EDUCATE • PADDLE • INSPIRE
Four friends, kayaked around the biggest freshwater lake in the world (by surface area) to help raise awareness and money to conserve the pristine waters and landscapes they behold, share stories and values of what makes our backyard so important to us and those that live with it, and make a documentary film at the end of the journey.
^ "Our Water" - film trailer above!! ^
• Our Goals •
- Increase education and awareness of the impact and importance of clean water in the Great Lakes.
- Develop a greater understanding of Lake Superior to make smart, creative conservation recommendations and actions in the future.
- Promote and raise money for non-profit organizations like the Superior Watershed Partnership (SWP) so they can effectively continue with their critical projects to protect the Lakes.
- Demonstrate our passion and love for the Great Lakes.
- Identify individuals before, during, and after our travels who share our passion for the Great Lakes and want to help make a difference.
• Actions •
- Collect observational and scientific data throughout our trip to support projects at the SWP.
- Hold informal sessions to share stories about Lake Superior and how it has impacted lives of those who live on or near it.
- Distribute pamphlets and other materials to people we meet on the trip to further their understanding of the impact and importance of conservation in the Great Lakes.
- Gather contact information of volunteers and donors to share with the SWP and AGL.
- Clearly document our trip by the use of photography, film, and journals/online posts. At the end, make a documentary film to illustrate our travels.
- When complete, share our story at Film Festivals in the Great Lakes region to continue to raise awareness and raise money for our conservation cause.
The Great Lakes contain 20 percent of the world's fresh water supply, Lake Superior alone contains 3 quadrillion gallons of freshwater. However, the lakes are increasingly at risk of climate change, invasive species, waste overflow, just to name a few of the many issues that need our attention. The freshwater of Lake Superior generates billions of dollars in tourism, recreation, transportation/shipping, and food production. The Great Lakes also provide water, health, and spiritual benefits to the 34 million people that live on or near them. The vitality of the water depends on our protection and integration of smart use conservation.
Along the trip we will interview individuals, families, and businesses on how Lake Superior have impacted their lives. Our vision is to connect the dots of our lives and the people we meet about how our lives are intertwined with the Great Lakes. We are striving to make a change in the way people think and feel about the lakes so that our individual changes can add up to great changes in the future. Our idea of "Future Generation Leadership" is our biggest goal in hope to educate, inspire, and motivate so that this vital life source can be protected and sustained for thousands of years.
Superior is a large body of water that behaves like an ocean and it's northern latitude makes it prone to unpredictable weather. Paddling the entire shoreline, we will encounter treacherous waters, cold and wet nights, and cravings for an all-you-can-eat buffet. We all have significant experience in this environment as we have all worked at least two summers guiding in Munising, Michigan. As guides, we had to constantly observe the weather and water to make educated decisions on when, where, or if to paddle to ensure safety of our guests. We will be in contact with local Coast Guard, use certified GPS beacons, and carry the Coast Guard required gear while on the expedition.
The camera gear we are taking on the trip is difficult to keep clean, charged, and functional on long trips and near water. We will be using efficient solar chargers by Power Film Solar to keep equipment charged, and waterproof storage will keep gear operational and dry. All four of us will understand how to operate the equipment and every participate will be shooting video of the trip at some point to share multiple perspectives.
Even with all the challenges we will be facing, we are sure that the serene beauty and our spirit for adventure will carry us all the way around the lake shore and make for an unforgettable experience. We can't wait to get started!