Gov Thompson Candlelight and Ski event Memorable

The Candlelight Ski & Hike on Saturday, Feb. 18th at the Gov. Thompson State Park was memorable. The 20 volunteers from the Friends Group and state park/forest staff put out 800+ candles starting in 60 degree weather! The evening was a success as we were able to keep the ski trail in good condition for the event. The trails and shelter were decorated with ice carvings and hot chocolate was available to everyone. The Friends raised $141.00 in donations.
by Maggie L Kailhofer

The BIG Share–Tuesday, March 7

Would you like to help make good things happen in Wisconsin? You can choose a variety of ways to help through the BIG SHARE!
Help to support the Wisconsin state parks. Where do your donations go?
Community Shares of Wisconsin presents The Big Share on Tuesday, March 7, 2017! The Big Share is an online day of giving for 70 local nonprofits dedicated to building a fair, just community and protecting our environment.  You can support Friends of Wisconsin State Parks and their work in 2017 by donating!  Start today!…/friends-of-wisconsin-state-pa…
The Big Share is a fun, easy and flexible way to donate to and to learn more about organizations that help our community. The Big Share will introduce you to new causes and organizations and allow you to share the stories of the work people are doing to make the world a better place.
“ Choose to help right now. Click on the image. The BIG SHARE – on Tuesday, March 7, 2017.

Incentive Grant Program

*Formerly known as the Affinity Naturalist Grant

Who May Apply

Eligible Friends groups must be non-stock, nonprofit corporations described under Section 501(c)(3) or (4) of the Internal Revenue  Code and exempt from taxation under section 501 (a).  In addition,  the group must have formed to raise funds for a state property and also have a written Friends agreement with the Department of Natural Resources.
Eligible Friends groups must also be current members of Friends of Wisconsin State Parks (FWSP).  In order to be a current member of FWSP the Friends group must have their membership dues paid before grant applications are processed.  If the membership dues have not been paid, please send a $25 check to Friends of Wisconsin State Parks with the grant application. Friends Renewal Form

Each form above is a Word document. Download the document to the computer. Complete it. Save it.

Either email it to:

or send it to:
Patricia Loosen
Outreach Coordinator for the State Parks of Wisconsin
101 S. Webster Street  PR6
Madison, WI  53707

How Much Money Is Available?

Each Friends group may apply for up to a $1,000 grant.

Grant Awards

Grants are awarded for up to 50% of project, position, or activity costs.  The other 50% of project costs shall be provided by the project sponsor (Friends group).  Up to 50% of the sponsor’s share of project costs may be non-cash donations such as materials, equipment use, services or labor.  Grants awards will be announced in early Spring..

What Projects Are Eligible?

Grants are awarded to qualified Friends groups for naturalists and eligible interpretive programs, including but not limited to interpretive equipment, LTE Naturalists, nature education for children, exhibits, interpretive signage and other interpretive needs.

Wisconsin Friends of State Parks announce major public fundraising and engagement effort

visaWisconsin Friends of State Parks announce the kick- off of a major public fundraising and engagement effort. The new campaign aims to increase the support that FWSP can provide in order to preserve, promote, protect and enhance Wisconsin’s beautiful state parks, forests, trails and recreation areas.   Friends of Wisconsin State Parks have been providing project grants to local park property Friends groups for 10 years, in order to provide a better experience for state park and trail visitors around the state.  FWSP has just celebrated 20 years as a nonprofit 501C3 organization and they have set out to broaden what they do and increase their impact around the state.  They fund educational programs throughout the park season, provide funding for workshops, the planting of trees and flowers at parks and trails. FWSP would like to expand programs that bring children to state parks and trails to learn and experience nature through this fund raising campaign.

"The organization’s mission and values have defined FWSP for 2 decades. The tax deductible donations of the public and state park visitors and supporters of this fund raising effort will help ensure that FWSP will continue to meet its challenges and commitments.  This effort will keep state parks vibrant and to allow for park and trail users to have an enjoyable experience," says Bill Zager, president.  "The FWSP fund raising campaign will sustain our commitment to outdoor education and nature program excellence. The campaign will advance our position as a steward of funds to educate park users as well to preserve, promote, protect and enhance the beautiful Wisconsin state park properties."

“This campaign is about the people who come to the Wisconsin state parks- the experience they have here, and the memories that they create and leave with”

The campaign will raise funds to support the following FWSP priorities:

Innovative education programs for visitors of all ages at state parks

Native Trees and Flowers planting projects at state parks/trails

Children & Youth Adventure program

Park/Trail recreation improvements project

New physical and emotional health and wellness programs for all ages

FWSP Endowment Fund


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