How to Help

SMLA depends on a) scientific data to develop and fund helpful programs, and b) the contributions of time and resources from our neighbors and members – folks like YOU!

There are four great ways to help SMLA continue its mission:

Join Us – Become a Member and Renew your Membership

Fall Membership Drive – 50% Discount for New Members!!!

  • SMLA has a variety of Resident memberships based on your ability to contribute. New members receive a special gift for memberships above Family membership.
  • Membership Benefits: A member once described the “benefit” of the yearly membership fee to SMLA as: “the cheapest insurance you can buy to maintain your home value.” The members of SMLA direct their time and efforts primarily towards the environmental protection of Smith Mountain Lake and its watershed. Our past efforts have significantly contributed to the overall health of the Lake and increased property values. Collected data and analysis clearly demonstrates that SML, while over 50 years old, looks and acts like a lake of 30 years. SMLA has achieved amazing results. If we don’t do it, nobody will! Become a Steward of the Lake.

Smith Mountain Lake Property Owner,

Being a property owner here on the lake, you already know that this beautiful Jewel of the Blue Ridge has much to offer. In fact, it was recently voted one of the best eight lakes in our nation to visit. The Smith Mountain Lake Association (SMLA) hopes that you find as much enjoyment here as we have, whether you reside here or spend your weekends and vacations on the lake.

As you finish your spring cleaning and preparation for the coming lake season, you probably have a checklist of tasks you are working through to protect your waterfront investment including double checking your insurance and making plans for maintenance of your home and property to ensure it is safe and protected. But what about the lake—the main draw to this location? What are you doing to make sure it is safe and protected?

Studies show that water quality directly impacts lake property values and that poor water quality and unsafe boating and water sports practices can adversely impact the recreational value of a lake. In turn, these issues diminish home values. Being passive on these issues is not likely to prevent them from happening. What can you do to help ensure our lake stays clean and safe—both now and into the future?

As you complete your spring-cleaning checklist, we recommend you add one other item to protect your waterfront investment: “Join the Smith Mountain Lake Association!” We are a Virginia non-profit organization with a simple and unique mission; to protect the water of Smith Mountain Lake and promote safe recreation. Membership in SMLA is your best and easiest opportunity to ensure that the lake you know and love will continue to be environmentally preserved, safe in all recreational activities, and a legacy that you can pass on to your kids and grandkids. It is the best and cheapest “insurance” you can buy to maintain your property value by helping to preserve our treasured lake.

Numerous SMLA membership benefits include:

  • A quarterly newsletter highlighting our activities to keep the lake clean and safe;
  • An informative website, social media, and neighbor-centered groups highlighting current issues impacting the lake;
  • A Smith Mountain Lake map (chart) annotated with GPS grid, underwater structures, facility listings, marinas, fishing areas, boat ramps, and much more, available for purchase in our office, from our website and at many local marinas;
  • A brochure Protecting Your Waterfront Investment—10 Simple Shoreland Stewardship Practices brochure which describes simple steps you can take to reduce pollutants, slow the flow of runoff, and capture and clean potential runoff; and
  • Reporting tools to take an active role as lake stewards by reporting floating debris, accidents, wake incidents, abandoned boats, and algae blooms.

Your membership will support the following initiatives we are currently pursuing to keep our lake Clean and Safe. They are:


  • Buffer Landscape Demonstration Projects. We are working with local master gardeners and master naturalists, along with local landscapers, to develop demonstration gardens that slow the flow of runoff and remove pollutants—protecting water quality and adding to the value of lakefront property.
  • Water Safety Council. We are working to decrease the number of fatalities, injuries and boating accidents from the previous five to ten year average as well as the past year. The vehicle to accomplish these goals is through education outreach opportunities such as press and social media along with public education events.
  • Water Quality Monitoring. SMLA monitors our lake for key parameters indicative of the water quality of the lake. The result of this monitoring provides us with a long term view of the natural aging of the lake, helps identify specific problem areas that can be addressed to improve water quality, and enables SMLA to alert the public to any instances of elevated harmful algae or bacteria concentrations. SMLA stewardship efforts have helped maintain the favorable trophic status of the lake over the past 20 years based on key metrics.

For over 50 years our SMLA has worked with other lake stakeholders to give us the lake that we have today, but there are numerous stressors that are continuously challenging our clean water and safe recreation of the lake. Just as you don’t buy insurance after a fire, don’t wait until our lake is in jeopardy before you get involved. Join us today!

Membership and charitable donations support the good work of SMLA, so we need your help to continue our mission to protect the water of Smith Mountain Lake and promote safe recreation. Please visit our website at for more information on the work that SMLA performs or how you can support our continued efforts. It is our best and most efficient insurance for maintaining our property values and preserving our treasure—The Jewel of the Blue Ridge.

To join the Smith Mountain Lake Association, visit our website at You can contact our office at or call 540-719-0690 and please Like Us if you have a Facebook account.

Help us preserve the Jewel of the Blue Ridge! SMLA looks forward to serving you.

The SMLA Membership Committee

Bill Butterfield, President

Mike, Streff, Vice President

Gale Easter, Chair

Join Us – Become a Business Partner


  • Businesses reap the rewards of a pristine lake by attracting and retaining customers year after year. Your success depends on OUR success. You can donate for a Business Partner Membership to show your support for SMLA and the work we are doing. There are several Business Partner membership levels.
  • SMLA greatly appreciates the opportunity to support our business community and help them succeed and prosper. We all understand that the health and protection of the lake is not only critical to our environment but to the economic vitality of our region. We ask that you frequent our Business Partners often and thank them for helping to enhance and protect our most valued asset – Smith Mountain Lake. View a list of our current Business Partners.

You can also contribute to SMLA, without costing you anything! Just use Amazon Smile and Kroger Community Rewards.

First, when you shop at Amazon,  use the Amazon Smile site ( It’s the same Amazon and same products, it just allows you to contribute to SMLA at no additional cost to you! Upon your first visit you will be prompted to search for and select a charitable organization from their list (Smith Mountain Lake Association, Inc. please!) then, shop away! Use this link: This works for Amazon Prime members as well. Just remember to log into the Amazon Smile site in order for us to get the contribution. SMLA will get a 5% reimbursement of your eligible purchases!

Second, do much the same at Kroger and sign up for their Community Rewards Program. This is different than fuel reward points. After you register for Community Rewards, Kroger will contribute 5% of your qualified purchases to SMLA! You will need our NPO number 80309. Here are Kroger’s complete instructions:

  1. Register online at
  2. Be sure to have your Kroger Plus card handy and register it with your organization as you sign up.
  3. Click on Sign In/Register
  4. If you are a new online customers, you must click SIGN UP TODAY in the ‘New Customer’ box.
  5. Sign up for a Kroger Rewards Account by entering your zip code, clicking on your store, entering your email address, creating a password, and agreeing to the terms and conditions.
  6. You will get a message to check your email inbox. Click on the link in the email.
  7. Click My Account and use your email address and password to proceed to the next step.
  8. Click on Edit Kroger Community Rewards information and input your Kroger Plus card number.
  9. Update or confirm your information.
  10. Enter RF748 or our name, select us from list and click confirm.

Sign up and start contributing today!

Help Us – Volunteer for one of our Committees and Projects

Become a Steward of the Lake

Members of SMLA direct their time and efforts primarily towards the environmental protection of Smith Mountain Lake and its watershed. The Smith Mountain Lake Association leads the way in:

  • Measuring and protecting water quality.
  • Working in cooperation with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission &AEP to address Shoreline Management Program issues, including dredging, shoreline restrictions, docks, and the policies and procedures regulating each.
  • Co-sponsoring “Take Pride in SML” annual clean up days in cooperation with the Chamber of Commerce & TLAC
  • Monitoring and participating in the development of programs for the relicensing of AEP by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.

Get Involved: SMLA has the following high-priority Committee Chair vacancies. Please contact the SMLA office or President and express your desire to serve. (All positions must be filled by an SMLA member)

  • Environmental Education Committee Chair

You can volunteer for…

  • Being an office volunteer
  • Collecting water samples
  • Identifying the organisms in a stream to determine water quality
  • Working on the Vessel Pump Out program
  • Collecting weed samples
  • Monitoring parts of the lake for floating debris
  • Organizing and participating in a Lake Cleanup Day in your neighborhood
  • Preparing articles for newspapers or the website
  • Developing marketing materials for the organization
  • Providing annual auditing services for the Treasurer
  • Representing one of the three counties by attending County Board of Supervisors meetings and reporting back to the SMLA Board of Directors

You can work with:

  • Homeowners on the Buffer Landscape Program to educate them on Lake saving techniques to reduce nutrients and sedimentation from entering the Lake.
  • Members of the Water Safety Council to concentrate on safe boating issues and implement related programs.
  • Local businesses, marinas, and the public to distribute and sell our Lake Maps/Charts.
  • Marketing professionals to help spread the good news about SMLA and the work we do.

You can study-up on a topic and work with others on issues as they present, such as:

  • The Shoreline Management Plan
  • AEP Relicensing
  • Local Government relations and interface
  • Environmental Education programs
  • Water level issues
  • Bacteria sources and farm animal retainer ponds
  • Fish habitats

You can interface with:

  • Ferrum College as they analyze data and prepare reports on water quality
  • Game and Inland Fishery as they address fishing issues
  • Blue Ridge Soil and Conservation as they address soil erosion issues

You may also have expertise that would help us with:

  • Watershed issues
  • Wetland Restoration Programs
  • Storm Water Runoff
  • Fertilizers and how they impact water quality
  • Landscaping and Plantings to reduce erosion
  • Fish habitat(s)

You Can Research, Benchmark, and/or Survey:

  • What other lake organizations are doing to protect their lake and watershed.
  • In fact, if what we are currently doing is not the best of fit for your interests, or expertise, you may also bring to us new ideas and programs. That’s how we grow!