Lake Level Workshop

Now that the educational film The Rise and Fall of the Great Lakes is available on You Tube, we have shown it countless times at Crossroads at Big Creek and we will again on Friday morning at 10:00. Conservationist Bill Mason of created this geologic comedy for the National Film Board of Canada in 1968, and it was an immediate hit with teachers and students alike. The “rise and fall of the Great Lakes” will be the topic of a more serious program about low water levels on Lakes Michigan and Superior on Thursday, August 8 from 6:30-8:30.

The Great Lakes Water Levels Community Workshop will be one of four free programs presented around the state by The Department of Administration’s (DOA) Wisconsin Coastal Management Program. These workshops will include discussions about water level data, state and local impacts of low lake levels, and the programs to help coastal communities.

“Wisconsin is home to many beautiful lakes and waterways. These workshops will provide information to help protect or restore our valuable water and coastal resources for families and Wisconsinites to enjoy for generations to come,” said DOA Secretary Mike Huebsch.

The workshop at Crossroads will begin with a discussion of data pertaining to low lake levels and how they impact the state. A large portion of the program will focus on local impacts resulting from low lake levels. Representatives from University of Wisconsin Sea Grant Engineering, Ports, and Harbors, the Department of Administration Coastal Management program and Coastal Hazards Workgroup, the DNR Office of Great Lake Great Lakes Dredging Team International Joint Commission, the DOT Harbor Assistance Program, and the DNR Recreational Boating Facilities Program of the Wisconsin Waterways Commission will offer presentations on state programs, resources and expertise.

The concluding presentation, “Addressing Lake Levels in Wisconsin: State Solutions” will be followed by a question and answer period with public comment/ recommendations.

Guest speakers include: Bill Schuster, County Conservationist. Door County Soil and Water Conservation Department Wisconsin Coastal Management State Wisconsin Sea Grant; Mike Friis, Program Manager. Wisconsin Coastal Management Program; Todd Thayse, Vice President & General Manager Bay Shipbuilding Company; Gene Clark, Coastal Engineering Specialist ;Cheryl Bougie, Sediment & Monitoring Coordinator- Lake Michigan;

The same topic, lake levels will take family-friendly look at lakes levels on Friday morning with the screening of “Rise and Fall of the Great Lakes. According to Wikopedia, “ The Rise and Fall of the Great Lakes is a 1968 Canadian short film featuring a humorous geography. lesson in which a canoeist travels abruptly through time as he crosses the Great Lakes, experiencing cataclysmic changes in different eras.

“Some animation is employed in the film to show the coming and going of the Ice Age, when the lakes were born, but most of the other episodes of lake history are suggested by camera tricks that affect the canoeman and so emphasize the change. There is, for instance, a scene where open water suddenly turns to ice, freezing the canoe in mid-paddle. Then, the canoe is left in mid air high above the water, illustrating the melting of the ice, and causing the intrepid canoeist to crash to the water below. At another juncture, he is almost run over by a huge freighter, illustrating the befouling of the waters by shipping. Such slapslick effects are employed to mark all the major changes in this history of the Great Lakes.
“Sudden changes of level leave the canoe stranded, or submerge the traveller’s tent. Between times the camera examines surviving evidence of the passage of the Ice Age – the striations of the rocks, the folds in the earth of farm landscapes viewed from the air.”

Family Programs continue Monday through Thursday at 1:30. These presentations are intended for all ages and meet at the Collins Learning Center.


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