Everyone Can Be a Steward of the Lake

Recently we received the following question on the SLA Website:   Is it “ok” for people to bathe with soap and shampoo their hair in the lake? The person who asked had understood that it was against the law to do so, but was concerned that there were people who had done so. I spoke with Rich Abbott at the Syracuse Water Department and he related that the “code” basis for not bathing or shampooing in the lake is based in the Onondaga County Sanitary Code. He related that anyone observing such behavior should report it to the Syracuse Water Department and they will go to the site/area where it is happening and educate residents about the code. Unfortunately, all soaps, even biodegradable soaps, can contaminate fresh water sources because soap requires soil for it to breakdown properly.

The rough water two weeks ago coupled with the high lake level triggered the need to remind everyone to check moorings and mooring lines and mark watercraft and those belongings left close to the shoreline with waterproof markers. During one stormy day there were waves washing 3 – 5 feet up over many docks and the shoreline and the relentless wave action for almost 24 hours took some tolls. One resident found a wave runner loose in the lake, another found a section of his dock off the dock frame, but luckily caught by another structure close by. The slight cove that is our waterfront seems to be a catch basin for objects and we have frequently brought items up to the roadside (after calling neighbors north and south) with the hopes the proper owner will claim them. Life jackets seem to be one of the common items that get away in a storm. You might not want to put your name on everything but a phone number or email address might be a good way to go.

Everyone who is out on the lake can keep “eyes on the lake” for debris and objects especially those items that end up in the lake after a storm. These can be dangerous to boaters, swimmers, skiers and paddle boarders. Good “scouts” do what they safely can to pick up such items and move them to a safe point out of the water. A friend of mine reported picking up a 5 foot plank (she put into in her boat with a struggle) after the last major storm. It was barely perceptible in the water….imagine the harm that could have been done to boat, propeller or person who did not see it in time.

Bob Werner and John Menapace have been busy surveying the lake for milfoil patches that will require matting next year and the Milfoil Boat Team has begun to roll up the matting that was put down early in the summer. Our Invasive Species Monitoring Stewards at the Launch Sites have been busy with all the residents and visitors trying to maximize the last weeks of the summer season. All of this work to help keep our lake water clear and pure is only able to be done because of the funds provided by SLA memberships and additional donations.

You can join the Skaneateles Lake Association by going to SkaneatelesLake.org to complete your registration and pay your annual dues. If you do not have access to the Internet and would like a registration form mailed to you please call 315-685-9106 and leave a message with your name and mailing address.

Please thank the following individuals for their sponsorship of the Milfoil Boat: Aug. 11-Deborah & Ed Brennan; Aug. 12- Heather & David Wheat, Deb & James Tifft, Sycamore Gardens (George & Karen Hanford); Nancy Thomas and Chris Legg; Aug. 13- Elizabeth & John McKinnell, Elizabeth Liddy; Aug. 14-Marie & Joe Grasso, George Ann & Edwin Bock, Virginia & Gary Shanley; Aug. 15-Maggie & Ed Dienst; Aug. 18-Diane & Stephen Bregande, Ellie & Chet Benoit; Jacqueline Bays & Joseph McCaffrey, Paul Alexander; Aug. 19-Sherill & David Ketchum; Aug. 20- Katherine & Joseph Compagni; Aug. 12- Anonymous; Green Ink of Skaneateles (Illysa & Tim Green); Aug. 22- Mary & Richard Kokosa, Shannon & Clayton Hale, Gail & Christopher Booth.

Please thank the following individuals for their sponsorship of our Lake Stewards: June 11, 12 & 13- Deborah & Ed Brennan; June 14- Robert Parsons; June 15- Joanne Viggiano & Kenneth Cannon; June 16-Christina Castle; June 17 Virginia & Jeffrey Shannon; June 18- Elaine & Jeffrey DuBois

Source: Skaneateles Journal