FREP E-Downstream
Tuesday, October 8, 2013                                                        Greetings from FREP!
Please visit our Website for additional information and updates on activities shared in this newsletter
FREP Noon Network
Wednesday, October 16, 2013   Noon - 1:30 PM
 Program:    Trout Park Forested Fen, Elgin
Presenter Steve Byers, of the llinois Nature Preserves Commission
Location:  Meet at the Burger Research and Education Center at the Max McGraw Wildlife Foundation Located off Sunset Park Blvd; with access off Illinois Rt 25 (Dundee Avenue) only – MAP.

We will meet at this location at noon – have lunch and learn more about Forested Fens and long-term efforts to protect this community at the former Fox River Country Day School. After lunch/presentation and discussion we will drive down to the Forested Fen and tour the calcareous seep and forested fen wetland communities.
Byers will lead discussion about fen wetlands in general, more detail about the forested fens at Trout Park Nature Preserve and at the former Fox River Country Day School.  While Trout Park is an Illinois Nature Preserve, the Forested Fen at the former Fox River Country Day School is not.

Noon Network participants will also learn about the long-term effort to protect and provide stewardship for the Forested Fen; developing a relationship with the school that provided for stewardship by staff under the leadership of the Illinois Nature Preserves Commission, and then the setback that ensued when the Fox River Country Day School went into foreclosure.

Learn how The Tollway Authority, Illinois Nature Preserves Commission, City of Elgin, The Conservation Foundation, Forest Preserve District of Kane County, and the Max McGraw Wildlife Foundation worked together to help save this forested fen. 

Elgin Forested Fen

Calcareous seep in foreground with white cedars (forested fen) in background
FREP Membership Meeting
Wednesday, November 20, 2013   1 PM             The Executive Committee will be meeting at 11 AM
Location: Aurora City Hall, 5th Floor
              60 E Downer Place, Aurora, Illinois.

Ample free parking is available on the street. A free lot is located 1 block south of city hall on Water Street.

Program: Aurora Rain Garden Project
              Eric Schoeny, City of Aurora

Like many older communities Aurora is mandated by the IEPA to treat the stormwater runoff that enters the Fox River. Water quality data from Aurora’s separate and combined sewer outfalls have shown that conventional grey infrastructure alone is not the answer to improving the water quality of our river.

Aurora has discovered that green infrastructure can be a cost effective part of it's stormwater management efforts. Eric Schoeny a licensed civil engineer, has spent 20 years working on Aurora's storm sewer system. He now leads the city's efforts in using green infrastructure to help meet the IEPA's water quality standards.

Eric will present a number of successful green infrastructure projects completed in Aurora and give an overview of the planning of 28 new rain gardens which will be installed in Aurora next spring. This project will be completed with the assistance of a $1.45 million IGIG grant.

The city's new Downer Place rain gardens are a short walk from City Hall.
Upcoming Noon Networks:
Wednesday, February 19, 2014
  Looking for suggestions!

Wednesday, April 16, 2014
  Lower Fox Land Conservation Plan Update
               Site tour of the new Dayton Bluffs
               property, Ottawa
               Dan Lobbes and John Church
              The Conservation Foundation
Upcoming Meetings:
Wednesday, January 15, 2014
Meeting & Annual Elections
Location:  TBA

Note:  If you are interested in holding an office in FREP or otherwise participating in the FREP Executive Committee, please email
and it will be passed on to the nominations committee, in preparation for our elections in January.
FREP members, potential members, and the general public are welcome to attend the FREP Noon Networks and meetings and programs. Learn more about activities in the watershed and network with others.
FREP Meeting Minutes can be found HERE
Your suggestions for FREP Noon Networks are welcomed. We feature projects, best management practices, and topics of interest to the FREP membership and general public, and move these programs around the watershed to reach a larger audience.

The programs are informal and often include a site tour of a project. They are publicized in the local papers and we often get interested people from the community who would like to find out more about a new environmental project in their community. We need a location where a group of approximately 20 can gather for the presentation. If a tour is involved, it is helpful to have this location near the project.

To arrange to host a FREP Noon Network, please contact Becky Hoag, Communications Manager,
Resources on our website
The presentations from our September 18th meeting program on Kane County's 2040 Green Infrastructure Plan Presented by Dennis Dreher, Geosyntec Consultants; Nancy Williamson, IDNR and  Chicago Wilderness SWAT; and Karen Ann Miller, Kane County Development Dept. HERE

Our August 21st Noon Network presentation on Elgin's Lord Street Basin CSO Green Infrastructure Retrofit Project by Rob Linke, P.E., CFM Trotter & Associates, Inc., and Aaron Cosentino City of Elgin HERE

Our Rain Garden Showcase photos HERE

Program Presentations Online:
Many other past Noon Network and meeting program presentations can be found in pdf form on the FREP Website HERE.
From our FREP President, Katie Parkhurst
FREP LogoThe Federal government shutdown may or may not be impacting you directly; however, it does impact all Americans. Our National Parks are preserved and protected by the Federal government, until a shutdown, when it is deemed national park employees are non-essential and can be furloughed.  Does this give us hope and inspiration that the government will be protecting our natural resources for us and future generations?  This is a great example of why grass root efforts are still so vital for protecting and restoring natural areas in our backyards.

The Fox River Ecosystem Partnership is a grass roots group organized to help each other restore and reclaim our local streams and tributaries.  Grass root efforts work by having dedicated volunteers give their time to help with education to members, managing the organization, assisting with grant writing and awareness, and networking.  FREP will continue with or without the federal government because we are supported by our members who all work towards our vision “…to balance all the uses and demands on our natural resources while preserving and enhancing a healthy environment.”

FREP was not organized to lobby and legally cannot.  However, our members are encouraged to act as individuals and learn about the issues impacting us from State and Federal levels.  For example, if you think the Federal government shutdown is negatively impacting our natural resources, we encourage you to contact your U.S. Senator and Representatives.  You can find information on how to contact State and Federal Legislators on the FREP Government Relations page. On a positive note, please join us for the October 16th noon network to see how state and local agencies are working in partnership with conservation organizations to save a forested fen.  Amazing what can be accomplished when we work together.  

                                                                                             Katie Parkhurst, Village of Algonquin
Fox River Summit 2014 Update
Please mark your calendars:
The 2nd Fox River Summit will be Friday, March 21, 2014 at Veteran's Terrace in Burlington, Wisconsin.

Last March many FREP members and watershed representatives enjoyed a first time summit with our neighbors to the north, where the Illinois Fox River begins.  It was a great event and attendees agreed that these gatherings should be continued.

With the Wisconsin planners having “nest egg” funding for the event that most likely needs to be used in their state, it was agreed that Wisconsin would host the second summit and the March 21st date has been set.

FREP formed a planning committee and will continue to support the Summit with participation, getting the word out, and having input on topics and speakers. If you have any questions or suggestions for the planners, please contact our Summit planning committee chair, Elizabeth Hagen-Moeller at

We will keep everyone up-to-date on the final plans here in the Downstream and on the FREP Website, and will let you know when registration for the 2nd Summit begins.
FREP Membership Roll for 2013-14
Thank you to all who have responded to our June dues statements.
95% of the amount of dues collected last year has been received.
If your name is not below, won't you please pay your dues today?  Help us reach 100%

You can pay your 2013-14 Dues using the online form  HERE   and pay by Credit Card via PayPal
The FREP Membership Roll for 2013-14 is also posted on our website HERE.
Links are provided for those members who have websites
Michael Ander, Friend, Sleepy Hollow
Barrington Area Conservation Trust
Barrington Area Council of Governments
Batavia Park District
Baxter & Woodman
Campton Historic Agricultural Lands, Inc./
  Garfield Farm
Campton Township
John Church, Friend, Oswego
Linda Cole, Friend, Aurora
City of Crystal Lake
City of Elgin
City of Geneva
City of Saint Charles
Linda Cole, Friend, Aurora
John Church, Friend, Oswego
The Conservation Foundation
Nancy Cox, Friend, St. Charles
Crystal Lake Park District
Christopher B. Burke Engineering, LTD
Deuchler Environmental, Inc.
Dundee Township
Engineering Enterprises, Inc. - EEI
Environmental Defenders of McHenry County
Flint Creek Watershed Partnership
Forest Preserve District of Kane County
Fox Metro Water Reclamation District, Oswego
Fox River Water Reclamation District, Elgin
Fox Valley Park District, Aurora
John Frerich, Friend, Batavia
Geneva Park District
Geosyntec Consultants
Barbara Gore, Friend, Aurora
Hey & Associates
Holly Hudson, Friend, Elgin
Kane County Farm Bureau
Kane-DuPage Soil & Water Conservation District
Kendall County Forest Preserve District
Kendall County Soil & Water Conservation District
Lake County Forest Preserve District
Lake County Stormwater Management Commission
Lake in the Hills Sanitary District
Rob Linke, Friend, St. Charles
Living Waters Consultants
Julie Long, Friend, St. Charles
McHenry County Conservation District
McHenry County Conservation Foundation
Oswegoland Park District
Jason Pettit, Friend, Aurora
Larry Rakunus, Friend, St. Charles
River Corridor Foundation of St. Charles
Kathleen Bergan Schmidt, Friend, Crystral Lake
Kent E. Sims, Friend, Bolingbrook
Laura Ross Stuart, Friend, Geneva
Tyler Creek Watershed Coalition
United City of Yorkville
Shawn Van Kampen, Friend
Village of Algonquin
Village of Fox River Grove
Village of Lake Barrington
Village of Millbrook
Village of Oakwood Hills
Village of Oswego
Village of Port Barrington
Village of Sleepy Hollow
Village of South Elgin
Nancy Williamson & Steve Byers, Friends,
    Village of Lakewood
Witness Tree Native Landscapes, Inc.
There is an online membership form and link to make your payment through PayPal HERE
A printable/mailable form  HERE
Watershed Planning
9 Lakes Project Patners
            Meeting Info: Wednesday, October 23, 2-4 PM
Viscount Hall, 2670 West Maple Ave, Slocum Lake
9 Lakes TMDL Webpage          
The Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP) received Clean Water Act funds from Illinois EPA to facilitate the development of a watershed-based plan for the “9 Lakes Planning Area” in southwestern Lake and southeastern McHenry Counties.  The plan will utilize data and information that an ongoing TMDL (Total Maximum Daily Load) analysis will provide.
The ultimate goal of the planning process is to determine where and which best management practices (BMPs) can best be implemented in order to reduce pollutant loads to the following nine lakes as well as the Fox River:

A. Cotton-Mutton Creek Watershed:  Island Lake, Woodland Lake, Lake Napa Suwe, Ozaukee Lake
B. Slocum Lake Drain - Fiddle Creek Watershed:  Slocum Lake
C. Tower Lake Drain:  Tower Lake, Lake Fairview, Timber Lake, Lake Barrington

Planning partners include the Lake County Stormwater Management Commission, Lake County Health Department – Lakes Management Unit, FREP, and the 4 Lakes Initiative.  All community members who live, work, or play in these watersheds are invited to attend and participate in this unique planning opportunity.  FREP's role is to maintain a project webpage on the FREP website and to provide project updates through this Downstream newsletter.
Additional Watershed Planning & Activity:
A number of other Fox River subwatershed groups are in various stages of developing, completing, and implementing plans for their watersheds. FREP continues to be a central source of information for these activities and will post meeting dates and information, and news of new planning here in the Downstream and on our website HERE.

9 Lakes TMDL Implementation Planning Project
Blackberry Creek Watershed  Webpage
Ferson-Otter Creek Watershed   Webpage

Note:  Blackberry &  Ferson-Otter groups are
currently seeking input about setting meetings for October and potential topics to discuss.  Please contact Tara Neff at

Flint Creek Watershed Partnership  Website
Jelkes Creek-Fox River Watershed Coalition  Webpage
Silver & Sleepy Hollow Creeks Watershed Coalition
Spring Creek Watershed  Website
Tyler Creek Watershed  Webpages
Woods Creek Watershed Study Stakeholders Website

Other Activities & News of Interest
If you have an activity or event you'd like FREP to share on our Website or in the Downstream, please email the information to Becky at:
October 12
Noon - 7 PM
Forest Foundation Fall Festival presented by The Forest Foundation of Kendall County
Hoover Wood Forest Preserve
11285 W. Fox Road, west of Yorkville   FLYER
November 2
6th Annual Green Living Expo
McHenry County College     Website
May 30 - June 2
River Rally
Pittsburgh, PA   Website
Sponsored by River Network & Waterkeeper Alliance
Of Special Interest
2013 Watershed & Stormwater Mangement Webcast Series from The Center for Watershed Protection is being hosted by the Lake County Stormwater Management Commission.
A series of live webcasts for public works, engineers and others on topics such as stormwater retrofits, stream restoration and other BMPs, and guidance on meeting NPDES Phase II requirements.
FREE, bring lunch. RSVP requested for each webcast.  For complete details and topics CLICK HERE
Dates are:   10/16, 11/20       11 AM to 1 PM
The Citizen's Guide to Preserving the Fox River had been available at more than 100 distribution points along the Fox River and in the watershed, but now the supply is out. The online version of the Citizen's Guide continues to be available HERE, along with a website full of information about how to help preserve our Fox River through your own actions.
Funding Opportunities
SCALE Grant from IEPA to support Stream Cleanups
It’s easy and with the SCALE grant from IEPA, you can get funding for supplies!  Stream clean ups are a great way to get your community involved and invested in improving water quality.  Pick a day, get some people together, and pick up some trash!   Details HERE    APPLICATION PERIOD CLOSES NOVEMBER 30th!  Funds available Feb. 1st
Becky Hoag, Communications Manager, Fox River Ecosystem Partnership    630-482-9157   Please Email me if you have an Email to add to our mailing list.

This newsletter is posted on the FREP Website on the Downstream Newsletter Archives Page