Seal of Dane County County of Dane
Dane County Land & Water Resources Department

Take a Stake in the Lakes Days Coming Up June 1 – 17, 2012-Celebrating 25 years of love for our lakes

June 01, 2012
Susan Jones, Dane County Office of Lakes and Watersheds (608-224-3764)
Land & Water Resources

(Madison, WI) Since 1988, thousands of volunteers have rolled up their sleeves and gotten their feet wet as part of the Dane County Lakes and Watershed Commission’s Take a Stake in the Lakes clean up events.  As part of its 25th anniversary celebration this year, the Commission is partnering with the Clean Lakes Alliance and large regional employers to make the event bigger and better than ever.

Over time, the annual Take a Stake in the Lakes event has grown from two days of shoreline clean-ups to a two-week series of countywide special events for learning about and acting to protect and improve Dane County lakes and streams. 

Take a Stake in the Lakes Days has become the flagship of volunteerism and care for our treasured waterways. Thousands of volunteers have cleaned up innumerable tons of garbage from Dane County’s waterways, shorelines and more.

“Take a Stake in the Lakes is the perfect example of how a strong community effort can do much more than any entity can alone,” said  Dane County Executive Joe Parisi.  “The event’s 25th year is a fitting celebration of these unprecedented partnerships that are forming at the right time to make a genuine difference in the health of our lakes.”

“We all have a stake in clean water, and all have a role to play in restoring and protecting our waters. In this special anniversary year, we’re celebrating the thousands of volunteers who have worked to improve Dane County waters over the years through Take a Stake in the Lakes,“ said Melissa Malott, Chair of the Dane County Lakes and Watershed Commission.

Long-time Friends of Monona Bay volunteer Nina Emerson said, “I wouldn't miss Take a Stake in the Lakes--it's a great opportunity to help cleanup the environment in a very social setting." In 2005, Emerson expanded the Friends of Monona Bay’s annual Take a Stake in the Lakes participation to a year-round monthly cleanup.

“Protecting the environment is part of our company culture,” said Edgar Huber, CEO and President, Lands’ End.  "We are committed to making a difference in our local community and fully support the Take a Stake in the Lakes initiative.  More than 150 Lands’ End employees are volunteering to kick off this year’s event.”

"For over 25 years volunteers have shown their commitment to the lakes by taking action in their own communities to preserve these treasures,” said Don Heilman, President, Clean Lakes Alliance.  “As a community-wide partnership we recognize how Take A Stake in the Lakes activities help build healthy lakes and healthy communities."

In addition to the clean up events, Take a Stake in the Lakes Days includes dozens of fun and educational events June 1-17.

Some highlights:

June 1 - Lands’ End employees pitch in at many sites on Lake Mendota, and at Olin-Turville Park on Lake Monona

June 5 - Thermo Fisher employees lend Dane County Parks and the City of McFarland a hand by clearing invasives for a future lakeside public access on Lake Waubesa

June 9 - Many groups clean up Mendota and Kegonsa

June 14 - Paddle to Work Day

June 16 - Many groups clean up Monona, Waubesa and Wingra

June 16 - Dane County Waters Champion Ceremony, Anniversary Party and Volunteer Celebration at Jazz in the Park

At Jazz in the Park ( at Wingra Park on Saturday June 16, the 25-year anniversary celebration will continue.  From 3 - 4 p.m. on the main stage, current and past Take a Stake in the Lakes cleanup volunteers, Lakes and Watershed Commission members, Take a Stake in the Lakes coordinators, and Commission staff will be recognized for taking a stake in the lakes over the past quarter century. 

For a complete listing of all events during 2012 Take a Stake in the Lakes Days 25th Anniversary, go to To participate in Take a Stake in the Lakes as an individual, organization or volunteer group, contact Rhea Stangel-Maier, Dane County Parks Volunteer coordinator, at 608-224-3601 or

#  #   #