For the Lake Wedowee Property Owners' Association, "Protecting Your Playground" is more than just our motto. It clearly states our mission of safeguarding and improving the quality of the lake environment and the interests of the property owners.
An important aspect of being .a member of the LWPOA includes volunteering to help with many of our ongoing events and services, some of which are shown below:
May 2022 LWPOA Update
From the Chairman, Tom Lettieri
Hello everyone. It has been a busy winter and spring as the Association celebrates its 25th Anniversary. LWPOA was incorporated in April 1997 and has been growing in numbers and scope ever since. Our membership stays between 450 and 500 member families, and we’d like to get that number over 500 as we enter membership renewal time this summer. We want all members to renew and invite a friend to join. Fewer than half of lake property owners are members and the more we have, the stronger our voice in protecting our playground.
One final note. We congratulate Sheila Smith of Alabama Power Shoreline Management on her retirement this summer. Sheila is a long-time member of the association and has been responsible for many improvements to Lake Wedowee. While Sheila will be greatly missed, we look forward to continuing our partnership with Crystal White. Have a great time in your retirement Sheila. You’ve earned it!
See you at the picnic on June 25th. Tom
Lake Safety, Tommy Bell
As Tom said above, as we enter the summer recreation season, please be extra careful on the lake. Be aware that boats can and do come from every direction. Slow down and look around. If you’re overtaking another boat, give them a wide berth... you never know when they might make a sudden turn. If you’re towing someone, look carefully behind before you start making a turn. There are a million other tips but they’re all common sense. Be aware, be safe. Don’t be “that guy.”
Wake surfing is a hot topic in the association, around the state, and the nation. Many people, organizations, and elected officials are looking for ways for wake surfers and everyone else to safely and peacefully coexist. If you are creating a large wake, be mindful of other boaters and shoreline structures. If possible, move to larger areas of the lake where your wake can dissipate. A recent study suggests up to 600 feet of distance is needed for wake surfing waves to diminish to the size of waves created by non-wake surf boats. Don’t get close to smaller boats. Those big wakes can capsize kayaks, canoes, and even small fishing boats. The Water Sports Industry Association knows that if wake surfers don’t police themselves, laws restricting them will be enacted for the protection of the larger population. So be aware, respectful, and courteous when wake surfing.
The association expects to be putting out ten more hazard marking buoys in the coming month. The Marine Police have approved our locations and given us the green light. When you see a buoy, stay plenty far away to avoid damaging your boat on whatever hazard it is marking.
Have a fun and safe summer. Tommy
Summer Picnic: Claudette Brown
Hooray! We’ll all get together on June 25th at Wedowee Marine South for the Summer (air conditioned indoor) Picnic. Again, we’ll have food, music, dancing, and a cash bar courtesy of Marine South. The picnic is later in June than usual because, as everyone emerges from the pandemic, it’s hard to get a venue. We must raise the price to $15 but hey, you can’t get a burger and fries at 5 Guys for less than that. Yes, you can dance at 5 Guys too, but everybody will look at you funny! We’re still working with caterers, but the meal will be a good one. Be watching for your invitation and RSVP form. The theme this year will be Memories of 25 years on the Lake, in recognition of the LWPOA 25th anniversary. You might get called on stage to tell the crowd your favorite lake memory. See you there! Claudette
Kids Fishing Day: Laura Krug
Wow, what a big job! The board has been working like crazy to put together this largest of all our annual events. It will be Wednesday, May 25th, at the Rice Pavilion at 3 p.m. We’ve had terrific community involvement as everybody is ready to get out and have fun again. We’ve got three years of pent-up fishing demand (the last event was in May 2019) so we’re expecting a big crowd of children. We have nearly 30 volunteers working the event but can always use more if you want to come out. Or bring your children or grandchildren. A list of all the merchants and others who are supporting KFD is at the end of the newsletter. Please patronize these establishments as they are instrumental in making the event happen as well as supporting so many other community events. What a great community! Laura
Water Quality: Frank Varisco
The heart of our water monitoring program is our network of volunteers who test the water around the lake monthly. Here’s a big thank you to our water testers: Jackie and Buddy Blue, Barry and Valerie Morris, Tom Lettieri, Tommy Cain, Tommy Bell, Kim Elmore, Bob Krug, Susan Urquhart, Gil Speck, Terry Mattocks and Patt High. These folks are trained by Alabama Water Watch out of Auburn University and keep a close eye on things in the water you can’t see. Fortunately, we rarely find anything of note and Lake Wedowee has among the very best water quality in the state. If you see anything that doesn’t look right, let us know via the contact button on the LWPOA webpage or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Frank
Treasurer’s Report: Cherry Ward
As always, the association is on very solid financial ground. As a non-profit, the income and the out-go must balance every year and we have done that consistently for 25 years. Our budget for the fiscal year just ending is $30,755 based on approximately $17,000 in paid memberships and the remainder from contributions to special events such as Kids Fishing Day and receipts for the Winter Dinner and Summer Picnic. Much of that money goes directly to the programs funded by the price of the meal or a contribution to Kid’s Fishing Day or the Lake Clean Up. A substantial part of your annual membership renewal goes to programs such as hazard buoys and water testing supplies. And of course, we have overhead that includes office supplies, mailing, tax preparation, printing, and insurance for the organization. The association also has about $36,000 in a contingency fund to hire engineers, lawyers, or environmentalists should a challenge to the lake license potentially negatively impact your property values or recreational opportunities. Cherry
Lake Clean Up: Rob Perry
BOATS! We need boats for the Lake Clean Up on October 25 – 27 (Tues/Wed/Thurs). We’re looking for pontoon boats that can get a little muddy, be pressure washed and not be harmed by the process. We know some of you have old pontoon boats you use for fishing or whatever and could contribute to the cause. The association pays for all the gas. You don’t have to be on the boat if you can’t get away for three days in the middle of the week. We’d love to have you, but we need your old boat. Alabama Power will be back with their “garbage barge” this fall, which will increase the amount of trash we can pick up. We did it ourselves last year which meant a lot of extra trips in smaller boats, but we still had a respectable haul, and the lake looks much better for the effort of scores of volunteers. Let me know if you have a boat we can use. Contact me at email@example.com. Rob
Relicensing: Barry Morris
No news is good news. Alabama Power filed the license application in November 2021 and, so far, no challenges have arisen. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has until November of 2023 to ask for more information and analysis, review the entire package, and grant the renewed license. The application or license itself can be challenged at any time, including after the new license is granted. The company has worked very hard to address all concerns that could lead to a challenge as it is better in all respects to get it right the first time rather than go back and change anything. There is no such thing as a small change as any alteration sends a ripple through the entire system. Every aspect of dam and reservoir operation are interconnected, from lake levels, to flood control, to fish habitat and spawning, to power output, and continuous flows in the river below the dam. We’re keeping our fingers crossed, but so far so good. Barry
Local businesses and Agencies Supporting Kids Fishing Day
Rice Pavilion on Lake Wedowee
Bobber's Bar & Grill
State Farm Insurance, Ken Seiffert, Agent
Buster Miles Chevrolet
Connally, Jordon and Assoc. PC
Beautiful Smiles - Dr. Michael Edwards
First Bank of Alabama
H & M Drugs
Southeastern Realty and Auction Co
Lake Wedowee Winery
Lakeview Auto Service, Inc.
Whispering Pines Farm
Benefield Funeral Home
Best Brands Plus Randolph County Appliance
Boondocks BBQ and Creamery
Crouch Team Realty
First Light Coffee
First State Bank
Pat and Tom Lettieri
Old Waters Inn at Wedowee
Southern States Bank
Superior Pest Control
Wedowee Building Supply
Lake Wedowee Docks
Bonner Heat and Air
Meadows Farm Equipment
Pat’s Barber Shop
Randolph County Sheriff’s Office
Randolph County Rescue Squad
Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources
Speaking of that, many of you are aware of Alabama Senate Bill 281 that would have limited wake surfing operations to larger areas of our lakes. Unfortunately, the bill died in the waning minutes of the 2022 session. A similar bill will be back in some form next year and we’d like to hear your feelings about wake surfing. Be watching your email for a survey so we can decide how the association should approach this. Depending on what we find, we will take appropriate action on proposed legislation. If the membership feels strongly that wake surfing should be restricted, we will make your desires known to key legislators and to other lake POAs around the state. When the on-line survey comes to you, please make your voices heard.
The winter dinner was a great success, and we are planning the summer (indoor) picnic along the same lines. It will be on June 25th at Wedowee Marine South. Details are provided below.
Kids Fishing Day is back on after a three-year COVID hiatus. The enthusiasm in the community has been terrific and the board has put a huge effort in staging this as the largest of our annual events.
The association continues to partner with the Alabama Marine Police to make the lake safer. Several board members met with the AMPs in April to work out the details for additional hazard buoys, and to discuss wake surfing and personal watercraft. As the lake population grows, it is imperative that everyone boat safely and be respectful of others on the water.
An email was previously sent regarding potential new directors for the 2022 to 2025 term. We have some great prospects again this year, and would appreciate your response in reviewing and voting on the three candidates.
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