No, there is not a referendum about the lakes on today’s ballot. But what if there was? “Let’s save Dane County lakes, whaddya say?” You know we’d all vote Yes. We love our lakes, all four/five of them: Mendota, Monona, Waubesa, Kegonsa and sweet little Wingra. They’re the gems of the Yahara River Watershed, our pride and joy.
And we especially love our lakes this time of year. Dane County lakes are awesome in the spring. The winter ice is gone and the summer algae hasn’t bloomed. The weeds still look like weeds and not like an old-growth forest. The water is sparkling and blue, and if it weren’t so cold you swear you’d go swimming every day.
Then comes summer, and the lakes turn into a back-country bayou: oozing, weed-choked, algae-slimed. You vow never to swim in them again as long as you live.
The Clean Lakes Alliance wants you to know that this is not the natural seasonal cycle of a lake. Which is why the Alliance invites you to care, even more than you already do, about cleaning up our lakes for good.
This is not a typical Dane County non-profit, as wonderful as many of those are. And I’m not saying that just because the Alliance is a new favorite client here on Cherry Street. I’m saying that because this is the group that our lakes have long needed: a public/private matching of the experts who know what needs to happen and the big hitters who have made good things happen here for decades.
The Alliance already has some great events planned: Crazy 4 Lakes on April 30, Festival of the Lakes on August 27, and house-party fundraisers in between. Attend, learn, celebrate, befriend.
Who knows? Maybe some day you will have to mark a ballot to save a lake. I’d suggest you not wait, though. Instead, click here and donate to the group most likely to make sure it never has to come to a vote.