WINONA LAKE — On Tuesday, Sept. 21, the Kosciusko Leadership Academy cadets visited The Lilly Center for Lakes and Streams at Grace College.
Dr. Nate Bosch, Director of Lilly Center for Lakes and Streams and Heather Harwood, Executive Director for Wawasee Area Conservancy Foundation presented the economic impact of the Lakes and protecting the county’s greatest natural asset in Kosciusko County.
Director Dr. Nate Bosch explained in the session his organization’s strategy of protecting the future of the county’s water systems through research, education and collaboration. The 2016 economic impact study done by the Lilly Center showed $313 million is brought into the local economy annually because of the lakes. With over 100 lakes and nearly 600 miles of streams in Kosciusko County it is the county’s greatest natural asset.
WACF, The Wawasee Area Conservancy Foundation now in its 30th year, encourages others to be good stewards of water resources. Their efforts have resulted in the acquisition and protection of over 10 miles of shoreline and 51 wetland areas totaling over 900 acres. WACF also has a new amphitheater.
Both presenters emphasized actions every county resident can take to preserve the purity of our lakes and streams, including:
• Make sure that any lawn chemicals used on your property do NOT contain phosphorous.
• Incorporate native plants as a buffer between your lawn or patio and the lake to soak up run-off before it gets to the lake.
• The lake bottom contains phosphorous too. Don’t stir up the lake bottom. Watch for a plume behind your boat no matter what your lake activity.
The next KLA session will cover Law Enforcement and Judicial System in Kosciusko County at Old Courtroom, Kosciusko County Court House on Oct. 5.