The Pokegama Lake Association hosts & supports a variety of activities during the year for both the community and our membership. During 2018, we provided many opportunities for our membership and the community to interact and find out what we do throughout the year.
On May 17, 2018, PLA hosted its 20th annual Freshwater Fair for 5th grade students in Pine City, Hinckley, East Central, and Mora schools. The Freshwater Fair provides an opportunity for our PLA mission to educate area youth on the importance of healthy, unpolluted lakes and rivers, to be taught in a fun and interactive format. Students learn how they can become stewards of the environment.
On the day of the Freshwater Fair, teachers and students arrive between 8:30 – 8:55 a.m. Students move to assigned learning stations beginning at 9:00 a.m. and rotate to different stations throughout the day. The Fair ends at 2:00 p.m. Whether fair weather or rain, it never seems to stop the students, presenters, or PLA volunteers from coming out to enjoy learning about the importance of available, clean water in a fun & interactive way. Approximately 500 people take part in this day, including about 400 students & 32 teachers from area schools, plus 16 presenters, and a large number of PLA member volunteers & friends.
Thanks to the partnership the PLA has with Pine City, the Pine County Fair Board, Pine County Extension 4-H, Snake River Conservation Club, and the VFW, we are able to use their buildings and parking lots.
On May 19, 2018, we hosted a welcome back potluck at the PLA building for our members who go south in the winter months and for our members who are seasonal on the lake and come back to weekend homes & cabins in the spring. Approximately 60 people attended, sharing stories of their winter activities and plenty of good food.
Each year PLA awards five conservation camp scholarships to 4 members of the Pine City Elementary 5th grade class, and one to a 5th grade child or grandchild of a PLA member. These students attend camp at Long Lake Conservation Center near Palisade, MN for a week of outdoor activities, including games, canoeing, archery, bog trekking, and many other activities. All of the campers report having a great time.
On June 30th, PLA members staffed our corn booth to sell walking tacos, ice cream sundaes & root beer floats for the annual Pine City Freedom Fest held at the Pine City Fairgrounds. The walking tacos were a profitable addition to this year’s menu and sold out quickly.
Once again, the PLA Corn Booth at the Pine County Fair July 31- August 4 was a resounding success. The corn booth is our major fundraiser for the year and many PLA volunteers, family, & friends help to make this event a memorable one. This year we faced a trying start to our booth sales due to rainy weather that resulted in standing water around the corn booth on Friday and again on Saturday morning. The cool weather also resulted in less root beer/root beer float sales, but we did have very successful corn sales. Our profit this year surpassed last year by a few hundred dollars. Our success is always marked by our amazing volunteers and this year was no exception! Thank you to all of you for your support of this important PLA fundraiser!
August 18 brought our annual PLA Summer Picnic and Silent Auction, another fundraiser to help with the programs we support throughout the year. We always have a good turn out and silent auction sales were a success again this year. Thanks to Marta Malone-Rice and Connie Stone, who took over from Darlene Collins who has chaired this fundraiser for many years.
The month of October brings our annual membership drive for the coming year. Membership applications are mailed with our October newsletter to enable folks who leave early for warmer climates to get their membership dues taken care of before they leave. There is also a membership form available on this website. Our members are very important to us and we are proud of the consistent membership numbers we are able to maintain throughout each year. Thanks to our chairperson, Jo Ann Laumeyer, for the many hours she spends keeping our membership numbers moving upward!
Sadly, fall & winter brings an end to most of our outside activities and we close the year by enjoying good food and friendship at our annual Holiday Party, which will be held at the Pine City American Legion on December 8. Look for your reservation sign-up form in the November issue of our newsletter, The PLA Update. Thanks to Nancy Ackley & Dave Stone for co-chairing our event this year.
Enjoy the holidays and your winter and we will look forward to another fun year in 2019.