Friday, August 17, 2012

New Rain Garden beautifies and manages water runoff

The Harwood Learning Landscape Arboretum & Wildflower Trail at Kettunen Center has a new theme garden to manage rain water runoff.
The Harwood Learning Landscape Arboretum and Wildflower Trail at Kettunen Center has a new theme garden to manage rain water runoff.
The Harwood Learning Landscape Arboretum and Wildflower Trail at Kettunen Center has a new theme garden to manage rain water runoff.

MSU Extension master gardener volunteers, Maggie Swiriduk, Pat Marlow, Andrea Grix, and Mike Stifler, a retired Department of Environmental Quality Water Division engineer, wanted to change the ditch at the trail entrance to a rain garden that would not only manage water runoff, but also showcases native Michigan wildflower species.

The rain garden, made possible with a gift from Dr. and Mrs. Russ Mawby and the work of volunteers, manages the rain runoff from the impervious surfaces like the road, parking lot and compacted lawn areas at Kettunen Center by collecting and absorbing the rain water preventing soil erosion, water pollution and flooding. Native plants are used because they do not require fertilizer, are more tolerant of local weather conditions and also attract local pollinators such as birds, butterflies and bees. The plants absorb excess water and rocks placed at the entrance of the garden slow and direct water flow.   

In addition, the gift supported the work of a professional landscape designer from Manning Designs of Big Rapids to create a new plan for the pollinator garden areas, and to purchase informational signage for the garden. The signage explains the importance of gardening for native bees using native wildflowers, shrubs and trees. The sign is a replica of the signage placed in the MSU Horticulture Gardens at the native bee educational display garden.

Monday, August 13, 2012

2nd Annual Green 5K Run/Walk Results

The 2nd Annual Green 5K Trail Run/Walk at Kettunen Center was held Sat., Aug. 11.
The 2nd Annual Green 5K Trail Run at Kettunen Center, held Sat., Aug. 11 saw a marked increase in participation and competition with over 70 registrants.

The overall winner was Ken Zylicki of Traverse City with a time of 19:42. The women’s winner was Grace Hamilton of Evart with a time of 25:21. See the full results below.

The Green 5K Trail Run/Walk course is advertised as “not your typical 5K” and started with a short spurt on asphalt, which quickly led to Kettunen Center’s extensive trail system. Racers went up and down hilly paths through hardwoods and meadows, and those taking a more leisurely pace, had the chance to enjoy beautiful vistas overlooking Center Lake and several wetland areas. Remarks from participants after the race included “I loved the run! I can see why this is such a good place for teaching outdoor and environmental education,” and “Whew! That was an excellent training run for hill work. Really nice!”

The event would not have been possible without the help of many local community volunteers. Laura Jacobson, Kettunen Center program staff and race organizer praises the efforts of Kettunen Center staff for getting the course marked and cleared for the race and credits the many volunteers who came and helped make the race a success.

Proceeds from the Green 5K Trail Run/Walk will be used to support youth and family programs at Kettunen Center making it more affordable for schools, camps and other youth organizations to attend. Annually, over 2000 youth and adults participate in outdoor and environmental education activities at Kettunen Center that include team building and leadership development.

Plans are to hold the race again next August.

Women’s Run Results

9 and Under:  Katharine Vann (37.18)
10 – 12:  Christina Vann (35.43)  Madeline McLutyre (1.04:42)
13 – 15:  Kinzie Sikkema (27.08)     Cheyana Rizor (28:09)    Robin Peppy (48:58:
16-19:  Grace Hamilton (25:21)    Jamie Bogart (34:49)
20 – 29:  Lindsey Akom (30:55)   Leah Sefton (33:56)   Holly Barber (35:14)   Wendy Paterson (43:02)   Stephanie Ellison (49:54)
30 – 39:  Nicole Edstrom (28:49)  Tonia Hartline (34:38)  Brandy Loveless (35:45)  Teresa Grover (38:46)  Michelle Bartman (39:40)  Sara Keinath (40:46)  Christina Dodde (41:58)
40 – 49:   Ann Bush (30:56)   Sheri Montoye (32:22)   Lauren Heilman (33.26)  Ellen Vann (35:43)  Louanne McLutyre (1.04:46)
50 – 59:  Becky Doll (34:54)   Darcy Vandawater (49:58)  Lisa Fragomeli (55:26)  Deb Nemish (56:11)
60 – 69:  Karen Yorks (37:18)  Joanne Iler (41:29)  Betsy Erickson (41:29)  Barbara Vandenberg (51:26)

Men’s Run Results

10 – 12:  Timmy Rizor (35:28)   Caleb Dodde (36:20)
13 – 15:  Ben Rigling (22:52)  Derek Hartline (25:12)   Joe Rigling (31:34)
16 – 19:  PJ Nemish (56:11)
30 – 39: Jed Avery (27:32)  Scott Akom (31:07)  Kirk Edstrom (34:58)
40 – 49: Mike Battle (25:06)  Tim Rigling (28:59)  Walt Hartline (31:44)  Tom Vann (39:17)
50 – 59:  Ben Zywicki (19:42)  Dale Moody (22:44)  Greg Mills (24:13)  Keith Stutzman (27:32)  Gary Sielski (33:23)
60 – 69:  David Stroud (30:43)  John Iler (50:38)  Ketih Yorks (52:49)
70 + :  Ken Vandenberg (37:40)

Walker Results

Men – 50 and Over:  Mike Tylman (47:18)
Women 40 – 49:   Renee Bisel (52:49)
Women 50 and Over:  Kris Bullock (53:41)