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Big Sauk Lake Association Spring 2015 Newsletter

Text of Spring Newsletter




    PresidentBob Bjork (320)351-2513

    Vice PresidentTim Weir (320)352-3318

    (Lake Watch North Half)SecretaryWayne Yokiel (763)560-8615

    TreasurerRick Jennissen (320)352-6905

    Vern Beckerman(Lake Watch S. 1/2) (320)352-3732

    Mike Blenkush (320)290-2496(Membership)

    Jerry Beuning (320)352-3921Kevin Baartman (763)413-0943Jeff Mayer (320)352-0055

    I believe that attendance at this meeting was eye-opening for me. Published minutes of that meeting, revealed that action was takento address drainage from the Fairy Lake area into Sauk Lake. Moresignificantly was that a Congressional bill to clean up Sauk Lake hadadvanced through the House and Senate and was now on PresidentReagan's desk for his signature. I learned later that it had a pricetag of a whopping $8M . There were two other speakers presentfrom the ACE. They discussed a plant control project that hadalready begun It was a 50%-50% cost sharing project. A "problemassessment" had been completed which was 100% Federally costfunded. They also described a cost-benefit analysis concerningproperty values and compared them to similar lakes in the vicinitywhich were weed free. Using 7.2 miles of lake property, theimprovement would be $166,000 per year. If both recreation andproperty values were improved, the total benefit was estimated at$700,000 per year!

    Apparently there was more than one attempt to create a viablelake association. Members were generally citizens living within theCity Limits. The official Big Sauk Lake Association was formed by adedicated group of property owners living primarily on the North endof the lake. They formed a Board of Directors, set up meetingdates, obtained State Incorporation, and formulated a set of By-Laws. One of the By-Laws, addressing the Lake, stated "Inquireinto civic abuses and to seek reformation thereof." I assume therewas concern about the continued degradation of the lake. In 1994,then President, Darrell Maas said, "the water quality was the worstI have seen in years." The following sequence is abbreviated dueto space. In 1995, Elaine Jensen became President, There was aproactive effort to engage the Todd County Commissioners inupgrading compliant septic systems. Sometime in 1996, TomFischer was elected. Major projects included successful fund-rais-ing projects to purchase two Civil Defense Sirens. Member DonSpehn was a major player in their acquisition. The fishing dockaccessible from the City Park was completed. The Annual FundRaising Dinner was begun as other fund raising projects. At thistime, a "young" SRWD had applied for a grant to investigate/controlof point-sources of water pollution and assist the City in the pur-

    chase of equipment to conduct mechanical removal of aquaticweeds. The original device, a weed puller, built in 1972, was wear-ing out and obsolete for various reasons. Sometime in 2000, therewas again a change in the Presidency. I would be amiss not to men-tion the contributions of the Directors who served during that firstdecade. Future projects included continuation of the fund-raisingeffort started earlier. Lake residents contributed $11K in cash andoffered volunteer service equivalent to $10K, totaling $21,000. TheSRWD received a grant called a CWP or a Clean Water Partnershipgrant. Volunteers were recruited to begin volunteer monitoring ofour lake and tributaries. We improved our presence at our booth atthe Stearns County Fair by improving its appearance and havingmatching games for children in lieu of winning inexpensive gifts.Our attendance has ranged from 650-750 per year. Earlier, a groupof volunteers including citizens and Directors met several times withDNR Aquatic Specialist Ed Feiler to create a VegetativeManagement Plan to specify how a Weed Harvester would operate.Initially a 10 year Plan, it was recently updated to reflect the newplan to control aquatic invasives.

    As our calendars were adjusted for the 21st Century, lake weedsand algae concentrations became intolerable. The mechanical har-vester was operating daily, cutting navigation channels in the non-lit-toral zone and also for individual property owners to navigate out tothese channels. The BSLA decided, in early 2007, to hireProfessional Lake Management (PLM) to conduct a 15 acre (laterreduced to 10) test spray using Aquaqthol-K to eliminate curly leafpondweed in the test plot. The plot was on the SW Bay of the lakeon the western side. On May 14, 2007 the spraying was completedfollowed by a PLM inspection report on May 29, 2007. I quote fromtheir report: " It is estimated that over 70% of the whole area hadbeen completely controlled with approximately 30% of the area witha significant reduction. It should also be noted that it may up to 21days for plants to completely fall and the survey was performed 14days following." The report also identified the four properties thatwere individually treated for clp, one on Saukview Dr., one onLakeshore Drive, and two on Birch Drive.

    Presidents letter continued on page 2

    From the President,Greetings Fellow Members of the BSLA.

    Just one year ago, this column reflected on the first days of 50's and 60's following a winter and "spring" which was etched in our minds as rather nasty. This spring is one to rejoice in as we have already experienced numerous days of 50's, 60's, 70's and even a couple of days in the 80's. Now, a welcome succession of rainy days have stimulated growth of the thirsty plants in our lawns, flower, vegetable gardens and crop land. To me, there has been an explosion of plant growth. Even lilacs are blooming. It will be interesting to see the effects of the earlier spring on aquatic plant growth. Does an earlier, wetter spring suggest a drier, lessrainy summer? We will find out!

    Quite recently I was invited to give a talk to our local Rotary Club, with emphasis on thehistory of our organization and to touch on our activities since its inception. I thought Iwould share with you some of the highlights of this history and conclude by bringing readersup to date on the present time, the spring of 2015. It is likely that a number of our membershave had lake homes dating back to pre -1980's. Other, more recent members may only befamiliar with lake condition in the years of the 21st Century. I say this because even thoughmy wife and had bought our present home in the mid 60's, on County Rd. 24, (now Brickyard Rd.), I paid little attention to any existing Lake Association. I'm sure we witnessed theexcessive weed growth and algae blooms and complained incessantly about it. However, Iread about a meeting called by the Sauk Lake Improvement Association for 7:00 PM onOctober 20, 1986. 30 people were present including myself. The meeting was held at theoffices of the City Water, Power and Light Department. Two staff members of the St. PaulOffice of the Army Corps of Engineers were present. Dave Vandesteeg presided.

  • Does the space between your dock and boat seem to get wider each year? We

    FDQ KHOS WKDW VLWXDWLRQ ZLWK$QG\V 6DIHStep. This rotomolded step attaches to the rail on your boat lift and goes up and down as you raise or lower your boat making for easy access. This step fits most lifts with a 2 inch rail.

    Mark Anderson, 1624 2nd St S. Sauk Centre, MN 56378

    For more information call or e-mail Mark at 320-352-6933 or

    [email protected]


    Bridging the Gap Between the Dock and the Boat

    Many of our readers recall this event. I am repeating it once more because of the unsubstantiated charges that BSLA has contributed insome massive way to destroy the weed population thus reducing thefish population. It is now 8 years later. The skeptics must be assum-ing that Aquathol molecules are still circulating and have replicatedthemselves (like cell DNA), to kill invasive weeds. They are able tonavigate into the N.W. Bay even against the water currents that flowfrom N. to S.!!

    Previous newsletter have kept you informed about issues dealingwith the SRWD's decision to stop mechanical harvesting and shift tochemical treatment. This was followed by a Project Agreement signedby SRWD, City of Sauk Centre and the BSLA. Subsequently, theBSLA acquired a contractor,

    Lake Restoration, to conduct a survey for clp in 2014 . The costwas borne from the accrued fund of tax levies held by the SRWD.Some 93.4 Acres of clp were identified in that mapping report. Thisspring, the SRWD filed a request for a spray permit just in case onewas needed. I signed that permit.

    A second survey was carried out by a DNR crew identifying 17.8acres that could be sprayed. Finally, the DNR approved spraying ofslightly over 12 acres.

    The Association was granted up to $9460 to conduct a herbicide application. Any grant money not used must be returned. In order to complete the grant application, it was necessary to acquire a vendorand a vendor number. We sent bids out to three companies andselected CLARKE, a company located in Clearwater, MN. We believethis company conducted its spray operation on the early morning ofMay 15th. Next is receipt of a report and final settlement of the cost.

    One would have had to be away from Minnesota or the Nation for

    that matter not to be aware of the concerted efforts to control AquaticInvasive Species particularly zebra mussels. Past INFORMER articleshave attempted to keep our readers informed concerning creation ofcomprehensive plans in both Todd and Stearns Counties to controlintroduction of this species into our lakes. Part of the completed plansprovides funds to hire "Water Guards" to act as "sentinels" at our lakeaccess points.

    These "guards" have been hired and will be visible at the Northaccess (in Todd County) and the two accesses in Stearns (Highway 71and the City Park) . We were awarded about $6400 to pay for theGuards. We are not responsible for paying or supervising them.Should you encounter one or more this summer, thank them for doing this service. Don't gripe and balk when they askfor permission to inspect your boat.

    This column is concluding with a note on carp. We have agreed toenter into a contract with Mr. Campbell to harvest up to 120,000 lbs ofcarp next winter. More on this at our Annual Meeting.

    I realized that this is the 25th Anniversary of the BSLA. While manyprojects have been completed and many hours have been expended,Sauk Lake still is classified as having hypereutrophic conditions in theSW Bay and eutrophic conditions in the NW Bay. Overall, it is hyper-eutrophic. I have asked before in this column, "What kind of a lake doyou want?" Remember its classification. Our Annual Meeting is com-ing soon. Check out the information about it in other parts of thenewsletter. Bring you questions and concerns as well. Our Boardhopes to see many of you there. PLEASE CONSIDER JOINING AS ANEW DIRECTOR.


    Presidents letter continued from page 1

    320-352-6933 [email protected]

    On The Lighter SideEditor makes no promises about these remarks. Other than that, Ihope you enjoy. All were from internet sources.

    HOW ABOUT SOME RELIGIOUS HUMOR -----------------Pay special attention to the wording and spelling. The more you

    know about the Bible, the more hilarious these answers are.They are said to authentic- nothing has been retouched.

    Lot's wife was a pillar of salt during the day but a ball of fire dur-ing the night.

    Samson slayed the Philistines with the AXE of the Apostles.

    The first commandments was when Eve told Adam to eat theapple.

    Adam and Eve were created from an Apple Tree. Noah's wifewas Joan of Ark. Noah built and Ark and the animals came onin Pears.

    Moses died before he ever reached Canada then Joshua ledthe Hebrews in the Battle of Geritol.

    Solomon, one of David's sons had 300 wives and 700 porcu-pines.

    Jesus was born because Mary had an ImmaculateContraption.

    The Epistels were the wives of the Apostles.

    St. Paul cavorted to Christianity. He preached Holy Acrimonywhich is another name for marriage.

    Christians have only one Spouse. This is called Monotony.


  • Editor's Note: Reader's will recall that THE INFORMER has oftenincluded articles on animals and plants other than fish or fishing.Credit is given to the Stearns County SWCD for this article whichappeared in their Spring Publication.Joe Orr - is the Stearns CountyPheasants Forever Biologist

    Spring is upon us and soon rooster pheasants will be fighting forcompanionship. Beginning in early March and peaking in early May,roosters scatter from winter cover to establish territories (3-10 acresin size ) and attract hens by crowing. On average pheasants move 2/3of a mile between winter cover nesting habitat, but some may moveas much as 1 1/2 miles. Each rooster will typically breed 3-7 hens.Fierce battles between roosters are not common, as most disputes aresettled with bluffing, but sharp spurs and pointed beaks can be usedas sometimes deadly weapons.

    After breeding, the hen will begin nesting by laying one egg a daytypically starting in mid to late April, and will continue until herclutch is complete (usually around 10-12 eggs). The hen alone isresponsible for the incubating process, which lasts 23 days and startsthe day she lays her last egg of the clutch. A complete nesting cyclefrom laying to hatch usually takes around 37 days. This makes mid-April to mid-June an extremely vital time for the reproduction suc-cess of the pheasant.

    The three main factors for nest failure during this period are: nestdisturbance by haying/cutting (Flushing bars on farm equipment cansave hens), predators (fox, raccoon and skunks), and the weather. Awet spring can equate to low nest success. Pheasants will have only1 brood per year, but if their nest or eggs are destroyed, they will try,try, and try again to be successful. Nesting takes a lot of energy, andwith each re-nest the clutch size size is reduced. Eventually a hen'senergy reserves are exhausted or not enough time remains during thenesting season for a hen to successfully hatch a nest, and she willgive up. Her success averages around 50% in areas without much

    nesting cover, and more than 70% in areas where there is goodamount of nesting cover.

    Pheasant chicks are born to run, and can leave the nest and followthe hen in search of food within hours of hatching. A pheasantchick's main diet is insects, but to be able to get to those insects, thepheasant chick needs good brood rearing habitat. Good brood rear-ing habitat means good lateral, and overhead concealment from pre-dation, since they are being hunted themselves by most everythingwith teeth and talons. From a hatch of a dozen chicks, six will sur-vive until the pheasant opener.

    Yet broods also require openness at ground level ( approximately30%) to feed freely throughout the stand (and to escape should trou-ble show up). This why Native Grasses and Native WildflowerPlantings are great for pheasants. Several species of Natives areBunch grasses (grow in clumps) which helps create that 30% groundopening that the pheasant chicks require, and the wildflowers attractthe insects that the chick's diet requires.

    CRP is a great way to put more pheasant habitat on your proper-ty. If you have small, odd shaped, unproductive cropland on yourproperty, maybe CRP is a way to help with the bottom line in youroperation, and create wildlife habitat at the same time. Give us a callat the SWCD, and let us help you.

    Pheasants Forever -- Spring Time Pheasant Activities

    17 1/2 x 21 1/2 Map Fully Laminated$5

    26 1/2 x 34 Map Not Laminated$10

    Send check or money order along with your name, address,

    and phone number to:

    Big Sauk Lake Association Box 282

    Sauk Centre, MN 56378


  • For BSLA information, notices, and lake-related links

    or to contact us.

    This site is courtesy of the World Wide Web Foundry, LLC.

    A BIG thank you to BSLA member, Lynn Woodward.

    A TALE OF CARP REMOVALEditor's Note: Many of you may have seen this article in the Minneapolis StarTribune last March. I chose to replicate it here because the reporter refers to the debateabout removing too many carp. What are your thoughts on this debate?

    6,000 pounds of invasive species removed from Silver Lake to improve waterquality.

    There were no catch limits on this fishing trip at Silver Lake in the north metro,and the fisherman used a backhoe to lift and load their haul - 6,000 pounds ofinvasive carp. When they were done pulling more than 1,100 fish out of thewater (Wednesday), the back of a pickup was full of squirming carp packed insnow.

    The professional fisherman who hauled the invasive carp out from under theice of the St. Anthony lake were doing so to improve water quality. The result:The lake is now nearly rid of the invasive fish, whose bottom-stirring pres-ence lowers water quality. Wednesday's yield was bigger than a one-day carpcatch last year of about 3,800 pounds.

    But the methodical removals have generated some debate, because fewer carpmean more weeds. More than a decade ago, Silver Lake, which straddles theborder of Anoka and Ramsey counties, was designated "impaired" by theMinnesota Pollution Control Agency because of elevated phosphorus levels,which fuel algae blooms.

    Carp eat aquatic vegetation and stir up sediment on the lake bottom, releas-ing phosphorus in the water. The fish have found their way into waters likeSilver Lake in minnow buckets and by swimming up ditches and other water-ways.

    Silver Lake's shoreline neighbors - the Three Rivers Park District, the RiceCreek Watershed District, Ramsey County, the state Department of NaturalResources and the cities of St. Anthony, New Brighton and Columbia Heights- agreed to remove as much of the lake's carp population as possible. It'sthought that population peaked at 1,300 fish in 2013.

    "What we are doing is looking at this carp removal as a best-managment prac-tice,"said Tony Havranek, a senior environmental scientist with theMinneapolis-based WSB & Associates, who is overseeing the project. "It's nota silver bullet, but it's one tool in a suite of tools that we are going to applyto a water body to improvewater quality and habitat. Another such tool, hesaid, is managing stormwaterflow.

    Generally, scientists like to see 89 pounds of carp per acre of water or less.

    Author: Shannon Prather, STAR TRIBUNE

    ($25 per Year: Jan. 1Dec. 31, 2015)


    Mailing Address:

    Phone No:

    E-mail Address:

    Please cut out and include with your payment to:

    BSLA, Box 282, Sauk Centre, MN 56378 !"#$#%

    The Big Sauk Lake Association is a Minnesota nonprofit corporation, and a tax-exempt, environmental organization under Article 501 (c) (3) of the U. S. Internal Revenue Code.

    For informationon advertising inthe INFORMER

    call:Mike Blenkush at

    320-290-2496 or


    [email protected]

    More On The Lighter SideRamblings of a Retired Mind------------I was thinking about how a status symbol of today

    is those cell phones that everyone has clippedonto their belt or purse. I can't afford afford one.So, I'm wearing my garage door opener.

    You know, I spent a fortune on deodorant before Irealized that people didn't like me anyway.

    I thought about making a fitness movie for folksmy age and call it "Pumping Rust".

    I've gotten that dreaded furniture disease. That'swhen your chest is falling into your drawers!

    Did you ever notice: The Roman numerals forforty (40) are XL.

    When you are dissatisfied and would like to goback to your youth, think about and take a refresh-er course in Algebra.

    I was thinking about how people seem to read theBible a whole lot more as they get older. Then itdawned on me. They were cramming for theirfinals! As for me, I'm, hoping God grades on acurve.

  • !

    Below is a listing of BSLA Residential and Business members who have paid dues for calendar year 2015 as of May 8, 2015. "#$%!for your support of Big Sauk Lake and the Sauk Centre community!

    Ann R. Mitchell, Attorney Big Sauk Resort Birchwood Resort Boomerang Marine & Powersports, Inc Central Minnesota Federal Credit Union Centre Graphics Centre Sports, LLC City of Sauk Centre Country Cat, Inc Godfather's Exterminating, Inc Mainstreet Press Minnesota National Bank Mitch's Dyno Tuning Sauk Centre Conservation Club Sauk Centre Public Utilities Commission Stearns Electric Association Tree Top Nursery & Landscaping Verizon - Home Town Solutions Westside Liquor Worms Ready Mix

    Alice & Jim Abraham Frank & Nancy Ademite Dennis M. Anderson Kevin & Leisa Baartman John & Cindy Banovetz Kevin & Mari Banz Tim & Jeni Barker Rick & Jodi Bass Daniel & David Beck Vern & Sue Beckermann Betty Lou Berg Ron & Ann Bergemann Jerry & Kaye Beuning Roger & Susan Beuning Chad & Trista Beuning Marian Bielke John & Gail Bieniek John & Jan Bieringer Big Sauk Lake Coop Bob Bjork Jim & Bernice Blacksher Mike & Betty Blenkush Russ & Edith Blue Jim Boyer Mark & Brenda Breitbach Andrew & Teresa Burlet Dick & Sue Cardinal Barbara Carlson Wendell & Clara Christensen Dennis & Kathy Christianson Jim & Barb Cooper Ken & Sara Cornell Richard & Linda Cross Ervin & Raeanne Danielowski Robert & Colleen Diercks Steve & Debbie Dierkhising John & Lorna Dierks Jon & Charlotte Dockter James Dolan Duffy - Lind Philip Ehresman Tony & Irene Felling Mike & Judy Felling Jean & Pat Fiedler Tom & Edie Fischer Marty & Deb Fitzgerald Kitty Fobes Robert Friedl Greg & Darla Gilb Bonnie & Roger Grapper Gary & Lois Grave David & Kathy Grussing Larry & Mary Gustafson Ed & Sara Hackenmueller Benedict & Claire Haeg Jack & Karen Haley Richard & Barbara Halvorson Heather & Tom Hamilton Kristine Hansen Harry & Alta Hanson Rick & Cindy Haroldson Cindi & Jerry Hefferan

    Maggie Heinen Scott & Abbey Henderson Richard & Grace Henning Larry & Debbie Herke Bill & Deb Hildebrand Mark & Barb Hilgers Dean B. & Dawn Hilgers Jim & Liz Himanga Paul & Shawn Hintzen Alyce Hintzen Lawrence & Barbara Hittle Ken & Kathy Hoeschen Bob & Sue Hoffman Kris & Chrissy Hokanson Randy & Denise Hommerding Stan & Dorothy Hortness Tim & Mary Janish Dan Jaros James & Bernadette Jennissen Rick & Laurie Jennissen Brenda & Patrick Jennissen Dean & Elaine Jensen Derek & Kim Johnson Mike & Lori Jost William Kellogg Greg & Jeanie Klasen James & Valerie Kluver Ed and Marnie Korteum Chuck & Bev Kortuem Mark & Gwen Kranz Marge & Bob Lackmann Bill Lanik Robert & JoAnn Larson Brent Lavoi Larry & JoAnn Lawinger John & Laura Lepowsky Maxine Lobejko Mike & Chris Long James & Mary Maddox Skip & Lyn Manoski Darlene & Dave Mareck Lucas Martin & Sara Olmanson Jeff & Carol Mayer John & Karla McCarey Peg and Lance Mead Steve & Fran Messerli John W Meyer Patricia Meyer J&J Miller Family Trust Jerry Moffitt Lanny & Darlene Moyer Gary & Nancy Mueffelmann Patricia Musenbrock Ken & Judy Nelson Ken & Mary Nelson Gerry Newgaard Chereen Norstrud John Olson & Jeanne Lally Laurie & Paul Overbeck Gilbert & Treonne Panitzke Herb & Alice Peters Rod and Jeanne Pettit

    Ed & Sue Pfeifer Vern & Jeanette Pfeifer Mary Ann Polipnick Dupper Polipnick/Deb Shapro James & Shana Rachey Roger Reinardy Joe & LuAnn Reznicek Shirley Rice Marjorie D. Ripperton Paul & Juliana Robischon Stephen & Amy Rothstein John Rucinski Arthur & Lorraine Schapp Kathy & Denny Schiebold Mark & Shellie Schreier Ellie Scott Keith & Jean Sjurseth Don & Jan Spehn Jason & Minnow Speidel Dorothy Stadther Arnold & Joan Sticha Jeff & Kathy Stickles Warren Stone Wanda Storie Kathy & Dale Struffert Bob & Linda Swanson Lawrence & Dolores Terwey Vic & Lorrayne Traut Dwayne & Judy Trisko Joe & Katie Uphus Dennis & Dorothy VonBank Gene & Debra Walter Roy Walz Bruce & Barb Wanquist Dwayne Weiner Brian Weinzierl Tim & Jo Weir Marcia & Chuck Weisbrich Cathie Wendell Gary Winter Leroy Wolbeck Bill Wroge Joe & Sharon Wyffels Wayne & Mary Jo Yokiel Dale & Jan Zaczkowski Victor & Trisha Zeiher Jim & Mary Zilka Kevin & Joan Zimmer Patrick Zwilling



  • BI



    Saturday, May 23, 2015 8 amBreakfast Served By Youth Group

    8:30 amBusiness Meeting

    First Lutheran Church, (Elm St. & Sinclair Lewis Ave.) Please enter via southwest entrance to basement.

    GUEST SPEAKER: Sabin Adams, Farm Bill Wildlife Biologist from Todd County, will give a presentation on conservation projects such as buffers, pollinator plantings, prairie restorations, grazing systems and others that improve habitat for wildlife and water quality.


    TAKE A






    Big Sauk Lake Association

    Box 282

    Sauk Centre, MN 56378


    PERMIT NO. 15


    Sauk Centre, MN 56378






    MOVE A