Thurston County Connection Newsletter
Thurston County Connection
Thurston County Connection
December, 2014
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Changes at Thurston County Superior Court

(More) Changes at Thurston County Superior Court

County Benefits from “JBLM Day of Service”

It’s official!

Health Systems Doing a Good Job of Tracking Illnesses

Families Welcome New Members

Perfection is Reality for County Waste Water Treatment Plant

Less Leftovers, More Joy

The Klondike Kings and the telegraph to nowhere

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 Giving Back to the Land and Water.

Through the Eyes of Stream Team Volunteers.

Thurston County has changed a lot over the past twenty years. With more and more development occurring, natural places need more protection and restoration. Stream Team recognizes that volunteers are vital to protecting and restoring water resources and precious habitat in Thurston County. These volunteers typically work on weekends doing tasks such as pulling weeds, planting and maintaining trees and shrubs, monitoring stream health, marking storm drains and educating the public about local water resources and salmon runs.

Stream Team interviewed a few volunteers to find out about how they became involved in Stream Team, the types of activities they do with Stream Team, and how the program has influenced their lives.

Don Eveleth has been a long-time winter Steelhead fisherman and outdoorsman . Don lives in McCleary, but commuted to work in Olympia at Crown Cork and Seal starting in 1967. He first got involved in Stream Team around 1993 when searching for a project for his Boy Scout troop. They borrowed stormdrain stencils from Stream Team and painted “Dump No Waste” messages on every stormdrain in the town of McLeary. Since then Don has worked on just about all the different types of projects that Stream Team has to offer. He participated in wetland surveys at Summit Lake, macroinvertebrate monitorings, tree plantings, Salmon Stewards and more. In addition, he makes and installs nest boxes for wood ducks. Don retired in 2004 and spends much of his time with his two grandsons or geocaching, hiking, fishing and gem hunting. His love of being outside and preserving natural habitats has inspired him to put in many volunteer hours with Stream Team, as well as the Departments of Ecology and Fish and Wildlife, and Native Plant Salvage Project.

Nicki Johnson grew up in Olympia. Nicki loves the outdoors and plants, so joining Stream Team was a perfect way to spend her free time doing what she loves. She first participated in Stream Walks, a program to assess the physical characteristics of streams as part of a long term monitoring program. This monitoring provided overall information on the streams' physical characteristics, such as stream bank stabilization, canopy cover, and stream depth. Nicki continued to participate in habitat enhancement by planting trees, as well as helping with the long-term maintenance of the trees by weeding the planted areas, watering and pruning trees, and conducting plant survival counts. Nicki also assists with “stream bug monitoring” and Salmon Stewarding and was honored as one of the Stream Team Volunteers of the Decade in 2000.

Ann Mataczynski first got involved with Stream Team in 1991 after seeing a flyer at the Capitol Mall advertising volunteer opportunities. At the time Ann worked for the State and was on the lookout for a volunteer project for her work team. Ann and her co-workers soon became the adoptive caretakers of Moxlie Creek, which ran close by their office in downtown Olympia. For Ann, the stream walks were just the beginning of countless hours spent helping to restore and protect habitat in Thurston County. Over the years she has participated in plantings on just about every creek in North Thurston County. Ann also became trained as a Salmon Steward. She has helped educate citizens about local spawning runs at sites along the Deschutes River and continues to Salmon Steward during the wild chum spawning season at the McLane Creek Nature Trail.

Since Stream Team began twenty years ago, volunteers have donated thousands of hours to help plant trees, monitor water quality and stream health, assess stream habitat, monitor culverts, install and monitor purple martin boxes, talk to community members about local runs of spawning salmon, and the list goes on and on. The work of committed individuals does make a difference in the long-term quality of habitat and life in our community. Thanks to all of our Stream Team volunteers! It’s been a fantastic twenty years and we look forward to twenty more!

For more information about Stream Team or upcoming events you can go to our Stream Team Info website. or call: 360-754-4681.

By Ann Marie Finan

Volunteers at a recent Stream Team planting. Volunteers at a recent Stream Team planting.