Volunteers are invited to join the Ice Age Trail Alliance for the final trail building event of the season on the Ice Age National Scenic Trail. From Oct. 22-26, volunteers will gather west of Madison to create a new section of the Trail, adding a hiking and snowshoeing opportunity near Highway 12.
During the event, which is part of the Alliance’s Mobile Skills Crew program, volunteers will help build over 2 miles of sustainable footpath in a landscape of steep hillsides, granddaddy oaks, and inviting wetland environments. No previous experience is necessary to volunteer, and there will be roles for all ages and abilities. The IATA provides food, tools, and campsites free to all who volunteer.
Because it’s the final event in the Alliance’s season of trail building, there will be some extra fun in appreciation of volunteers’ work on the Ice Age Trail this year.
“This event is going to be a grand finale to a remarkable season,” said Luke Kloberdanz, outreach and education manager. “To show our thanks to our volunteers, we have a lot planned – a pumpkin carving contest, Swanky Saturday, and a pig roast are some of the highlights.”
The Alliance is partnering with two area schools, FairShare CSA Coalition, Vermont Valley Community Farm, Campo di Bella and REI to bring the local community into the effort to build the Ice Age Trail in Dane County. The project is also being supported, in part, by the Dane County Partners for Recreation and Conservation.
The farms will provide fresh, local food to hungry trail builders.
“Our partnership with Ice Age Trail Alliance, to provide certified organic produce grown less than 20 miles from the event, is an opportunity to collaborate with a group that shares the same vision of involving community,” said Jonnah Perkins of Vermont Valley Community Farm. “We are fortunate to have a connection with an organization that sees the value in serving fresh, local produce.”
Mary Ann Bellazini of Campo di Bella also values the opportunity to collaborate with the Alliance.
“We are so proud to partner with the Ice Age Trail Alliance in their upcoming appreciation dinner,” Mary Ann said. “Campo di Bella supports the efforts of the Alliance in preserving and maintaining the natural beauty of Wisconsin. Through our combined efforts, we will continue to foster land stewardship for current and future generations.”
Volunteers will gather mornings from Wednesday, Oct. 22, through Sunday, Oct. 26 at 8 a.m. at Camp Brandenburg off Highway 19 in Dane, just east of Indian Lake County Park, which will serve as the project headquarters. Look for yellow Ice Age Trail Event signs. Trail work ends by 5 p.m. each day and by noon on Sunday.
If you’re planning on volunteering, please help the Ice Age Trail Alliance plan for your needs by registering online at http://mobileskills.iceagetrail.org/springfield-hill, or call the Ice Age Trail Alliance office at (800) 227-0046.