Families and friends from Lake Crystal came together on Sunday in Robinson Park to implement the first steps towards restoring the water quality of the three lakes. With live bands playing on the beach throughout the day and multiple booths ranging from a hog roast to face painting, the Crystal Waters Project had something for everyone.
But the real star of the day took form as overturned soil and dirty hands. Parents and children alike were shown how to create their own rain garden, a small garden consisting of native regional plants planted downhill from waterspouts on houses. These gardens play a vital role in curtailing pollutants and fertilizers from reaching the lake; instead, water trickles through the soil where the plants utilize the stray fertilizers and filters away the pollutants from the lake.
This new initiative is promoted through Greensteps, a Minnesota non-profit group that helps towns and cities lower their emissions, restore native prairies, and improve water quality by encouraging other participating towns to share their successes with other Greensteps cities and offering environmental input from professionals on their staff.
Lake Crystal is the most recent addition to the Greensteps program, joining April 22nd of this year, and has seen strong community support. Gina Cooper, a community volunteer, says the aim of the Crystal Waters Project is to get people on the beach and in the lakes as soon as possible.
Through it may be a long road to restore their lakes, implementing features as simple as a rain garden makes a substantial difference. If your town is interested in becoming a member of the Greensteps program, feel free to visit this provided link.