(Sunset, S.C.) – In honor of the 40th Anniversary of Earth Day and in line with the 10th Anniversary of The Reserve at Lake Keowee, The Reserve and its members have outlined a series of environmental stewardship efforts and activities in and around Lake Keowee. These include various small acts of care, kindness and protection of the land, water and wildlife.

  • Adopting five islands in Lake Keowee through the “Adopt-an-Island” program created by Friends of Lake Keowee Society (FOLKS) and Duke Energy Island Keeper. Islands 17, 17A, 17B, 17C, and 17D have been adopted by The Reserve and its members. The property owners and staff from The Reserve have been cleaning the lake and islands this week, in conjunction with the bi-annual “Lake Sweep”, a lake-wide clean-up effort organized by FOLKS. The Adopt-an-Island will culminate this Saturday, as Boy Scouts and leaders from Pickens Troop 51 join The Reserve in helping clean islands 17 and 17A and hear from FOLKS volunteer, Jack Lewis, about their impact on the lake.

  • Adopting a four-mile stretch of Highway 133, just off the Cherokee Foothills Scenic Highway (Highway 11) in Sunset, S.C. Four “Adopt-A-Highway” clean-up weekends are planned for 2010: February, May, July and October. At the clean-up event in February, members of The Reserve picked up 93 bags of litter, including a car bumper and old tires.

    Additional environmental stewardship acts are planned for later in 2010, including a Blue Ridge Experience Weekend in September in conjunction with FRIENDS of the Blue Ridge Parkway, in honor of the Parkway’s 75th Anniversary. This event weekend will be open to the public and will feature a concert by Blue Ridge musician Tim Seaman.

    One of the reasons we formed The Reserve Community Foundation was specifically geared toward environmental stewardship, so we are excited to use The Reserve’s 10th Anniversary as a springboard to do more ‘little things’ that add up to big, positive impacts,” stated Kathryn Coleman-Gravely, executive director of The Reserve at Lake Keowee’s Community Foundation. “Lake Keowee is a tremendous asset to our area, and we want to do our part in helping it stay clean and beautiful so that it can be enjoyed responsibly for generations to come.”

    One of the purest lakes in North America, Lake Keowee is more than 26 miles long, dotted with islands, and with some waterways spanning two to three miles wide. Lake levels remain near full pond throughout the year to depths well over 125 feet. A drinking water source for Greenville County, S.C., Lake Keowee enjoys 18,500 acres of mountain-fed waters and three hundred miles of shoreline and is the second cleanest lake in South Carolina behind Lake Jocassee, which is 90% protected from development, according to Sandra McGee, Community Relations Manager for Duke Energy. Lake Keowee is a haven for outdoor recreation and home to many freshwater fish including largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, bluegill and white bass.

    The Reserve at Lake Keowee Community Foundation is a non-profit organization created to enhance the quality of life at The Reserve and in the local area while fulfilling a sense of community and philanthropy here for The Reserve’s members. The Foundation sponsors regular cultural events including concerts, plays, lectures, and an annual art festival. The Foundation is funded and supported by a transfer fee of 0.25% of every sale, provided in perpetuity, within The Reserve. The Foundation has four major functions: 1.) Help preserve the natural resources in the area through acts and events of environmental stewardship; 2.) Provide educational programs for members and guests of The Reserve; 3.) Promote an arts program at The Reserve; and 4.) Provide outreach activities for neighboring communities in Pickens County, SC.

    Earth Day was born on April 22, 1970, as a result of an environmental teach-in, conducted by U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson and then Harvard graduate student Denis Hayes and attended by more than 20 million people across the United States, to raise awareness about ecological issues confronting the planet. By 1990, more than 200 million people in 141 countries celebrated Earth Day, and today, the occasion connects more than 17,000 organizations in 174 countries. Earth Day’s 40th Anniversary goal is “a billion acts of green” around the world.

    About The Reserve at Lake Keowee
    With a membership of more than 550 families from 30 different states, The Reserve at Lake Keowee is a lake, mountain and golf community stretching across 3,900 acres including 30 miles of shoreline on Lake Keowee and 1,400 acres of green space. Created by Greenwood Communities and Resorts, The Reserve offers more than $100 million in completed, family-friendly amenities, including a 200-slip Marina, Village Center complete with Guest House and a Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Course and more than 1,400 acres of parks, preserves, trails and green space. Homesites at The Reserve, complete with club membership, begin in the $200,000s.

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