Au Sable River Property Owners Association


 2014 Half-Time Huron Pines AmeriCorps Positions Available
The Association is once again partnering with the Au Sable River Watershed Committee to host an AmeriCorps Volunteer. The past three years as a host have been very successful as this has proven to be an excellent way to "get things done" in the watershed.  
Huron Pines is still accepting applications for several positions. If you, or someone you know, would like to learn more, please visit the following links.
The Au Sable River Watershed Technician position has been filled.
Download an application.
See other Huron Pines AmeriCorps positions.

 Cedars' Chair Recognized
February 1st, Howard Johnson, founder and chair of Cedars for the Au Sable, was recognized by the Michigan DNR at the Mason-Griffith Founders Chapter of TU annual meeting in Grayling.
MDNR Forester Patrick Mahoney presented Johnson an Outstanding Project Award from the Michigan DNR Forest Resources Division for over 15 years of outstanding work with the Cedars for the Au Sable project.
Cedars for the Au Sable is a project of the Au Sable River Property Owners' Association that seeks to bring young Northern white-cedars back to the banks of the Au Sable and Manistee rivers. Since it's beginning in 1997, over 18,000 cedar seedlings have been planted on the banks of the Au Sable River and protected in enclosures from deer. Cedars for the Au Sable has partnered with the Michigan DNR to plant trees on the banks of the Au Sable River South Branch in the Mason Tract and the Manistee River in the Deward area. This is an all volunteer effort with financial support from property owners, local merchants, and conservation organizations including the Au Sable River Watershed Committee, Mason-Griffith Founders Chapter of TU, and Anglers of the Au Sable.

Visit the Cedars for the Au Sable website for more information about this valuable project.

Johnson (left) shown here with Patrick Mahoney.

 ARPOA President Receives O.B. Eustis Award
David Smith was presented with the O.B. Eustis Award February 1 during Huron PInes Annual Meeting at the Treetops Resort in Gaylord. O.B. Eustis was a successful industrialist in the Alpena area and was an ardent conservationist as well. Today, his family presides over the selection of an individual, company, and organization from Northeast Michigan to be recognized for their work in environmental protection and/or improvement. Smith joins past Award recipients from the Au Sable Watershed including Gerry Lake, Bob Andrus, and Thomas Buhr.

From Huron Pines...
David Smith has selflessly dedicated thousands of hours to the protection of the Au Sable River Watershed. In addition to chairing the Au Sable River Watershed Committee, David sits on numerous boards including Huron Pines, Mason-Grifith Founders Chapter of Trout Unlimited, and Anglers of the Au Sable and serves as president of the Au Sable River Property Owners’ Association. Camera in hand, he has helped plan and implement restoration projects— from improving road/stream crossings, erosion sites, and fish habitat structures to planting cedar trees and spearheading the effort to eradicate the invasive purple loosestrife plant from the Au Sable River. David’s commitment to volunteerism is also evident through his service as supervisor of Huron Pines AmeriCorps members for the past three years. David is a reliable, devoted, and tireless worker who has positively affected the quality of the Au Sable River and the entire region.

Smith (center) with Brad Jensen and Lisha Ramsdell from Huron Pines.

Sucessful Purple Loosestrife 2014 Season
ARPOA members participated in two volunteer events in 2013 to eradicate Purple Loosestrife in or near the river. Huron Pines AmeriCorps Volunteer Claire Woods organized the events during which nearly 25 miles of river were cleared.
To learn more about this very aggresive invasive and to find out how you can help, please email here.

July 20, 2013

New Board Member
Gary Vetter is the newest ARPOA Director elected at the Annual Meeting in July. Gary and his wife Barb live on the South Branch just upstream of Chase Bridge. Gary (left) is pictured below helping the Au Sable River Watershed Committee rebuild the road end access at Deerheart Valley Road.
July 20, 2013
Wine and Cheese Gathering

ARPOA members hear about Cedars for the Au Sable from project chairman, Howard Johnson.

Second Wine and Cheese Gathering on July 20 at Gates Lodge.
Over 60 members attended this combined wine and cheese social and annual meeting and in the midst of socializing with other property owners, elected Board members for the next three years and heard about some major projects happening on the river. Carol Vidrio and Gary Vetter were newly elected to the board and Greg Stansbury and Barb Bowers were relected. Claire Wood, A Huron Pines AmeriCorps volunteer serving with the Au Sable River Watershed Committee, explained about AmeriCorps and told about what she has been doing so far. Howard Johnson gave a report about the ARPOA project Cedars for the Au Sable and encouraged those present to order cedar kits to plant on their river banks. Howard also reported that 600 trees were planted in 2012 and over 18,000 cedars over the life of the project. Greg Stansbury gave a short report on the Brown Trout tracking project sponsored by the Anglers of the Au Sable. Bob Andrus described two major projects the Mason-Griffith Founders Chapter of Trout Unlimited have going on the Mainstream both above Grayling and in the Holy Water. Finally, David Smith, ARPOA president, gave a short history of the Purple Loosestrife project, demonstrated how to remove plants, and showed the difference between the invasive and a similar native plant, Blue Vervain. Finally, he announced two Purple Loosestrife removal days... August 14th and August 24th.

Click here to read a Crawford County Avalanche article about the meeting. Article written by Claire Wood.
Click here for more pictures.

June 15, 2013  

 New Board Member
At the June Board of Directors meeting, Carol Viriro was appointed to an open position on the Board. Carol lives with her husband, Rick, at Drumming Grouse Lodge, on the north side of the river just downstream from McMaster's Bridge and has been an ARPOA member for a number of years. Carol can be seen to the right as she has fun volunteering for a Mason-Griffith Founders, TU habitat improvement project on the mainstream.

Please join the ARPOA Board in welcoming Carol to our Board.

April 28, 2013
Opening Day Fire
The festivities of the 2013 Trout Season Opener were marred by a wildfire that burned just over nine acres (about the size of nine football fields) east of Keystone SF Campground and south of the Au Sable River. The fire was reported around 2:30, Saturday by two spotter planes and was out by 4:00 the same day. Besides the DNR Grayling Unit fire crew, Mio DNR and Grayling Township also responded. Township fire fighters were tasked with pre-wetting homes off Elbow Trail that were closest to the fire. The fire burned within 50 yards of one home before being contained. DNR Fire personel were also stationed on the north side of the Au Sable River Mainstream in case the fire jumped across the river. Initially the winds were from out of the south but changed and fire then started moving toward the east before it was stopped. Equipment on the scene included two dozers, a plow, and several water trucks. Mike Janeese, the DNR Fire Control Supervisor for the Grayling Unit, was investigating the origin of the fire Sunday and did not think the fire started from a campsite fire ring at the Keystone campground. Click here for pictures.
With low humidity and windy conditions, fire danger can become extreme very quickly. All possible precautions should be taken at all times. Go here for more information about wildfires in Michigan.


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