For Cleaner Water
       & Fewer Floods  

Area Events & Workshops

  • 06 Nov 2013 4:57 PM | Anonymous
    ZWP and History Center Grant To Use History to Understand the Present

    Zumbro Watershed Partnership (ZWP) is working with the History Center of Olmsted County (HCOC) to develop an "environmental history" of the Zumbro Watershed. The scientific, history, and land use information that they collect will help ZWP and HCOC educate the public about how we have arrived at the river system that is prone to erosion, sedimentation, and downstream flooding.

    Both organizations will use the collected information for displays, programs, and other educational outreach.

    Read the whole article at:
  • 06 Nov 2013 4:54 PM | Anonymous
    Zumbro River Voted "Best Tubing River"

    It's not often the that Zumbro River gets much recognition. But recently, it was voted "Best Tubing River". Check it out.
  • 09 Sep 2013 9:39 AM | Anonymous

    Schad-Tracy Signs of Oronoco donated $800 of highway signs for the May Zumbro Watershed Partnership Rain Barrel Sale.

    "The signs made it a lot easier for people to find our rain barrel sale this year," said Zumbro Watershed Partnership Education Coordinator Kevin Strauss.


    Business donations are a major source of funding for Zumbro Watershed Partnership's projects for "Cleaner Water and Fewer Floods" in the region. If your business would like to support our programs, please contact ZWP Executive Director Lawrence Svien at

  • 23 Aug 2013 2:53 PM | Anonymous
    Zumbro & Friends Flood Mitigation Town Hall Meetings

    Zumbro & Friends is a coalition of watershed and community groups working to reduce or eliminate destructive flooding in the Zumbro Watershed. To better understand how and where flooding happens in the watershed, the group has been working with Dr. Steve Druschel from Minnesota State University Mankato to develop a watershed model. These public meetings will give residents a chance to learn about the model and how it can help guide flood mitigation planning and projects in the future.

    1. Mazeppa Sept 17, 6:30-8:30

    Community Room 121 Maple Street NE Mazeppa, MN 55956


    2. Mantorville Sept 19, 6:30-8:30

    Mantorville Senior Citizen’s Center (Old Catholic Church) 601 Clay St. Mantorville MN 55955 


    3. Wanamingo Sept 24, 6:30-8:30

    Community Room (Old Fire Hall) 401 Main St. Wanamingo, MN 55983


    4. Oronoco: Sept 26, 6:30-8:30

    Oronoco Community Center 115 2nd St. NW, Oronoco, MN 55960


    Meeting Format:

    6:30 to 7 - coffee & meet Dr. Druschel, Sarah Green and members of Zumbro & Friends.


    7 – 7:30 - Dr. Druschel & Sarah Green present findings of a Zumbro watershed modeling study that has been completed by civil engineering students.


    7:30 to 8:30 – Public questions, input and suggestions regarding flood mitigation in the Zumbro Watershed.

    For more information, contact John Homme of the Zumbro & Friends citizens group. Homme can be reached by phone at 507-206-0177 or by email at 

  • 11 Jul 2013 4:15 PM | Anonymous

    Thanks to a Community Partnership Grant from the Southeast Libraries Cooperating and funds from the Minnesota Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund, ZWP received a grant to develop two new programs for watershed libraries and schools.

    Using "Mr. Wizard Style" science experiments and cool science demonstrations, Education Coordinator Kevin Strauss gets children and adults excited about science, and taking care of the Zumbro River Watershed.

    The Amazing Water Science Show: introduces participants to all the amazing things that water can do, and how we can keep our waterways cleaner. 

    The Amazing Rock Science Show: introduces participants to the rocks under our feet, the amazing volcanic and glacier history of Minnesota, and how we can all keep our rivers and groundwater clean.

    Other programs include our "Amazing Animals" and "Zumbro Zoe" shows.

    All programs are open to the public, come out and watch. Also if you know of a school or library who has funding to bring these programs to their site, contact Kevin Strauss at

    Tues., July 16, 10:30 a.m., Kasson-Mantorville Public Library, Kasson  “Amazing Animals of the Zumbro River Valley”

    Tues., July 23, various times, Zumbrota Public Library, Zumbrota,

                            10:30 a.m. “Zumbro Zoe’s Amazing Clean Water Show”

                            1:00 p.m. “Amazing Animals of the Zumbro River Valley”

    Tues., July 23, 7:00 p.m., Lake City Public Library, Lake City

                            “Amazing Water Science”

    Wed. July 24, 10:30 a.m., Kasson-Mantorville Public Library, Kasson 

                            “Amazing Water Science”

    Wed. Aug. 7, 1:00 p.m., Rochester Public Library, “Amazing Water Science”

    This project was funded in part or in whole with money from Minnesota's Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund.

  • 08 Jul 2013 4:46 PM | Anonymous
    Rochester residents have watched our flood control system shrug off storms and high water that have pulverized downstream communities. But that's not by accident. Community leaders worked hard to protect the Med City, and they did it while reducing the water flow leaving Rochester. Today the river releases 18 percent less water, even during high water events, that it did in the 1970s. Find out how these changes happened in this article from the Rochester Post-Bulletin.
  • 06 Jun 2013 1:16 PM | Anonymous

    Simulation games give participants a chance to practice skills that they need in the real (nongame) world. They also teach participants about new and innovative ways to solve problems like river pollution or flooding.


    Join the Zumbro Watershed Partnership on Thursday, June 13 at 6:30 p.m. at the Cascade Meadow Wetlands and Environmental Science Center (2900--19th St. NW, Rochester) to play "The Watershed Game" a game where participants need to work together to solve pollution problems in their region. Chocolate is involved. 


    For more information, contact Zumbro Watershed Partnership Education Coordinator Kevin Strauss at or 507-993-3411.

  • 30 May 2013 1:10 PM | Anonymous

    For the second year in a row, the Zumbro Watershed Partnership has coordinated river pollution sampling projects under a Surface Water Assessment Grant (SWAG) from the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA).


    In this project, ZWP will work with teams of water professionals and volunteers to collect water samples from Rochester in the south to Pine Island in the center of the watershed and Wabasha in the east. Teams will be collecting data on river clarity, oxygen levels, bacteria count, and chemical pollutants.


    If you would like to volunteer to help out with water sampling, contact ZWP Executive Director Lawrence Svien at or by phone at 507-226-6787.

  • 18 Apr 2013 9:19 PM | Anonymous
    When snow melts or rain falls, the water picks up pollutants as it drains across land to a stream. Measuring that flush of pollutants can be tricky because some stream water levels rise and fall so quickly – in a matter of hours. It’s also important because the bulk of pollutants can come from one major storm in a season.

    Seeking to detect that flush of pollutants, staff from the Zumbro Watershed Partnership is heading out into the elements this year to check the river for pollutants when snow begins to melt or rain starts to fall. These checks include measuring the water temperature, its clarity and other conditions.

    Staff will also take water samples for lab analysis to determine levels of nutrients and sediment. These are the two most common pollutants in Minnesota waters, with nutrients fueling algal blooms and sediment clouding the water.

    While the Zumbro Watershed staff and local partners regularly monitors the health of the Zumbro River and it's tributaries, this water monitoring is special because it captures the level of pollutants in runoff. Water picks up soil, fertilizer and other pollutants as it runs off the land to a stream, lake or wetland.

    “Pollutant loads are typically highest during and after high precipitation events because many pollutant concentrations are often highest during periods of elevated stream flow. Concentrations can also vary between events as the source of runoff and contributing pollutant sources differ with rainfall intensity, areas of bare soil, and other factors,” said Pat Baskfield, hydrologist with the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) groundwater and load monitoring unit.

    “Capturing data from all major events during first flush and the ensuing high flow period is essential to determining the health of rivers across Minnesota. Each bit of data helps to fill in a picture of water quality,” he said.

    To accurately determine a pollutant load, the Zumbro watershed staff will also check the river during typical flow conditions – when no rain or snowmelt occurs – to establish a baseline of pollutant levels. These checks will provide a comparison point to determine the amount of pollutants flushed in during high water periods.

    The data from Zumbro watershed will flow into a statewide water monitoring network, along with six other groups in southern Minnesota. The MPCA recently awarded more than $900,000 in grants to these local partners to do this monitoring. The Zumbro Watershed Partnership received some of that funding to help pay for staff time, lab analysis, and equipment for monitoring four sites on the Zumbro River.

    These points of data will provide long-term information to help fill in the picture of water quality across the state. The Zumbro staff will combine these water quality data with stream flow information to estimate overall pollutant loading from a watershed or drainage area.

    This effort is part of agency-led Watershed Pollutant Load Monitoring Network, which collects data to provide information about the health of Minnesota watersheds – our rivers and what feeds into them. The information helps identify where excessive pollutants are entering river systems, from both direct and runoff sources.

    Because this network is statewide and long-term, it can help identify trends over time and compare one part of the state to another. It is also useful to evaluate the effectiveness of remedial activities and to identify waters that need protection.

    For more information visit the network’s website (

    For the recent funding round, the MPCA also awarded grants to:
    · Cannon River Watershed Partnership;
    · Chippewa River Watershed Project;
    · Fillmore Soil and Water Conservation District;
    · Hawk Creek Watershed Project;
    · Minnesota State University-Mankato Water Resources Center; and
    · Redwood Cottonwood Rivers Control Area.

    These grants are funded by the Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment. The next funding round for this program will be in August 2013 and target northwestern, north-central, and northeastern Minnesota.

    Source: Zumbro Watershed Partnership and the MPCA
Contact Us:

Mailing Address: Zumbro Watershed Partnership, Inc.
12 Elton Hills Drive NW
Rochester, MN 55901

ZWP Executive Director Contact Information 
Phone Number: 507-226-6787

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