Andrew & Sandburg Bass Fishing Teams Create Fish Habitats for Village's Lake Sedgwick

Andrew & Sandburg Bass Fishing Teams Create Fish Habitats for Village's Lake Sedgwick
Posted on 08/03/2016

While most of their peers were at home, enjoying a day off from school, nearly 20 members of the Victor J. Andrew and Carl Sandburg High Schools Bass Fishing Teams spent a chilly Friday morning creating fish habitats at the Village of Orland Park's Lake Sedgwick.

"The village is grateful for all that these teams have done to help Lake Sedgwick," said Orland Park Mayor Dan McLaughlin. "We thank Coaches Bartgen and Corcoran for helping the kids know how important the lake is both for the community and the environment. Everything they've done at the lake is very much appreciated."

"The Parks Department has been cutting brush near the natural shoreline and our guys created bundles of brush that will be dropped into the lake to create fish habitats," explained Andrew Bass Fishing Head Coach John Bartgen. "This is the third time we've been out here to drop habitats. We've had kids were out here last year and the year before."

Lowe's Home Improvement of Orland Park donated the cinder blocks used to anchor the bundles that were being dropped from three boats on the lake.

"The habitats give the lake more structure," explained Sandburg Bass Fishing Head Coach Jim Corcoran. "These will draw more different types of fish."

Ron Beaudry, of the village's Building Maintenance Division, has served as the village's liaison with the clubs for the past few years.

"This is a nice joint effort between the village and the two schools because we're all working together to improve the lake," Beaudry said. "We like working with the kids and welcome their help with improving Lake Sedgwick."

As village Parks Department crews cleared and stacked the shoreline brush, fishing club members bundled the twigs and branches into bunches that would soon be tied to cinder blocks for dropping in the lake.

Orland Park Village Trustee Pat Gira chairs the village's Recreation and Parks Committee. "It means a lot to everyone to see so many kids give up their days off to come out to the lake in the cold to help make this project a reality. That says a lot about the great kids at Andrew and Sandburg."

Andrew High School Senior Joseph Regiro has participated in all of the club's activities at Lake Sedgwick, including the two previous fish habitat drops and when the Department of Natural Resources shocked the lake to complete a fish inventory.

"Lake Sedgwick is a shallow lake without a lot of structure," Regiro said. "The habitats that we're dropping today will help the fish live longer and provide more safety in the lake."

"These guys have been helping at Lake Sedgwick for the past few years and we appreciate everything they've done," said Village Parks Operations Manager Gary Couch. "The village enjoys having the kids take an active part in the sustainability of the lake and when they're adults, they'll look back and know what a big impact they had."

Sandburg Sophomore Andy Sullivan added, "This is a great thing to do because it will help keep the lake populated. And, it's been interesting working with the guys from Andrew. Normally, they're our rivals," he said smiling.

Regiro added, "We have a friendly rivalry and Sandburg and Andrew work together on projects more than any other schools. And, even though we're rivals during our tournaments, we help each other out. We all enjoy fishing and we all enjoy this lake."