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The Creation of Two National PlayCleanGo Campaigns

By Sue Burks, MNDNR and Belle Bergner, NAIMSA

Play Clean Go logo

Last fall, MNDNR and CCIS signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) giving CCIS the rights to register the PlayCleanGo trademark in Canada and begin development of a parallel PlayCleanGo campaign across Canada. The process will take some time because they have to translate everything into French first! Look for the article by Barry Gibbs for more details on Canadian efforts.

About the time the CCIS MOU was signed, MNDNR and NAIMSA began development of another MOU to gradually transfer national (United States this time) campaign management to NAIMSA. That MOU is just about done with final approval expected this spring. The transition process will take place in stages and take roughly 18 months to complete.

All three organizations are committed to preserving PCG brand integrity and working together to expand the PCG campaign across North America. In May, we're looking forward to the North American Invasive Species Forum in Georgia to reach out to our Mexican partners. In the meantime, we will continue to work together to serve our existing partner organizations and their local needs.

Watch for our announcements on how the transition process is going and who to contact for assistance. Once the MOU has been signed, we'll post it in the Shared PCG Folder on Dropbox. You can find the CCIS MOU there already.

If You See It, Report It - Use EDDMaps to Report Invasive Species Occurrences

report inasive species posterLaunched by the Univ of Georgia, EDDMapS has become a reliable hub of information to help you identify and report invasive species. Initially focused on terrestrial invasive species, it has recently expanded to meet partner needs to include infested waters and aquatic invasive species, at least in some regions.

The advantages of are many: international recognition (a number of Canadian provinces also use EDDMapS; easily accessible by field staff and private individuals; includes data across land ownerships; includes a verification system that helps ensure accurate identification; provides a free mobile application for smart phones and tablets; and an extensive library of photos and species information for land owners and managers.

EDD maps web home pageIt is not necessary to have an EDDMapS account to view the invasive species distribution data.  Go to the Distribution Maps tab on the home page and select the species you are interested in. You can choose to display state/province, county, point or list data. You can then repeatly click on the area of interest and the map will zoom into individual records. The list option will take you immediately to a list of reports, so you can click and open individual records.

To report invasive species occurrences, you must first open a personal account (it's free). Their mobile application works well on tablets or smart phones and is available for both iPhone and Android operating systems. Various states and provinces have contracted with EDDmaps to customize their mobile application for local use. So when looking to download their application, be sure to download the one for your particular region. All of them upload data to the North American database where the data can be viewed from anywhere. If you don't find one for your region or state, encourage your local state or provincial representative to contact EDDMapS to discuss your needs.

EDD maps tool webpageOnce you have an account, there are a number of other data management tools available for your use under  Tools and Training Materials. Check out the EDDMapS website and mobile application.

Encourage your local partners to do the same.  It's a great way to share occurrence data across property lines so everyone is better informed and better able to plan their management efforts.

Building Local Partnerships: Five Tips to Keep in Mind

Katie Greshack, NW Michigan Invasive Species Network

During my tenure as the Northwest Michigan Invasive Species Network Coordinator, and moving into our recent partnership with PCG, I've grown a lot in how I work with other organizations. I'd like to share five lessons I've learned about the importance of building local partnerships.

Read on . . .

  • Be Inclusive: This may seem obvious, but don't turn people or groups away if they want to be involved. You never know what skills, resources, or passions a potential partner can bring until you start brainstorming together.
  • Be Creative:  Think outside the box as you recruit partner organizations. It makes sense to look for help among the usual suspects, but consider historical preservation groups, restaurants, athletic clubs, or art collaboratives. These partners-in-disguise allow your group's reach to expand into organizations that may never have thought about invasive species – or maybe they're thinking about them in brand new ways.
  • Be Persistent: If a group declines to join right away, don't write them off as a lost cause. Keep prospective partners in the loop on new developments and ideas that they might be interested in, and be open to approaching them from a different angle than you'd originally anticipated.
  • Be Respectful: As you're being persistent, remember that these organizations have other things going on, too, and joining forces may not be their top priority. In addition, each organization has a different mission or service area; that's all ok—partnerships are strengthened when goals are complimentary, not identical.
  • Be Generous: It's often easy to think about what a group can do for you, but sometimes it takes some time with your thinking cap on to remember what your organization can do to help partners. It may be as little as sharing positive experiences with the public, or as much as working on a grant together.

News from PCG Partners

PlayCleanGo in Canada

By Barry Gibbs, CCIS Director

 Canadian Council on Invasive Species logoThe Canadian Council on Invasive Species (CCIS) is taking the lead on PlayCleanGo in Canada.  The CCIS Board, in March, approved an implementation plan for PlayCleanGo. The goal of the plan is to mirror the current PlayCleanGo initiative in the United States.  Canadians will see a new website (, graphic standards, partner program, sponsor program, newsletter, social media, steering committee and outreach materials in both official languages English and French. All in time for a 2018 launch.

The new website is under development and will be up and running in 2017. We will start with the English content while we develop the new French equivalent of PlayCleanGo.& It is always tricky creating a slogan in another language that sends the same message. Stay tuned!

For 2017, Canadian organizations can join and stop the introduction and spread of invasive species through recreational activities. In 2018, Canadian partners will be encouraged to join Likewise 2017 orders for PlayCleanGo materials can go to The link to the order form can be found on the Resources/Graphics Library webpage. In 2018, they will become available through the Canadian website.

In other news, Andrea Altherr will be representing CCIS on the PlayCleanGo Steering Committee. Andrea lives in Whitehorse, Yukon and works for the Yukon Invasive Species Council. YISC is a PlayCleanGo partner.

CCIS hosted the 3rd National Invasive Species Forum in Ottawa Ontario February 28th to March 2nd. It is the only conference held in Canada that brings together national organizations, provincial and national governments to talk about invasive species issues. There was lots of interest in PlayCleanGo and we see many opportunities for collaboration emerging. As a result CCIS engaged Barry Gibbs as Executive Director to oversee the implementation of PlayCleanGo for CCIS. Barry was previously on the PlayCleanGo Steering Committee representing CCIS so he is familiar with PlayCleanGo.

NAISMA logoSponsorship Efforts

Belle Bergner, NAIMSA

You have used PlayCleanGo's fantastic education and outreach tools for perhaps months or years. Your constituents, stakeholders, and your natural areas have benefited from its impact because the spread of invasive species has slowed. Now, partners and any interested organization has an opportunity to support PlayCleanGo by becoming a sponsor. We need your support to reach every individual in North America with the PlayCleanGo message.

Will you help us?

NAISMA needs to raise at least $100,000 over the next year to be able to sustain and grow PlayCleanGo. MN DNR, through an MOU with NAISMA, is gradually phasing out its support and management of the national program.

Sponsors will be given tremendous benefits including exhibit space and logo recognition at the PlayCleanGo Convention in Reno, Nevada on October 23, 2017 (see next article) where 400+ attendees are expected from all over the US and Canada.

More sponsorship information and to sign up. Here is a summary of PlayCleanGo sponsor opportunities:

Sustaining ($500)

  • Logo on the sponsor page of the PlayCleanGo and NAISMA websites
  • Name listed in the PlayCleanGo Newsletter (Quarterly)

Contributing ($1,000)

  • All of the above including:
  • Logo in one PlayCleanGo Newsletter (Quarterly)
  • 20% Discount on Exhibit Booth Space at the 2017 PlayCleanGo Convention on October 23, 2017 in Reno, NV
  • 1 Complimentary ticket to the 2017 PlayCleanGo Convention

Providing ($2,500)

  • All of the above including:
  • Logo on Program Book at the 2017 PlayCleanGo Convention
  • 2 Complimentary tickets to the 2017 PlayCleanGo Convention

Supporting ($5,000)

  • All of the above including:
  • Logo on PlayCleanGo website homepage
  • Advertisement in PlayCleanGo newsletter (current reach: 427)
  • 4 Complimentary tickets to the 2017 PlayCleanGo Convention
  • Complimentary Exhibit Booth at the 2017 PlayCleanGo Convention

Visionary ($10,000)

  • All of the above including:
  • Logo on all welcome presentation screens at the 2017 PlayCleanGo Convention
  • 6 Complimentary tickets to the 2017 PlayCleanGo Convention
  • Sponsor a reception at the 2017 PlayCleanGo Convention


  • All of the above including:
  • Title Sponsor at the 2017 PlayCleanGo Convention
  • Logo on all PlayCleanGo Event lanyards
  • 8 Complimentary tickets to the PlayCleanGo Convention
  • Invitation to present at PlayCleanGo Convention
  • Video promoting PlayCleanGo with your logo recognized, posted on Social Media and YouTube

Don't wait until sponsor spots are filled! Sign up today or contact Belle for more information.

PlayCleanGo Convention at NAISMA Annual Meeting in Reno, Nevada: October 23, 2017


By Belle Bergner, NAISMA Executive Director

Get ready for the first PlayCleanGo Convention this October 23 in Reno, Nevada at the Nugget Hotel and Casino! Set at the doorstep of Lake Tahoe, one of North America's greatest natural treasures, the Convention will be an opportunity to connect with other PlayCleanGo partners, learn from each other's success stories and challenges, and discover new partnerships to leverage the success of your PlayCleanGo program. Discounted hotel rooms at $55 per night mean this is an opportunity you won't want to miss. Come early and stay late to enjoy the area's stunning natural beauty.

The PlayCleanGo Convention is being held jointly with the North American Invasive Species Management Association's (NAISMA) Annual Meeting. Convention attendees will be welcome to join all of NAISMA's events with a paid PlayCleanGo Convention registration. One-day tickets will start at $125 or $75 for students that will include access to exhibitors all day and a generous evening welcome mixer. Additional opportunities include workshops; a day-long invasive species management tour of Lake Tahoe and surrounding natural areas; all sessions at the NAISMA Annual Meeting that will cover the latest techniques and information on terrestrial and aquatic invasive species concerns; and social networking events.

PlayCleanGo partners are invited to submit presentations to share your successes, challenges, and ideas in any of the following categories:

  • Case Studies & Success Stories
  • Sponsor & Partners Panel Discussion
  • On the Ground Presentations & Panel Discussion

An abstract submission page and registration will open by May 1, 2017 at Contact Belle Bergner for more information at 414-967-1350 or

Winter Outdoor Retailers Show

Outdoor reatailer logoBy Mark Daluge Teton County Weed & Pest District & Sue Burks, Minnesota DNR

On behalf of PlayCleanGo—Stop Invasive Species in Your Tracks, North American Invasive Species Management (NAISMA) President—Elect, Mark Daluge and Minnesota DNR Forestry / Invasive Species Program Coordinator Susan Burks traveled to Salt Lake City, UT to network with potential partners at the Outdoor Retailer Winter Show.

Over head shot sowing show room floor at Outdoor retailer showBoth the winter and summer shows are held in Salt Lake City. The lectures, demonstrations and fashion show provide information retailers can use to improve their business. The trade show gives wholesalers the opportunity to show off their goods, especially any new lines coming out the next season.  With a special area for the environmentally and/or socially conscious, they give companies a chance to highlight their philanthropy and connect with related not-for-profits.  One surprising service was a mobile application with show highlights, lecture and demonstration schedules, networking opportunities and the means to schedule personal interviews between buyers and sellers or donors and non-for-profits. Together, the show package is a gold mine for anyone wanting to connect with the recreation industry.

The winter show is a bit smaller in size when compared to the enormous summer show, with much fewer watersport representatives, but still provided plenty of opportunities to continue previous conversations and introduce the PlayCleanGo brand to numerous retailers. The PlayCleanGo campaign has been well received by many environmentally aware brands, and continues to gain recognition by exhibitors at this event. As a result of this show, Mountain Khakis has signed up as a PlayCleanGo partner.  The possible partnerships are nearly endless with outdoor retailers, but it takes time and a bit of creativity to gain momentum.


Mountain Khakis

Mountain Khakis logo

Mountain Khaki's addition to the PlayCleanGo campaign is a direct result of our outreach efforts at Outdoor Retailers show. Their passion for the outdoors is both contagious and inspiring. "We are the people we have been waiting for" a Navajo quote on their website speaks to who they are as a company and how our partnership could benefit mutual goals. To start off, they are looking at possible product donations to outdoor events and incorporating PlayCleanGo into their "Ambassador Program". We encourage PlayCleanGo partners to show their appreciation by wearing Mountain Khakis brand wear. Also visit their website and explore ways to further the goals of both organizations through local a partnership.

Thanks to this vendor for actively supporting invasive species prevention. You can thank them too by visiting their website and putting their products to good use.

Rep. Spotlight

Sue Staniforth, BSc. MSc.,Education & Outreach Manager, Invasive Species Council of BC


Sue Staniforth sitting on hill side

Sue is a biologist and environmental educator, with a passion for outdoor and hands-on conservation education. She brings to her work over 25 years of experience as a biologist, educator and curriculum developer.  Before working with invasive species, Sue worked as a whale researcher in the Atlantic, Pacific and Gulf of Mexico, taught at several universities, and was a long time park interpreter at regional, provincial and national parks. She has developed over a dozen learning resources on topics that range from Garry Oak ecosystems to biodiversity to invasive species, and delivered hundreds of professional development workshops both provincially and nationally. Sue also has broad experience working with many stewardship groups, non-profits, communities and First Nations at local, regional, provincial and national levels.  She is an avid gardener herself, and enjoys taking care of a heritage apple orchard, chickens and ducks, as well as a boisterous dog in her off-work hours.

Contact informtion

Head Office: Williams Lake, BC
Home office: North Saanich, BC
Phone: 250-655-6300


North American Invasive Species Forum logoMark Your Calendars!
2017 North American Invasive Species Forum

Please join us for this biennial conference encompassing the interests of professionals and organizations involved in invasive species management, research, and regulation in North America. Conference will be held in Savannah, Georgia on May 9-11, 2017.

More information »

American Hiking Society logoNational Trails Day
Saturday June 3, 2017

National Public Lands Day is June 3, 2017! Celebrate by hosting a PlayCleanGo event or partnering with an agency or organization who is for celebrating National Trails Day!  Ideas include hosting an educational weed pull at a local trailhead or educating trail users about invasive species through an informational booth.

More information and to find an event near you »

national get outdoor day logoNational Get Outdoors Day
Saturday June 10, 2017

Promote PCG at a National Get Outdoors Day event near you! There are TONS of events going on across North America to celebrate this day and it's a great opportunity to promote the PCG message to recreationists who enjoy the outdoors!  Contact local land management agencies near you to see what they are doing or host your own!

More information and to find an event near you »

NAISMA logoSave the Date! 2017 NAISMA Conference & PlayCleanGo Summit

Please join us and your fellow invasive species managers in Sparks, Nevada October 23-26, 2017 for the North American Invasive Species Management Association (NAISMA) Conference and first PlayCleanGo Summit. Watch for more information throughout the summer to register!