Currents September 2018

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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CYSThe 22nd Annual Clean Your Streams Day is under a month away – September 22nd!  Registration is open for our seven kick-off locations throughout the greater Toledo area.  Gather up your friends, family, and faculty to help us remove tens of thousands of pounds of trash from our waterways! This year, kick-off locations include: University of Toledo, Olander Park, Three Meadows in Perrysburg, Monroe Street United Methodist Church, Side Cut Metropark, Middlegrounds Metropark, and Oregon Municipal Building. Sign up through our website ( or call our office at 419-874-0727. Registration will be open until Friday, September 14th.  Groups of ten or more will require a site captain(s) who will need to attend one of our training sessions and be responsible for the safety of their group. 

Don’t want to get dirty?  We need people to help us with the Appreciation Picnic at the Lucas County Fairgrounds following the cleanup.  Volunteers are needed to help with food, raffle prizes, and set up/tear down. (You can still get a t-shirt, too!) Reusable cleanup supplies will be collected at the picnic and Challenge Awards will be presented as well.  Fred LeFebvre from 1370 WSPD will MC this year’s picnic again, so get ready for food and fun as we celebrate your commitment to clean water!   Last year, we removed over 23,000 pounds of marine debris from our streams, rivers, and lake and we are trying to do even more this year!  With your help, we can reduce pollution in our waterways and improve overall water quality.  It’s time to take out the trash!

If you can’t make it to the cleanup on Saturday, September 22nd, please consider supporting those who can by donating a raffle item.  The raffle helps us to show our appreciation for all of the hard work done by our volunteers and the paid raffle items help offset some of the costs of Clean Your Streams Day.  We will gladly accept cash donations as well!  If you or your business would like to donate to the 22nd Annual Clean Your Streams Day, please contact our office so we can make arrangements and recognize you for your support of improved local water quality.  

ChallengeClean Your Streams Day just wouldn’t be as fun without a little friendly competition!  Youth and college groups are encouraged to sign up for our Youth and Collegiate Challenges while businesses and organizations and other small groups can participate in our River Partner Certification Challenge.  Youth groups can win in three ways: Most Volunteers (group with the most volunteers), Battle of the Bags (number of total bags of trash a group fills), or Awesome Effort (the average number of bags per person). Awards will be presented to first, second, and third place participants.  And don’t forget to register your group first!

Non-student organizations and corporations can also be recognized for their efforts with our River Partner certifications.  Groups with 50+ volunteers will receive our 4-star, Watershed Warrior status.  30-49 volunteers will earn the 3-star River Guardian certification.  10-29 volunteers will be recognized as 2-star Stream Protectors. 1-9 volunteers will earn the Creek Crusader certification for their group.  Awards will be announced during our Appreciation Picnic, so make sure your group stays for the free pizza and awards ceremony!

NOAA logo textWe are very excited and honored to announce that we have officially received a 2-year grant from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Marine Debris Program. We are one of only 12 grant recipients for the removal of marine debris and the only organization working in the Great Lakes Region.  This grant will allow us to expand our cleanups in impact and scope.  Our aim is to remove over 30,000 pounds of marine debris from the Maumee River and other tributaries in the greater Toledo area over two years.  Our cleanups help prevent debris from entering and impacting western Lake Erie.  Our data recording enables us to closely track and monitor marine debris trends and compare our findings with other cleanups across the nation.  This grant would not have been possible without the support of our partners including: the City of Toledo, Metroparks of the Toledo area, Lucas County Engineers, and the City of Oregon.  We are extremely grateful to NOAA for their sponsorship of our efforts to remove marine debris in Northwest Ohio and help improve the water quality of our streams, rivers, and Lake Erie.

GLOThe Mighty Maumee got a little cleaner this summer thanks to our Get the Lead Out volunteers.  We had six Get the Lead Out sessions this summer at fishing hot spots along the Maumee River.  Our GLO volunteers covered 3.5 river miles at Side Cut Metropark and Orleans Park in Perrysburg.  198 volunteers came out to help us remove marine debris and fishing gear from the banks of the river.  In total, PCS has facilitated six Get the Lead Out programs aiming to improve the health of our water and prevent fishing gear from contaminating the waterways and entangling fish and wildlife.  A remarkable 28.2 pounds of line, lead, and lures were removed this summer. The fishing line will then be cleaned by our friends the Toledo ZooTeens and sent to Berkely Conservation Institute to be recycling into fish spawning structures.  Along with the left-behind fishing line, 445 pounds of trash were also removed.  Get the Lead Out helps reduce marine debris and ensure that the Walleye Capital of the World continues to attract the next generation of anglers. 

MissionaryIslandWith some help from our friends at Toledo Metroparks and Wood County Parks and a bunch of dedicated volunteers, we’ve combined recreation with remediation this summer! 23 paddlers came out to Farnsworth Metropark on Sunday, August 19th to paddle to Missionary Island for a land-based cleanup.  In less than three hours, they removed 642 pounds of trash from the island and four tires! Without their efforts, all this trash would have ended up as marine debris in the Maumee River.  We are so encouraged to see so many people actively and passionately protecting our waterways. On Saturday, August 25th, PCS co-hosted a canoe cleanup with our partners at Wood County Park District on Hedges Island at Ostego Park which was unfortunately rained out. It has been rescheduled for Saturday, September 8th from 9-1pm if you would like to join!  Registration is required through Wood County Park District by September 6th.  Paddlers are often all-too aware of the problem of marine debris in our waterways.  Next time you go out on your kayak or canoe, think about bringing a mesh bag with you so you can remove the marine debris you see on your paddle.  If we want to continue to enjoy recreating on our streams, rivers, and lake, it’s important that we do our part to preserve their aesthetic and ecological integrity.

Currents: September 2018

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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Bob Neubert
President of the Board
Lucas Co. Engineers

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

Joan King
First Solar

Kyle Spicer
Private Citizen

Denise Fonner
Board Member
Private Citizen

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

Bill Hoefflin
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