Last Thursday’s Mtg. – Good Going MPA!

Not that last Tuesday wasn’t enough excitement for Manchaug Pond, Thursday morning provided another meeting for the MPA. Our 1st Vice President/Stormwater Grant Coordinator met with CEI, the engineering/environmental firm concerning the s.319 stormwater grant. We just completed our second year of a 3 year grant. Our Grant Coordinator is the taskmaster – keeps us hopping, turning us now and again from the water level/dam issue back to water quality, has us keeping detailed volunteer logs, gets the reporting in on time to DEP, and makes sure we don’t go over budget… to name a few of her duties!

Well, Thursday’s assessment of our project is that we are in great shape!

We are under budget, and the site work in Douglas and Sutton is now completed with the exception of the rain garden at the Public Access Boat Ramp. And all the rain provides the added bonus of actually allowing us to see right away how the structures will handle heavy rains and lots of runoff!

The rain garden site is all prepared with just some design work and planting to be done. The center strip in the photo below – where no grass is growing – will be planted with native species which can handle the moisture and work to filter pollutants.

Our Grant Coordinator is working with the New England Wildflower Society and has received input from the Sutton Conservation Commissioners as to the different plants they would like to see incorporated in the design.

Year three, will be used to finish up with most of our focus on the educational component of the project targeting horseowners and residents in the watershed.

In the first two years of the grant, the MPA has held spring and fall clean up events, workshops on Composting and Lawn and Landscape Care as well as a Mass Aggie Horsekeeping Seminar for the many livestock/horse owners in the watershed. The MPA has also provided an educational display at a number of events from the clean-ups, to Waters Farm Days, to our educational programs, to the January conference of the Mass Congress of Lake and Pond Associations. The exhibit brings the latest research and technology in easy to read form for you to use in your home landscape!

This is made possible by a s.319 DEP storm water grant and with matching volunteer time by the MPA, and towns of Douglas and Sutton.