September 2021 Dispatch

Ice Age Trail Alliance
Chippewa Moraine Chapter

Ice Age Trail Dispatch

September 2021

Chapter Meeting:  September 20

Our September Meeting will be a Zoom meeting due to the current situation with the Covid-19 Delta Variant.  The meeting is Monday, September 20th at 6:30 p.m.  If you plan to attend the chapter meeting, please contact Vicki Christianson at and I will send you the link for the meeting.  Hope to see you there. 

First Sunday Hike - September 5

It’s going to be a beautiful day for a hike!  Come and join us for our First Sunday Hike on September 5.   JoAnn Parks and Vicki Christianson will be leading a hike on the Chippewa Moraine Segment.  Come join us for a Hiker’s Choice beginning at the Obey Center.  There are several loop trails starting at the Obey Center to choose from.  Hikers who attend will vote on which trail loop to hike.   Come and enjoy this beautiful piece of trail.  

The Obey Center just re-opened on Saturday, June 26th after its Covid-related closure.  You will have the opportunity to check out their glacial and Chippewa Valley History displays, check out some live critters, and view a glacial video.  The staff is looking forward to seeing you.

Hikers should meet at the Obey Center parking lot on Hwy. M at 1:00 pm.  Wear sturdy walking shoes or hiking boots, long pants, and long sleeve shirt.  Be prepared to tuck your pants legs into your socks.  Bring water and a snack.  Mosquito repellent is recommended.  Wear a mask at the parking area if you have not been vaccinated.  Maintain 6 feet of distance on the hike.    Please send  an RSVP to JoAnn at  


We need volunteers to work at our Fall Color Hike on Saturday, October 2nd.  We will need greeters and shuttlers at the Obey Center from 8:30- 11:30.  We will also need donations of cookies and bars for the hikers at our display table.  Shuttlers will drive groups of hikers to a number of starting points, and the hikers will hike back to the Obey Center.   We hope to have a good turnout with the Mammoth 41 event.  If you are willing to help in one of these areas, please contact Vicki Christianson at

Note:  You need to have the Volunteer Agreement to volunteer at this and all events.  If you do not have the volunteer agreement, see the information below.  (It’s simple to fill out) 


Walk to End Hunger held on the Chippewa River Segment

The Bohemian Hall - Lodge 141 south of Cornell sponsored a hike on the Chippewa River Segment on August 8th.  Their goal was to raise money or food items for the Cornell Food Pantry.  The hike, led by JoAnn Parks,  was well attended by families.  Hikers either made a donation or brought food items for the food pantries in Cornell and Cadott.  $610 was raised for the two food pantries, along with a large box of food items.


Platforms dismantled at Camp Nawakwa

A mighty crew of 10 volunteers worked to  dismantle two platforms at Camp Nawakwa.  In return for our work, we were able to keep the usable lumber for the maintenance of boardwalks, etc.  Our lumber storage area is getting nice and full, and will supply us with many boards for upcoming projects.  A big thank you to our volunteers who worked hard that day.

The Mammoth Challenge is Back! 

Last year’s Mammoth Challenge was such a big success that they are bringing the event back this year.  Over 7,000 hikers signed up for the challenge last year, and over 5,000 hikers completed it!  The Mammoth Challenge this year is to hike 41 miles of the Ice Age Trail during October and visit 3 trail communities.  Registration is now open.  There are two new Trail Communities this year and they will be ready for the Mammoth Hike Challenge:  Antigo and Sturgeon Bay.  Cornell become a Trail Community in January 2020.

Visit   for all the information about the Mammoth Challenge and get registered for this monthlong event.  Be sure to click on each of the FAQs questions.  There is a lot of information hiding in there.  Did you know that families can sign up as a team and pool their miles together!?!?  If you complete the 41 miles, you (or every member of your team) get a certificate.  If you complete 41 miles and visit 3 Trail Communities, you  (or every member of your team) get the certificate and the patch (see image above).


The Ice Age Trail Alliance won the National Park Service George and Helen Hartzog Award for the Midwest Region-Volunteer Group Award out of 21 outstanding nominations submitted in recognition of 2020 efforts.  The George and Helen Hartzog Awards for Outstanding Volunteer Service recognize the exemplary contributions volunteers make to their park and to their community.  George B. Hartzog, Jr. served as the Director of the National Park Service and created the Volunteers-in Parks (VIP) program in 1970.  Dan Watson submitted the nomination which recognizes the remarkable response of the IATA staff and volunteers to COVID-19’s impact on Alliance programs and activities.  The Ice Age Trail never closed and provided a safe outdoor escape.  This resulted in a significant rise in membership and volunteers.  Work plans were reorganized to meet safety standards and resulted in 53,297 hours of mission critical service and 1.277 feet of boardwalk and 1.3 miles of new trail construction.  The Think Outside program designed to engage 10,000 WI fourth graders shifted to Zoom presentations, digital scavenger hunts, and a video series.

Congratulations to the IATA for this award and a big thank you to the many volunteers who give of their time and talents to the Ice Age Trail.

Go to  to view a video message from Mike Wollmer at the Ice Age Trail Alliance.

September Work Day - Saturday, September 18, 2021

Come and join us for our September Trails Workday!  Crews will be working on trail maintenance on the Firth Lake Segment east and west of the 600’ boardwalk at Firth Lake.  Volunteers will meet at the CC parking lot at 8:00am and then shuttle to the Firth Lake parking lot off of 250th Ave.

Please bring water, snacks, work gloves, sunhat, rain coat and pants, cell phone, bug spray, and personal items.  Please wear long pants, long sleeve shirt, and sturdy shoes. Somewhere in our work area expect that there may be wood ticks, poison ivy, ground bees, ants, and sharp thorns. We will be carrying in the tools we need and our backpacks.  We will provide tools such as buckets, loppers, hand saws, and shovels.  Feel free to bring a shovel with you if you like.  We will also have a first aid kit with us.

We plan to stop in Cornell afterwards for lunch.

Get your Volunteer Agreement and join the trail crew on work projects!

You need to have a completed Volunteer Agreement for the National Park Service in order to participate in our trail improvement days.  If you filled one out last summer, you are in good standing.  

If you do not have a signed Volunteer Agreement, here is the link:     Please fill out the fillable form and email it to

Please read the following documents before signing the agreement:  

- Cover letter from Eric Gabriel NPS

- IATA Volunteer Risk Assessment Tool

- Covid19HA

When you send in the Volunteer Agreement to Dan Watson, he will sign it and return it to you.  Please print a copy for yourself or save it in your files.  Email me at to let me know that you have received your signed Volunteer Agreement.

Upcoming Events:

September 5- First Sunday Hike-Obey Center

September 18-September Trail Work Day- CC parking lot-Firth Lake Segment

September 20- Chapter Zoom Meeting

Month of October:  Mammoth 41 Challenge

October 2-Fall Color Hike

October 16-October Trail Work Day