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Outreach Tools

This page offers outreach resources aimed at encouraging actions that improve water quality in Dane County. We encourage watershed groups, friends groups, and all others to use these tools in their endeavors to keep our waters clean. 

 

Plant Dane

Target Audience: Dane County residents, schools, businesses, organizations, gardening clubs, faith groups and others interested in building or expanding rain, downspout or other native gardens. 

Key messages to share:

  1. Native plants add beauty to your property and also provide important ecosystem services such as habitat for local wildlife and improved water quality. 
  2. Native plants act as sponges helping rainwater to soak into the ground preventing stormwater runoff from draining into our lakes, rivers and streams.
  3. Convert a small area of turf or pavement into a native garden or rain garden. Order native plants through Plant Dane at only $11.50/4-plant pack. More than 50 species available for purchase including garden kits. Plants will be available to order on a first-come, first-serve basis up to 35,000 plants. NOTE: The sale will end on March 19th if we do not reach the cap before then.
  4. Grow native plants or donate funds to purchase native plants for community and school projects.
  5. Learn how to build a rain or downspout garden by attending the "Dig Into Rain Gardens- 1:1 Coaching Sessions with Experts"

Tools to help spread the word:

  1. Plant Dane web page. Add the Plant Dane link and logo to organization's web site.
  2. 2024 Plant Dane Article. Feel free to customize and use this template to use in newsletters or local papers.
  3. 2024 Plant Dane Flyer. Contact Christal Campbell for a supply to distribute. 
  4. 2024 Plant Dane social media graphic, 2024 Plant Dane Homepage graphic
  5. 2024 Free Native Plants for School and Community Projects social media graphics- spring cycle.
  6. "Like" the Ripple Effects WI Facebook page and share Plant Dane related posts. 

Leaf-free Streets

Target Audience: 

Residents and businesses located in densely populated urban areas with a high concentration of large terrace trees (between road and sidewalk).

Key messages to share:

  1. Leaves left in the street every fall are a major source of phosphorus to urban stormwater.
  2. When it rains water runs through street leaves forming a "leaf-tea" rich in dissolved phosphorus that drains  to our lakes, rivers and streams.
  3. Safely removing street leaves before the rain can significantly reduce the amount of phosphorus in urban stormwater- Join us in keeping streets leaf-free this fall!
  4. Sign up to receive Leaf-free Streets Rain Alerts this fall- alerts will be sent (via text or email) 1-2 day before a rain event reminding you when it's time to remove street leaves.

        Sign Up for Text Alerts       Sign Up for Email Alerts

Tools to help spread the word:

  1. Leaf-free Streets for Clean Waters web site. Link to us fro your organization's web site!
  2. Leaf-free Streets Yard Signs. Signs to encourage neighbors to remove street leaves before the rain. Local sign message: "We're removing street leaves before the rain to protect (Lake Mendota, Lake, Monona, Lake Wingra, Pheasant Branch, Yahara River, etc.), join us!"
           Request a Leaf-free Streets Sign
  3. Leaf-free Streets Thank You Packs. These are to be used to recognize residents who remove street leaves before the rain. Packs come in small door hanger style bag and contain a simple thank you note with a few water related postcards.
           Request a Leaf-free Streets Thank You Pack
  4. Leaf-free Streets Template Article 2023. Feel free to customize and use in newsletters or local papers.

  5. Flyers and door hangers. Request a supply to distribute below.
           Request Flyers
           Request Door Hangers

  6. "Like" the Ripple Effects WI Facebook page and share Leaf-free Streets related posts and rain alerts.

  7. Social Media Graphics- Wheelbarrow Post, Leaf Removal Tools Post, Leaf-free Streets Graphic

  8.  Leaf-free Streets Template Nextdoor.com post- feel free to modify to meet your needs.

Rain Barrels

rain barrelTarget Audience: 

Residents with a home where rain barrels could be placed at their downspouts to collect rainwater. 

Key messages to share:

  1. Rain barrels collect water from roofs and reduce the amount of stormwater runoff that can carry pollutants down storm drains into our lakes, rivers and streams.

  2. Harvested water can be used later to water lawns, gardens, and potted plants, helping to conserve water and save money!

  3. Rain barrels can improve downstream flooding by reducing the amount of runoff our roofs.

  4. Purchase a rain barrel for a reduced price from Dane County today!

Tools to help spread the word:

  1. Rain barrel web site. Link to us fro your organization's web site!
  2. Rain barrel newsletter template. Feel free to customize and use in local newsletters and newspapers.
  3. "Like" the Ripple Effects WI Facebook page and share Rain Barrel related posts. Also feel free to use these Facebook post templates

Adopt a Storm Drain

storm drains clogged and cleanedTarget Audience: Residents, schools, businesses, organizations, volunteer organizations clubs, faith groups and others interested in reducing pollution in our local waterways that are in the City of Fitchburg, City of Stoughton, City of Middleton, City of Sun Prairie, Village of Cross Plains, Village of DeForest, Village of McFarland and Village of Cottage Grove. 

Key messages to share:

  1. Litter and pollution that enters our storm drains often flow to our local lakes, rivers and streams with little or no treatment. 
  2. Clearing debris and litter from storm drains reduces the amount of pollution that reaches our local water resources.
  3. Help prevent localized flooding by removing debris and litter that can clog or block our storm drains and storm sewer. 
  4. Join us in adopting a storm drain in participating communities (City of Fitchburg, City of Stoughton, City of Middleton, City of Sun Prairie, Village of Cross Plains, Village of DeForest, Village of McFarland and Village of Cottage Grove). 

Tools to help spread the word:

  1. Adopt a Storm Drain web page. Link to this webpage from your organization's web site.
  2. Adopt a Storm Drain article. Feel free to customize and use in newsletters or local papers.