Truesdale Lake  

South Salem, New York

Lake New Year’s Resolutions 2024

Some Lake Stewardship Resolutions for the new year:

  1. I will join and volunteer with my lake association and make my voice heard and my energy felt during this coming year.
  2. If I do work on my house or property I will get proper wetlands permits, building permits, and other needed permits for the safety of my family and the health of the lake.
  3. I will get my septic tank pumped and inspected. If the tank baffles are missing or damaged, I’ll have them replaced. (Wind River, formerly Kaiser-Battistone offers 15% discount for lake area residents – but you have to tell them about the discount!) Regular septic pumping and maintenance is prudent for homeowners and for the lake health.
  4. I will “overseed” my lawn rather than spread fertilizer or pesticides. I’ll tell my lawn service – or myself – to cut my grass high and leave the clippings on the lawn. If I think fertilizer is needed, I’ll use phosphate-free fertilizer since it’s the law. I will also tell my lawn care company that it is illegal in Westchester County to use phosphate based fertilizer unless extensive testing has been done on the soil – and even then only on a limited basis and never within 20 feet of the lake.
  5. If I live on the lake, I’ll plant a “buffer” of native plants to slow the flow of rainwater or stormwater (and the pollutants and nutrients it carries) into the lake. (More info from Penn State.) I’ll also pull up some invasive plants and plant some native ones.
  6. I’ll pick up after my pets — and for the love of all that’s neighborly — I will throw their poop into MY OWN trash.
  7. This year I’ll make sure no oil or gas from my mower or car spills on the ground or into the lake.
  8. If I take coolers, sand toys, or other beach or boat items to another waterbody, I’ll make sure that they are free of weeds and shells before bringing them back here so I don’t transport invasive plants and animals.
  9. If I visit the association beaches and boat launch properties, I will leave them in better condition than when I arrived. That includes putting all beach toys away and removing trash.
  10. If I fish on the lake, I will clean up my fishing tackle, monofilament, and any hooks that get snared. I will get my Truesdale Resident Fishing Tag and display it when I fish on the lake. I will not fish in areas where fishing is prohibited (all beaches and the dam/spillway near the siphons). I will not leave fishing equipment, debris, or garbage around or in the lake. It does not disappear and it kills birds, turtles, and other wildlife.
  11. If I haven’t done so already, this is the year I’ll take a safe boating course.
  12. I will make sure my Truesdale Lake boat sticker is still affixed to all of my boats. If any have come off I will replace them. If I have new or unregistered boats I will register them and get a sticker. This applies for boats stored on private lakefronts as well as the boat launch properties.
  13. For when the lake is frozen if I have a ladder I will keep it close by the lake in case an ice rescue is needed.
  14. I’ll start or use a compost pile (away from the lake shore, wet areas, or streams).
  15. If it’s icy, I’ll minimize my use of salt by using kitty litter or sand where I can.
  16. I’ll learn more about my lake’s history, health, plants, and animals this year.
  17. I will send photos I take around the lake to us here ( or tag them #truesdalelake on our Instagram page so everyone can enjoy!
  18. I will try out sailing in the Truesdale Sunfish Fleet #27 this spring and summer. (Sunfish are available to borrow from lake residents if you’d like to give it a try – contact us ahead of the Sunday races and we can figure it out.)

Happy 2024 to all!

Thanks to Janet Andersen and others for these timely resolutions, add yours below in the comments.

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