Even a little drop in a big pond has a ripple effect.

That’s what students and faculty at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, Manitowoc Campus, want to share with the public Wednesday (Oct. 10) during the 2018 Lakeshore Water Summit: Emerging Trends in Manitowoc Stream Quality.

The event starts at 6 p.m. at Founders Hall, Room F149, Manitowoc Campus, 705 Viebahn St., Manitowoc.

The schedule is as follows:

6:00-6:30 p.m. — Social – Light refreshments and posters on display

6:30-7:30 p.m. — 2018 Water Quality Update presented by Manitowoc Campus student interns

7:30-8:00 p.m. — Investing in our community’s future through the Lakeshore Water Institute (LWI) – including Q&A with students and faculty

The Summit is presented by the LWI, a collaborative partnership between the Lakeshore Natural Resource Partnership and UW-Green Bay’s Manitowoc Campus. The partnership started five years ago as a way to scientifically test whether actions taken to clean up water near the village of Cleveland (south of Manitowoc) had had an impact.

Students in their first and second years of college were able to complete graduate-level research into nearby waterways, streams, creeks and lakes to determine whether even small local efforts would have a “trickle-down” effect on water quality, said Professor Rebecca Abler (Biology) at the Manitowoc Campus.

The students worked with Abler and Manitowoc Campus biology professor Rick Hein, who is also the co-advisor of the Lakeshore Water Institute research interns.

“What the students discovered was that even small things can have an impact,” Abler said. “On one property, the grass clippings from mowing were falling into the nearby creek. The researchers asked if the land manager could simply point the mower so the grass clippings fell away from the water. What our research was able to show was that not only did the simple act of pointing the mower away from the water improve the water quality of the creek, but that it also had an impact all the way downstream to the quality of water in Lake Michigan.”

Students also found that in some cases, larger efforts are needed, such as the restoration of Centerville Creek. The students investigated what the creek looks like in terms of its structure and water quality five years after restoration began. They will present their findings on that restoration, as well.

The event is free and open to the public. Light refreshments will be served. For more information, contact Prof. Rebecca Abler at Rebecca.abler@uwc.edu.