I have been a Let's Go Fishing Instructor for many years now and have recently started working with James and his staff at LCI with The Boys and Girls Club of Burlington, The King Street Center and Spectrum Youth and Family Services. We had an event this past summer where the kids visited a fish hatchery and fished for several hours and then learned how to clean and prepare their catch followed by a picnic where the some of the kids had fresh fish for the first time. The second event, The Lake Supper, was just a few weeks ago where the kids helped me prepare several different dishes all consisting of fish from Lake Champlain. The dinner was well attended and the kids worked hard showing a genuine interest in the food itself and the fact that it all came from Lake Champlain.
I work with volunteer groups all over the country and these events are two of the most special and rewarding things I have ever done as a volunteer, angler or chef. I look forward to continuing this relationship with The LCI and helping to educate the kids of these groups and others on the waters and fish of Lake Champlain.
I have been an instructor with The Let's Go Fishing Program for many, many years now and it's one of the most rewarding programs I've ever been associated with. The educational efforts by this program and the LCI in general are second to none. As an angler and Vermont resident, I feel very fortunate to have the LCI as a teacher, protector and advocate for Lake Champlain and I look forward being involved with them for a long time.
My name is Trevien Stanger, and I am writing today to enthusiastically report on my class’s experience have James Elhers of Lake Champlain International speak for us on a recent Thursday morning. I teach an “Introduction to Environmental Science” course at the Community College of Vermont (CCV) here in Winooski, and we’ve been spending the last couple of weeks wading through the science, policy, and ethics associated with clean water here in the Champlain Basin. We’ve done water testing in the river, read over the “State of the Lake Report,” examined case studies from other impaired watersheds, and have taken the time to closely look at our own “water foot-prints.” However, I could tell that an element was missing in our studies–– namely a sense of true, impassioned engagement, and I’m happy to say that James provided us with this and much more.
Over the course of our hour together, James provided students with a strong, coherent, entertaining narrative of why Lake Champlain is impaired–– he walked us through the science of algae blooms, the interconnectivity of watersheds, and the chemistry of human waste systems. However, it was in pivoting to the policy problems and opportunities that James started to bristle with passion and fire, and you could see the students respond. By revealing the economic and personal impacts these water issues are having on real people in the Basin, James helped transform this at-times abstract information into the ongoing, real-time problem that it is. In discussing how much of the policy around food, development, and urban infrastructure impacts our watershed, James demonstrated that each of these issues can be worked on at various levels, and that with greater public participation, we could potentially start seeing real progress in the years to come.
I teach Global Social Problems at CCV in St Albans, VT. James Ehlers did a wonderful presentation to the class on issues of cyanobacteria impingement in Lake Champlain, including St Albans and Mississquoi bays. The students had been required to watch the documentary "Bloom" prior to James presentation. James was energetic and passionate in his presentation. The information resonated with the students, all of whom live in Franklin County, many in and around the bay. For many the presentation was eye opening and tied directly into our course module on global environmental issues - its not just a problem in 3rd world areas, but right at our doorstep. Thank you James, and thank you LCI for enriching our knowledge on this issue, and for stimulating activism.
Lake Champlain International 's value to the cause of clean water and water-based recreation cannot be overstated. Through its events, it helps connect residents to the precious natural resources around them in a manner that is family-friendly and intergenerational. With its constituency built and educated, it then helps activate that constituency to ensure that the voices of anglers are heard in the public policy arena where decisions that affect their interests in clean water and fishing are made. LCI's innovative Blue certification program also helps property owners to play a role in keeping our water clean. LCI is also creative in building partnerships with leading businesses and hard-hitting environmental public interest groups alike.
I am a chef who Lake Champlain International has helped to connect me with local fisherman. We have also participated in a number of events together. They are great to work with!
As a professional fisherman, The Lake Champlain Basin is critical to my career and success. LCI has been the most influential and the best advocate to promote clean water and our environment. I am a huge fan and support their endeavors to improve this great resource. The LCI has also partnered with the "Let's Go Fishing" program. The "Let's Go Fishing" program is instrumental in educating our next generation to appreciate our fishing resources. I work closely with the "Let's go Fishing" program because I firmly believe in their mission.
Lake Champlain International has taken the lead in advocating for issues that are dear to my heart. They run a first class fishing derby as well. Lake Champlain has a voice through this essential non profit. As a Charter Captain and writer, I am also an advocate for Lake Champlain. LCI and their dedicated staff are champions in my book!
This is my third year as a Let's Go Fishing Instuctor, being the outdoor loving, environmentalist that I am. It makes me happy to be able to teach kids, why we have law's, and what it takes to keep our water's clean, and usable for year's to come, is so viatal to our life's . This program help's me to teach kids what a great place the outdoor's can be and how important it is to be an Ethical person, and respect the law's that are put in place, for the purpose of preserving the right to fish for the next generations. This program is vital for our children, and should be kept alive. LCI does a great job with the watershed's and continued support should be given.
My relationship with LCI started with entering my son and I in the LCI Father's day fishing derby. It has continued as a relationship for my guide and charter service. The staff at LCI do an amazing job of both promoting and conserving the Lake Champlain watershed. Their staff write pertinent and informed articles in their monthly newsletter. They do a fantastic job of balancing recreational and business promotion of the Lake while putting conservation of this national treasure into every decision. This is certainly a winning combination for all involved. The staff has also invited my son to their office and brought him onboard as a monthly columnist. It is rare that such a big organization can take the time to see the value of an 11 year old's opinion and knowledge. All around a fantastic organization.
I cannot say enough good about LCI. I am executive director of another nonprofit in VT caring for homeless and at-risk teenagers. Last year LCI provided a way for our teens to be out on Lake Champlain, which is a goal we had had for years. We run a series of homes for kids, all near the Lake, yet none of our kids had ever been out on the Lake, fishing or anything else. LCI finally made that possible, and for that I will always be grateful.