Being Lake Wise with Vermont Youth Conservation Corps

Article, written by , appears on the Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation's Watershed Management Division blog.

In late July, a few residents at Lake Dunmore participating in the Lake Wise Program were selected to have some shoreland Best Management Practices (BMPs) installed on their lakeshore properties. The labor was provided by the Vermont Youth Conservation Corps(VYCC).

Lake Wise award winning participant Kate Williams of Leicester proposed to her neighbors that the community beach area could be more lake-friendly by making a few improvements as recommended by the Lake Wise site visit team. The community liked the idea and purchased the minimal materials needed for the project. The VYCC crew did the installation of a wide set of infiltration steps to control erosion where community members access the lake with canoes and sailboats. A small berm/swale to shorten the distance needed for water flowing downhill to move into the wet no-mow zone was installed and the children’s lakeside sand ‘pit’ was given wooden sides that will contain the spread of the activity area and hopefully keep more sand in the pit and out of the lake. And though more vegetation is needed on this site, a number of native blueberry plants were planted in clusters along the lakeshore.

Also in Leicester, the VYCC crew helped to reduce surface erosion on a steep slope at Sue Potter’s residence by leveling existing paths and steps, installing rock-toe and an infiltration trench, and most importantly- -lots of groundcover planting! Sue was very pleased with the results saying, “I am more impressed than ever with the result of the effort these young people put into the project.  I am so thankful to have won their help. The project is really very nice and already made an impression on the neighbors!  I have given your contact information to a neighbor wanting to be involved with the Lake Wise Program and more people are asking me about it.  It probably helps that I point to my award sign every time someone goes by the dock!”

Amy Picotte and Eddie Haynes with the help of volunteer Peggy Barter, visit several homes a week on Lake Seymour in Morgan and are finding that lakeshore residents are really appreciating the visits and useful tips provided by the Lake Wise program. For more information on Lake Wise, please contact Amy or Eddie at: