Root-Pike WIN in the News

We are working tirelessly every day to restore, protect and sustain the Root-Pike Basin watersheds through the implementation of Nine Element watershed restoration plans. Visit this page regularly for links to media stories on our work and announcements from our staff and board.

Please Visit our calendar to see if an upcoming meeting or event interests you. Contact us for more information.

August 3, 2017 - By providing clean water, communities, businesses and the environment can all thrive, Dave Giordano told a group of people at Kenosha’s Northside Public Library Thursday evening. But Root-Pike WIN can’t do it alone. Protecting major watersheds takes a cooperative effort and WIN aims to bring diverse groups together on projects to restore wetlands, plant native vegetation and reduce pollution.

July 31, 2017 - Local environmental experts, including Dave Giordano, executive director of the Root-Pike Watershed Initiative Network, refrained from knee-jerk reactions opposing the proposal and instead suggested parties come together to ensure a rational, balanced approach that minimizes environmental damage through planning and foresight.

June 22, 2017 - Sparkles the Water Spaniel has been spotted all over southeastern Wisconsin lately! Along with his hostess, Katie Knoff, he not only participated in, but led the annual Wind Point Pet Parade. Following the parade, Sparkles was honored to be the celebrity judge for Wind Point pets entered for best costume, best talent and best grooming.

May 31, 2017 - Root-Pike WIN has a new “life size” clean water mascot, “Sparkles the Water Spaniel”. Sparkles was created as part of the Respect Our Waters program, which began in 2012 as a new way to educate residents of Southeastern Wisconsin on ways to reduce stormwater runoff pollution through better homeowner land management practices. Sparkles will make his first appearance at the Kenosha HarborMarket on June 3, 2017, to meet area residents and encourage people of all ages and interest levels to enjoy WIN’s “The Mystery of Pike Creek” event at Kenosha Public Museum.

May 21, 2017 - 200 middle school students visited the mouth of the Pike River in Kenosha to understand watershed connectivity and the basic principles of what happens on land ultimately ends up in the storm sewers, rivers and lakes. Dave Giordano shared his thoughts on the importance of educating youth on watershed issues and solutions.

May 19, 2017 - Allison Thielen, Program Manager of Root-Pike WIN, accompanied Nan Calvert for Nan's monthly environmental program on WGTD's Morning Show. What is a watershed? What can municipalities do to reduce stormwater runoff issues? What can homeowners and business owners do on their own properties to help hold back stormwater and reduce the pollutant load entering our streams and Lake Michigan? All of these questions (and more) were answered on the radio show.

May 17, 2017 - Root-Pike WIN Executive Director, Dave Giordano, outlined the issues the restoration project is looking to address and the expected outcomes and impact on water quality in the Root River and Lake Michigan. Improving the ravine and wetland will help minimize the future deposition of excess sediment and nutrients. The project will bring other benefits to the community as well, as Colonial Park represents a rare opportunity for Racine residents to enjoy a beautiful, quiet natural area in the middle of the city.

May 17, 2017 - During a press conference, Root-Pike WIN, along with the City of Racine and Weed Out! Racine, announced plans for the ravine and wetland restoration project in Racine's urban Colonial Park. The project is currently in the design and engineering phase and is expected to move into implementation in 2018.

May 17, 2017 - Root-Pike WIN Executive Director Dave Giordano, along with City of Racine's Mayor John Dickert and Melissa Warner of Weed Out! Racine, announced on Wednesday a restoration project aimed at restoring a ravine and wetland as well as removing invasive species in Colonial Park. The project could create spawning habitat for Northern Pike that currently doesn't exist between the mouth of the Root River and the Horlick Dam.

May 11, 2017 - Dave Giordano shares about Root-Pike WIN's history, mission, current projects and objectives, challenges and ways you can get involved. He discusses upcoming events, such as the Mystery of Pike Creek event to be held at the Kenosha Public Museum on Saturday, June 3rd, as well as WIN's outreach efforts through the Respect Our Waters campaign.

May 8, 2017 - As Racine County prepares to spend $2.25 million to transform Pritchard Park into an outdoor youth sports complex, it has asked the Root-Pike WIN to help it return the park’s natural areas to a more native habitat. In a step toward that effort, the group organized more than a dozen volunteers who were on hand beating back two invasive species that continue to crowd out native forest plants in the park.

May 2017 - Wind Point Living Magazine - During a downpour at a typical home, water gushes out of downspouts, across lawns treated with pesticides and fertilizers, into an oily street and, finally, down a storm drain that dumps that pollution along with the water into a stream or Lake Michigan. By building a rain garden, you can divert your gutter water into an attractive planting bed that works like a sponge and natural filter to clean the water and lets it percolate slowly into the surrounding soil.

April 22, 2017 - On the Saturday closest to Earth Day in April, Gateway celebrates our environment with displays, workshops, hands-on activities for people of all ages, and other environment-related activities. Hundreds of community members visit the Gateway campuses each year to learn and show their support for our environment. The 2017 Celebrate Earth Day event was held on April 22--the actual Earth Day.

March 2, 2017 - Have you noticed? Whenever it snows, the beautiful pristine white piles of cottony looking snow morph quickly into dirty, unsightly mounds of who knows what. Well, that gray icing is runoff pollution that you normally don’t see when it rains. Root-Pike WIN discusses how dirty snow gives us the uncomfortable reminder that pollution exists in forms we can see and others we cannot.

February 27, 2017 - Community Connection is a weekly feature of the Kenosha News helping people learn about organizations making a difference in Kenosha County’s communities and sharing ways to get involved. Root-Pike WIN was featured in February 2017 and Dave Giordano discussed the origin and mission of our organization, our current work and how we can best be supported by the community.

December 2016 - Root-Pike WIN's executive director shares information to make it easy to strike a balance between safely clearing snow and ice from your property this winter and reducing impacts to the environment, human health, and pet health. Salt less, salt smarter. See better results and cleaner water!

October 2016 - We created “Riffles” to give you a snapshot of what’s happening with the Plans for the Root-Pike Basin. Much like riffles add oxygen to water and increase habitat, these bits of progress we are sharing add energy and enthusiasm to what we are trying to accomplish. It’s exciting, and together, we’re making progress. The value we are providing to the communities in which we live, work and play is clear. We’re the catalyst for awareness… and action. Please support us and stay involved.

August 15, 2016 - Jacob Kittilstad of CBS 58 explores a section of the Pike River in Mt. Pleasant that has undergone a major transition thanks to many dedicated individuals and the Village of Mount Pleasant. Tony Beyer and Sonny Havn from the Village of Mount Pleasant are interviewed in the tour.

July 14, 2016 - Dave Giordano, Root-Pike WIN's Executive is interviewed by Greg Berg on 91.1 FM WGTDs Morning Show. Dave, along with Nan Calvert of the SENO/Kenosha-Racine Land Trust, discuss the condition of the Root-Pike basin watersheds and Root-Pike Watershed Initiative Network's strategy to improve land management and water quality in Southeastern Wisconsin.

June 14, 2016 - Root-Pike WIN has been caring for downtown Racine's Sixth Street Stormwater Planters since May of 2013. Recently, program manager Allison Thielen assisted city staff with soil sampling of the planters to determine nutrient losses and the effects of road salt on the engineered soil in the planters, which contain native plant species.

May 18, 2016 - Root-Pike WIN is excited to announce the return of Allison Thielen to the program manager position for the organization. Allison previously held the same title for the organization from 2013 to 2015. She will primarily be responsible for managing the Respect Our Waters campaign, working with the Southeastern Wisconsin Clean Water Network, office management and some grantwriting and watershed plan implementation work.

April 20, 2016 - Letter to the Editor by Dave Giordano, executive director of Root-Pike WIN:
Championed by County Executive Jim Kreuser, Kenosha County’s enthusiastic support for the Pike RIver Watershed Restoration Plan began in 2012 with active participation in the planning meetings. In 2014, the Kenosha County Board of Supervisors agreed to adopt the plan after it received approval from the Environmental Protection Agency. Today, Kenosha County, among other municipalities in the Pike River watershed, has been working to advance the recommendations, while introducing new ideas to make the plan even better.

April 13, 2016 - Executive director Dave Giordano and Root-Pike WIN board member Lori Artiomow describe the current conditions and needs of the Pike River watershed, for which a 9-element restoration plan was completed in September 2013. The organization has a new focus on implementation of the Pike River Plan along with the Root River and Wind Point Watershed Restoration Plans.

April 7, 2016 - Root-Pike WIN participates in the annual free kids fishing clinic organized by Salmon Unlimited Wisconsin, the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources and the Racine County parks system. During the clinic, held at Quarry Lake Park of Racine in the Root River watershed, members of the Root Pike Watershed Initiative Network will be on hand to talk about protecting water resources.

March 15, 2016 - The Respect Our Waters Campaign by Root-Pike WIN along with over 40 other vendors to participate in the first EcoFest Racine, co-organized by Greening Greater Racine and Gateway Technical College. Visitors to the Respect Our Waters booth can collect bookmarks, stickers, buttons, pet waste bags and other items and information designed to teach local residents things they can do on their own property to help reduce stormwater runoff pollution. Respect Our Waters will also raffle off a free rain barrel.

February 26, 2016 - Root-Pike WIN and Weed Out! Racine is seeking volunteers to assist with managing the stormwater planters at Sixth Street and College Avenue in downtown Racine. Volunteers would weed the planters, remove last year's dead foliage, plant replacement plants and come back to weed again as needed.

January 2, 2016 - The Root-Pike Watershed Initiative Network has named Dave Giordano as their executive director. A former board member and current resource group member since 2011, Giordano’s new duties include leading fundraising efforts, day-to-day operations and communications. “The impaired watersheds in Southeastern Wisconsin are in a fragile state, and I couldn’t be more excited to take on a leadership role in an organization that can affect significant improvement”, Giordano said.

October 12, 2015 - Funded in part by Root-Pike WIN's watershed-based grants program, the WATERshed program teaches 4th grade and 7th grade students about the area’s system of streams, rivers and lakes. Students are also taught the importance of keeping that system healthy and safe for plants, animals and people, according to Nancy Carlson, program coordinator and naturalist at River Bend Nature Center.

July 13, 2015 - After more than two years of planning, Root-Pike WIN will introduce its plan to restore the Wind Point watershed at a meeting Thursday evening. The Wind Point Watershed Restoration plan will include 10 projects most critical to complete a restoration of the watershed, which includes portions of Racine and Milwaukee counties. Officials with Root-Pike WIN will present the plan at a public meeting Thursday from 5:30 to 7 p.m. at the Wind Point Lighthouse, 4725 Lighthouse Drive.

May 29, 2014 - (Fox 6 video) A couple of weeks ago, a quiet neighborhood in Franklin was taken over with lights, microphones and camera crews as an every day house was transformed into a stage. Chip and Chris were able to crash the set to bring us a behind the scenes look at just what was going on. Interviewed by the reporters were Allison Thielen of Root-Pike WIN and Sparkles the Water Spaniel himself.

September 26, 2013 - A new plan calls for restoration of the Pike River and its watershed area in part to reduce pollutants, like nitrogen and phosphorous, found in the water. The plan, to be formally presented today, comes from the Root-Pike Watershed Initiative Network, a nonprofit that tries to protect and restore the Root and Pike river watersheds. The plan includes 10 “critical” recommendations. Five of those are in the Somers area of Kenosha County, and five are in the Mount Pleasant area of Racine County.

August 27, 2013 - Alternatives for the Horlick Dam will be the focus of the Root River Planning meeting from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 28, at River Bend Nature Center, 3600 N. Green Bay Road. The dam has inadequate spillway capacity to safely pass the 500-year flood level, and the state Department of Natural Resources is expected to require Racine County to improve the safety of the dam by increasing its spillway capacity or removing it. Staff from the Southeastern Wisconsin Regional Planning Commission will present four conceptual alternatives for the dam.