Blue Heron Shoreland Stewardship Award Program

Recognizing and showcasing  shoreland development excellence


The Blue Heron Shoreland Stewardship Awards Program was established to recognize lake property owners who champion strong lake stewardship principles in the development and use of their waterfront property to minimize environmental impacts. VCLRA makes these annual awards to generate awareness and educate lake property owners on the importance of shoreland stewardship by showcasing excellence in lake-friendly waterfront development.


Nominations for the Blue Heron Shoreland Stewardship Award may be made by any Vilas County lake association, lake district or the Vilas County Lake Specialist. The deadline for submitting a nomination to VCLA is July 15th. Each lake association, lake district or the Vilas County Lake Specialist may nominate up to two (2) lake property owners. Each lake association or lake district that submits a nomination for this award MUST also submit the names of 2-3 members of the association/district who would be willing to serve on the award review committee. Award winners will be notified by September 1st and awards will be presented at the VCLA Annual Meeting the following June. From the award winners, VCLA may nominate up to two (2) for the DNR’s Shoreline Stewardship Award.

Shoreland Review Criteria

There are five shoreland areas that are considered for this award.
Driveway and parking scoring
Are driveway and parking areas kept to a minimum and is run-off from driveway and parking areas directed to a buffer area so erosion and lake contamination is minimized?
Structures and septic areas scoring
Is run-off from structures directed to a buffer area or rain garden and does the septic system (if present) appear to be functioning property?
Yard and recreation areas scoring
Is the yard and recreation area properly sloped to avoid erosion and direct water to a buffer area? Is the use of fertilizer minimal?
Shoreline area scoring
Does the shoreline area have a buffer that contains multiple tiers of vegetation? Is the buffer area maintained? Is the shoreline and lake access area stable?
Entire lot area scoring
Are impervious surfaces kept to a minimum? Is the percent of cleared area kept to a minimum? Are there paths or roads through undeveloped areas? Does exterior lighting have glare shields?