By SHANNON WATKINS
Few would imagine that maple syrup could be used to fight aquatic weeds, salvage threatened mussel species, and keep boaters safe, but the Friends of Claytor Lake are willing to give it a try.
The local conservation group is having their second pancake dinner since last August. The first pancake dinner saw about 250 people come though the door and raised approximately $4,000.
“We’ll try to start doing two of these a year,” FOCL Executive Director Jeff Caldwell said. “One at the beginning of the summer and one at the end.”
The FOCL programs that the dinner will help fund include ridding the lake of the invasive hydrilla plant, preserving several types of freshwater mussels, and teaching boater safety classes.
In particular the emphasis right now is clearing out trash and debris that washed into the lake as a result of January’s flooding, says Caldwell.
FOCL is “very well received” in the community, says Caldwell; he thinks that FOCL is beneficial to everyone. “They’ll find us useful if they have anything to do with the lake at all. In the summer we work feverishly to keep litter out and keep it clean. We try to keep it as good an experience for the average visitor as possible.
“You’re supposed to be lazy and enjoy yourself when you get up to the lake,” says Caldwell. “We like to think we keep it clean and safe for you.”
Friends of Claytor Lake pancake dinner will be at at the Dublin Fatz on Saturday, April 13, from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. Tickets are $7 and can be purchased at Fatz or online from the FOCL website at HYPERLINK “http://www.focl.org/” www.focl.org/ (they will be mailed USPS upon purchase). Children 6 and under eat free.
Mark your calendars ahead for May, as well: on May 11 from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m., MK’s Gourmet Pizzeria and Shoppe in Dublin will set aside profits from all meals purchased for FOCL. A band is scheduled to entertain as well.