Chesterton Tribune


Grand Kankakee Marsh documentary to air on WYIN November 5

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A locally produced documentary entitled “Everglades of the North: The Story of the Grand Kankakee Marsh” will air at 8 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 5, on WYIN 56 - Lakeshore Public Television of Merrillville and also on WNIT 34 in South Bend on Nov. 8.

Lakeshore is the PBS “presenting station” for the film.

The one-hour television documentary tells the history of the Grand Kankakee Marsh and how people have used and perceived this wetland for more than 10,000 years.

The Marsh may have been as large as one million acres in northern Indiana and Illinois, and was home to some of the highest concentrations of wildlife and waterfowl in North America.

Less than 5 percent of the Kankakee River marshes survived modern development and the film explores the important role this wetland played in the history of the area. It looks at the natural and cultural history of the area and the different uses of the land from the earliest Native Americans to the European settlement to modern agriculture.

“This has been an incredible experience,” said producer Pat Wisniewski, founder of For Goodness Sakes Productions in Valparaiso. Wisniewski teamed up with friend and syndicated columnist Jeff Manes of Lowell, who grew up on the Kankakee River and approached her about creating a story about the marsh. “It didn’t take long for us to realize we needed to make this documentary,” he said. “We need to tell this story.”

“The Grand Kankakee Marsh is something that man had destroyed before he realized its value”, said Guy Carlson, of the Izaak Walton League – Diana Chapter. “Now we need to give something back to nature.”

The chapter helped raise funds for the production of the film.



Posted 10/30/2012