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New Brochure Identifies Invasive Species at Windsor Lake
By Tammy Daniels, iBerkshires Staff
10:21PM / Monday, June 19, 2017
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The brochure researched and created by MCLA students Kailynn Clark and Karen Witek will be available at the lake and campground.


The trifold brochure, with illustrations by Kailynn Clark, has information and identification information for seven common varieties of invasive plants.
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — A student environmental project at Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts has produced a brochure and more extensive booklet identifying invasive species at Windsor Lake. 
 
The project by Karen Witek and Kailynn Clark got a passing grade from the Windsor Lake Recreation Commission after reviewing the trifold brochure and booklet they produced. 
 
"They've spent a lot of time and energy on the project," Chairman Arlen Cellana said. "For what it is for me, I appreciate the time and effort that you put into it.  ... You set a good bar for the rest of the students to follow."
 
The project grew out of one of the college's Green Living Seminar, which brings in speakers on various subjects.  
 
Clark this recent one had a focus on invasive plants and she and Witek had "fight for this one" because there were a number classmates interested. Clark liked that she could use her artistic abilities in illustrating the pamphlet and Witek said it was something she was very interested in. 
 
The pamphlet was done under professor Daniel Shustack and with input from Cellana, environmental specialist Debra Kaczowski, and photographer John Starsja. Witek and Clark did the research and layout, and Clark the illustrations. 
 
It shows a number of different invasive plants such as garlic mustard and Japanese knotweed, information about the plants and a QR code to a website listing databases for further information on plants. The brochure's meant for distribution at the lake but the booklet will be more expansive and detailed. 
 
"We would certainly like to make it more clear for people who read that what your options are as well for other plantings," Witek said. "When you have invasive species and you take care of the situation and get rid of all that and you want to put natural plants in there, where you could go getting them, making sure they're going to be native plants?"
 
Commissioners said the hope is that lakegoers, such as campers at Historic Valley Campground, will be more aware of invasive plantings and even do some "minimal landscaping" around their sites.
 

A QR code on the back links to a page with more informational links.  
"The more eyes at the lake that are looking out for these things, the better we are," Cellana said. 
 
Commissioner Nancy Bullett agreed that it offered good advice for both local residents and visitors from out of town "so they know what they're encountering." 
 
Witek said she'd like to see the next batch of brochures on slightly heavier paper to make them sturdier. The commission was provided with the digital format and printer information for future use. 
 
In other business, the commission:
 
Referred to the mayor's office an application for a charity swim by Paul Olchvary on Aug. 19. Members said they had no problem with the proposal but did want to know what organizations were to benefit. Bullett said she would follow up. 
 
• Gave tentative approval to a little free library-type proposal by Ben Mancino for Windsor Lake. The library box would be donated and the books would be donated by MCLA.  There was a question of resupplying the books and who would maintain it. Mancino was asked to attend the next meeting. 
 
• Heard a report on Chris Tolar's grand opening  on July 16 of the disc golf course he built at the lake. He will have discs available for people to try out the course. The daily parking fee will be the only cost to the event.
 
• Discussed who might be blazing new trails at the south end of the park property. Bullett is also very concerned that the trail to the Haupt Tunnel has collapsed and is not longer viable. 
 
• Accepted a $2,000 grant from the North Adams Elks to be sued toward play equipment for the campground. City firefighters, along with community support, also plan to move the old playground equipment from the now vacant Sullivan School to the campground. The two groups will work together to provide a fully accessible playground for the campground.
 
The commission also accepted with regret Bullett's resignation from the commission effective July 1. Bullett, who also resigned from City Council, is moving out of the area. She said leaving her beloved Windsor Lake will be her most difficult challenge. 
 
"I thank you for your service," said Commissioner David Racette. "You had a big picture in mind but you were able to keep us on focus with baby steps."
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