Geneva Lake Conservancy hosts Whitewater Community Conversation

Jake Schmidt, Geneva Lake Conservancy (GLC) staff member, Kevin Brunner, GLC Board Member, and Karen Yancey, GLC Executive Director display a map of the remnant oak forests in Walworth County, many of which are located in the Whitewater area.

Whitewater residents Kevin and Nancy Brunner and the Geneva Lake Conservancy (GLC) hosted a Community Conversation for members of the Whitewater and LaGrange communities on October 4 at the Cravath Lakefront Community Center.

The conversation focused on the current and future conservation needs of the Whitewater and LaGrange communities.

“If we are to protect our land and water resources, we need to begin by involving the community in envisioning what kind of the community we want to be in 2050,” said Kevin Brunner, a GLC Board Member who will serve as GLC Chairman beginning in 2019.

The Geneva Lake Conservancy has expanded its efforts to the Whitewater area and recently worked with the Whitewater Rice Lake Management District to send a letter to its members on how they can help reduce phosphorus in area waterways.

The Conservancy has also received a DNR Knowles Nelson grant recently to preserve an oak forest and kettle pond in LaGrange for public use and is currently raising the matching funds to purchase this property, Brunner said.

Approximately 20 area residents attended the conversation and discussed their concerns about the area’s urban and rural forests, the increase in invasive species and the need to protect lakes and other natural resources.

The Kettle Moraine area is rated by conservationists as having global importance to migrating birds and other wildlife, according to the GLC’s Executive Director Karen Yancey.   She said that a major goal of any conservation efforts must be to protect the area’s high conservation values, particularly its lakes and oak forests.

The Community Conversation will be held regularly in the Whitewater area and the Conservancy will report back annually on programs and land protection efforts it has undertaken in the area.  Area residents are invited to join in the conversation by contacting the Geneva Lake Conservancy at glc@genevalakeconservancy.org or by calling 1-262-275-5700.

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