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Vol. 8, No.1 January 22, 2010

Friends and Aquatic Species Alike,

On behalf of the FLG Board of Directors, we hope your year is beginning with a splash... With little attempt for brevity, our announcements are few and exciting. We invite you to participate to the fullest extent of the law.

1. FLG's Annual Winter Public Information Event:
Let's be clear about this. Mike Smith is a solo explorer. He might be THE solo explorer. During a month-long survival tenting gig by his lonesome in the frozen puckerbrush of Ontario winter he got the idea to retrace Lewis & Clark's historic water trail by canoe. Alone. (He must be nuts!). He brings his tales of adventure and terror to Friends of the Looking Glass and the general public (families and young adventurers are invited to experience Smith's adventures and slide show), Wed., Jan 27, 2010 @ 7PM at the DeWitt Area Emergency Authority (Fire Station), Community Room, at 911 West Main, DeWitt (at the west city limits). Did we mention that admission is free? Mike's presentation follows our earlier community ed events: "A Walking Tour of WildFlower Meadows", "Water Gardens & Rain Barrels", "Here Come the Raptors", "Mr. Stealhead, Jim Bedford Talks River Fishing", "The LGR Bank Stabilization Work Plan", and a host of your personal favorites too numerous to mention. This year's winter "public education event" is a prelude to the Sat. March 6 Quiet Water Symposium @ the MSU Pavilion. Be sure to put the QWS in your calendars.

TEACHERS, other opinion leaders, and eco windbags alike, please print out a few of the Mike Smith posters and hand to students/fellow workers and post at work & public locations.

Adobe Acrobat FileSolo Canoe Adventurer Mike Smith
Floats Into DeWitt


2. LGR Bank Stabilization Project Update:
As we do for most board meetings, we asked for an update on the progress of the LGR bank stabilization plan for DeWitt's Riverside Park. DeWitt City Administrator Chris Olson kindly supplied it. See Chris Olsen's LGR Bank Stabilization Project Update

3. Looking Glass winter canoe / kayak trip:
I've had a dozen or so inquiries about a winter float trip. Here's your large opportunity. Yes, the river IS open and navigable. A winter float trip is a terrific way to spend 3-4 hours in near monochromatic beauty, punctuated by an occasional male cardinal whose plumage can almost surprise your senses. You'll see deer, rabbits, muskrats, assorted waterbirds (geese, ducks, blue herons), the backs of fellow kayakers' heads, many varieties of songbirds and raptors...maybe even an eagle or two. If you're interested but perpetually coldblooded, staying warm is not difficult. If you're not a pro paddler with professional garb held together by nifty sponsorship patches, you could wear a pair of neoprene waders or insulated bibs (to keep feet, legs & butt warm) and uptop a few layers of fleece, a thin windbreaker, and a hoody for over the hat just in case, and a pair of neoprene or waterproof, insulated gloves. Walk to the mailbox and back thusly clad and convince yourself that you'll be fine. Sunglasses and a hat with a brim are useful items if you deplore squinting. Polarized sunglasses can help you notice attack rocks and underwater deadheads before it's too late. (The latter not to be confused with above water deadheads - some of whom could be your paddling buddies). The primary date is Sat., Feb 6th and the launch venue is Babcock Landing, straight north of East Lansing on the Looking Glass. We'll do the upper stretch and end up @ Riverside Park in DeWitt by 1:30 - 2PM latest. Get your car spotted and meet your fetching fellow floaters at Babcock for a 10AM put-in. A warm meal can be had @ Sam's Kitchen, a block north of the park at the bridge / canoe take-out in Downtown DeWitt, and the 1-block walk is a good way to wake up your butt muscles. Backup date is Sat. Feb 27, same time/venues, if weather mucks up our plan for the primary date. Let me know if you're planning to join us.

4. Become a Looking Glass River Friend:
Please consider printing it off, filling it in and sending your meager check to Treasurer Larry Arbanas, whose address is printed on the brochure. Your donations help us carry out our work in the LGR Watershed. Now that he's retired, Larry's Japanese (2nd) language is slipping and he's just itching to don his green plastic visor, roll up his sleeves, calculate small checks and fill in spreadsheets. Please help Larry cope?

Adobe Acrobat File2-Sided FLG Brochure



5. Lastly, (Hold your applause) "Asian" Carp: We hope you've been following the so-called "Asian" carp controversey and their impending ruination of our Great Lakes, connecting bodies (The Looking Glass & others) and inland waters. We're including A.G. Mike Cox website link which includes a way for you to voice your opposition to the US Supreme Court's refusal to allow the closing of the O'Brien Lock and waterways connecting Lake Michigan with the Mississippi River Basin to block the species' northward progress. Please take a minute, review the site and consider voicing your opposition. There are dozens of exotic species affecting our Great Lakes ecosystem...their presence is a cough in the wind compared to the ecological damage these voracious carp will cause. Thank you all.

On behalf of the FLG Board of Directors: Thank You!
Bob Bishop
FLG Communications Dir.