IZAAK WALTON LEAGUE OF AMERICA
BUSH LAKE CHAPTER
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Chapter Overview

One of the earliest conservation organizations in the United States

Our Mission:

To conserve, maintain, protect, and restore the soil, forest, water, and other natural resources of the United States and other lands; to promote means and opportunities for the education of the public with respect to such resources and their enjoyment and wholesome utilization.

The Izaak Walton League was formed in 1922 to save outdoor America for future generations. The League's founders, who were avid anglers and loved the outdoors, named the organization after Izaak Walton, the 17th century author of The Compleat Angler, a classic book about the art and spirit of fishing. We are one of the earliest conservation organizations to set an aggressive course to defend wild America by changing public policy. Almost every major, successful conservation program that America has in place today can be traced directly to a League activity or initiative.


Five things that distinguish the Izaak Walton League, from other environmental organizations:

  1. Our approach to issues is driven by what is best for the ecosystems that support us and the rest of life on earth, not just a specific species or place.
  2. We are broad-based and non-partisan, working with people of different interests and backgrounds who do not always agree, but share a common interest in the outdoors.
  3. We take a multi-pronged approach to tackling issues at multiple scales, including direct action/projects, public education, and advocacy at the local, state, and national levels.
  4. Our organizational structure is geographically dispersed, with locally run chapters blanketing much of the United States.
  5. Direction for the national organization comes from the bottom up.  We are grassroots collaborators, working with a wide range of backgrounds and interests at all levels to achieve common goals.

Since 1937 our Chapter has been on the shores of Bush Lake. Our beautiful location, on such a beautiful lake with all the great surrounding woodlands and wetlands, reminds us of the need to protect, preserve and restore our natural resources for future generations. Bush Lake has great water quality because of past local actions to keep it clean. It's an awesome lake for kayaking, canoeing, swimming and other low-footprint recreational activities. Twenty minutes from Minneapolis/St. Paul and you can be kayaking next to a loon on a lake that you can see down 15’ and feel like you’re alone up north - there are very few places like this left in the metropolitan area.

Our chapter is composed of volunteers who enjoy and respect the outdoors and get together to advocate for common-sense approaches to issues and policies that affect the environment that we live in and appreciate. We educate ourselves on conservation issues and help organize actions and outreach to the public.

With chapter membership dues we help provide funding for youth outdoor experiences, scholarships for college students, and community conservation projects. We also participate in water-quality sampling in area lakes and streams, habitat restoration projects, community litter cleanups, and other hands-on conservation projects.

We welcome all who are conservation minded to become members.


RECENT CHAPTER ACTIVITIES:

  • Scholarships for college students in conservation majors
  • Scholarships to school group program at Richardson Nature Center
  • Scholarships to Izaak Walton Camp at Deep Portage Conservation Learning Center
  • Host Wilderness Awareness Presentations at REI Store in Bloomington
  • Sponsor youth fishing access in metropolitan area and youth fishing event at our chapter
  • Advocate for-educate about reduction and filtration of urban storm water runoff in local communities.
  • Advocate for prioritized / strategic terrestrial invasive species control and improved resource management in local communities
  • Advocate for aquatic invasive species control in local communities, statewide and nationally.
  • Offer free workshops on Water Smart Landscaping: Lawn Care, Rain barrels, Rain gardens, Low Water Use Landscapes, Bird & Butterfly Gardens, Permeable Pavement Types, Composting 
  • Offer workshops through Eden Prairie Community Education on Water Smart Landscaping and Living with Shoreland
  • Co-sponsored the 2011 “Design with Nature” Conference at U of M St. Paul Campus, hosted by The Wild Ones
  • Water quality monitoring training at Bush Lake and Minnesota River
  • Bio monitoring of water quality for Nine Mile Creek Watershed District using IWLA Save Our Streams (SOS) program
  • Display and staffing of tables at Living Green Expo, Midwest Fly Fishing Convention, and MN 350 presentation at Edina High School
  • Hosted Solar power potluck event to promote renewable energy use for solar PV, solar thermal, and electric powered transportation in conjunction with the MN Renewable Energy Society
  • Lead on local efforts toward a sustainable community including participation in West Metro Sustainability Forum sponsored by the Alliance for Sustainability
  • Lead chapter within IWLA Mn Division in hosting the 2009 Wetlands Summit at Normandale Community College.
  • Lead chapter within IWLA Mn Division in organizing and hosting 2010 Wetlands Summit “Agriculture and Water Quality”
  • Lead chapter within IWLA Mn Division in organizing and hosting 2011 Watershed Summit “Managing Water on the Land” at U of M Landscape Arboretum


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