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The annual Islands Summit is where the islands meet and get to know each other and help each other.
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Click on the map below for a quick overview of the member islands in the alliance. More detail and more photos are in the island showcase below.
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Our mission


The Great Lakes Islands Alliance encourages relationship building, fosters information exchange, and leverages resources to address shared challenges and embrace opportunities to benefit islands.

HEALTHY, SUSTAINABLE ISLAND COMMUNITIES.

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Links for information and registration for the October 4-7, 2020 Islands Summit on South Bass Island, Ohio will be available here soon. Sponsorship information is below.

The Great Lakes contain the largest, most diverse collection of freshwater islands in the world. Of the 32,000 islands, nearly twenty continue to host communities of people, typically a mix of year-round and seasonal residents and visitors.

While present-day island communities are uniquely distinct from one another in character, traditions, and geography, they share a number of complex, inter-related challenges, including: access to public services and quality education; supporting a diversified economy; managing natural, cultural, and historical resources across public and private boundaries; and changing demographics (size, age, seasonality, ownership, economic status, etc.).

These challenges are hurdles, not immovable barriers. In fact, some island communities have already independently developed their own “island solutions to island challenges.” Island communities are finding they often have more in common with one another than to their adjacent mainland. There is great value in islanders learning from other islanders about best practices that work, as well as those that don’t.

The 2020 GLIA Summit host committee with representatives from Kelleys, Middle Bass, Pelee, and South Bass Islands seek sponsors and donors to support the 4th Annual Great Lakes Islands Summit!

Island Updates

The monthly GLIA call on April 1, 2020 was dedicated to sharing coronavirus information (status, good ideas, specific challenges) from each island. GLIA members from each community were asked to provide an informal, 5-10 min update. Note: with a few exceptions, the summaries below are not a verbatim, nor are they intended to represent a full or formal or fully vetted record from each island community. Please contact GLIA leads from each island for clarifications.

Reports from past great lakes islands summits

Resources & Webinar

Resources

Webinar: Great Lakes Water Levels 101

Learn about Great Lakes water levels from one of the leading experts in the region, Andrew Gronewold, PhD, PE, physical scientist at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)–Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory and adjunct professor at the University of Michigan.
watch webinar
webinar Q&A

2019 Great Lakes Islands Basketball Tournament

The tournament was held on Dec. 6-7, 2019 on Mackinac Island. Teams were from Washington Island (Lake Michigan), Mackinac Island (Lake Huron), South Bass Island (Lake Erie) and Beaver Island (Lake Michigan).