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NEWS ARCHIVE:     Age: 544 days

Work*Play*Earth Day events to be held around the state in 2019

Contact(s): Janet Hutchens, DNR Volunteer Coordinator, 608-261-8453; Paul Holtan, Office of Communications, 608-235-2126
April 2, 2019

[EDITOR'S ADVISORY: This news release has been updated to include events at Amnicon and Wildcat Mountain state parks on April 27 that were omitted from the original release.  We regret the error.]

MADISON - People will multiple opportunities to celebrate Earth Day while helping out and enjoying a Wisconsin State Park System property during the 11th annual Work*Play*Earth Day events that will be held around the state.

There are 30 different properties holding events on April 13, 20, 22, 27 and May 4 and 11. Volunteer events are sponsored by the Friends of Wisconsin State Parks and Department of Natural Resources properties.

Tree planting is one of the popular activities carried out during Work*Play*Earth Day events around the state. - Photo credit: DNR
Tree planting is one of the popular activities carried out during Work*Play*Earth Day events around the state.Photo credit: DNR
Volunteers also help get picnic areas and campgrounds ready for the season. - Photo credit: Friends of Wisconsin State Parks
Volunteers also help get picnic areas and campgrounds ready for the season.Photo credit: Friends of Wisconsin State Parks

This year the Wisconsin State Park System is celebrating the 30th anniversary of the Friends Group partnership program. The formal program to encourage volunteers and outline how citizens can form groups to support the park system properties started in 1989.

"The program has blossomed from a few support organizations to 64 Friends Groups that provide thousands of volunteer hours and dollars to help support the mission and activities of the Wisconsin state parks, forests, trails, and recreation areas" said Janet Hutchens, volunteer coordinator for the Wisconsin State Park System.

"This celebration includes the efforts of each individual, past and present, who has helped grow the statewide friends program and foster local partnerships in his/her community. All of these efforts have a resulted in lasting enhancements, increased awareness, and continued support for the Wisconsin State Park System."

Hutchens said the success of this annual event, Work*Play*Earth Day, supported by the Friends of Wisconsin State Parks umbrella organization, is just another example of the dedication of Friends Groups to help improve the visitor experience and engage more citizens in the care of the park system.

Last year 950 volunteers participated donating more than 3,240 hours at 28 different events.

"These volunteer events are a great way to get out in the spring and shake the cobwebs off after the long winter," she said

In addition to tree planting, other activities taking place around the state include installing benches, removing invasive plants, painting picnic tables and other structures, raking and cleaning up leaves and picking up litter. Lunches or refreshments are often provided by the many park friends groups that help sponsor these events.

Hours vary by event, but most begin either at 9 or 10 a.m. and run through noon or early afternoon. For complete details, search the DNR website,, for "Work Play Earth Day."

"When the work is done, volunteers join staff in hiking or biking park trails, visiting nature centers or interpretive displays, or enjoying any of the recreational opportunities available at the different properties," Hutchens said.

2019 Work*Play*Earth Day Events

Saturday - April 13

Saturday - April 20

Monday - April 22

Saturday - April 27

Saturday - May 4

Saturday - May 11

Last Revised: Tuesday, April 02, 2019

Contact information

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