Thursday, March 23, 2017                                          Greetings from FREP!
Please visit our Website for additional information and updates on activities shared in this newsletter
Join us for the next FREP Noon Network
Wednesday, April 12, 2017 
Noon - 1:30 PM
Location: Dundee Township Office,
     611 E. Main St., Suite 101, East Dundee
The Conservation Foundation’s
    Fox River Outreach & Education Initiative
    and Fox Valley Monarch Corridor Project
Presenters:  Trish Beckjord and Dan Lobbes
                   The Conservation Foundation
The Fox River Initiative is a 5-year education and outreach program focused in Kane, Kendall and LaSalle counties with three key pillars: broad-based public education, the Conservation In Our Community program, and Art of the Fox, a new program celebrating the Fox River through fine art. Over the next five years, The Conservation Foundation will be addressing the health of the Fox River in a variety of ways, from educating schoolchildren and scouts, providing community workshops on sustainable landscaping practices, wildlife and other relevant topics, helping community leaders craft their ordinances and community management policies with the health of the river in mind to capturing the beauty of the Fox on canvas and encouraging the public to interact with the river that defines our communities.

The Fox Valley Monarch Corridor Project is a collaboration among 12 public and private conservation organizations to create habitat for monarch butterflies and other pollinators. Over the next two years, forest preserve districts, park districts, township open space districts and private conservation organizations will be enhancing nearly 1,000 acres of land in the Fox Valley by growing milkweed seed, distributing seeds and plants and putting plants in the ground. Funding is being provided by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation.
The Conservation Foundation Website
Note: The program on the Chicago Living Corridor Alliance originally scheduled for this date has been postponed.
Membership Meetings Scheduled  for 2017
Wednesday, May 10, 2017  1 PM    Program:  Zika Virus & Mosquito BMPs        
Clarke headquarters, 675 Sidwell Court, St. Charles, IL 60174

Wednesday, September 13, 2017  1 PM    Program:  Sierra Club - Nutrient Reduction Strategies  Location: TBA

Wednesday, Nov. 8, 2017  1 PM    Program:  Flint Creek Watershed     Location: Barrington Public Library
FREP Noon Networks Scheduled for 2017
Wednesday, June 14, 2017  Noon - 1:30 PM 
Tour of Midwest Groundcovers Facilities, Rt. 64, St. Charles
Wednesday, August 9, 2017  Noon - 1:30 PM      Program:  Campton Township Field Tour
Wednesday, October 11, 2017  Noon - 1:30 PM    Program:  Tour of Gladstone Fen Restoration in Bull Valley
All FREP Membership Meetings & Programs, and FREP Noon Networks are free and open to the public. Reservations are not required. Most Noon Networks accommodate us bringing our lunch to eat during the program.

Many of our past Noon Network & Membership Meeting presentations are available in pdf form HERE
President's Message
FREP’s vision for the Fox River watershed in Illinois is to balance all the uses and demands on our natural resources while preserving and enhancing a healthy environment. We work to promote, preserve, protect, and enhance the natural, cultural, economic, and recreational resources of the Fox River watershed. We wrote those words back in 1996 when FREP was formed. Today we live in a very different time, and the importance of our mission has never been more relevant.

FREP was a proud co-host of the first One Earth Film Festival film screening in Kane County. Held at Waubonsee Community College in Aurora it was a resounding success. Working with our partners, we filled our 150-seat venue, and our enthusiasm and progressive activism in the watershed impressed the film director, Catherine Zimmerman. I think those who participated went away inspired to action. Our goal now is to host another film screening in 2018 and attract more “non-choir” members. Many thanks to our partners in this great event (Fox River Study Group, Friends of the Fox River, The Conservation Foundation, Fox Valley Sustainability Network, Waubonsee Community College, Sierra Club Valley of the Fox Group, Kane County Environmental and Water Resources Division, and our corporate sponsors AES, Hey and Associates, and Bedrock Earthscapes.)
Later that week many of us traveled up to Burlington, Wisconsin for our 5th Annual Fox River Summit. Again, a great event with over 130 participants. We continued to learn, exchange ideas, and collaborate with our neighbors to the north – the river doesn’t recognize the “cheese curtain.” Many thanks to Tom Slawski for again pulling together a great program. We continue to look for more ways to partner with the Southeast Wisconsin Fox River Partnership.

Today, I spoke at a rally about the proposed cuts to the USEPA budget and staff. Over the last 20 years, FREP has brought over $10 million to the watershed in grants. We know any state funding we had is long gone. But this budget proposal would likely gut the 319 program which contributed the largest dollars to this $10 million (and we actually stopped counting back around 2009 when the program changed and FREP was not as active in reviewing projects). Our watershed has benefitted greatly from this program aimed at reducing non-point source pollution. We need to remind our elected representatives that we actually need and like clean air and clean water.

Kane County Forest Preserve District was a founding member of FREP over 20 years ago. On April 4, 2017 the Kane County Forest Preserve District is asking voters for $50 million which will preserve approximately 2,000 acres of land and add to their existing holdings of approximately 21,000 acres. Please support this issue of improving our quality of life and keeping our water, air and environment clean by voting in favor for the referendum. For more information go to

Now is the time for us all to be out talking to our neighbors, friends, family, and colleagues about clean water, clean air, our Fox River, and the importance of a clean environment for all of our health. Nature and people need each other!
Jeff Mengler, Hey and 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: March 2017  Waukesha County, Wisconsin hosted the Core Development Team (CDT) on February 21st.  Guests included staff from Waukesha County, the City of Waukesha, Wisconsin, the Village of Mukwonago, Wisconsin and the Southeastern Wisconsin Fox River Commission. As a result of the Water Trail Initiative, the Village of Waterford, Wisconsin developed a business incubation opportunity to help a paddle sport rental business establish itself in Village Hall Park alongside the village-owned canoe/kayak launch. Paper forms in addition to electronic forms will be available to volunteers when collecting access site, dam and segment data. Karen Miller continues to map existing but outdated access site data in Illinois which will be updated by volunteers. The CDT plans to continue meeting at different locations along the Fox River in order to meet and interact with stakeholders.
Members of the Core Development Team (CDT) attended the 5th Annual Fox River Summit on March 10th in Burlington, Wisconsin.  Thanks to our own Tom Slawski for once again organizing this great event!

(Left) Thanks to Rick Kania and Tom, the CDT toasted the first draft of the Water Trail Map. 

Rebecca Ewald and Karen Miller presented an update to the Water Trail Initiative.

After the Summit, Greg Taylor of the CDT headed to Madison, Wisconsin where he represented the Initiative at Canoecopia.
On March 20, the Village of Algonquin, Illinois hosted the Core Development Team. The Team was interested in learning from Katie Parkhurst and Ben Mason about the Fox River Corridor Plan developed with assistance from the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning’s Local Technical Assistance program. In addition, Ben and Katie provided information about access sites and dams along that part of the Fox River. The Plan supports the Water Trail Initiative.  The CDT likes the illustrations in the Plan drawn by Bruce Bondy.

Algonquin offered the use of their drone to film the Fox River in the Algonquin area. Barb Messick distributed a draft of a Volunteer Instruction Guide to be used when accessing the access site, dam and segment data collection forms. Karen presented the updated map she is working on to illustrate existing data. 

National Trails Day is June 3rd.  The Rock River Trail  is celebrating its grand opening that day. Greg Farnham, Coordinator for the Rock River Trail, is a member of the CDT as an advisor. 

The CDT’s next meeting is scheduled for April 17th, possibly in Burlington, Wisconsin.
For more information, visit the Water Trail Initiative page HERE, or contact Karen Ann Miller at
March 6th & 10th were busy days for FREP!
FREP was honored to co-sponsor the One Earth Film Festival's screening on March 6th in Aurora. This was the 6th year for the festival and the first screening they had in Kane County. The co-sponsors presented a Sustainability Resource Fair as part of the event. Karen Ann Miller, below, staffed the FREP display.
There was great interest shown in the post-film Q&A and in the displays. For more information and links to resources introduced at the screening, please visit our film webpage HERE.
The presentations from the Fox River Summit are now posted on our Summit page HERE.
There was a capacity crowd at Waubonsee Community College's Downtown Campus multipurpose room for the screening of "Hometown Habitat" on March 6.
Many FREP members attended and partipcated in the Annual Fox River Summit with our Wisconsin watershed partners on Friday, March 10th.
Clean Ups & Volunteer Opportunities
With the arrival of spring is the time for clean-ups in our watershed.
There are a number of opportunities for volunteers to participate.

Friends of the Fox River organize a number of these and their schedule can be found HERE.
   Upcoming Events: 
   North Elgin on Saturday, April 22
   Batavia on Saturday, May 20

Dundee Township Open Space Workdays
Visit our Clean-Ups Page for April dates or the
Dundee Township Facebook page

Scroll down to Other Activities of Interest for the ongoing activities of Fabyan Preserve Stewardship Days in Geneva

Kane County Recycles is seeking volunteers for our Recycling Event on Saturday, April 1st. We will be recycling electronics, books, paint, and doing free confidential document shredding. We need help (1) greeting and counting cars, (2) checking IDs, and (3) opening car doors on approach to the unload area to help speed the process along. To say thank you, we provide refreshments (donuts and coffee in the morning and water all day). A pizza lunch will be served at the close of the event!

The event runs from 8am-12noon. Volunteers are asked to arrive at 7 or 7:15am at the latest to sign in, have a snack, and get to your station. We start unloading cars at 7:45 if possible, because they line up early. You can expect to stay until around 12:30, though of course you are free to go when you need to. Kids under 17 are welcome to volunteer but must have an adult accompanying them and have a signed waiver form, attached. Please  review webpage for more information.
Please contact Jennifer Jarland at 630-208-3841 or to sign up, or if you have a group who would like to volunteer. She needs to hear as soon as possible!
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.
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
City of St. Charles
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
Jeff Hedrich, Friend, North Aurora
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
Howard Miller, Friend, Batavia
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
Cindy Skrukrud, Friend, Richmond
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  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
A number of 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.
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 Boone-Dutch Creek stakeholder meeting is being planned for late April 2017.  If you would like to be added to the Boone-Dutch Creek Watershed contacts list to be alerted about upcoming meetings, 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.
   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 
   Coalition Newsletter 2017 #1 

Nippersink Creek Watershed  

Silver & Sleepy Hollow Creeks Watershed Coalition

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:
March 30 - April 1, 2017 Illinois Lake Management Association's 32nd Annual Conference
Holiday Inn Crystal Lake Conference Center, Crystal Lake, Illinois
Registration/FEE   Website
April 4, 2017
Center for Watershed Protection's 2017 National Watershed & Stormwater Conference       Website
April 6, 2017
Envirothon 2017 competiton for high school teams
Details at Kane DuPage Soil & Water Conservation District
April 27, 2017
8:30 AM - 4:30 PM
GreenTown Fox Valley
Two Brothers Roundhouse 205 N Broadway, Aurora, IL    FEE
More information at Fox Valley Sustainability Network
Center for Watershed Protection’s  Watershed & Stormwater Management Webcast Series:
  Sponsored by Kane County Division of Environmental and Water Resources   Noon to 1:30 PM
2017:   -- Friday, March 24  Wednesdays: June 21, Sept. 13, Oct. 18, Nov. 15        Flyer
        Kane County Government Center, Building A, 1st Floor Conference Room, 719 S. Batavia Avenue, Geneva
       RSVP to Cecilia Govrik at 
2017 Technical Assistance Symposium   Tuesday, May 16, 2017
Registration is now open for the 2017 Technical Assistance Symposium at Roosevelt University (Murray-Green Library, Auditorium Building, 430 S. Michigan Ave., Chicago), co-hosted by CMAP and the Regional Transportation Authority (RTA). 

The symposium will mark the release of the 2017 Call for Projects for the Local Technical Assistance (LTA) and Community Planning programs.  In addition to learning about potential technical assistance opportunities, attendees will have the chance to discuss best practices with past award recipients and get one-on-one input on the application process.

Elected officials, municipal and County planners and staff, community-based organizations, nonprofits, civic organizations, and consulting firms that work with communities are encouraged to attend.  

Registration is required, and the cost is $30. Registration Link
Fabyan Preserve Stewardship Days   2017
The Natural Resources Committee of Geneva, in conjunction with the Kane County Forest Preserve and other environmental enthusiasts are continuing their efforts to remove buckthorn and honeysuckle at Fabyan Park Preserve in Geneva. The goal of this stewardship work is to remove invasive species so that native plants may again flourish below the mighty oaks on the property.
Meet in the parking lot on Rte. 25, east side of the road (across from the windmill) just north of Fabyan Parkway. Start at 9am and work till noon. For more information, contact Jay at or call him at 630.299.9945.
March 25 – 9 a.m. to Noon
April 8 and 22 - 9 a.m. to Noon
May 6 – 9 a.m. to Noon
The Lake County Stormwater Management Commission has released its Annual Report for 2016.
It can be found HERE.

 Visit the Morton Arboretum's Community Trees Program Funding Page for a number of funding opportunities.
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.

  FREP on Facebook

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