Itasca Water Legacy Partnership’s (IWLP’s) goal is to build strong community relationships revolving around water. We are proud that we have established a diverse base of volunteers and members representing students, business, industry, government, environmental groups, lake associations, lakeshore and non-waterfront, rural and urban residents. Our completed projects have already generated new jobs in the area. We hope that you will “Team Up for Clean Waters” and become a part of this community




One of IWLP's goals is to educate ourselves and others about water quality issues and the importance of maintaining our water resources.  Some of our efforts have been as follows;

  • APRIL:  “Children First Fair" is held yearly at the IRA Civic Arena in Grand Rapids. This huge event draws more than 2,000 attendees.   IWLP participates by providing water-related activities for young people.

Youth Water Summit Water Chemistry StationAWESOME and AMAZING are just a few of the adjectives that area 5th grade students use to describe their day at the Fairgrounds participating in the Youth Water Summit that has been held annually since 2012.

Students have an opportunity to interact with over 40 different hands-on water science activities in an outdoor setting.  Topics include density, ph, rain gardens, invasive species, kayaking, lead and mercury, macro and micro invertebrate identification, journaling, hydrological cycle, scientific instrumentation, physics, hydraulics, septic system science, water cycle, visual spectrum, household cleaning supplies, water art, groundwater modeling, lake turnover, hard and soft water, siphoning and phenological observations.   

This event has financial support from ISD318 Endowment Fund and the Itasca County Environmental Trust Fund.  THANK YOU to all of the wonderful volunteers who participated.  See latest report here

  • AUGUST:  Itasca County Fair Booth  - For the past three years, IWLP has shared a booth with Itasca Coalition of Lakes Association with a focus on educating the public on the spread a of aquatic invasive species in Itasca County and the control efforts that are being made.  
  • VARIOUS TIMES:  Programs about current water quality issues are offered throughout the year, i.e. 2015 Healthy Watersheds Conference:  Water & Forests held in July (see Home page).


2015 Healthy Watersheds Conference:  Water & Forests 

Five of the twelve presentations, as listed below, were videotaped and posted on YouTube.  You can view them here.   

  • “Let’s major in the minors:  What is a watershed and how does it fit with a county water plan?” by Dan Steward, Board of Water & Soil Resources
  • “Pharmaceuticals and endocrine active chemicals in surface water.” by Mark Ferrey, MN PCA
  • “Score your shore:  A self-assessment of habitat on your lake lot.” by Stephanie Simon, MN DNR
  • “Assessing the influence of natural copper-nickel bedrocks on water quality.” by Perry Jones, U.S. Geological Survey
  • “How are Itasca County Lakes doing?” by Moriya Rufer, RMB Environmental Laboratories

A year of planning yielded a day dedicated to the water, forests and watesheds of Itasca County on July 31st  at Sugar Lake Lodge on beautiful Siseebakwet Lake near Grand Rapids, Minnesota. This conference provided learning opportunities about why watersheds are important no matter where we live, whether urban, rural, waterfront or forest,  and what we can do to keep them healthy.  To read the full report and links to all reports click here





IWLP is managed by an all-volunteer Board of Directors and is always looking for new Board and committee members--dedicated people who are passionate about water-quality issues

IWLP VolunteersMany amazing volunteers have donated their time and talent to activities such as the Youth Water Summit, Native Shoreland Buffer Incentive project and the Deer-Pokegama Lakes Diagnostic Study, to name just a few.  We hope that you will join us in these efforts.  Contact us at:

Part-time summer job opportunities are available for aquatic invasive species education and control.  If you are interested, contact us at:  or by telephone at:  218-256-9100