District 10 Como Community Council

Lake Como Cleanup - October 8, 9am-Noon

The Como Community Council, in partnership with the Capital Region Watershed District, plans multiple Lake Como cleanup events each year. Volunteers gather with others in the community to clean trash from the lake surface or shoreline. We’ll meet near the dock on the lower level lake side of the Pavilion to pick up tools, supplies, and have a refreshment.

District 10 provides trash-grabbers, rakes, buckets, nets, trash bags, and nitrile gloves for those who need them. Or, feel free to provide your own gear. Registration is not required, but it helps us plan and communicate if changes come up.

More 2022 Dates

Saturday, October 8, 9am-Noon

Como Curb Clean-Up (October-November)

Como Community Council is teamed up with the Como Active Citizen Network and Capitol Region Watershed District for the Como Curb Clean-up. When it rains, leaves on streets release nutrients into the water that flows into storm drains and the lake. There it becomes food for invasive algae. Join 100+ neighbors in sweeping your curb once a week this fall to help keep Como Lake clean.

Signing up below to be an official participant helps us track results and helps (a lot) to support future efforts!

Collective Curb Cleaning Practice (from ComoACN website)

Simple in design, but mighty in its impact, Curb Cleaning is an individual, household practice led by Como neighbors on their own properties. When we all do this, it becomes a collective practice, removing water pollution sources that, in the aggregate, significantly impact our beloved local waters – Como Lake and the Mississippi River.

2021 Curb Cleaning season was Oct. 1 through November 30.

During autumn, our focus is leaves! All those fall leaves that accumulate in our street gutters otherwise known as our “curbs.” Each household focuses just on the stretch of curb that borders their own private property (alleys too, if you have one).

Streets + leaves + stormwater runoff = nutrient pollution in local waters!

When rainwater washes over leaf litter accumulated along street curbs, phosphorus and nitrogen leach out of those leaves (think of a tea bag). This creates nutrient infused runoff that then flows to the nearest storm drain and into underground storm sewer pipes. In Como, our pipes empty into Como Lake and the Mississippi River.

Como Lake is already impaired due to excessive nutrients that feed noxious algae. This annual pollution influx coming from our neighborhood streets further degrades lake and river water quality and damages the aquatic ecosystem.

How to practice Curb Cleaning!

It’s simple, really.

  • October 1st, begin monitoring the curbs that border your private property.
  • Once a week (or as needed) if you notice leaf litter has accumulated along the curb, sweep it up.
  • You can simply push it up onto your boulevard. This at least gets it out of the street where stormwater runoff will flow. You can then deal with the leaves when you’re ready to manage your yard leaves.
  • Or you can gather them up and move them immediately to a pile in your backyard, to breakdown into compost over the winter.
  • Or you can bundle them up and take them to the nearest county yard waste site.
  • Or you can bag them in a compostable bag and ask your waste hauler to pick them up (for a fee).
  • November 30th, if you’d like your pollution source removal to be counted in our community-wide, aggregated measurement of Pounds of Phosphorous Prevented, you can report a.) how many feet of curbage you took care of and b.) how often you cleaned your curbage. We have a form below and will also email reporting info to you if you’ve registered to participate.

2021 Como Curb Clean-up Results

  • Total responding participants: 61
  • Total feet cleaned: 31,302ft
    • Number of miles cleaned: 5.9
    • Equivalent football field lengths cleaned: 104
    • Equivalent number of times around Como Lake cleaned: 3.5
    • Number of times to the moon and back cleaned: 0.0000124
  • Phosphorus estimated in 1ft of curb: 0.0003125
  • Total lbs. of phosphorus prevented from reaching Como Lake: 9.78lbs
  • Pounds of curly leaf pond weed this phosphorus amount could produce: 4,891lbs!
    • Tons it could have produced: 2.45t

Regional Parks Clean-Up Day - Earth Day (ish)

D10 Como Park usually co-hosts the Como Park portion of the city’s Regional Parks Clean-up Day.

When: Saturday, April 23, 2022 from 9am-11:30am

What: Individuals and groups of all ages come together to pick up litter that has recently become exposed due to the melting snow.

How: Participating is easy! Register online, then drop by the pavilion around 9am on April 23 to check in and pick up bags and gloves. Borrowed equipment should be returned by 11:30am. Registration is not required but it helps us plan and communicate with volunteers in the event of poor weather, etc.

Where (Como Park): Look for our table near the Como Lake Pavilion to sign-in, pick-up some supplies, and debate which part of Como Park is your favorite with one of our helpful volunteer board members.