What it takes to make a difference

The Freshwater Society is in its third year of teaming up with Michelob Golden Light on the Celebrate Your Lake Contest, and it’s been a really great way to see communities in action around the water they love.

If you haven’t heard of the contest, check out our webpage for the details – it’s a voting contest that takes place through Facebook and the winning lake receives a $50,000 conservation award to do something good for their lake.

What has been great to witness is something that we’ve seen a lot while working with lake and stream groups around the state – getting something done means knowing the people around you. Whether it’s addressing curly leaf pondweed or corralling folks to get online and vote, connectivity is what wins the race.

Each year of the contest has seen a mix of lakes from around the state compete; from large “destination” lakes that see thousands of boats a year, to smaller locally known assets that are maybe less traveled but no less appreciated, and everything in between.

In the first two years of the contest the winners were of the latter type. Albert Lea Lake and the Fairmont Chain of Lakes may not be what jumps to mind when you say the words “Minnesota Lake” but they proved that a local love for water, and knowing your neighbor, is what can translate into action.

So here’s to both communities for taking the time to make an effort to win the contest, but also for taking the time to know each other. Stay tuned for Celebrate Your Lake round three!