Friends of the Sauk River


Promote it, Paddle it, Protect it!

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News from 2008

Annual Membership Meeting

On September 13, 2008, the Friends of the Sauk River held its third annual membership meeting. The meeting was held at the City Center Administration Building in Melrose, MN. Approximately 20 members attended. A new Board of Directors was established. During the meeting several presentations were made. Mitch Bender discussed the history of the Friends of the Sauk River. Marian Bender from the Minnesota Waters gave a presentation regarding the great work her organization is doing. Adam Hjlem from the Sauk River Watershed District gave an update on the upper Sauk River project.  Andrew Dotseth gave a summary of the Sauk River clean up. A status report emailed to the Friends of the Sauk River regarding the Sauk Riverís state canoe route designation was read to the crowd. At the end of the day,  a cool life jacket was raffled and Jan Bjork was the lucky winner. We are still waiting for her to model it for us.

Area Water Festivals

Members of the Friends of the Sauk River volunteered as presenters and support staff at the Middle Sauk River Water Festival in Melrose, MN on May 14, 2008, the Lower Sauk River Water Festival in St. Joseph on September 17, 2008 and the new Three Rivers Water Festivals in Sartell on September 25, 2008. These water festivals are organized by the Sauk River Watershed District. The mission of the water festivals is to educate area 4th graders on the value of our water resources.

Sauk River Clean Up Day

The first Sauk River Clean Up Day was held on May 3, 2008. The day was a great success despite the cool weather. Over 50 volunteers helped to clean nearly 3 miles of the beautiful Sauk River. Several St. Cloud State University students organized the event on behalf of the Friends of the Sauk River. They were Andrew Dotseth, Bill Erickson, Jon Frikken, Madison Jones, Eric Johnson, Tyler Kruse, Amit Pradhananga, Joe Stafne, Joe Storlien and Tyler Zelazny. Special gratitude and acknowledgement also goes out to the clean-up sponsors: Salem Lutheran Church, the SCSU Volunteer Connection, the Sauk River Watershed District, Minnesota DNR - Adopt a River, City of Waite Park, City of St. Cloud, West Central Sanitation, Sue Monson, Matt Reuter, Gary Dotseth - Wells Fargo Home Mortgage, Deborah and Duane Fischer, Central Minnesota Noon Optimist Club, Kentucky Fried Chicken - St. Cloud & Waite Park, Subway - Southside Locations, Bernicks, Trobec's Bus Service, Monster Energy Drinks. And of course, THANKS to all the great volunteers.


In April 2008, The Friends of the Sauk River adopted a portion of the Sauk River in the St. Cloud area. Our stretch of the river runs between Highway 75 in Waite Park and the 8th Street bridge. This area of the river will the target area for upcoming river clean ups.

501(c)(3) Status Obtained

In March 2008, The Friends of the Sauk River receive 501(c)(3) status. This now means donations to the organization are tax deductable and that the organization can apply for many more types of grants. A special thanks to Joe Storlien and Gene Waldorf for their work in this effort.