Prince William Conservation Alliance
Home About Us Calendar Blog Resources Donate
White-breasted Nuthatch
Prince William Conservation Alliance
Explore, Enjoy & Protect Local Natural Areas

Community Report
December 2, 2009
Newsletter Archive
Great Blue Heron
Fish come and go, but it is the memory of afternoons on the stream that endure.
E. Donnall Thomas
In the News
Lancaster Farming, November 27 2009

Bay 'dead zone' still bad in '09
Annapolis Capital; November 27 2009
Paris Glendening, Baltimore Sun; December 1 2009

What will Prince William look like in 2030?
Eastern BluebirdFirst Thursday Speaker Series

When: Thursday, Dec. 3 at 7:30 pm

Where: Bull Run Unitarian Church,  9350 Main Street, Manassas 

Speaker: Charlie Grymes, Chair of the Prince William Conservation Alliance 
Prince William has evolved since the continent of Africa smushed into North America, and created the land that is now Prince William County.  Dinosaurs tromped through Manassas 100 million years ago – and a few have been elected to office since then. 

Migrants settled down here 10-15,000 years ago, then newcomers led by John Smith sailed up the Potomac River past Choppawamsic and the Occoquan in 1608. 

The first industrial site in Northern Virginia was the Neabsco Iron Works. After we converted our forests into charcoal and firewood, we created such massive erosion that we killed the port of Dumfries.

Since then, farming has faded, suburbia has grown, and we’ve converted much of the county into a deer’s dream habitat.  Now, with all levels of government maxxed out financially, the idea that we’ll keep growing – just like we did since Shirley Highway was built – is under review. 

How will our fields, forests, and streams look in 20 more years – and what sort of “nature” will be nearby in our neighborhoods?
    Lake Manassas - Public access in 2010? 
Lake Manassas
When: Monday, Dec. 7, 5:30 p.m.

Where: Manassas City Hall, 9027 Center St., Manassas

The Manassas City Council is holding a special work session to discuss opportunities to open Lake Manassas to the public.

Government staff and the Virginia Dept. of Game & Inland Fisheries have been working on a proposal to open Lake Manassas for public fishing, boating (no gas engines) and the quiet enjoyment of the scenic landscape.

Under the current proposal, Game & Inland Fisheries would assume responsibilities for managing surveys, stocking the lake and law enforcement. They would also construct a low-impact gravel parking lot, boat ramp and finger pier for launching and retrieving boats. 

The City of Manassas has two options. Under the first scenario, public access to Lake Manassas would be unrestricted, open without registration or fees (except your fishing license). 

This open-access approach is successful at other Virginia reservoirs, including the Occoquan Reservoir in Prince William, Beaverdam Creek Reservoir in Loudoun, the Abel and Smith Reservoirs in Stafford, Mountain Run and Lake Pelham Reservoirs in Culpeper.

The City’s other option is to place a modular or other structure at the site and contract with local business to manage a concession and collect fees, if imposed. Public access points would be opened at sunup and closed at sundown.

The 800-acre Lake Manassas has been closed to the public for many years. Good fishing spots are few and far between. Lake Manassas would be a welcome addition appreciated by wildlife watchers, paddlers and fishermen alike.

More information will be provided at the City Council’s December 7 worksession. Plan to attend – you’ll hear the latest information and, most important of all, let Councilmen know that opening Lake Manassas to the public is important to you.