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March 4, 2013

6th Annual Meeting of St. Joseph River Watershed Council slated for March 18th in Sturgis

The 6th Annual Meeting of the St. Joseph River Watershed Council will be held at the Sturges-Young Auditorium in Sturgis the evening of Monday, March 18.

The program will include social time and dinner along with singing, drumming and storytelling by Potawatomi Grandmothers from the Pokagon Band as they present “Living Water: Teachings of the Water Walkers”. The water is alive; we feed it and it feeds us. We grow food with it and we eat fish from it. We swim in it and we paddle on it. As individuals and organizations, we are working to protect and restore the land and water that flows to the St. Joseph River. Andy Jackson and other Potawatomi Grandmothers will sing, drum and share stories that help us understand Ezh gda bamendamen nibi – the way which we should all mind the water.

Potawatomi women are recognized as life givers and protectors of water. In order to raise awareness about the importance of clean water, Potawatomi Grandmothers started an annual “Water Walk” to foster respect and appreciation for the water that is too often taken for granted. The Watershed Council Event will highlight these efforts along with others occurring in the watershed that promote the protection and enhancement of our waterways.

The evening will also include dinner, a cash bar and a silent auction (items for bid include Local Beer & Wine, Native Plant Seeds, Rain Barrels, Paintings by Local Artists, Bird Houses and more).

This event is open to the general public, but registration is required. If you are interested in clean and healthy water, you will not want to miss this event. For more details and to register online visit http://www.fotsjr.org/. You can also register by calling 574-299-3421.

The St. Joseph River Watershed is the 3rd largest watershed of the Lake Michigan basin and is located in the southwest portion of Michigan and the northern portion of Indiana. The major cities and villages in Michigan within the watershed include Hillsdale, Coldwater, Sturgis, Three Rivers, Dowagiac, Niles, Buchanan, Berrien Springs, Paw Paw, Watervliet, Benton Harbor and St. Joseph. In Indiana, major cities and villages include Angola, Kendallville, Albion, Syracuse, Middlebury, Goshen, Elkhart, Granger, and South Bend.

The meeting will also include presentation of the “Al Smith Watershed Stewardship Award”.  This award was established to honor individuals with a passion for improving the health of the watershed.  For information on the award, last year’s winner, or to nominate someone for next year, click here.

Editor’s Note:  This post was expanded at 6:08 p.m. 3-4-13 by adding information from the Southwest Michigan Planning Commission to that provided earlier by Matt Meersman of the Friends of the St. Joe River Association (www.FotSJR.org).






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