All posts by Mike Mass

2018-2019 Annual Meeting Announcement and Newsletter (March 1st, 2019)

The annual meeting and 2019 elections are scheduled for March 1st, 2019 at the Minooka Village Hall Board Room.  Please plan on attending.

Please review the news letter for 2018 reports and plans for 2019.

NLE 2019-01-Annoucement

Please complete the survey and return it to the HOA

NLE 2019-01-Survey

The agenda for the March 1st meeting can be found with the follow link

NLE 2019-01-Agenda 03-01-2019


2015 Fall Creek Pumping

HOA Email Action on 12/9/15-12/10/15


Discussions were had around forming a pumping committee and the percentage split between the HOA and the Ski Club.  There is currently $4,000 already budgeted for lake pumping in the HOA budget. A motion was made by Keith to form a committee of Ben Schwinn, Keith Erchinger, Brad Lanka, Matt Dumsdorff, and Mike Mass for the purpose of managing the lake level via pumping from the creek to the west within the budgets established.  Cost of the pumping operations should be split between the HOA and the Skiclub on a 50% / 50% basis. Motion was seconded by Jim Herman.  The motion passed with votes as follows:

Keith: Yea
Ben: Yea
Tom: Nay
Seth: Nay
Jim: Yea
Sidney: Nay
Dianne: Yea
Dave: Yea
Allan: Yea

HOA Block Party – July 18th 2015 2:00PM

Saturday, July 18th 2015  2:00PM

Join us at the Access Lot for and afternoon of socializing

Please respond no later than Sunday, July 12

More information coming in your mailbox this week

Linda Erchinger (,
Brenda Straube (,
Diane Gifford (

Cat tail Eratication work – 2015

Ski Club is coordinating cat tail spraying.   Please leave areas that have been sprayed for 2-3 week so that the chemicals can kill the roots.

Note: Roundup type herbicides are used at low concentrations to spray the leaf out of the water only.  No chemicals are added to the water.

Several people volunteered to help with cutting and removing.


Combined HOA & Ski Club Meeting – June 4th, 2015

HOA: Brad Lanka (Pres), Keith Erchinger (VP), Doug Salvatori (Treas), Mike Mass (Sec.), Allan Lundeen, Diane Gifford, Lori  Casey, Jim Herman (VP-on phone)

Members:  Marty Gannon, Ben Schwinn, Seth Freeman, Katie Salvatori , Jackie Mass,  Gene & Cindi Martin, Liz Swarczynski, Teryl Lundeen, Ed Guidi, Matt Dumstorf, Mark Hayden, Marcus Hayden, Tom Hugunin, Mike & Cheryl Delrose, Butch and Sue Cooper, Brian Casey, Kerri Courtright

Meeting was opened by Keith.  The purpose of this information meeting is to present information to entire subdivision on the activities the Ski Club has done this year to improve the lake level and to begin discussions on what long term plans should be made to support the health of our lake.  The lake is a valuable asset to the subdivision and affect the value of all of the homes in the subdivision.

Brief History: Lake was dug in 2002, filled in 2003 and 2004, First ski in 2004.  Lake is built above neighboring streams and above the water table.  A compacted clay liner was constructed in the lake to allow the lake level to be higher that the water table.  Water to fill the lake come from rain on the subdivision and a local shallow well installed in 2004 to pump from the water table just below the lake bottom.  The well capacity is about 90 to 105 gallons per minute.  2010 through 2012 were the highest lake levels.  The well was able to be turned off for about 20% of the time in 2010-2012.  The last 2 years has been a drought and lake levels have fallen about 3 feet.

Maintenance of the compacted clay liner is critical to maintaining the water level in the lake.  The south shore was restored this year by cleaning weeds and clay brought in to perform restoration and compaction of the shore from the deterioration from the freeze thaw cycles and cattails.  The snow melt provided some quick gains that were lost very quickly.  The cattails particularly above the water line seemed to be a major contributor to the problem.  In deep water the cattail roots do not need to seek water.  In shallow water or above the waterline the roots go deep looking for water.  Work was done at an opportunistic time when the shoreline was dry.  The rain that came provide about 2.5 to 3 inches with post rain losses similar to what has been normal for this lake.  Cost of the restoration was about $6500

The company that provided the product and consulting during the construction of the lake “Seapage Control” has always said that compaction of the liner is always beneficial especially after the winter frost has had a chance to loosen it.  Maintaining lake level and keeping the liner saturated will prevent cracking and help to maintain the seal.  Allowing the liner to dry out will require a period of time of higher seapage until the liner saturates and reseals.  Preventing erosion of the liner is of obvious importance.

Mike Mass has a lot of detailed lake level readings that he has correlated into loose rates.  The data confirms what has been said by Seapage Control.  Comparing current lake readings to this data helps to determine when problems exist.

In 2014 some preliminary surveying of the farm to the west of the subdivision was done to determine if the creek that ran through it was viable to provide water for the lake.   It was determined that the creek was lower than the lake until it crossed Minooka Road at the north end of the farm.  It is known that his creek will dry up during the summer months.  Water flow during the spring and summer seems sufficient but related to the amount of seapage and evaporation of the lake is difficult to assess.

The ski club had sufficient funds to investigate and test the idea of pumping from the creek to the lake which would help determine the capacity.  On May 4th the Ski Club began pumping from the creek to the west which is 12 feet lower than the lake.  Pump capacity is about 400 GPM but at times the 4 inch pump needs to be throttled down due or shut down to low creek flows.  One month cost is about $5,600.  The Club purchased the hose to help control cost.  Fuel cost is about $60-$80 per day.  Output from the pump at peak flows is about 576,000 gallons per day.  To date, the lake level is up about 21 inches which equates to about 12 million gallons of water plus seapage and evaporation which could add up to an additional 6 million gallons.  Estimated total water gain from rain, pumping  and the well could easily be almost 20 million gallons for the one month period.

Cattail eradication is a current activity that the Ski Club has set as a goal for 2015.  Work has begun already along the south and east shores and through the quiet cove of the lake toward the access lot.  Long term plan needs to be developed.

Lake insurance is a risky and problematic situation.  Our subdivision is a very unique community giving it a very specific character.  The open access of the homeowners to the lake is a different than most neighborhood lakes and limits the number of insurance carriers that will provide coverage.

The ability to pump from the creek has proven to be a viable solution to obtaining water.

The optimum time to fill the lake would be in the fall to cover as much of the liner with water to minimize the impact from frost.  Historically fall is a fairly dry period.  Flow in the creek during the fall still needs to be investigated.  We have seen gains in November and December in the past.  Dealing with freezing conditions into November and December make handling the pump all the more difficult.  May, June and early July is the other time of the year when we see the biggest gains.

Purchase a used pump is about $19,000
Cost to rent a pump is $1,300 per month including service.
Cost for a permanent pipe is about $3 per foot.  Currently we are using about 900 feet of hose.

An open discussion was had by everyone present.  We have attempted to incorporate the discussion and some subsequent questions/answers into the information presented above.

Action List:

  • Tom Hugunin to contact his guy to get a proposal to look at the lake.
  • Lori to contact some people for more options.
  • All member present to give Doug their current e-mail to provide better communications
  • Investigate the cost of obtaining water from the Village – Brad
  • Investigate cost of an aquatic weed cutting machine – Diane
  • Update the website to provide more information – Jackie Mass
  • Determine best guess at annual water needs and cost to continue – Keith
  • Ben volunteered to help cut weeds and cat tails.
  • Send out letter to all lake homeowner that we will be cutting cattails – Ski Club
  • Set up as a bulk e-mail for better communications – Mike Mass