July 2022

Happy Independence Day

SML Fireworks

 Hoping this issue of AHOY finds that you have enjoyed your 4th of July, Independence Day, holiday with your family and friends.  The weather has been hot and the water is warm both of which make us glad we have this beautiful, clean lake to enjoy.  

On Saturday our family enjoyed the SML Fireworks and Fire Company Fundraiser benefiting Saunders Volunteer Fire Department at Parkway Marina.  The fireworks were terrific.  I also noticed that boater courtesy and adherence to the no wake zone was excellent.  Many thanks to our SMLA Water Safety Committee (WSC) for their work in informing our lake community of the “no wake” zones around the fireworks.  On Sunday evening another fireworks show was held at Mitchell’s Point Marina which raises funds for the Semper Fi Fund and Operation Command. This fundraiser benefits veterans in need.      

Pirates Day – July 16th

Please “NO” Water Balloons

Virginia law states that it is illegal to intentionally release (or for Pirate Days, throwing) water balloons into the lake.  Ingested water balloons can significantly harm or kill animals (domestic pets included), and fish.  They can also be harmful to boats and PWC’s.  On behalf of the SMLA board of directors I am asking you to please use other means to soak your neighbors and pass along this request to your friends attending Pirate Days.   

Water Quality Management Program

Second Week Test Results

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The first week of bacteria sampling conducted by Ferrum College on May 24 found excess bacteria in five of the fourteen locations tested.  A press release containing these results was distributed to local print media, WQM monitors, and SMLA members.

The second week of bacterial sampling on June 7 found all fourteen sampling sites had returned to more normal background levels. A press release was distributed to the same recipients as above on June 8.

There have been some informal discussions regarding the possibility of creating a real time dashboard of WQM results. Ideally this would appear on the SMLA home page, and consist of compelling graphics that would serve to relay information and draw people to the SMLA web site.

SMLA Website

Redesign and Update of the SMLA Website

SMLA has initiated a project to update the design and functionality of our website.  I will update you in future AHOY editions.    

Take Pride in SML (TPISML)

May 2022 TPISML Results

Results are in for the TPISML May clean-up efforts.  128 individuals signed-up with TLAC with an estimated number of miles covered for clean-up at 25.4 miles.  Approximately 4.3 tons of trash was collected with the most unusual items being lawn chairs, sign posts, boat bumpers and a boom box.  We had a few rainy weekends during May which may have impacted the volume of debris collected.  Next year we hope to return to a full TPISML lake clean-up effort not impacted by this springs Covid concerns.      

SMLA Business Partners

Drive to Connect with our SML Businesses

We have increased our efforts to connect with the businesses of the Smith Mountain Lake Regional Chamber of Commerce.  We sent out the e-blast mailing below to the 600+ members and 6,000 contacts -of the chamber.  Once again I would ask you to reach out to those you do business with in our lake community and ask if they are members of SMLA and if not, please encourage them to sign-up as a business partner.    

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Save Our Streams (SOS)

Spring Results from SOS

Our SOS group of volunteers managed to test 16 streams this spring during the months of April and May.  Results were very good with 12 of the readings in the satisfactory range between 9-12, 2 in the gray area, and 2 in the unsatisfactory range.  The average reading was 9.6 which is very good.  At our BOD meeting in June we recognized that area farmers around the lake have done a really good job in keeping cattle and chemicals out of the lake.   

SMLA Membership Drive

Help Spread the Word to Your Neighbors

We continue to focus on increasing our SMLA membership.  We are getting ready to mail another letter to a new set of more recent property owners. I hope you will join with us in our efforts to increase our membership by promoting SMLA to your friends, neighbors, and the local businesses you support

SMLA Annual Meeting

Planning for a Full Annual Meeting in September

We are excited to have begun our SMLA Annual Meeting planning for this fall.  We will hold a membership meeting at a local facility and have a panel format for presentation and discussion regarding the work of SMLA.  We will have exhibitors in addition to our liaison partners.  Food will be served and we plan to run the meeting from 6:00 – 7:30 pm on a weeknight.  I will provide more information, including date and location, in the next edition of AHOY.  

Bill Butterfield