President’s Letter

President’s Message, November, 2017 by Kurt Kastel

Hello Cross Lakers
As we move into the colder weather months, and snowbirds start to fly south, I wanted to update you on the progress of some of our initiatives. In September, Minnesota Native Landscapes completed primary work on the long-awaited soil erosion project on the North End.  The culvert was re-graded, with additional drainage added. The flow will pass through both rock and native vegetation filtration systems, and will result in less sediment finding its way into the lake, which should help to reduce contaminants.  Please check out the photographs of the project included in this news-letter.  The project has evolved over time, and there is more work to be done as the pollution load, particularly phosphates, is a multi-faceted problem with no easy or quick solutions. However, the Cross Lake Association is committed to improving water quality in both the near and long term, and we consider this project to be at least a step in the right direction.

Towards that end, we will be partnering with Pine County and other lakes in the Snake River watershed at a water quality conference in December. This two-part conference, held on December 5th, will focus on Aquatic Invasive Species initiatives across the watershed, and also to discuss the advantages to forming a new County Coalition of Lake Associations to replace the now-defunct PICKM organization. As you know, our lake does not exist in isolation, and what happens elsewhere in the watershed is of critical importance to the health of Cross Lake and the Snake River. The Cross Lake Association strongly feels that coordinating with other associations and the relevant government and regulatory agencies is the most effective way to achieve lasting results and get maximum leverage of our resources.

On the social front, we had a very successful Fall Dinner/Dance, with a “Hawaiian” theme that was really well-received. Our thanks to out-going CLA board Vice-President Frank Ramish, and his wife Linda, for organizing such memorable event. Also, thanks to the Pine City American Legion for providing the venue and a great meal, and to the Cruisers, for their exceptional music.

Additionally, the Cross Lake Association held its fall membership meeting in September, with featured speaker Roger Hugill, formerly of the DNR fisheries division. He provided an extremely informative and engaging discussion, and we hope to have him back again as we recognize his unique knowledge and experience is a valuable resource for both the CLA and the community at large. At that meeting we also elected new board members Bruce Anderson and Daniel Reuter. Subsequently, Mary Reuter and Scott Olsen have also joined the CLA board.  The CLA also wants to thank outgoing board members Bob Rothenbacher, Pat Brautigan, and Frank Ramish for their valued service to our organization. A complete list of board members and officers can be found in this newsletter.

Finally, as my term as President comes to an end, I want to extend my sincere and humble thanks to my fellow board members and the membership at large for entrusting me with the responsibilities of this organization. I have enjoyed being a part of this wonderful community, but after 12 years on the lake, my wife and I decided that our life plan runs in a different direction, and we have regretfully sold our cabin on Cross Lake. We will not be completely absent, however, as we have many treasured friends and family in Pine City, and I will continue to provide whatever assistance I can to the Cross Lake Association. I wish you well.

Best Regards and a Blessed and Happy Holiday Season,

Kurt Kastel, CLA President