Watershed Tour Scheduled

CELINA —  Residents in the Grand Lake St. Marys Watershed who want a closer look at some of the techniques being used to help clean up the region can do so this week.

The Do-It Yourself Tour, which is sponsored by a handful of watershed stakeholders, will take place from noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. The tour will feature eight stops around Auglaize and Mercer counties, with each highlighting techniques used to help clean up the watershed.

“The soil and water has done lots of farm tours, but with all that’s been happening with in the lake projects ... This year they decided to do a lake and farm tour,” Grand Lake/Wabash Watershed Alliance Coordinator Laura Walker told members of the Lake Improvement Association during Saturday’s meeting. “A lot of counties across Ohio do forest tours and traditional farm tours, but this is the first I’ve seen them combine these two.”

The eight stops include: the AiryGator stationed at the St. Marys Boat Club, Brutus — the newest dredge stationed at Otterbein-St. Marys, Brownhaven Dairy Farm at 07535 State Route 364 in New Bremen, the Prairie Creek Treatment Train along Ohio 219, Franklin Township Nature Park along Karafit Road, St. Charles Center, located off Ohio 274, an edge of field and tile monitoring station on Depweg Road near U.S. 127 and Mercer Landmark’s new facility located at 3911 Burkettsville-St. Henry Road in Coldwater. Each stop will have personnel on hand to answer questions and give a brief explanation as to what visitors are seeing in regard to any equipment or operations.

“It’s a free event,” Walker said. “There are kids’ activities at some of the stops — they can get out and see the cows at Brownhaven Dairy, they can get up close to that dredge and really check it out. There will be a lot of hands-on things.”

Walker encouraged residents to take advantage of the chance to explore the stops on the tour.

“You actually get a chance to get out and see things for yourself,” Walker told The Evening Leader following the meeting. “If you want to see the rough fish nets, you can see how the dredge works. You get to see things more hands-on ... It’s going to appear more real. It’s right there. You can ask the questions you want to ask.”

For more information on the driving tour, search Grand Again on Facebook.

The next meeting of the Lake Improvement Association is scheduled for 10 a.m. Oct. 6 at the Celina Moose Lodge.