Goshen celebrated 50 years of the Clean Water Act with a festival in Mill Street Park on Saturday.
Along with a dip tank, water-themed activities, food trucks, and educational materials, the city also released its 2022 Consumer Confidence Report for Goshen Water Utility. In it, the city describes the origins of the city’s water, possible contaminants, watershed protection efforts, and how the city’s water compares to U.S. Environmental Protection Agency standards. environment and the state of Indiana.
“We’ve come a long way, the United States in general,” Mattie Lehman, Goshen Stormwater specialist. “These streams, although not pristine, are cleaner than they have been in 50 or 60 years because we have done a ton of work trying to clean them up and now they are a great recreational resource for people.”
The report identifies all contaminants identified in city water during the 2020 calendar year and further explains the likely source, amount present and amount allowed, and identifies protective measures and precautions.
“The presence of these contaminants in the water does not indicate that the water posed a health risk,” the report explains. “In fact, none of the test results indicated a violation of federal, state, or municipal standards for water quality and public health.”
The data lists inorganic contaminants including lead and fluoride, organic contaminants such as chromium, unregulated contaminants such as sodium, disinfection by-products including chlorine, and radiological contaminants including uranium and radon.
The data was offered to visitors to Mill Street Park during Water Fest, but is also available online at https://goshenindiana.org/ccr.
“I think we have a responsibility to make sure he’s protected and if we do that, it gives us back,” Lehman said.
At the park, dozens of children, youth, adults and seniors gathered to celebrate Goshen’s water system.
“We really wanted to showcase our drinking water resources here,” she explained.
The area has several assets for city water management including Rock Run Creek, storm sewers, and more.
Storm Drain Art Mural artists were also recognized at the event.
The artists followed the theme of this year’s storm sewer wall art, “Dreaming of Clean Water, Celebrating the 50th Anniversary of the Clean Water Act” showing how far the city has come to protect drinking water and raise awareness the public to the link between storm drains, urban storms, water runoff and pollution of waterways.
“A lot of people don’t know that most of our storm sewers in Goshen connect directly to local waterways like Rock Run Creek or the Elkhart River,” the city noted in a special children’s coloring book for the event on the theme of water. “This means that pollutants from our roads can be washed into our sewers and pollute our streams and rivers.”
The storm sewer murals are expected to last until the end of the year, but some of the artists from last year are still going strong.
“We just don’t know,” Lehman said “This is only the third time we’ve done the mural thing. The age of the concrete, there are so many factors and we’re still trying to figure it out.”
The artists for this year’s murals are Rachel Schrock and Sammi Centeno, who produced “Don’t Let Life Slip Down the Drain,” of a turtle, sponsored by Abonmarche Consultants; Ida Short, who produced a frog’s “Frog Dance”, sponsored by Bathany Christian Schools; Katarina Antal, who produced “From Water, Comes Life” of a dragonfly, sponsored by Cycle Works; Thavisak Mounsithiraj’s work of an abstract fish connected to a tree, sponsored by Snyder Paints; Della Allen’s “Daydreaming” of a mermaid’s tail and flowers, sponsored by Dustin and Therea Sailor; Ally Isenbarger’s “Ours to Protect” from a tree, sponsored by Goshen Brewing Company; Katelyn Brown’s work ‘The World Is In Our Hands’, from The Globe, sponsored by the Goshen Chamber of Commerce; Melanie Helmuth, who produced “Fantastic Wildflowers and Where to Find Them,” from a bee and its flower, sponsored by Goshen Floral and Gift Shop, Inc.; Abigail Ogle’s Untitled Mushroom Painting, sponsored by The Electric Brew; and Chloe Madison, who produced the star-studded, Everence-sponsored “More than Just a Dream.”
A map is provided in the coloring book, and there is also an interactive map with more information about each of the performers at https://goshenindiana.org/waterfest.