Entry ID2531
Friends of Reservoirs Member/Group Sponsoring the ProjectRural Leavenworth, Inc. – a nonprofit, nonpartisan community organization focused on preserving and promoting the rural atmosphere of Leavenworth County, KS.
Project Leader Contact InformationSherri Grogan
Phone(913) 226-6705
EmailEmail hidden; Javascript is required.
Address16635 Leavenworth Rd
Basehor, Kansas 66007
Map It
Project Information
Reservoir NameLeavenworth State Fishing Lake 24421 Parallel Rd, Tonganoxie, KS 66086
Google Maps Locationgoogle.com
Please describe the project objective(s).

Improve the quality of fishing – more fish and increased size. The forecast report on the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks website shows bluegill, channel cat, largemouth bass, striped bass and flathead catfish to have a “fair” rating; and white and black crappie are reported with a “poor” rating. Citizens report they can fish and get no bites. The lake is the primary fishing spot for citizens living in the southern half of Leavenworth County and it often draws visitors from neighboring counties. Leavenworth State Fishing Lake is near the metropolitan areas of Kansas City and Lawrence, KS and is fished heavily.

There was a major renovation of the lake 28 years ago that included piers, brush piles, rock humps, and a gravel spawning bar to enhance lake habitat. In 2011 and 2018, the lake was lowered to repair the dam and spillway. The fish feeders and aerators are no longer used. The lake has not recovered to pre-2011 quality of fishing levels.

Rural Leavenworth, Inc. hosted a public meeting with the lake biologist in early summer of 2022. Attendees suggested adjusting the creel limits and stocking with shad but there was no commitment. The biologist recommended focusing on improving structure at the lake.

We also hosted programs with the game warden, local historical society, and coordinated a lake clean-up day. The community would like to enhance the beauty and quality of the lake, so it is preserved for years to come.

Please describe the project methods. Will the product be used in conjunction with existing habitat restoration efforts on the reservoir? Will the product supplement natural brush, rock, or other materials being added to the reservoir?

Rural Leavenworth Inc. will place recycled cedar trees in the lake this winter. Grants are being pursued to provide a variety of structures. If the Mossback grant is received, we will place Mossback attractors. If the Fisheries partnership grant is received, local volunteers will collectively decide whether to buy supplies and build attractors or buy them. The artificial attractors will complement the trees and existing. The biologist has not mentioned having a lake management plan nor did he present one during our meeting.

Will state fish and wildlife agency staff be directly involved in the project? How so (planning, site selection, participation in installation)? Is there an associated lake or habitat management plan that states the need for structural habitat enhancement?

The biologist will be involved in placing the trees and other habitat. He offered to bring the state’s pontoon boat to help with the placement. We will also record the GPS coordinates for the new habitat.

The lake is unique per the biologist because of the steep walls on multiple sides of the lake. Less than 1/3 of the lake bank can be easily fished because woods surround most of the lake and it is undeveloped. Swimming was originally allowed in the lake when it opened in the 1930s.

List the species that the project is expected to benefit:

The project is focused on improving the crappie and bass populations.

How do you plan to conduct outreach and advertise the project? (Examples: on-site signage, press releases, websites, message boards)

Rural Leavenworth, Inc. uses social media to communicate upcoming events, recruit volunteers and provide status on initiatives. We use our own Facebook page as well as sharing information to several other community pages in the surrounding area. Social media is supplemented with direct email to volunteers who have participated in previous events. The local newspaper is also supportive of publishing information.

We have reached out to local organizations like the Boy and Girl Scouts via email. Representatives from the Boy Scouts, Happy Helpers 4-H Club, Sierra Club, Rural Center of Kansas and Leavenworth County Commission participated in the lake clean-up. A County Commissioner attended the meeting with the biologist. Our network is fairly well established and we have the support of the local community to improve the aesthetics of the lake property and fishing quality. Consideration is also being given to creating a non-profit organization that is focused exclusively on Leavenworth State Fishing Lake given the public’s interest in our activities.

Upload at least one letter of support from a representative of the state fish and wildlife management agency:LVSL-support-letter-2022.pdf
Partnership and Budget
Does the project involve one or more youth groups?Yes
Partner List Upload (If you're having trouble with the table above)Fisheries-Grant-Budget.pdf