Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Give the West Michigan Shoreline Regional Development Commission a Day, October 23rd, and They'll Give You Clean Lakes & Streams, Silversides Museum, Muskegon Channel

A Message from Kathy Evans: If you can spare just one day to really find out what we can do to protect our water quality, streams, lakes, wetlands and wildlife, register for the October 23 Silversides Museum event at Or just e-mail me at This program has something for everybody (and lunch from Hearthstone, too

Here's the list of great speakers!

Water, Woods and Wetlands
West Michigan and Great Lakes Restoration and Revitalization
Wednesday, October 23, 2013

8:30 a.m. - 2:45 p.m.
Regional Forum Location: USS Silversides Submarine Museum 1346 Bluff Street, Muskegon
South Side of the Muskegon Lake Harbor Channel at Lake Michigan

8:30 a.m. - 9:00 a.m. - Check In - Coffee and Networking
Welcome and Introductions
Sandeep Dey, Executive Director, West Michigan Shoreline Regional Development Commission

9:00 a.m. - 9:30 a.m.
Michigan and Great Lakes Restoration and Revitalization
John Allan, Director, MDEQ Office of the Great Lakes
This presentation will provide an overview of Michigan's Office of the Great Lakes and discuss Michigan's sustainable-use water strategy, harbor dredging,the Lake Michigan Lakewide Management Plan and Great Lakes Areas of Concern

9:30 a.m. - 10:00 a.m.
Muskegon Lake - Remediation, Restoration and Revitalization
Kathy Evans, Program Manager, West Michigan Shoreline Regional Development Commission
This presentation will provide a case study of the restoration and revitalization of Muskegon Lake and how watershed stakeholders, agencies and public and private landowners set goals, developed plans and funded large scale sediment cleanups and fish and wildlife habitat restoration projects.

10:00 a.m. - 10:15 a.m. - Break

10:15 a.m. - 10:45 a.m.
Muskegon River Watershed - The Hersey River Restoration and Dam Removal Project
Gary Noble, Executive Director of the Muskegon River Watershed Assembly
This presentation will provide a case study of the restoration of free flowing habitat conditions and natural flows to the original /historic north channel of the Hersey River. The project was accomplished with multiple project partners and funders.

10:45 a.m. - 11:15 a.m.
Great Lakes Wetlands and Michigan Watersheds
Jennifer McKay, Tip of the Mitt Watershed Council
This presentation will provide information about the importance of wetlands and cover the latest information on what's happening with wetlands policy in Michigan.

11:15 a.m. - 12:00Noon
The Lake Michigan Water Trail and Community Recreation Plans in the West Michigan Region
Erin Kuhn, Economic Development Program Manager, WMSRDC
This presentation will provide information about the collaborative effort among Michigan's Regional Planning Councils to develop the "Lake Michigan Water Trail" with support from the MDEQ Coastal Zone Management Program and water trail stakeholders. Erin will discuss how the project relates to conservation and the environment, community economic development, tourism and recreation.

12:00 - 12:45 p.m. - Lunch

12:45 p.m. - 1:15 p.m.
Water Quality and Non Point Source Funding Opportunities
Robert Sweet, Michigan Department of Environmental Quality
This presentation will provide an overview of the goals of Michigan's Non Point Source Water Quality program and the resources that are available to municipalities and watershed stakeholders to improve water quality through planning, design and implementation of water quality improvement and stormwater management projects.

1:15 - 1:45 p.m.
US Fish and Wildlife Service -Great Lakes Fish Habitat Partnership (invited)
Speaker TBD, US FWS
This presentation will provide an overview of the goals of the US FWS programs that are available for fish and wildlife habitat restoration, and include project highlights such as the White River/Cobmoosa Creek Road Stream Crossing Water Quality Improvement Project that involved a partnership of local governments and other watershed stakeholders.

1:45 - 2:15 p.m.
Hazard Mitigation Planning in the West Michigan Region
Stephen Carlson, Senior Planner, WMSRDC
This presentation will provide an overview of hazard mitigation, funding opportunities for mitigation projects, and examples of successful mitigation projects. WMSRDC is currently assisting the counties of Lake, Mason, Muskegon, Newaygo, and Oceana in the 5-year update of their countywide Hazard Mitigation Plans.

2:15 - 2:45 p.m.
Finding Common Ground: Input on Natural Resource Priorities and Partnership Projects
Joshua Croff, Planner, WMSRDC will highlight a GIS project that identified common goals for collaborative water quality improvement projects among transportation and watershed stakeholders. The presentation will feature an interactive session that will give participants an opportunity to identify needs and priorities about natural resourcesin the west-central Michigan region.

2:45 p.m. -Adjourn

Optional Tourf rom 2:45 - 3:30 p.m.
Following the Forum, a field trip to a Muskegon Lake Fish and Wildlife Habitat Restoration Project will be offered. Located on the drive out from the Silversides Museum on Lakeshore Drive at McCracken Street, "Grand Trunk" is one of fifteen Muskegon Lake shoreline properties that was restored under a WMSRDC/Great Lakes Commission National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration/ARRA $10 million dollar grant project. The field trip will feature the wetland habitat restoration project and how community involvement and partnerships transformed a former eyesore into an outdoor classroom and public access park in the historic City of Muskegon Lakeside Neighborhood Business District. The WMSRDC Muskegon Lake project restored 33 acres of open water and emergent wetland, 20 acres of native plant wetland buffer and transformed 13,000 feet of hardened shoreline into colorful, productive wetland native plant habitat.

Aregistration fee of $10.00 will include morning refreshments, lunch, and materials. Register by contacting Mary Seeger at or by phone at (231) 722-7878 ext. 21. Please make check payable to the West Michigan Shoreline Regional Development Commission - Mailing address:
WMSRDC, P.O. Box 387, Muskegon, MI 49443-0387.

Please provide your name, organization, and contact information when registering by e-mail, phone or mail. Registration payments will not be accepted at conference site.
Space is limited, so please register soon and make payment to WMSRDC by October 18, 2013.

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