TRAVERSE CITY - Michigan Trout Unlimited awarded Norm Fred, chairman of Boardman River Clean Sweep, its Order of the Hexagenia award. 

 

The Hexagenia award honors those who have made a “positive contribution to cold water fisheries in the State of Michigan in a non-TU capacity.”  Greg Walz, chairman of Michigan Trout Unlimited and Jim Cantril presented the award.  After receiving the award, Norm Fred gave a presentation to the Michigan Trout Unlimited Council on stream and dockside recycling bins for monofilament fishing line.

 

Over the last 15 years, Norman “Norm” Fred and his Boardman River Clean Sweep (BRCS) (http://www.brcleansweep.org/) organization has, in a term, become a force of nature on behalf of northern Lower Michigan’s rivers by removing each year’s accumulation of refuse tossed by careless paddlers and anglers.

In terms of specific numbers, 2018 found the BRCS working on over 53 clean-up projects which is 7 more than in 2017.  The BRCS teamed up with Anglers of the Ausable to clean up the South Branch of the Ausable this past year but on their own annually spearhead cleanups on the Betsie, Platte, Manistee, Jordan, Boardman, Sturgeon, and Golden Cedar rivers. Couple this with the numerous illegal public land dump sites they tackle (35 in Grand Traverse County alone this year), and the impressive magnitude of the service provided by Fred and the BRCS group is obvious.  This year’s clean sweep of the Boardman River is on May 25th.

 

Norm Fred, in accepting the award said: "Adams Chapter Trout Unlimited has been there to help the Boardman River Clean Sweep even before we had a name and the project was just an idea."

 

"Bill Fernandez, one of the Charter Founders of the Adams Chapter, was at our first meeting in 2004 and he offered financial and logistical support even before he had asked his Board of Directors if it was ok.  He wanted this to happen as much or more than we did."

 

"The Adams Chapter has been the longest and most consistent source of financial aid and support for the BRCS for the 15 years that we have existed."

 

Norm has consistently made grant proposals to the Adams Chapter asking only for what the BRCS needs to fulfill their mission for the upcoming year. Additionally, Norm is extremely active in the Adams Chapter especially pitching in on both the annual banquet planning as well as outfitting youth fly fishing camp attendees.

 

The level of effort expended by Norm and his cadre of volunteers is both impressive and inspiring and they do it on a shoe-string budget. The work they accomplish always exceeds all levels of expectation and the Adams Chapter sincerely believes they deserve broad recognition for the work they do, year in and year out. The rivers prioritized by the BRCS for their projects include many of the finest trout streams in the United States-rivers that members of Trout Unlimited hold near and dear to their hearts, which is absolutely an outstanding contribution to the overall mission and vision of Michigan Trout Unlimited.

 

The Adams Chapter of Trout Unlimited is dedicated to committing its resources and raising funds to educate local youth, support conservation efforts and repair the stream deadening effects of erosion, sedimentation and over use. For more information, visit www.adamstu.org.