Streams 365 cleanup this fall!  CYS 365 is one of our annual programs and is an extension to Clean Your Streams that occurs every September. When signing up for a CYS 365 cleanup, volunteer groups schedule their own private cleanup at a location we suggest based on need.  All that is left for them to do after scheduling is to receive safety /cleaning protocol from a PCS staff member and to pick up supplies. It’s that simple! Groups can even adopt a location that frequently experiences littering to make sure that trash doesn’t continue traveling throughout our watershed. For more information about CYS 365 and to register a group, check out our website. Be an advocate for clean streams all-year round! 

October4Join us for the Annual General Meeting on Thursday, November 17th as we celebrate the success of 2016. The event will be held in the Hankison Great Room at the W.W. Knight Nature Preserve in Perrysburg, and will go from 6:00 to 8:00pm. Following dinner, there will be a presentation highlighting the work done this year and a sneak preview into next year’s plans. We will congratulate Clean Your Streams Challenge Award winners and present the first place winners with their certificates and plaques. We will also present the Clean Streams Partner Award, a prestigious award given to an outstanding member of the community who has shown laudable effort in protecting our local waterways. There will also be a Silent Auction of art pieces and other valuable items. For the business portion of the meeting, we will elect next year’s board members. If you are interested in becoming a board member, please contact PCS as soon as possible. We would love to have you join the team. The evening will be filled with food, celebration of the work on our rivers, our dedicated volunteers, and plans to support rivers in the future. Watch your mailbox for an invitation. Please RSVP by contacting PCS at 419-874-0727 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. We look forward to seeing you there! 

Currents: October 2016

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.


Keep Current and Follow us on Social Media

PCS on Facebook PCS on Twitter
PCS on Instragram PCS on Youtube


CYS 20 (2016) Photo Gallery



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

Andrew Curran
Vice President
Assistant Scout Executive, Boy Scouts of America

Colleen Dooley
Attorney, Private Practice

Philip Blosser
Market Development Manager
Perstorp Polyols

Denise Fonner
Board Member
Private Citizen

Shawn Reinhart
Board Member
Environmental Manager, Johns Manville

Terry Shankland
Board Member
CEO, Shankland's Catering

Chris Smalley
Board Member
Park Services Supervisor
Metroparks of the Toledo Area

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