The weather is warming and recreational visitors will soon be frequenting the Grand Lake Region.  This week, the state has recommended caution at the West, East and Camp beaches.  Testing is ongoing, but officials have chosen to post these advisories to increase public awareness. Although wading and swimming are not recommended in these areas, visitors can still access the lake by boat and fish.

Grand Lake St. Marys Restoration Commission Facilitator, Tom Knapke stated “We must stay positive and continue to pursue the initiatives planned for action this summer, and investigate all possible solutions for next year as well.”

The Lake Strategic Plan, drafted earlier this year, details work being currently done and plans for future execution. It includes increased aeration and sediment removal, installation of treatment trains on tributaries, rough fish removal, and the application of alum during the first week of June.  In addition, the LRC is focusing on the review of several scientific proposals to enhance the effectiveness of this plan with other research partners.

Funding for these efforts includes partnerships with local, state, and federal agencies as well as dozens of private vendors and organizations. The commission is seeking a number of grants and foundation opportunities to expedite the number of projects being implemented.  Universities and researchers from across the country have been in contact with the group offering innovative approaches to the complex issues surrounding the health of the lake and its watershed. 

LRC member, Julie Miller, with Wright State University’s Business Enterprise Center commented, “People’s persistence and desire for our project’s success are quite high, and I have confidence that we can restore both the lake and our economy. There is tremendous value in focusing in on a long-term self-funded process for restoration.”

LRC Marketing chair, Linda May states, "As the general economy is improving slowly and steadily, I feel Grand Lake St. Marys will continue to improve.  Yes, this latest advisory is a set back, but the alum treatment is being done in a few weeks and we are feeling positive that the treatment will help to slow down the algae growth. Let’s all work together and stay positive."