Category Archives: Innings & Events

Miami Group’s Picnic

Miami Group, Sierra Club, Annual Picnic –
Sunday, Aug. 13, 2017
In August, Miami Group DOES NOT have a monthly meeting (Inning.)  Instead we have our annual picnic – this year on the second Sunday.

Our picnic will be held in Loveland at the Izaac Walton League Lodge, located between the Bike Trail and the Little Miami River.
544 Branch Hill Loveland Rd, Loveland, OH

Bring something to share for the picnic –appetizer, salad, vegetable, something  to grill or a dessert – and your drink. We’ll have a hot grill, plates, plasticware, cups, napkins, water & coffee.

Come earlier in the day, place your contribution in the refrigerator or coolers, and enjoy these activities:

• If the water level on the Little Miami River is high enough you may want to paddle the river.  Check our Meet-up (  or call 513-382-7377

• To paddle on your own or with a few friends, contact the Loveland  Canoe Livery, just up the road from the Lodge.
• Bike Ride along the River (Experienced 24 miles roundtrip bike ride) Start at 1:30 at the Lodge, ride along the river to Avoca Park and back. (NOTE: Meetup details and RSVP will be on a separate post by, Evan Denenberg, one of our biking leaders.)

• For a shorter bike ride see who’s biking at 2:30 from the Lodge &ride north along the river to Nesbit park for ice cream and back.

• Hike – on your own or join a group leaving the lodge at 3 pm.

• Slides, equipment to climb, and a sand box/ toys for little ones.

• Sit in the shade, watch the river float by and visit.

• After dinner – live  music.
For more information contact:


Above photo:  Miami Group members that presented their vacation slide shows.  Nov. 2015

Innings Location and date:  Boy Scouts Achievement Center; 10078 Reading Rd.; Evendale, OH;  Monday, Oct 2, 2017 at  7:00-9:15 PM

Miami Group members will be sharing photos and stories of their recent trips.

Each presenter usually takes about 12-15min and shows a brief collection of their vacation photos. The requested media is a flash drive, and the slides in Jpeg, pdf, or ppt format.
If you are interested in presenting, please email Alvin Denenberg at
<> with your topic and for additional questions.
We usually have room for 7-8 presenters.

Examples of previous member slide shows are:
Colorado Rockies, Utah’s National Parks, Machu Picchu, Wildlife and Birds of Ohio and Florida, Images and Trips to the White Mountains, Nature and Wildlife Images of Maui and Kauai,
Mill Creek Canoe Trips, Photographic tours of Niagara Falls, Outer Banks, and New Hampshire, and Wildflower Trips.


What is going on at the University of Cincinnati in sustainability?

July 10, Monday, 7 pm at Boy Scout Achievement Center  at 10078 Reading Rd. Evendale, OH. 

This will be a brief overview of what the students, faculty and staff are doing, our goals moving forward, some lessons learned and a few big ambitions.

Mary Beth McGrew will be talking about initiatives at the University of Cincinnati in the area of sustainability including current activities, challenges and opportunities.

Mary Beth McGrew is the University of Cincinnati’s Sr. Associate Vice President of Planning + Design + Construction and the University Architect. She has been with the University for over ten years and prior to that worked for large multidisciplinary firms doing work around the country. Her educational background started in the sciences and health related professions before becoming an architect. At the university her department of 60 includes architects and engineers for small projects, project managers who for large capital projects; Environmental Graphic Designers, a Real Estate and Community Development group, a Space Management Office and a Sustainability Coordinator. She works very closely with the Office of the Provost, President and reports to the Sr. VP of Finance and Administration. Together the group works to keep the physical campus in support of the academic mission. The campus resources consist of 16Million SF of buildings, and 473 acres.


NOPE Update by Nathan Alley

Beginning announcement at the June 5, 2017 Innings

NOPE Update by Nathan Alley

Nathan Alley is Transportation Policy Coordinator for the Ohio Sierra Club.

As an attorney, he has had extensive experience with federal and state environmental laws. and has worked on issues relating to coastal preservation, oil and gas development, clean water and sustainable agriculture. 

About NOPE!:  NOPE! (Neighbors Opposing Pipeline Extension) is a coalition of concerned citizens from over 14 Hamilton County communities affected by Duke’s proposed pipeline.  The mission of the organization is to ensure that any necessary natural gas infrastructure is installed in a way that is safe and responsible, away from densely populated areas.  For more information, visit

Nathan will give us an update on NOPE activities, especially since there is an upcoming hearing with the Ohio Power Siting Board on

June 15, 2017. 

The local public hearing is scheduled:

June 15, 2017 from 3 p.m. to  8 p.m.

University of Cincinnati-Blue Ash

Muntz Hall, Room 119

9555 Plainfield Road, Blue Ash, Ohio 45236 

Rain-Barrel Workshops in Cincinnati & Dayton

Spring showers bring summer flowers, but they also contribute to stormwater pollution which is the leading threat to the health of our waterways. There is a way you can collect the rain, reduce stormwater pollution, save on water bills, and provide healthy water for your plants and landscape. RAIN BARRELS!!!

The Sierra Club is leading a green infrastructure revolution and we have distributed over 400 rain barrels, while educating thousands of individuals in southwest Ohio. Join us this spring at a rain barrelworkshop near you by RSVPing below. Space is limited!

Cincinnati Area Workshops

March 25th 2-3 p.m. (Meiers Winery Silverton)

April 8th 2-3 p.m. (Meiers Winery Silverton)

May 13th 2-3 p.m. (Meiers Winery Silverton)

Dayton Area Workshops

April 9th 1-2 p.m. (Square One Salon, Centerville)

April 15th 2-3 p.m. (Tudor Day Spa, Dayton)

April 15th 12-1 p.m. (Square One Salon, Oak Creek)

April 30th 12-4 p.m. (5th St. Brew Pub, Dayton)


Hope to see you at a workshop this spring!  Here is a short informational video about the earthminded DIY Rain Barrel Kit.



Recap of the February Inning “Open Forum on Environmental Issues”

This unusual Innings meeting featured three speakers, with break-out sessions for each. Marilyn Wall spoke on MSD issues; Bob Park spoke about coming global cataclysms, and Nathan Alley talking about Plastics, Pipelines and Transportation. People left motivated to take positive action to address the issues!



Recap of the 2017 Miami Group Retreat

The 2017 Retreat at the Schott Pavilion at the Jesuit Spiritual Center in Milford was a huge success, with about 60 people in attendance!

The fun began with loads of goodies to eat for breakfast (and throughout the day). MC Marci Taylor started with an “icebreaker”: She gave everyone a list of questions to ask people they didn’t know. That got folks engaged with one another early-on!

The first panel discussion was entitled Back to Our Roots: 2017 Conservation Initiatives. Matt Trokan described the many water-related accomplishments achieved in 2016, and his plans to expand the program this year. Marilyn Wall reviewed our decades-long struggle to get MSD to fix our huge problems with combined-sewer overflows. Much progress was made in 2016, but much more remains to be done. Nathan Alley discussed progress on alternate forms of transportation. The “streetcar” went into operation in 2016, new bike lanes were added, and bike trail segments were added. Progress appears to be accelerating! All three speakers encouraged more member participation to move these programs forward.

The second panel discussion was entitled What Can We Do Now? With all that has happened since the election, many of us are shell-shocked, and some are nearing despair. Yet, there are strong signs of hope, as people have turned-out in the tens of thousands all over the USA and across the world as well. The big question is where we go from here.

The first speaker was Dave Altman, a lawyer with decades of experience using lawsuits to make companies stop breaking the law. He says it’s a three-step process: Organize, Strategize, and then Litigate. Whatever happens with the EPA, he notes that anyone “adversely impacted” by an action can, like the EPA, sue to rectify the situation. So, in essence, We are the EPA!

The next speaker was Michelle Young, who has been an activist her entire life. She described many of the campaigns she has worked on, and decided to run for office herself last year, losing to Steve Chabot in Ohio’s First Congressional District. She encourages like-minded people to run for office as well. At this point, she feels we must “go back to the beginning” like we did I the 60’s, and “we MUST WIN this time!”

The next speaker was Larry Falkin, who heads Cincinnati’s Sustainability Office. He believes that things may not be as bad as they seem, since bureaucracies change slowly. The points out that “despair is not empowerment”.  The city has been on-track for nine years now in meeting climate-footprint reduction goals. He praised the city’s “solarize” program and their decision to make downtown parking free for all-electric vehicles. In 2017, the city will employ anaerobic digesters, begin textile recycling, and renegotiate our electric power aggregation contract (help with keeping it 100% green!).

Marilyn Wall kept her comments brief in order to give the others extra time. Her bottom-line: “We MUST organize, and we need more people to get involved”.

Melissa English of Ohio Citizen Action recapped her 28 years as an activist, focusing on her now 14 years with OCA. She explained OCA’s grassroots approach: Organize the “fence-line” neighbors that are directly impacted by a polluting business. OCA plays the “outside game”, going door-to-door gathering signatures and encouraging people to “comment” on pending actions. She gave this example: To get the Ohio Energy Table to “thaw the freeze” on alternative energy standards, OCA gathered 12,000 Comments and 32,000 Signatures!

A lively discussion followed. Dave Altman made one key point: The reason the Tea Party was so effective at organizing is that every participant was given a copy of (ultra-liberal) Saul Alinsky’s book “Rules for Radicals”. They learned those lessons and applied them well. Perhaps we should do the same!

A buffet luncheon was served downstairs. It was delicious, with plenty to go around.

After lunch, there was a free period. A few people went on a short hike at a nearby preserve. Many attended a Water Sampling demo by Matt Trokan. Others just chatted and/or took a short walk.

The first afternoon session was on area bike paths, with Frank Henson of Queen City Bike presenting. He gave a recap of how bike trails have evolved over the years, leading to a new organization named Tri-State Trails, which is a coalition of trail advocate & stakeholders, a physical network of trails, and a vision and plan to interconnect existing trails in the tri-state area. The top three challenges for trail construction are obtaining right-of-ways, funding, and public & political support. Much has been accomplished, and there is now a well-organized and funded program for filling in the blanks. The full presentation is available on

The second afternoon session was on the Edge of Appalachia Preserve and the Sunshine Project, presented by Martin McAlister of the Nature Conservancy. Martin detailed how a small parcel donated by one person has grown into a large preserve which is now within 1000 yards of Shawnee State Forest. The preserve is one of the most biologically diverse temperate regions of the world, especially for songbirds, salamanders, mussels and land snails. The full presentation is available on

After a well-attended Happy Hour, we enjoyed another terrific meal.

The final presentation of the day was a slide show by Marci Taylor and her husband Warren regarding their recent visit to Israel. Their tour was jointly sponsored by Muslim, Jewish and Christian churches in Cincinnati. As a result, they got guided tours of sites cherishes by all three faiths. They had many wonderful pictures to show and stories to tell.

Hats-off to our GREP Committee for another great Retreat: Randy Johnson, Marci Taylor, Karen Nagel, Elizabeth Durrell, and Jean Kantor  (And Martha Walker as registrar).



ExCom Election Results

Congratulations to our newly elected ExCom (Executive Committee) members: Muslim Contractor, Josh Clyde, Marie Kocoshis, and Gail Lewin. Their term starts at our first January meeting.

Many thanks to our two ExCom members who are departing: Elizabeth Durrell and Bob Park. We appreciate all their work and I’m sure we’ll see them engaged in other Sierra Club work.

Summary of the January 2017 Innings Meeting

At the Jan. 3, 2017 Innings, Prof. Stan Hedeen gave an outstanding presentation on “The Un-Natural History of the Mill Creek”.  He covered the geology, history, how man-made industry polluted the creek, and future methods to restore it.

There were 38 attendees, including Mill Creek Commodore, Bruce Koehler, Dr. Michael Miller, Aquatic Biologist, and Marilyn Wall, Miami Group Ex-Comm, Chair, which led to very interesting and productive discussions.
Thank you very much, Prof. Hedeen, for a very enjoyable evening.