COLA honors Mindermann [UPDATED]Published 1:47pm Sunday, August 29, 2010 Updated 4:37pm Monday, August 30, 2010
Marvin Mindermann, 82, did his utmost to help preserve Lake Six, between Vergas and Frazee, when he served for 18 years as president of his lake association. Those efforts resulted in Mindermann being named as the 2010 Volunteer of the Year by the Otter Tail County Coaltion of Lakes Association (COLA).
“During his years as president, Marvin educated Lake Six residents about the importance of lake stewardship, lake science, invasive species, erosion and shoreland management,” said COLA president Shawn Olson. “Marvin also approached all property owners and encouraged them to upgrade their septic systems. He well deserves this distinguished award.”
COLA created the award to recognize and honor volunteers who demonstrate talent, time and commitment to protect and preserve Otter Tail County’s lakes, rivers and wetlands for future generations.
Mindermann, who received the award Saturday morning during COLA’s monthly gathering at the Ottertail Community Center, said he’s humbled by the award.
“It was a privilege to serve the Lake Six Association, he said. “Our lakes in Otter Tail County are among Minnesota’s greatest assets. It’s our responsibility to keep them clean and safe. We’re home to native beauty. We need to provide conservation and appreciate the opportunity for relaxation for many people, along our lakes and other waterways”
Mindermann was an Air Force career man who spends summers at Lake Six and winters at his home in Fargo. He considers himself a lifelong learner, and took training about invasive species from the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (NDR).
“Marvin used his unique powers of persuasion,” said COLA president Olson, “and he was able to secure 100 percent participation for preservation amolng property owners at Lake Six.”
Mindermann was a hands on volunteer, along with exhibiting leadership. He personally met with boat owners at public accesses to talk about ways to prevent the spread of invasive species and also took lake water samples to the laboratory research facility at Detroit Lakes. Cleaning out roadway trash also was part of his agenda over the years.
During their Saturday meeting, COLA presented the 2010 Lake Association of the Year Award to the Dead Lake Association. The association fought what it considererd a development (Blue Heron Bay) not in the best interest of lakeshore residents or the long-term well being of the lake. Instead, the property was purchased by the Trust for Public Lands and the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR).
Attorneys, engineers, appraisers and others cost the Dead Lake Association $325,000. To pay for it, the association members held auctions, raffles and monthly pancake brerakfasts.
“This was a grassroots effort by the Dead Lake Association and a story of tenacity,” said Jerry Horgen, COLA sub-committee chairperson. “They’re an association we can all look up to.”
Steve Henry of the East Otter Tail Soil and Water Conservation District, along with EOT Board of Supervisor Denny Reynolds, recognized COLA itself for its contribution to water preservation in Otter Tail County.
“COLA’s lake monitoring program, on an ongoing basis, is a great accomplishment,” said Reynolds. “As the organization that comprises the various lake associations in Otter Tail County, COLA does a great job of educating members, promotes shoreland stewardship, fights invasive species and financially supports the lakeshore specialist as part of the water conservation district.”
On hand to thank COLA, Mindermann and the Dead Lake Association were State Sen. Dan Skogen and State Reps. Bud Nornes and Mark Murdeock. Each said that volunteers, through their water preservation efforts, will help maintain lakes and rivers for generations to come.Tags: COLA, Lakes, Mindermann