News & Events at Environmental Services Division
Superior Stormwater Annual Report Meeting
Weds. Feb. 28th from 5:30-6:30 pm at Barker's Island Boat Club - 250 Marina Dr. (note new meeting location!)
Did you know that stormwater is the biggest source of pollution to Lake Superior? Because of that, the City of Superior (among other municipalities) manages 6 Minimum Control Measures to manage stormwater pollution (you can learn more about those MCMs here). Each year we report to the WiDNR on those activities. Read past reports here. Join City of Superior stormwater staff to hear about updates to the city-wide stormwater permit and ask your questions. We look forward to seeing you!
Superior Stream Monitoring Program Kick-off in Spring 2018!
We're excited to announce a new activity, open to individuals, families, organizations and businesses: The Superior Citizen Stream Monitoring Program!
Do you want to learn more about Superior Streams or how our urban infrastructure impacts those streams?
Join us and participate in the inaugural season of the Stream Monitoring Program. No prior experience is necessary and we will provide the equipment, expert training and oversight necessary to successfully sample a Superior Stream. We ask for a one-season commitment from volunteers. Contact us with any questions or sign up today! Volunteer training will begin in spring 2018.
Check out the Stream Monitoring Program website for more information!
Are you ready for snow and ice? Consider a LOW SALT DIET for your driveway and sidewalks!
Around here we understand winter. Heck, some of us even like it! But one task that most of us could do without is snow and ice removal. So what do you do to make that task easier? Turn to that bag of salt.
We need to use salt for public safety. But too much salt can have negative effects on stream critters, soil, and vegetation and these effects must be added to all the other stresses we contribute to local streams and lakes.
Any salt that runs off your sidewalk or driveway in snowmelt is headed for Lake Superior. Salt is considered a permanent pollutant. Once the salt is in a lake or stream it's there for good, fouling habitat for fish, waterfowl, and bugs and aquatic plants (their food).
Save time and money by only applying specified amounts of salt, and only at appropriate times.
One teaspoon of road salt will contaminate 5 gallons of water enough to exceed our federal chronic limit for chlorides.
- Shovel first to remove as much snow and ice manually.
- Apply salt, scattering it evenly (sweep up any piles), across the sidewalk or driveway. 1 pound of salt (fits in a 12 oz coffee cup) will cover 60-70 feet of sidewalk or 2 parking spaces. *
- If the temperature is below 15 degrees F, salt wont work. switch to a different blend that works at a lower temp or use sand for traction.
- Sweep up salt and sand residue and dispose of it properly.
Download and print out this poster for more tips on smart salting!
* Pro-tip: Calculate the size of your sidewalk or driveway (length x width) and make a scoop that is marked to show how much salt you should use for the space.
Major Leauge Pro-tip: Pre-treat before a storm with liquid de-icer (salt brine) to prevent ice build-up. You will save time and effort in clearing up after the storm, and you will use significantly less salt. Find a recipe and instruction here.
More information about salt use can be found at WI Salt Wise.
Superior Speaker Series: Sturgeon in Wisconsin, living fossils in a modern world.
When: Tuesday February 13th 6 PM - 7 PM
Where: Lake Superior Esturarium, 3 Marina Drive. Barker's Island (red building) Superior, WI 54880
What: Join Paul Piszczek, WDNR Fisheries Biologist, to learn about sturgeon in the St. Louis River and Estuary. Sturgeon are often referred to as “living fossils”. These ancient fish can live over 100 years and are highly dependent on good water quality to survive. Wisconsin and Minnesota DNR staff have worked together to stock and study sturgeon in the St. Louis River (SLR). Recent successes in establishing sturgeon in the region speaks to the ongoing efforts to restore the SLR Estuary. Paul will weave together a story of history, general biology and ecology, research, fisheries management, and Lake Superior… all via sturgeon. Light refreshments will be served.
This event is FREE and open to the public! Learn more about sturgeon on theWisconsin Sea Grant website.
Download and share our event poster!
Orb365: A Community Art Collaborative and part of the Lake Superior Ice Festival
When: Friday Jan. 26-Sunday Jan. 28th
Where: Barker's Island Superior, WI 54880
What: Each orb represents a day of the year that water is important to you. Work with your family, friends, school, community group, or as an individual to contribute to this community art installation by creating ice orbs!
All ice orbs will be arranged into a larger installation on Barker's Island for the Lake Superior Ice Festival.
Do you mow a lawn? Check out this poster for a few tips to save money, effort, and time while keeping your lawns green and lakes blues this summer! You can also find lawn care tips here.
Grass clippings and leaves in the street carry extra nutrients to local streams and Lake Superior. "Nutrients" may not sound like a bad thing, but too much can be unhealthy for our aquatic ecosystems. Not only can excess nutrients cause algae blooms, but as the leaves and grass decompose and break down they consume oxygen which means less oxygen for fish and other critters. Stormwater systems in urban areas keep us safe by reducing flooding, but they also channel grass clippings and leaves and other pollutants on the roads to streams and lakes. Do your part by planning your border cuts to direct grass clippings into your yard instead of into the street. Not only is is better for Lake Superior, it's the law in the City of Superior (Sec 58.2 of the City Ordinances)
Open House and BBQ at the new Poplar Wetland Basin!
Join Mayor Paine, city officials, and community members for this FREE family friendly open house at the newly constructed Poplar Wetland Basin. Learn about stormwater treatment in the wetland, landscaping for stormwater protection on your own property, and enjoy a BBQ, beverages, games and door prizes! The event is free and all are welcome.
When: Monday Oct. 16th from 4:00-6:00 PM - Dedication by Mayor Paine at 5:00 PM
Where: Poplar Wetland Basin, Poplar Ave and N 12th St. Superior WI
Who: All are welcome at this free open house!
Lake Superior Estuarium Grand Opening!
Join the Lake Superior National Estuarine Research Reserve for the Grand Opening of the Lake Superior Estuarium exhibit hall on Barkers Island, in honor of National Estuaries Day! There will be opportunities for fun and learning about the St. Louis River for everyone in this exciting new facility in Superior, WI. Enjoy, explore, experience!
When: Saturday, September 30 at 11 AM - 7 PM, Opening Ceremony at 1:30
Where:Lake Superior National Estuarine Research Reserve at 14 Marina Dr. in Superior, WI
Who: All are welcome at this free Grand Opening celebration!
With thanks to our supporters at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, University of Wisconsin Extension and University of Wisconsin Superior.
Superior Coastal Clean-Up
When: Saturday Sept. 16th 10 am-12 pm
Where: Wisconsin Point, Lot #1
What: Participate locally in a global effort to clean up beaches and waterways by joining the Superior Coastal Clean-Up. This event is part of the International Coastal Clean-Up, a global effort to clean up waterways around the world.
Show up at WI point anytime between 10 am and 12 pm to participate. Or round up a group of your own, choose a location you care about, and a time that works for you all during the week of Sept 11-17. The City of Superior will provide garbage bags, gloves, and garbage disposal. We just need you!
For more information or to reserve a site and clean-up kit, contact Andrea at 715-394-0392 or firstname.lastname@example.org
We Need You to Keep the Trail Clean!
Join the Superior Coastal Clean-Up via ATV on Superior's all-season motorized trail system. If you ride these trails, you know them, and you maybe even know where there are dump sites along the trails. With your help we can clean them up!
Who: It starts with you, but it doesn't end there. Work alone or organize a group of friends and family to work together. Use your ATV (on motorized trails), bike, or feet!
When: Anytime that works for you between Sept. 11-17th
Where: All-season motorized segments of the Osaugie and Pokegama Trails (See Superior's Motorized Trail Map).
How: Contact Andrea to choose a site or trail segment, get a clean-up kit, and arrange for garbage disposal. email@example.com 715-394-0392
Paddle with a Purpose
The St. Louis River Alliance is hosting field experiences on the St. Louis River every Wednesdays in August to learn about Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS) in the region. Enjoy a relaxed paddle on the St. Louis River with our AIS Staff while learning about species of concern in the region, how to monitor for potential AIS, and what do to if you find something suspicious! No past knowledge or experience with aquatic plants or animals is required for this hands on learning opportunity!
All sessions are FREE, family friendly, and open to the public!
Field experiences will run about 2.5 hours, with the following dates for sessions:
· August 2 1:00 - 3:30 PM – Click here to register
· August 9 5:30 - 8:00 PM – Click here to register
· August 16 1:00 - 3:30 PM – Click here to register
· August 22 5:30 - 8:00 PM – Click here to register
If you are able to bring your own canoe or kayak, please do. If not, we have a limited number to lend out, so please REGISTER ASAP to secure your paddle equipment.
If you’re not able to canoe or kayak, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We are happy to work with folks to get out on the water in a way that is safe and enjoyable for everyone. Learn more about the program here.
Superior Speaker - North Shore SUP
North Shore Stand Up Paddleboard (SUP) connects people to the St. Louis River Estuary (SLRE) and Lake Superior by getting them up on SUPs. By sharing the beauty of the estuary and Lake Superior, owners Heather and Garrett hope people gain an appreciation for the world-class freshwater ecosystems of our region and then work to preserve them.
What: Come by for a short presentation about the SLRE and Lake Superior as viewed from a SUP, learn about the sport of SUP and why it's the fastest growing paddle sport, and (weather permitting) give it a try yourself!
When: Tuesday Aug 1st 6-7 PM
Where: Barker's Island, at the Lake Superior National Estuarine Research Reserve building (near the S.S. Meteor), Superior WI
When: Weds. July 19, 5:30-8:30pm
Where: Fairlawn Mansion, 906 E 2nd St. Superior
What: Grab the lawn chairs and bring the family for some old-fashioned fun at Fairlawn Mansion’s Ice Cream Social. This community event includes food at “yesteryear” prices, carriage rides, a car show, kids’ games and a cake walk! There will also be live music by the Fractals, local artist’s art sale, and free group tours of the mansion (last tour leaves at 8 p.m.).
When: Sunday July 16, 11-3
Where: Barker's Island Festival Park
What: Live music by Woodblind and Superior Siren, fun for kids of all ages including science experiments, art activities, and (weather permitting) free trails of Stand Up Paddleboards by NorthShore SUP! Prize giveaways throughout the event!
Call for High School Artists and Anglers!
Students in grades 9-12 who have artistic talent or just really like to fish, will want to check out the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources inland trout stamp and Great Lakes salmon and trout stamp design contests for the 2018 year stamps. Subject matter for the stamps must feature living species of salmon or trout commonly found in Wisconsin's waters or appropriate subject matter relating to trout and salmon fishing.
Artwork for the 2018 inland trout stamp contest and Great Lakes salmon and trout stamp contest must be received or postmarked by July 3, 2017. Once the artwork has been submitted, DNR will create an online gallery and open the voting through the Web and Facebook in July. The top 10 entries from the online voting will then move to a final round of judging by a panel of three to five judges with expertise and interest in trout, salmon and wildlife art.
Learn more online, or contact Joanna Griffin, DNR trout coordinator at Joanna.Griffin@Wisconsin.gov or 608-264-8953.
Lake Superior on Tap
Great beer starts with clean water.
Beer is about 95% water. Some waters are famous for brewing: the soft water of Pilsen, the pure Rocky Mountain spring water, and now this region is seeing a “Lake Superior” style beer.
What: Join Thirsty Pagan Brewmaster, Allyson Rolph, to find out what makes this region special to brewers and how Lake Superior impacts the flavors in your glass. Light (non-alcoholic) refreshments will be served.
When: May 16th, 2017 6:00-7:00 PM
Where: Superior Public Library, 1530 Tower Ave. Superior WI
Twin Ports City Nature Challenge
Calling all nature-lovers and outdoor enthusiasts!
What: The City Nature Challenge is a five-day event during which nature lovers, citizen scientists and anyone interested can contribute to a nationwide assessment of wild plants and animals in urban areas.
How: Upload photos of plants, trees, animals, birds, bugs … any wild, living thing using the iNaturalist app or the iNaturalist website's City Nature Challenge 2017: Twin Ports project from April 14-18.
Don't know how to use iNaturalist? We'll show you!
Free iNaturalist and Bioblitz training.
When: Saturday April 15th, 10am-1pm
Where: The yurt at Hartley Nature Center, Duluth
For more information, visit: http://bit.ly/2n4zYQK
World Water Day - Wastewater
When: Weds. March 22nd, tours, by appointment, offered throughout the day, Open House 3:00-5:30pm
Where: City of Superior - Environmental Services Division of Public Works - 51 E. 1st St. Superior, WI
What: World Water Day is March 22nd and the theme is Wastewater. So how can we pass up an opportunity to offer tours of the City of Superior Wastewater Treatment Plant? We can't!
Contact us to sign up for a tour (times offered throughout the day) or stop by between 3:00-5:30 for an Open House with displays and information about stormwater and wastewater management in Superior. Of course, we'll have suggestions for ways you can be a solution to water pollution!
Public Meeting - Superior Annual Stormwater Report
Where: Superior Public Library (1530 Tower Ave. Superior).
What: We welcome your review and comments on the City of Superior Annual Stormwater Report. Copies of the Annual Report are available at Environmental Services or online at www.ci.superior.wi.us/577/Annual-Report.
Written comments will be accepted until March 8th, 2015.
Submit written comments to:
Environmental Services Division
Department of Public Works
51 E 1st St.
Superior, WI 54880
It's easy to participate:
- Download and complete a pledge form to receive all necessary supplies.
- Fill balloons with water.
- Place balloons outside, or in a freezer, and let the cold weather do the work to create ice orbs!
- Deliver frozen orbs to Barker's Island on Thurs. Jan 26th between 10:30-12:00 or 4:30-5:30. Or arrange for pick-up of orbs.
- Come down to the Lake Superior Ice Festival anytime on Friday-Sunday to see the installation and enjoy the huge slide, ice carvings, pond hockey, music, bonfires, s'mores, ice princesses and much more!
2016 News and Events
1316 N 14th Stat:
Registration for the training is closed.
When: Saturday, Sept. 10th at 8 AM registration, 9 AM race begins
Where: Osaugie Trail, Barker's Island
Cost for individual participation is $25, and $50 for a family (up to two adults and children). Children must be accompanied by an adult.The cost includes a t-shirt for each participant and a bandanna for a dog. Individuals may walk up to 2 dogs. Dogs must have current proof of rabies vaccination at the time of registration and remain on a 6 ft or shorter leash at all times. NO flex leads. You are responsible for cleaning up after your dog(s).
Learn more on the HSDC website.
The Aqua Kids’ cast and crew spent a full week in the Twin Ports getting their feet wet in the Lake Superior watershed with researchers and resource management staff from the Lake Superior National Estuarine Research Reserve, the University of Wisconsin-Superior, the City of Superior, the City of Duluth, Fond Du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Natural Resources Department, Fond du Lac Reservation Cultural Center and Museum, MN Department of Natural Resources’ MinnAqua Program, the EPA, the Natural Resources Research Institute, Northern Great Lakes Visitor Center, Northland College, and Minnesota Sea Grant.
Their week in the region included research and monitoring of invasive species like emerald ash borer and purple loosestrife, snorkeling through fish habitat near Clough Island, sampling fish and invertebrates, looking for microplastics in Superior Bay, sailboat racing on Lake Superior with the Duluth Keel Club, and touring wild rice restoration projects in the St. Louis River estuary. In Duluth, they accompanied city stormwater experts to an urban trout stream as they go underneath the city in a stormwater tunnel. In Superior, they assisted with stormwater pond inspection and maintenance with survey equipment, stenciled storm drains, and helped manage invasive plants near the newly designed Poplar Avenue Wetland basin. They will also die field and lab work related to marine debris, wetland habitats, and climate change.
Aqua Kids has been honored with a number of prestigious awards, including 2 Emmy Awards, 15 Telly Awards, and 2 Videographer Awards. Locally, it airs on Fox 21 Saturdays at 7:30 pm.
When: Sunday July 17, 11-4 (Join us in 2017! Lake Superior Day is always the 3rd Sunday in July)
Where: Barker's Island Festival Park
What: Live music, art and fun. Free activities include stand-up paddleboard demos, canoe and kayak rides, art exhibits and vendors, photo booth, educational activities, arts and crafts, rain garden workshop, native plant sale, farmers market and performances from local musicians.
Earth Tracks at the Lake Superior Zoo
When: May 20th, 10am-2pm
Where: Lake Superior Zoo, Duluth MN
What: Travel throughout the zoo, visiting animals, and various stations set up with environmentally themed activities, games, and demonstrations. Learn more about the event here!
Watch Roller Derby, visit the City of Superior Environmental Services Division Table to learn about local water, and win prizes!
Come spend the evening with the Northland's original flat track roller derby league! Cheer on the Harbor City Roller Dames and make their Sun's Out-- Guns Out Double Header the event of the season!
Saturday May 21st 5:00 pm-9 pm Wessman Arena
Visit our booth for a chance to win prizes during breaks in the bout.
The St. Louis River Alliance (and the Piping Plover) needs you!
Join the St. Louis Rover Alliance in monitoring Piping Plovers on Wisconsin Point.
Learn more at a volunteer training at the Environmental Services Division Building in Superior.
ESD 51 E 1st St. Superior WI 54880
Learn more on the SLRA website.
Nemadji Watershed Public Meeting
When: Weds. May 4th
Where: Superior Town Hall
What: Learn about local efforts to improve the condition of the Nemadji Watershed. Find out what residents can do, and are doing. Be part of the solution! More information about the effort can be found on the Carton County Soil and Water Conservation District website. This is a joint effort between the Carlton County SWCD and the Douglas County Land and Water Conservation District.
Pet owners: Get out and do your doo-dy
April 24-30 is National Scoop the Poop Week. In addition to being smelly and unsightly, pet waste is dangerous to humans and other pets. Pet waste attracts rodents and can be the cause of local beach closings. Pet waste may contain pathogens such as bacteria, viruses and parasitic worms that can be transmitted to humans who are gardening in contaminated soils or who are recreating in infected waters.
Pet waste also contains nutrients that help weeds and algae grow. Excess vegetation growth in aquatic environments is both unsightly and it uses up the oxygen that fish and other aquatic life need to live. Oxygen levels are also reduced as bacteria decomposes pet waste (a process requiring oxygen).
Most of us don't have dogs willing to use the indoor facilities, so pet owners need to clean up for them.
Pet waste should be picked up and either be:
- flushed down the toilet (be sure to pick out rocks and sticks first),
- put in the trash or,
- buried in your own yard. If you want to bury pet waste, make sure it is in a hole at least 6 inches deep, away from vegetable gardens and water sources, and in permeable soil (not clay). Do not add it to compost piles.
Faxon Creek Rescue - Clean Up
When: Saturday April 23th, 1pm - 5pm
Where: N 23rd St and Lamborn Ave
What: Join the City of Superior, the Lake Superior National Estuarine Research Reserve, and Northern Lights Elementary School for a clean-up of Faxon Creek.Volunteers are invited to meet Reserve and City staff at tables set up at the intersection of Lamborn Ave and N. 23rd Street, near Northern Lights Elementary in Superior. No reservations are needed. Please dress for the weather and be prepared for the possibility of mud. Volunteers can stay as long or as little as they like, and children are welcome to attend with an adult caretaker. Free refreshments are provided by the Red Mug Café. Please call the Reserve at 715-392-3141 with any questions.
Storm Water 2015 Annual Report Public Meeting Event
When: Tuesday, March 8th 6-8 pm
Where: Superior Public Library, 1530 Tower Ave. Superior, WI
What: Join the Environmental Services Division as we go over the Storm Water Annual Report and voice your comments, concerns, and questions.
When available the 2015 Storm Water Annual Report will be linked here.
Please comment on the report.
Smart Salting - Winter Sidewalk & Driveway Maintenance for Homeowners
When: Monday, Jan. 18th, 11-12
Where: Superior Public Library, 1530 Tower Ave. Superior
What: Join the Environmental Services Division of Public Works for this FREE seminar. Learn about proper application of salt and other traction agents to your sidewalks and driveway. Learn about road salt, its effects on the environment, keep your driveway and sidewalk safe while protecting local water, and saving money!
The River Talks Presents: Natalie Warren - Hudson Bay Bound
a bonus presentation in conjunction with the St. Louis River Summit
When: Weds. Feb. 3, 7 pm
Where: Swenson Hall - UWS, Superior WI
What: Natalie Warren and Ann Raiho were the first women to paddle the 2,250 miles from Minneapolis to Hudson Bay in a canoe, following the journey of two young men who documented this journey in the book, Canoeing with the Cree. Join us to hear Natalie Warren talk about the journey!
Public Meeting about the Faxon Creek Culvert Replacement at Hill Ave - Join Us!
When: Tuesday, Feb. 2, 5-7 pm
Where: Moose Lodge, 66 E 5th St.
What: Learn about Public Works' plan to remove the aged viaduct structure and replace the culvert crossing. The crossing would be upsized and would substantially increase the crossings ability to convey Faxon Creek during high flow conditions. The proposed culvert replacement includes one 10 foot high by 12 foot wide box culvert. A 410 foot section of sanitary sewer will also be replaced as part of this project.
Work with your family, friends, school or community group, or as an individual, to contribute to this community art installation by creating ice orbs! Each orb represents a day of the year that water is important to us. All ice orbs will be arranged into a larger installation on Barker's Island for the closing ceremony of the Lake Superior Ice Festival (Sat. Feb 27th).
1. Contact the City of Superior-Environmental Services Division and pledge to make ice orbs (715-394-0392 or email: email@example.com). We will provide all necessary materials and instructions.
2. Fill balloons with water and place outside until frozen (2-4 days depending upon air temperature).
3. Deliver frozen orbs to Barker’s Island on Friday Feb. 26 between 10am-12pm (or arrange for pick-up by Thurs. Feb. 25 at noon)
4. Visit the Lake Superior Ice Festival on Barker’s Island anytime between Feb. 20th-27th, and for the closing ceremony on Saturday Feb 27th to see your contribution to the celebration! Learn more about the event on the Ice Project Facebook Page.
Download an Ice Orb Instruction Sheet or a pledge form.
City's Hazard Mitigation Plan, Open House - Learn about the Plan!
When: Feb 25th, 6PM
Where: Superior Public Library, 1530 Tower Ave. Superior
What: The City of Superior has been updating the 2010 Hazard Mitigation Plan. This plan was integral to the City receiving funding post 2012s Presidential Disaster Declared event. Learn more at this open house event!
When: Thursday, Nov. 5, 6-8 pm
Where: Moose Lodge, 66 E 5th St.
What: The City of Superior is constructing a wetland basin to treat stormwater runoff from the Central Business District. The basin will be near Poplar Ave and 12th St. Come see the preliminary design, provide input on features you'd like incorporated and get your questions answered. We'd love to hear from you!
City's Hazard Mitigation Plan Update Meetings - Please participate!
The City of Superior is updating the 2010 Hazard Mitigation Plan. This plan was integral to the City receiving funding post 2012s Presidential Disaster Declared event.
It is important for the Plan to be updated so the City can qualify grant funds through the State and Federal Emergency Management Programs. There will be interactive discussions about the hazard strategies, relevant edits, and areas of concern. The projects and strategies identified will be incorporated into the updated plan which will be ready for final review by September 1, 2015. Meetings will be one hour in length and start at 11 am and end at noon. Light food and drinks will be provided.
Meeting location: Government Center (1316 N 14th St), Room 204
Meeting dates: June 25, July 9, July 23
Meeting Time: 11 am - 12 pm
How is Drinking Water Treatment and Wastewater Treatment Done in Superior?
Find out as SWL&P and Superior Environmental Services Presents these two important water-related services in Superior. The practices are important for human health and environmental health.
Tuesday May 19th at 5 p.m. at the Superior Public Library
View the 2014
A public meeting to submit comments will be held at the Superior Public Library on March 25 from 5:30-7:30PM.