Lake Lucerne Advancement Association
June 19, 2021
Meeting was called to order by Rick Hermus, President at 9:00 a.m.
Attendance: Jim Wienser, Joe Heilmann, Jim Zach, Sally Hickman, Rick Hermus, Patty Voigt,
Jack Kloss, LexAnn Hitchcock. There were 40 guests in attendance.
Jim Z. has correction to minutes from 8-31-2019 under Fish Habitat Committee to read WI DNR
Regional aquatic Biologist Scott Van Egeren’s shoreline habitat and aquatic plant survey is
continuing and will finish by this fall.
Joe moved to approve the minute from 8-31-2019. Terry Coughlin second the motion. Motion
We are paid $12.00 per hour for volunteers under our grant.
We are having issues with the toilet at the landing. May decide to not put there next year. We
are on the DNR list for a toilet and fix the parking lot.
Jim Zach gave Fish Stick project update. This is the largest Fish Stick project in the state of
Wisconsin. The permit is good thru 2025. Fish Stick Project can be summarized in 5 phasesPlanning, Permitting, Preparation, Placement and Propagation Payoff. A total of 41 fish sticks
were built on the southern end of Lucerne, 2 were in the northern portion. There were 7 more
planned but we were unable to complete due to ice conditions.
1) Planning — Nov 2018-October 2020:
Understanding that the nearshore web-of-life from microscopic to the visible is dependent
upon nutrients such as O (oxygen0, CO2 (carbon dioxide), N (nitrogen), and P (phosphorus) —
however elemental C (carbon) is the necessary building block for life that then utilizes those
nutrients. C can become a limiting factor in oligotrophic lakes with developed shorelines where
trees no longer fall in and are allowed remain in the water. Fish sticks provide that source of
C. Fish cribs in deeper water do not serve that function.
Thanks in this phase to LLAA Fish Habitat/Fishery and Water Quality Committee members: Tim
Sprink, Dave Schlitz, Mike Heim, Ryan Siggelkow, Tim and Jeff Turriff, Mary Heilmann, Ed
Mullaney, Jim Wienser, and Vern Kamenick. WI DNR Fishery staff including Greg Matzke, Scott
Van Egeren, Scott Toshner, Greg Sass. Sakoagon Fish Biologist Mike Pruel. Rick Gruel
Landscaping. WDNR MFL Specialist Liz Wood. UW Extension Lakes staff at UWSP – Eric Olson
and Lynn Markham. WI Lakes – Mike Engleson. WI Lakes Partnership staff and presenters at
the WI Lakes and Rivers Conferences. Ed Smith – Northwoods Insurance Agency and Nate
Pezewski – Horton Group Insurance Agency. A fishery habitat development grant from the
Forest County Potawatomi Community and Lynne Black – Town of Lincoln Chair made project
2) Permitting — July-October 2020:
We have a 5 year permit, through 2025.
Thank you to:
Shoreline property owners willing to host fish stick(s): Cary Chmielewski, Jim Mitchell, Mike
Heim, Jim Wienser, John E Novak.
Fish stick plan and design – WDNR Greg Matzke
Lucerne shoreline habitat and aquatic plant survey (confirmed lake is low in woody shoreline
material (Carbon)) and provided expensive data to prepare for a revised lake management plan
if we take advantage of it.
Application was a very complicated process – Forest Cty Land & Water Conservationist Steve
Kircher made it possible.
WI DNR Water Management Specialist Jared Seidl.
3) Project Preparation — November 2020-February 2021:
Thank you to Tim Sprink, WDNR Jason Headson and Liz Wood who had selected suitable trees
on Anthony Island. John Novak hired a tree cutter who dropped trees around the island which
became covered with over a foot of snow.
We had uncertainty of winter weather conditions and during COVID pandemic. Monitoring ice
thickness, planning ice road routes, plowing snow and packing slushy snow so areas could
freeze solid, then roads and staging areas needed to be maintained with additional snow
blowing and plowing using tractors, trucks, UTV/ATVs, and snowmobiles. Thank you to Steve
Van Grinsven, Tim Sprink, Jim Wienser, Kole Olson, Robert Pfeiffer, Jake Wincapaw, Jeff Turriff,
Ryan Siggelkow, and Rick Hermus.
Two hundred fish stick anchors and cables were ordered, additional cable needed to be added
to the anchors. Also 3/16” aircraft cable needed to be cut into two hundred 7’ lengths and
crimped end-loops made for tying trees to each in each cluster. This was done by Joe
Heilmann, Mike Heim, Jim Wienser, and myself.
4) Placement of Trees and Fish Sticks — Two long weekends in February 2021:
By early February we had 18-22” of ice under our ice roads and staging areas. Thank you Ken
Mihalko and his skid steer. He joined in our endeavor on a 1 day notice after the prior
contractor backed out. Ken had lighter equipment and less clearance but because of our snow
clearing he had no problems moving trees and assembling the fish sticks. We made efficient
use of Ken’s services because of the donation of labor and machinery by Roy Conrad, John E
Novak, Tim Sprink, Steve Van Grinsven, and Jim Wienser. Some removed trees off the island to
where other operators connected and dragged them over to the staging areas were Ken was
able to pick them up and assemble. Additional volunteers who located trees in the snow,
cabled/uncabled trees for the tractor operators, and cabled the fish stick clusters included Mike
Heim, Dave Schlitz, Dave Ebben, Jim Wienser, Jennifer Zach and myself.
As the weather warmed, two holes formed in our ice roads — first one cut off our direct access
to the DNR islands after the first weekend. That meant that all equipment had to go over
Anthony to access the DNR islands. The second hole formed on the last day of the second
weekend closing off further access to the DNR islands.
WDNR Greg Matzke and Katie Renschen developed an idea to anchor the fish stick clusters
directly to the lake bottom by using an ice auger to drill holes and drive the anchors into the
lake bottom, completed March 3. This saved us a lot of time and additional expense of
temporarily cabling fish sticks to on-shore trees.
5) Propagation and Payoff:
What we’ve completed so far is habitat work. It’s not very visible. Initially the structures will
attract fish but if fish are given a chance to propagate and provide food and shelter to the
young fish over the next few years, the beneficiaries will be fish, people, loons, and eagles.
Since our permit is open through 2025, the general membership present were invited to call me
if interested in hosting a fish stick or tree fall secured to their shoreline.
Rick Hermus gave a short report regarding the “Loons and Lead Program. Lead poisoning is the
leading cause of death for loons. Working on education. Smith Sport and Hobby has lead free
Healthy Lakes Program handout has 5 programs that you can participate in. They include Fish
Sticks, Native Plantings, Diversion, Rock Infiltration and Rain Garden. Steve Kircher, County
Conservationist-Land Information/GIS Director is our Lakes Grant Program volunteer. His email
is if you have questions on these programs.
LexAnn would like to thank the 21 volunteers that came for clean up. She gave the following
update of events: July 4th boat parade at 10:00 a.m. with Water’s Edge start. Brat Fry drive
thru on July 17 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Fun Days needs volunteers for 2 hour shifts. Schaeffers
has given permission to sell raffle tickets outside of the store. Committee Head meeting on July
17 at 9 a.m.
Lake Lucerne Golf Outing on Tuesday, September 7, 2021 at Nicolet Country Club, Laona.
Registration 1:00 p.m. with Shot Gun start 1:30 p.m. Dinner and cocktails at Water’s Edge on
Lake Lucerne. Please register by September 3. Contact Mark Orlovsky at 414-255-4271 with
Rick asked for a motion to approve the budget. Joe Heilmann moved to approve. Tom
Board Position 1: Mike Hitchcock nominated Diane Braunreiter
Vern Kamenick nominated Jim Zach
Bill Voigt nominated Jenny Criel
All accepted nomination.
Board Position 2: Terry Coughlin nominated Joe Heimann. Joe accepted nomination.
Secretary: Joe Heilmann nominated Patty Voigt. Patty accepted nomination.
President: Jack Kloss nominated Mark Orlovsky
Jenny Criel nominated Jim Wienser
All accepted nomination.
Rick entertained a motion to adjourn meeting. Motion to adjourn by Joe. Patty second the motion. Meeting adjourned.