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Focus on Friends–Friends of Peninsula State Park

Spooktacular Hike - Game TableThe Friends of Peninsula State Park(501 c (3)) are dedicated to supporting the interpretive, historical, educational and visitor service programs of Peninsula State Park located in Fish Creek, Wisconsin. The ‘Friends were founded in 2007.
The volunteers assist Peninsula State Park staff by :
  • Helping to eradicate invasive species such as garlic mustard and European honeysuckle within the Park.
  • Providing volunteers to assist in the Nature Center throughout the summer and fall.
  • Providing volunteers to help with programs put on by Park staff, such as the Candlelight Ski, Talking Tombstones and Spooktacular
  • Providing volunteers to assist in the Door County Half-Marathon and the Door County 50-mile Run.

  • The hard working volunteers frequently donate 1500-over 2000 hours per year. They worked tirelessly to promote and host Campfire Stories and Snacksthe Annual Golf Classic’ event., annual Candlelight ski/hike event in February, and the Talking Tombstones and Spooktacular(Photo – right).
    It is not unusual for over 1000 visitors to attend the Spooktacular Hike at Peninsula State Park where visitors were treated to costumed characters along a mile-long candlelit trail, campfire stories, cookies, marshmallows, and cider, crafts, a fire safety play at American Folklore Theatre, and meet-and-greets with Smokey Bear and Sparky the fire dog. Thank you to everyone who supported this event to raise funds for nature education in the park!
    Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/peninsulafriends

    Focus on Friends–Friends of New Glarus Woods State Park

    Clipboard01Located in the driftless area of Northern Green County, WI, The Friends of New Glarus Woods State Park promote the use and improvement of the park by:
    • Providing volunteer support for maintaining trails, planting prairies and other stewardship activities.
    • Assisting the park with educational and community activities
    • Providing financial assistance for park projects and programs
    One of the favorite events for park visitors is called Spirits of the Night.  The event is held annually in September.  Costumed “Friends” hide along a designated trail  at night which is lit by lanterns.  Park visitors walk along the trails and spot the “Spirits” . As each animal is spotted, it mysteriously talks and tells their story as it relates to the environment.  A huge bonfire is centrally located and all return for hot cider and food provided by the “Friends”.
    The children, and adults as well, enjoy the playground. This was a big project for the “Friends”.

    Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/NewGlarusWoodsStatePark

    Focus on Friends - Friends of the Mead/McMillan Association

    The Friends of the Mead/McMillan Association come from many different backgrounds interested in increasing public understanding, appreciation, support, and enjoyment of wildlife. Formed in 1996, the goals of the “Friends”  continue to seek funding for educational support, improving access and use of the handicap facilities on the property, creating citizen support for the management activities on the property, expanding and promoting the walking trail system, promoting the Mead as birding area, purchasing needed operational and habitat maintenance equipment, providing updated maps of the property, and creating a trail system with viewing areas.
    With almost 40,000 acres dedicated to wildlife, Mead and McMillan are resources that touch the lives of every citizen in Wood, Portage and Marathon Counties. The Friends are a partner in the day to day operation and we have much to be proud of.
    The ‘Friends’ were instrumental in raising funds for the Stanton W. Mead Education and Visitor Center, a model in green design in the state of Wisconsin. They have also provided funding and volunteers to build the Ephemeral Trail and Boardwalk, along with the observation decks overlooking the Educational Wildlife Scrape & Sedge Meadow.
    The Friends of the Mead/McMillan Association, Inc. Board of Directors meets every other month, typically on the first Tuesday at 6 pm at the Visitor Center.  The meeting is open to the public and Friends members.
    The Friends of Mead & McMillan Wildlife Areas Facebook page is https://www.facebook.com/FriendsofMeadMcMillanWildlifeAreas/info?tab=page_info

    Focus on Friends–Friends of Mirror Lake

    Friends of Mirror Lake State ParkOn June 12,2014, the Friends of Mirror Lake Sate Park, the Department of Natural Resources, and many contributors gathered for a Ribbon Cutting Ceremony to celebrate our collaboration and completion of the New Amphitheater at Mirror Lake State Park.
    Two years before,  the Friends of Mirror Lake undertook the biggest project to date for the park – a new seating area for the amphitheater.  Through our fundraising efforts of fire wood and concession sales, ‘The Friends’ donated $50,000 to the project with a $20,000. State matching grant to fully fund the project.    In August, we hosted our first wedding ceremony!
    The Friends of Mirror Lake sponsor and staff many events throughout the year at Mirror Lake:
    • Winter hikes – torch lighting, parking cars, greeting visitors
    • Wood Work days – help with making bundles of firewood to be sold to campers
    • Picnic table project – staining and assembling picnic tables
    • Earth Day events – leading a group of volunteers while working the following:
    • Invasive species removal
    The Friends of Mirror Lake State Park is organized for the charitable and educational purpose of supporting, assisting and promoting Mirror Lake State Park by providing interpretive, scientific, historical, educational, and related visitor services to the park.
    The Friends of Mirror Lake Facebook page is https://www.facebook.com/pages/Friends-of-Mirror-Lake-State-Park/278024202237665?sk=timeline .

    Focus on Friends–Friends of Lakeshore State Park

    No question about it, since its opening,  in 2007, Lakeshore State Park is a very busy park. There have been over 3,500,000 visitors. More than 150,000 people have participated in outdoor educational programs.  Through it all, The Friends of Lakeshore State Park have been there to preserve, enhance, and promote this very unique park.
    In the heart of downtown Milwaukee, Lakeshore State Park provides a unique oasis with recreational and educational opportunities geared to an urban population. Lakeshore State Park offers great views of the city and Lake Michigan. It is the only urban state park. It is located on a man-made 17-acre island east of the Henry W. Maier Festival Park Grounds, Lakeshore State Park includes a 130-foot long pedestrian bridge, walking trails, docks and reservable overnight boat camping and fishing areas.
    The Friends offer volunteer opportunities. Volunteering at the Park is a great way to make new friends, have fun and learn more about the Park and Lake Michigan. Opportunities include:
    • Park Ambassador – Greet and inform visitors about the Park, upcoming events and activities. Sign up for a shift on the weekend, weekdays or evenings. Location
    • Volunteer Naturalist – Assist Park staff in conducting educational classes and programs. A background in teaching and\or natural sciences is desirable but not required.
    • Citizen Scientist – Help the Park staff gather information on scientific endeavors at the park, such as bird surveys, water data or conducting visitor surveys.
    • Lakeshore Caretakers – Assist Park staff with the many projects required to operate and maintain a Wisconsin state park.
    • Special Events – Assist in the set up, operation and takedown of various events at the Park, such as the Urban Island Beach Party, Gathering Water’s Festival, Campfire on the Park, Winter Festival, and many more. Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MKELakeshoreStatePark?fref=ts