Living Sustainably: Everyone is part of a watershed – celebrate yours!

Living Sustainably: Everyone is part of a watershed – celebrate yours!

We love our waterfront here around Holland, but did you know that, really, everyone lives on the water?

It’s true. We all live in a watershed. A watershed is an area of land that drains into a certain stream, river, or lake. It’s like a bathtub where all the water flows towards the drain because it’s the lowest spot. And if you live in the greater Holland area, you live in the Macatawa Watershed.

On Saturday, July 15, the Macatawa Water Festival will be back for its third year on Holland’s Windmill Island.

The festival is designed to help people of all ages learn about one of our most precious resources, Lake Macatawa and the Macatawa Watershed. The festival will feature hands-on activities and educational exhibits from more than two dozen local partners.

Activities will be available for all ages. Every young explorer will receive a Watershed Passport. As they learn from various vendors and participate in activities, they will receive passport stamps. Once their passport is complete, they will turn it in for a prize.

Why should you be at the 2017 Macatawa Water Festival? Here are seven good reasons:

1. Join in more than 20 hands-on activities;

2. Ride in a voyageur canoe or paddle a kayak around the island;

3. Build a rain barrel or wood duck nest box;

4. Fish for a trout, have it filleted and take it home for dinner;

5. Learn about recycling, composting, and upcycling;

6. Take a bike ride around the island or ride in a pedal cab;

7. It’s a great and free way for the whole family to unplug and get outdoors!

— Ashley Van Zee is the Community Outreach Coordinator at the Outdoor Discovery Center Macatawa Greenway. The ODCMG is a local nonprofit with the mission to connect people, land and nature.

This Week’s Sustainability Framework Theme:

Environmental Awareness/Action: Environmental education and integrating environmental practices into our planning will change negative outcomes of the past and improve our future.

About this series:

Living Sustainably is a collection of community voices sharing updates about local sustainability initiatives. It is presented by the Holland-Hope College Sustainability Institute, a joint project of Hope College, the City of Holland and Holland Board of Public Works. Go to for more information.