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The mission of the Rocky River Watershed Council is to protect, restore and perpetuate a healthy watershed through public education, watershed planning, communication and cooperation among stakeholders.


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By Loren Genson, Medina- Gazette

The Brunswick community celebrated the 25th anniversary of North Park with hot dogs, fishing and music.

The park’s lake was stocked with fish by the Brunswick Optimist Club, and members of the Rocky River Watershed Council were on hand to meet and talk with residents about what it means to live and play near streams and creeks in the Brunswick area.

Nevaeh Lottig, 6, and sister Dakota inspect a bluegill. (GAZETTE PHOTO BY LOREN GENSON)

“We’re trying to raise awareness here that this area is all part of the Rocky River Watershed,” said Jared Bartley, watershed coordinator. “What you do in this area affects the Rocky River.”

North Park has a main entrance off Grafton Road and also is accessible from Magnolia Drive and Aster Place. Other nearby developments have walkway entrances to the park.

The Watershed Council is working with the city to improve erosion at Healy Creek in nearby Venus Park, which is a tributary of the Rocky River. The lake in North Park also drains into Healy Creek.

Watershed members were ready to answer questions from residents about the $390,800 Healy Creek project, but said they also hoped to educate residents about how they can keep the local waterways free of pollution.

“In some developments, the creek is just a concrete strip that runs by quickly and picks up everything from the ground,” he said. “Everyone has storm drains that also flow into the creek.”

In addition to awareness, the Council also hopes to help people learn about the human impact on creeks and streams. For example, people who have homes that back up to local creeks may mow the grass right up to the creek, erasing the local buffer that helps to prevent erosion.

“We’re here to answer questions and let people know that what they do affects their local lakes and streams,” he said.

In addition to education, there were games for kids, and a number of families took advantage of the freshly stocked lake.

Tim Smith, the city’s economic development manager and a member of the Brunswick Optimists Club, said the club joined forces with the park and Rocky River Watershed Council to offer the fishing opportunity.

Smith said the club normally offers fishing annually in conjunction with the Medina County Park District in the spring, but this year’s event was canceled. His club donated $500 to stock the lake at North Park for the anniversary to keep their fishing tradition going.

“We’ve offered the fishing every year for the last 20 years,” Smith said. “We just usually do it in the spring. This year it’s just in July.”

Contact reporter Loren Genson at (330) 721-4063 or at lgenson@medina-gazette.com.

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