LAKESIDE, Mich. — The League of Women Voters has been working on water issues for nearly a century, and on Lake Michigan advocacy for over 50 years.

So it’s only fitting that “The Great Lakes and Groundwater” will be the theme of this year’s Annual Meeting of the four-state League of Women Voters Lake Michigan Region.

“Once a year, LWV members and citizens who live in the Lake Michigan Watershed are invited to convene for the LWV Lake Michigan Region Annual Meeting,” said Cheryl Chapman of the league’s La Porte County chapter.

“It is always informative and energizing, and this year’s meeting is especially convenient for Hoosiers, since it is just across the border in Lakeside, Michigan.”

The event, Oct. 25 and 26 at the Lakeside Inn, is a two-day workshop which also includes field trips and presentations that “feature opportunities to learn about advocacy, educational opportunities for communities, communications and legislation, and more,” Chapman said.

Members and guests will have a choice of field trips to the Galien River County Park, Galien River Sanitary District, and Pokagon Environmental Programs.

It’s all designed to “provide participants with opportunities to network and learn more about threats to water quality, and most importantly, how to help protect our water resources,” Chapman said.

The keynote speaker will be Liz Kirkwood, executive director of FLOW (, who will be speaking on “Groundwater: The Sixth Great Lake.”

“This is one of the best opportunities of the year for people to come learn more about advocating and protecting Lake Michigan and our shorelines,” said Jeanette Neagu of Michigan City, a LWV member since its inception and a Northwest Indiana activist for Lake Michigan.

“Whether we are looking at lake levels, dead zones, issues of farm runoff and industrial accidents, and other sources of pollutants entering our lake, it is really invigorating to be able to join with others to take effective actions and to be responsible stewards of Lake Michigan,” Neagu said.

More information, including registration information and schedule, can be found at

—From staff reports

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