Hero of the KK River Clean-up

War Exercises on Our Great Lakes?

If you would like to receive occasional broadcasts regarding the efforts of citizens of the Great lakes to promote our sweet inland seas, send an e-mail to greatlakesculture@milwaukeerenaissance.com.

Here are some excellent web sites dedicated to promoting and protecting our Great Lakes.




Sweet Water Salvation

This concept was given me by Eric Gietzen, a Shorewood H.S. teacher of a course called Watershed Wisdom, and a long-time friend who went to Domincan H.S. with my daughter Rachel. What follows are my notes put into some order in hopes of working with Eric and friends to spark a self-conscious Great Lakes culture, a bio region to promote and defend.

Great Lakes from a “Different Angle”

Watershed Wisdom links with “sweet water salvation,” i.e. life blessed with intimate knowledge of Great Lake’s locales and the bounty awaiting those able to enjoy the natural glories of their specific watershed and tributary to the sweet inland seas. Each watershed has its own personality in terms of fish species, water fowl, plant and animal life, terrain, and imbrication in a myriad of tributaries, in the case of Eric and students, coursing toward the largest concentration of fresh water on the planet. Beauty laying dormant, awaiting re-discovery after the disconnect with nature attendant the industrial revolution.

Great Lakes Viewed from the Heavens

Sweet water salvation also awaits those who take advantage of the sporting adventures the waters provide. In Erik’s and friend’s world, “Third Coast” surfing, with new wet suit and wind harnessing technologies, opens one up to the thrill of flying across the waves of the Great Lakes seas for increasing portions of the year. Erik has recently published an essay on Great Lakes surfing in an international surfer magazine,”Surfers Journal,” the first time this development has been given serious literary treatment. Ryan Gerard, of Holland, Michigan, has sparked an on-line surfer community that complements the real community’s emergence, from Magilla Schauss’ friends in Buffalo, to surfers in Thunderbay, Ontario and all over the Great Lakes.

A number of experiences and teachers sparked the creation of this course Erik has offered for the past 7 years:
a life-changing trip around the world with his wife, then Catie Makiya, back in 1990, which raised the question of what makes a place exotic and unique; an epiphany while teaching at Mineral Point, Wisconsin, which brought forth the answer—one’s particular “watershed” as a bounty to discover; the poetry of Gary Snider, e.g. “Turtle Island,” who suggested we learn the flowers, teach the children, and go lightly on the earth; John Elder of Middlebury, whose “Teaching on the Edge” was particularly important; and a colleague at Shorewood named Peter Piaskoski, who helped create the course.

KK River Clean-up, October 14, 2006

St. Patrick’s Day Great Lakes Renaissance Soap Box Orators?

It is hoped that over the years some of the heavy lifters of the Great Lakes Renaissance will offer us soap box orations regarding their great work. Let’s aim for March 17, 2008.

Youssouf Komara Welcomes Soap Box Orators of Milwaukee

Great Lakes Water Wars

Peter Annin, author of “The Great Lakes Water Wars,” is scheduled to visit Schwartz’s book store at Kinnickinnic and Lincoln Avenues in Bay View on Wednesday, October 18, at 7 p.m.

The promo for the talk says:

The Great Lakes are the largest collection of fresh surface water on earth, and more than 40 million Americans and Canadians live in their basin. Will we divert water from the Great Lakes, causing them to end up like Central Asia’s Aral Sea, which, experts point out, has lost 90 percent of its surface area and 75 percent of its volume since 1960?
Or will we come to see that unregulated water withdrawals are ultimately catastrophic? Former Newsweek correspondent Peter Annin writes a fast-paced account of the people and stories behind these battles.

Great Lakes Stewards

Last edited by Godsil. Based on work by TeganDowling.  Page last modified on November 03, 2006

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