Portage Park District News, Needs & Thanks!

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*adapted from the Portage Park 11-28-13 Newsletter by Executive Director Christine Craycroft

chickadeeSledding hills, hiking trails, chickadees calling…….these are a few of my favorite things….

It’s hard to take a thoughtful walk in the park and not recall the many blessings we have, and I’m especially reminded of all of the wonderful people I’m lucky to know and work with through Portage Parks.

Volunteers and donors of all kinds, happy people using the parks and sharing their experiences, and a great team of partners in business, non-profits and government agencies all working together to improve the common good.

And while our staff has shrunk over the past few years, our dedicated Maintenance Coordinator Mick Owen remains, creatively and resourcefully using his lifetime of work skills with a tiny budget to keep up with 14 miles of hike and bike trails and 4 open parks (thankfully this year also aided by seasonal worker Lee Schaeffer). Mick’s wife Alice contributes too, with the occasional pie or cinnamon rolls she bakes as a thank you for some of the many favors he manages to pull here and there to get the job done.

Thanks to you all, for caring about our natural heritage and helping to keep Portage Parks moving into the future.

The Portage Park District Foundation has been a vital supporting nonprofit organization, especially with budget cuts of recent years that hit the Park District hard. Thanks to the work of the Board of Trustees and dozens of volunteers, the Foundation has been able to contribute $50,000 this year, raised from hundreds of donors across the county.

At the Board’s last meeting of the year, special recognition was given to Trustees Jeff Hunt and David Bogner who are moving off the Board after serving for 4 years; their efforts yielded great results for our cause. Thank You!!

Become A Volunteer!

Volunteering for the Portage Park District has rewards for both you and the park. The park needs volunteers to continue its maintenance and growth. Apart from volunteers, the park would take a dive!

frogThere are so many ways to help, some of which require very little time. Some are indoors, others outdoors. A few of these include:

  • Stewardship program – inventorying existing conditions and monitoring changes in animal and plant communities. Stewardship may include removal of alien invasive species and habitat creation and improvement.
  • Environmental Education Program Assistant – help with hikes, hands-on activities and our Bio Bus programs at local fairs.
  • Event Committee – members help coordinate details for some of the special events offered throughout the year.
  • Office assistants – help write a newsletter, send out correspondence, organize files, do research or manage a database.
  • Frog and Toad Monitoring – During the frog season, volunteers train themselves to identify amphibians by their call and then take these skills outdoors to study the frogs in their local ponds and wetlands. Data is collected and sent to Frogwatch USA, a national database sponsored by the National Wildlife Federation.

Read more and fill out a volunteer form HERE.

 

Christine Craycroft
Executive Director
Portage Park District

330-297-7728

ccraycroft@portageparkdistrict.org
www.portageparkdistrict.org

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