Currents March 2017

Did you know that the Great Lakes are the biggest freshwater source in the world? Lake Erie is the most productive for fishing of all the Great Lakes. Your support helps make our streams clean, clear and healthy so they can support this complex ecosystem. By donating to PCS, you help us reach our goals of restoring rivers that lead to Lake Erie beaches that promote fishable and swimmable conditions for generations.

Support PCS - Donate Now!


DSC 0619Thank you and congratulations to the 64 youth who participated in the 15th Annual Partnering for Clean Streams Youth Patch Day Workshop on Sunday, March 5th. Six groups of energetic Boy and Girl Scouts from kindergarten through fifth grade earned the blue and white embroidered Partnering for Clean Streams patch by participating in various water education stations. Through six different hands-on activity stations, professionals from across northwest Ohio taught the scouts about different aspects of our water resource such as storm water runoff, water conservation, Lake Erie algae, and sources of pollutants. Each station not only educated but also empowered the participants to become active stewards of their local waterways with ways they can make a positive difference.

During the Workshop, participants practiced storm drain stenciling, learned about storm water runoff and sources of nutrients, and explored how water is treated so it is safe for us to drink. This year’s Workshop also celebrated Toledo Rain Garden Initiative’s 10th Anniversary by painting rain barrels. Participants painted the different aspects of the water system, including soil, plants, animals, the atmosphere, and the water itself. These very colorful rain barrels will eventually be featured at our Clean Your Streams Day Appreciation Picnic in September.  

Everyone, parents and kids alike, appreciated the hands-on aspects of the Workshop, and our newest station, EnviroPaint, where they painted on rain barrels. Other favorites included Lake in a Bag, where youth simulated the growth of lake algae, and Walk on Water, where they got to walk along the Ottawa River on UT's campus. Participants were also very fond of our other stations, Drain Away, Waste In-Waste Out, and Down on the Pond.  All six stations were very successful in teaching the youth participants about stormwater runoff, the nutrients in our water and how they get there, water conservation, our local rivers, and everyday practices that can help protect our waterways. We, as PCS, would like to extend a big thank you to everyone who participated and especially, those involved in the planning process. These individuals include Andrea Beard, Jamie Kochensparger, Cheryl Rice, Patrick Lawrence, Richard Kroeger, Cherie Blair, Emily Denlinger, Jessica Wilbarger, and Lauren Rush. We also would like to thank the Toledo ZooTeens for volunteering with us at Patch Day. We look forward to seeing you at next year’s Workshop! Check out pictures from this year's Workshop by clicking here!

5We are excited to once again offer Storm Drain Marking as our project for Global Youth Service Day 2017! On Saturday, April 22nd, take part in marking local storm drains with the message, “Drains are for Rain, Flows to Waterway”, which helps clarify the common misconception that water entering storm drains is treated.  Our volunteers also pass out informational door hangers to residents living near the marked drains. From 9:00am-12:00pm, volunteers will mark the storm drains in preselected jurisdictions such as Toledo, Holland, Sylvania, and others.  At 12:30pm, volunteers are invited to an Appreciation Picnic held in the lawn at the United Way building in downtown Toledo as part of Global Youth Service Day.  If weather does not permit us to mark drains on April 22nd, a rainout date is scheduled for April 29th.  For more details and to register, please check out our Storm Drain Marking page on our website and/or by downloading the form here.  Registration ends on April 12th. We hope to see you on Global Youth Service Day! 

DSC 0559We are very excited to welcome Paul Fuzinski to our team, as the new Program Coordinator. Paul grew up in Ida, Michigan often exploring the 10-acre wooded lot behind his childhood home. After extensive traveling of the United States and experiencing some of the most astounding landscapes in the country, Paul stumbled into the field of Anthropology which in turn piqued his interest in human environmental impact. After receiving his Bachelors in Anthropology from the University of Toledo in 2015, Paul left home and hiked the Appalachian Trail in its entirety for nearly six months. Upon seeing first hand the human impact on the landscape and the growing amount of pollution in some of the most remote areas of the country, he decided to devote his time to protecting the environment and informing the public on both local and large-scale environmental issues. In his free time, Paul enjoys writing, reading, playing music, backpacking, biking, making short documentaries and long distance endurance sports. 

2017 GCM logoFor the second year, Partners for Clean Streams has been selected as a charity partner for the Mercy Health Glass City Marathon. In addition to this great honor, we are also partnering with the Marathon to continue developing their “greening” efforts through recycling, composting, and TerraCycling (to learn more about TerraCycling, click here).  Last year, a handful of volunteers and the PCS staff were able to divert approximately 4,500 pounds of waste from the landfill by creating a separating system. Most of this waste came from the finish line area and after party next to the University of Toledo Glass Bowl. We separated thousands of plastic bottles and cups for recycling, cardboard and food waste for composting by Hirzel Farms, and thousands of water cups, GU Packs, and heat sheets for TerraCycling. At the end of the day, an entire 30-yard dumpster intended for landfill waste sat empty.

While this is a unique and powerful partnership, you might be wondering, well what does this have to do with our rivers? The Marathon runners cross the Ottawa River and other tributaries several times throughout the course. They will also rely on drinking water to keep them hydrated over 26.2 miles.  The volunteers that sweep the course after the race are helping the rivers by removing debris before it reaches the nearest storm drain or waterway. Water is inherently connected to this race, and we hope that our involvement and partnership will draw attention to that.

This year’s race is on Sunday, April 23rd, the day after Earth Day. How fitting! Whether you are running the race, cheering from the sidelines, or watching news coverage at home, you have the opportunity to support our efforts at the Marathon and beyond. As a charity partner, runners, spectators, and the general public are able to make a donation to PCS through the Marathon. This money will not only support our work that day to reduce the environmental footprint of the race, but it will also support our work to protect and preserve our local waterways. Our programs, outreach, partnerships, and projects all revolve around our mission, which is to strive for rivers, streams, and lakes that are clean, clear, and safe. To donate as a part of the Mercy Health Glass City Marathon, click here.  

Currents: March 2017

Your donation, no matter how small, can make a huge difference in the long run. Every penny goes a long way in protecting your water.


Keep Current and Follow us on Social Media

PCS on Facebook PCS on Twitter
PCS on Instragram PCS on Youtube


15th Annual Youth Patch Day Workshop



Terry Shankland
President of the Board
Private Citizen

Andrew Curran
Vice President
Assistant Scout Executive,
Boy Scouts of America

Colleen Dooley
Attorney, Private Practice

Kyle Spicer
Private Citizen

Deanna Bobak
Board Member
Private Citizen

Denise Fonner
Board Member
Private Citizen

Jeff Gibbs
Board Member
Private Citizen

Joan King
Board Member
Private Citizen

Chris Smalley
Board Member
Park Services Supervisor
Metroparks of the Toledo Area

Patrick Lawrence, Ph.D.
Past President of Board (non-voting)
Associate Dean, College of Arts & Letters
University of Toledo

Partners for Clean Streams Inc. is striving for abundant open space and a high quality natural environment; adequate floodwater storage capacities and flourishing wildlife; stakeholders who take local ownership in their resources; and rivers, streams and lakes that are clean, clear and safe