Wednesday, October 26, 2016                                            Greetings from FREP!
Please visit our Website for additional information and updates on activities shared in this newsletter
Upcoming FREP Meeting:
Wednesday, November 9, 2016    1 PM
Fermilab, Batavia, Entrance at Pine Street & Kirk Road
We will meet in Wilson Hall, One East.
Wilson Hall is the main highrise building. 
Enter at the front doors. One East is past the elevator bank, to the left.
Osprey Nests and Platforms in the Fox River Watershed, Michael Campbell, Illinois Audubon Society
Ecological Restoration at Fermilab, Ryan Campbell
FREP Executive Committee meets at 11 AM
Photo from Audubon Society Website
Photo: Bob Howdeshell/Great Backyard Bird Count
Click HERE for their Osprey information page
Your suggestions for FREP Noon Networks and Meeting Programs are welcomed. Noon Networks feature projects, best management practices, and topics of interest to the FREP membership and general public. We move these
programs around the watershed to reach a larger audience.
The following dates are available for Noon Networks in 2017:
  February 8, 2017
April 12, 2017
June 14, 2017
August 9, 2017
October 11, 2017
To arrange to host a FREP Noon Network or Membership Meeting,
please contact Becky Hoag, Communications Manager, 630-482-9157

Minutes of FREP Meetings can be found HERE.
Thanks to Fox Metro Water Reclamation District staff Eva Kiss, Sue Glavan, Randy Hummer, Tom Muth, and others who provided an in-depth presentation and tour of their Oswego facilities for our FREP Noon Network on October 12th.

As you can see from the photo it was a wet day, but that did not deter our group from a complete tour. We are looking forward to the success of their expanded facilities, with construction already underway.
President's Message
In my June message I wrote briefly about other groups with a focus on the Fox River and its watershed. We know it can be confusing to the public, and sometimes even to those of us involved with one group or another. So we’re trying to work more closely with our fellow Fox River Groups and provide linkages between the groups and have a common message.

So let’s start with featuring one of those groups – the Fox River Study Group (FRSG). The FRSG began meeting in the summer of 2001 to plan how to prepare for the upcoming Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) study on the river. A TMDL study was required by federal law because three segments of the Fox River appeared on the IEPA list of impaired waters (the 1998 303(d) list). These segments, which lie between Holiday Hills and North Aurora, were listed because results from at least one water sample suggested there were water quality concerns.
The 303(d) listing was updated in 2002, and now includes the entire length of the Fox River from the Wisconsin state line to the river’s mouth at Ottawa, with the most numerous causes listed as flow alteration, habitat alteration, low dissolved oxygen, nutrients, organic enrichment, PCBs, siltation or suspended solids.

Today, the FRSG is a diverse coalition of stakeholders working together to assess water quality in the Fox River watershed, and devising and implementing a plan that will be better than a TMDL for the River. Participants in FRSG include Friends of the Fox River, Sierra Club, Fox River Water Reclamation District (Elgin), Fox Metro Water Reclamation District (Aurora), FREP, IEPA and Blackberry Creek Watershed Plan Implementation Council as well as representatives from Algonquin, Aurora, Batavia, Crystal Lake, Elgin, Geneva, Island Lake, Kane County, Lake in the Hills, St. Charles and Yorkville.

So this is a very science-based group, focusing on the water quality of the Fox River and what can be done to improve it. Note that this group includes all of the WWTP dischargers to the River – and they all have some skin in the game.

While you may not read this in time, if you want to learn more, the Fox River Study Group's annual meeting is open to anyone, and is coming up on Thursday, October 27, 2016 from 9:30 am to Noon at the Batavia City Hall. Their website can be found at

Next month, I will have something to say about our brethren at the Friends of the Fox River and their activities.

Stay tuned for more and get outdoors to enjoy autumn in the Fox River valley.
Jeff Mengler, Hey & Associates, FREP President
WI-IL Fox River Water Trail Initiative
FREP has joined with the Southeast Wisconsin Fox River Partnership and the Village of Waterford, Wisconsin, to pursue the designation of all or portions of the Fox River in Wisconsin and Illinois as a National Water Trail through the National Park Services' National Water Trail System. Technical assistance from the NPS Rivers, Trails and Conservation Assistance Program has been awarded and planning is now proceeding.
The current Core Development Team Karen Miller, FREP; Angie Tornes, National Park Service; Greg Farnham, Rock River Trail Initiative; Brian Daly, CMAP; Tom Slawski, Southeast Wisconsin Fox River Partnership; Rick Kania, SEWRPC; Jodie Auliff, Illinois Paddling Council; and Barb Messick and Rebecca Ewald, Village of Waterford, WI.
UPDATE: The Core Development Team (CDT) enjoyed the beautiful fall weather and colors at our monthly meeting at Lost Valley Visitor Center in Glacial Park on Monday October 17th.  We are inching ever so closer to having the survey to collect access site, dam and segment data and including the ability to upload photos completed and available through Google Drive for volunteers to use on their smartphones or tablets.  Barb Messick and Rebecca Ewald continue to collect data on the Wisconsin side of the Fox River.

Karen Miller is beginning to sort through data on the Illinois side collected by a variety of sources beginning in 1999.  Once Karen has determined what needs to be updated and collected, the new volunteer coordinator for Illinois, Greg Taylor will work with volunteers to collect the data needed.  Greg has eagerly offered to take on this responsibility. He has experience organizing for the Boy Scouts and is active with the Illinois Paddling Council and Prairie Rivers Network.

The CDT is looking forward to working with Greg. Sigrid Pilgrim from the IPC sent Karen a DVD with information about the Fox River assembled by Ralph Frese, “canoe maker and conservationist and prominent figure in the North American canoeing circles lived from 1926 until December 10, 2012. Frese lived in the Chicago area. He is known for promoting conservation and canoeing, building historic replica canoes, and starting canoeing and conservation organizations and events” (Wikipedia).  The CDT plans to continue discussion on budget, funding and the examples of logos Angie sent to the Team and the several logos Barb designed and offered as possibilities.  Greg Farnham, Coordinator of the Rock River Trail Initiative, described the several trails affiliated with the original project including water, bike, walking, driving, air and chocolate.  Greg reminded the Team of the need to eventually request local governments and organizations pass resolutions supporting the Fox River Water Trail.  With the exception of the CDT’s first meeting at Wingspread in Racine, Wisconsin, the CDT has been alternating between Glacial Park in McHenry County and Waterford, Wisconsin.  The Team discussed meeting at other locations along the Fox River.  
For more information, visit the Water Trail Initiative page HERE, or contact Karen Ann Miller at
Save the Dates:
A December social gathering is being planned for Wednesday, December 7, 4 to 6 PM at the new Hardware Sustainable Gastropub & Brewery, 2000 Orchard Rd, North Aurora
This unique and striking facility has its own 1.5-acre hop farm, a micro orchard, herb garden patio and greenhouse. Their goal is to be as sustainable as possible on their 5.6-acre parcel.

This event will be "pay your own" and we'll be taking reservations next month to help plan for the space needed to have set up for our group.
Wednesday, January 11, 2017  1 PM         Location TBA
FREP Membership Annual Meeting & Officer Elections
A program about Road Salt is being planned
Native Landscape & Ecological Restoration Guide
At the recent Beyond the Basics 2016: The Devil’s in the Details stormwater conference, Jeff Mengler discussed the new Chicago Wilderness Native Landscape & Ecological Restoration Guide: Recommendations for Contractor Selection, Project Specifications, Performance Standards, Monitoring and Management Guidelines, and Institutional Arrangements.

Prepared by the Chicago Wilderness Native Landscape & Restoration Contractor Selection Guide Working Group
This document is the culmination of many years of an off-and-on effort to provide something to help folks in selecting and hiring contractors for native landscaping and restoration work. We all know the stories of traditional landscape companies who think they know the native stuff selling the unsuspecting a “bill of goods” and then the projects fail because they didn’t really know what they were doing.
Download the Guide HERE on the FREP website

Or, find it on the Chicago Wilderness publications page HERE.
FREP on Facebook
FREP has a Facebook page.
Please visit & LIKE our page!
Many of our past Noon Network & Membership Meeting presentations are available in pdf form HERE
FREP Membership Roll
Thank you to those below who have responded to our new membership drive for 2016-17
Our annual membership drive began in June and dues notices were sent out to current members.
We have sent membership appeals to additional potential members.
Members from last year who have not yet paid will receive a reminder in September.
Use the online membership form and link to make your payment through PayPal HERE
A printable/mailable form  HERE
Michael Ander, Friend, Sleepy Hollow
Applied Ecological Services
Barrington Area Conservation Trust
Barrington Area Council of Governments
Batavia Park District
Baxter & Woodman
Christopher B. Burke Engineering, LTD
Campton Historic Agricultural, Inc./
   Garfield Farm  Museum
Campton Township
John Church, Friend, Oswego
City of Aurora
City of Batavia
City of Elgin
Linda Cole, Friend, Aurora
The Conservation Foundation
Crystal Lake Park District
DeKalb County Forest Preserve District
Deuchler Environmental, Inc.
Bill Donnell, Friend, Aurora
Dundee Township
Engineering Enterprises, Inc. - EEI
Environmental Defenders of McHenry County
Forest Preserve District of Kane County
Fox Metro Water Reclamation District, Oswego
Fox Valley Park District, Aurora
Friends of the Fox River
Geneva Park District
Geosyntec Consultants
Hey & Associates
Kane County Development & Community Services Dept
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
McHenry County Conservation District
McHenry County Conservation Foundation
Oswegoland Park District
Jason Pettit, Friend, Aurora
Larry Rakunas, Friend, St. Charles
Schoppe Design Associates, Inc.
Jack Shouba, Friend, St. Charles
Sierra Club, Illinois Chapter
Kent E. Sims, Friend, Bolingbrook
St. Charles Park District
Laura Ross Stuart, Friend, Geneva
Tallgrass Restoration, LLC
Tyler Creek Watershed Coalition
United City of Yorkville
V3 Companies
Shawn Van Kampen, Friend, Aurora
Village of Algonquin
Village of Fox River Grove
Village of Lake Barrington
Village of Millbrook
Village of Oakwood Hills
Village of Port Barrington
Nancy Williamson & Steve Byers, Friends, Lakewood
The FREP Membership Roll is also posted on our website HERE.
Links are provided for those members who have websites
We share this list in each issue so that readers of Downstream can easily find links to our members,
to promote communication and collaboration on Fox River watershed issues.
Watershed Planning
Boone-Dutch Creek Watershed
 in McHenry County
The Boone-Dutch Creek Watershed-based Plan and an Executive Summary have been posted to the project webpage on the FREP website HERE.

A plan implementation kick-off meeting is being planned in the near future.  If you would like to be added to the Boone-Dutch Watershed Planning contacts list to be alerted about upcoming meeting dates, please contact Holly Hudson at CMAP: 312-386-8700,  
CLICK HERE for the Boone-Dutch Creek Watershed Planning webpage with documents, information on meetings, and more.
For more information, contact Holly Hudson at CMAP: 312.386.8700 or
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. They are listed below, with links to their webpages/websites.

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.
   Subwatershed Links

9 Lakes Watershed Plan     Webpage

Blackberry Creek Watershed   

Boone Creek Watershed Alliance  

Ferson-Otter Creek Watershed   

Flint Creek Watershed Partnership 

Jelkes Creek-Fox River Watershed Coalition   Webpage 

Nippersink Creek Watershed  

Silver & Sleepy Hollow Creeks Watershed Coalition

Tyler Creek Watershed   Webpages

Woods Creek Watershed Study Stakeholders      Website

Fox River Corridor Plan
McHenry County has received a Local Technical Assistance grant from the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP) to create a corridor plan for a portion of the Fox River from Burtons Bridge on the north to the eastern edge of the Fox Bluff Conservation Area on the south. Working cooperatively with McHenry County, Lake County, and other local stakeholder groups, the plan aims to identify both county-wide and local opportunities to improve the environment and natural resources, considering the corridor’s water and habitat quality, multi-modal transportation access, and recreational and open space amenities.

This project will build on the groundwork established through the previously completed Fox River corridor planning process for the Villages of Algonquin and Carpentersville and coordinate with the ongoing WI-IL Fox River Water Trail Initiative.

For more information, contact Kate Evasic at
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:
Tuesday, Nov. 1
Wednesday, Nov. 2
8 AM - 2 PM
McHenry County Salting Workshops
at City of Crystal Lake, 100 Woodstock St., Crystal Lake
FEE   Register by Oct. 28th     FLYER
Wednesday, Nov. 2
5 to 7 PM
Conversations about Conservation-Kendall County Conservation Group Summit
RSVP by Oct. 28   Info
Wednesday, Nov. 2 Chicago Wilderness Conference - Celebrating One Home, One Future
University of Illinois Chicago Forum     FEE   Register Online by Oct. 28 HERE
Friday, March 10, 2017 5th Annual Fox River Summit
Burlington, Wisconsin       Details TBA
NOTE: Date change. Originally scheduled for March 17th.
Tuesday, April 4, 2017 Center for Watershed Protection's 2017 National Watershed & Stormwater Conference
Details to come    Website
Save the Monarch Butterfly!
You can help the Monarch butterfly!  Ask your mayor to sign the Mayors' Monarch Pledge!
Besides being beautiful creatures, Monarchs are important pollinators that help to grow the food that we eat everyday, and they are in trouble! Their populations have plummeted by 90% due to the loss of habitat from urban sprawl and intensive agriculture. We have lost much of the milkweed and native pollinator plants that Monarchs need to survive. 

Monarch butterflies need milkweed to lay their eggs, and their caterpillars only eat milkweed plants. If the Monarch butterfly is to be saved, we must all take action, and our mayors can lead the way!
Cities, towns, and counties can help by planting butterfly-friendly gardens, changing mowing schedules to promote the growth of milkweed, and educating residents about how and where to grow milkweed and other pollinator plants.
Prairie Rivers Network has created a petition to get Mayors to commit to at least 3 or 25 action items. Read the action items HERE.  Ask your mayor to sign the pledge!  Link to the petition
Center for Watershed Protection’s  Watershed & Stormwater Management Webcast Series:
    •  Sponsored by Lake County Stormwater Management Commission, held at facilities in Libertyville.
       2016:  Wednesday -- November 16   CANCELLED       
    •  Sponsored by Kane County Division of Environmental and Water Resources   Noon to 1:30 PM
2016:  Wednesday -- November 16     Flyer
        1st Floor Water Resources Conference Room, 719 S. Batavia Avenue, Geneva
       RSVP to Cecilia Govrik at 
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.

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