waskington state lake images
WATERLINE - June, 2024

WALPA is part of something bigger – introducing NALMS

by Marisa Burghdoff, Snohomish County

Did you know that WALPA is an affiliate organization of the North American Lake Management Society (NALMS)? NALMS has a similar mission and purpose as WALPA but is focused on lakes across the United States, Canada, and Mexico.

We partner with NALMS to promote our shared mission of lake protection. To learn more about NALMS, sign up for their great newsletter or become a member at www.nalms.org. Here are just a few of the exciting projects NALMS has underway that you can learn more about and/or participate in:

LakeLine magazine
LakeLine is NALMS’ quarterly magazine with up-to-date lake news and articles on topics affecting lake health like invasive plant control, resolving recreational conflicts, and lake restoration.

Access to LakeLine is typically reserved for members, but the most recent LakeLine issue been made available to all because the NALMS board thought it had important information to share with everyone. Click on the link and scroll down to check out two especially relevant articles on:

  • The restoration of Washington State’s very own Lake Ketchum
  • An update on NALMS’ efforts to build momentum for restoring funding to Section 314 of the Clean Water Act. This funding was once an invaluable resource for lake restoration work that has been absent for nearly two decades. If reinstated, these grant funds would be instrumental in making progress towards healthier Washington lakes.

Lakes Appreciation Month and poster contest
July is Lakes Appreciation Month!  NALMs has a variety of events to celebrate this month including: 

  • Libraries Love Lakes – This outreach project pairs school and public libraries with lake scientists to provide collaborative programming emphasizing the importance of lakes in our everyday lives. NALMS has done all the work curating activities and resources for local libraries to use as programming in July as part of Lakes Appreciation Month. To get involved, visit Libraries Loves Lakes and send a quick message to your local library (they even have a template you can use)!
  • Poster Contest – Do you know a student artist or have a friend who is a teacher? Let them know about the 2024 Lakes Appreciation Month poster contest. Cash prizes for the artist ($50) and their school or organization such as Scouts ($250) are available for elementary, middle and high schoolers. This year’s theme is “Lakes Calling”. See past winners and learn more, but act now as the deadline is Friday, June 14th!
  • Secchi Dip-in – The Robert Carlson Secchi Dip-In started in 1994 as a way to get the community involved in sampling lake data during Lakes Appreciation Month. Grab your Secchi and submit your data! If you have a longer-term lake program, you can even submit year-round data for this valuable community science project.

State proclamation – to spread the word about Lakes Appreciation Month, NALMS encourages getting a proclamation from your governor or mayor. WALPA has already obtained one from Governor Inslee — consider reaching out to your local jurisdiction as well!

2024 Conference – Lake Tahoe November 5-8
This year’s NALMS conference is scheduled for beautiful Lake Tahoe! Not only is this a great destination close to home, but it is a hotbed of interesting lake science. If you haven’t been to a NALMS conference, this is a great opportunity. The conference provides a great mix of presentation and workshops on both lake science and lake management with a very welcoming atmosphere for folks with all levels of knowledge. They also provide student scholarships and early career funding assistance. Learn more and register at www.nalms.org.

Fireworks Study
As you learned from Dr. Waterline (see related article), there isn’t enough research out there on the impact of fireworks on lakes. To fill that gap, NALMS is going to study this question with the help of volunteers across the United States. There may still be a chance to get involved if you are interested. If not, we can look forward to hearing about results in the future! Visit https://www.nalms.org/perchlorate-fireworks/ to learn more.