Author Archives: Friends of Grant Park

Friends of Grant Park 2022 Calendar

Cover photo by Wendi Huffman

We are proud to offer our Friends of Grant Park calendar for 2022, featuring local artists’ photographs and artwork inspired by Grant Park. The proceeds of this calendar support our mission to preserve and protect the park. Available at the following South Milwaukee businesses, cash or check only, made out to Friends of Grant Park:

Avenue Coffeehouse, 911 Milwaukee Avenue

Mari’s Flowers, Wine & Gifts, 905 Milwaukee Avenue

Parkway Floral, 1001 Milwaukee Avenue

Skyline Deli, 1919 12th Avenue

The cost is $12 each or 2/$20.

If you wish to order online, there will be a $2 charge per calendar for shipping. Please note how many calendars you wish to receive and send your name, address and phone number in an email to friendsofgrantparkcalendar@gmail.com. We will be happy to mail one to you!

Something Spooky on October 10th!

Trek ‘n Treat

The Friends of Grant Park are happy to bring back our popular Trek ‘n Treat event on Sunday, Oct. 10th, from 1 to 4 pm. The family friendly educational event is a Halloween-themed nature walk through the Seven Bridges trails, starting out from Area 5 parking lot. “View the haunts of nature” in the 7 Bridges area, learn about the forest and get treats! $2 per child participant. Children 10 and under must be accompanied by an adult. Costumes optional, but more fun! Activities and refreshments for sale in Shelter 5A. Accessible route option available.

Stop the Invasion of Trash on our Beaches

Seven Bridges Adopt-a-BeachTM Clean up

On Saturday, Sept. 11th, the Friends of Grant Park held a beach clean up in partnership with Alliance for the Great Lakes.

Tom Gardner was our first volunteer of the morning!

The weather was breezy and comfortable that morning, heating up considerably after the noon hour. Volunteers had to navigate through the course of several hundred cross country runners that morning who were competing with regional competitors in the park at the same time as our beach clean-up. Traffic was congested, parking was tight, but still a small group of intrepid volunteers found their way to our clean-up table to do their duty for the park. Thank you for your perseverance!

Our Root-Pike River Basin Tour

On Aug. 24th, several FOGP members traveled to the Root and Pike River watershed to tour restoration areas and improvements made over the last 20 years by the Root-Pike Watershed Initiative Network (Root-Pike WIN). Our guide, Bill Sasse, a new member of FOGP, is a board member and former president with Root-Pike WIN. Since we are setting aside a significant portion of our fundraising money to fix erosion of a slope above a bridge in Grant Park, we thought we should see what Root-Pike WIN has accomplished. We toured a restored prairie in Pritchard Park; a stream restoration and bike path in Mount Pleasant; and a regenerative storm water conveyance in Kenosha filtering runoff from farmers soybean fields into the Pike River. Our last stop was the restoration at Petrifying Springs Park to view the refreshing clean waters of the Pike River stream flowing past a pavilion with graduated stone embankments to minimize erosion. Did I mention it was 94º with high humidity on Aug. 24th?

FOGP members visit a Root-Pike WIN prairie restoration in Pritchard Park in Racine

Root-Pike WIN has tirelessly partnered with federal, state, county, corporate and community partners to address the task before them. Layer after layer of planning, engineering, permitting, land acquisition, and construction, along with volunteers following up with planting prairie seed mixtures and removal of invasive species has resulted in a greener, cleaner watershed that benefits our rivers and our communities.

Thank you to Bill Sasse, and all the volunteers and partners of Root-Pike WIN for their accomplishments and a job very well done. Now it’s our turn to roll up our sleeves for the Oak Creek Watershed.

Thanks, Emilee!

The Friends of Grant Park wish to thank Emilee Herbeck on completion of her top notch job repairing and/or replacing the zig zag split rail fencing in several areas of the park. Emilee realized how important it was to direct visitors to use park paths and stairways to prevent erosion of the slopes and bluff. Emilee took this on as her Eagle Scout Project, with the support of FOGP. The crew she assembled to help her complete the task is pictured below. She also constructed two flying squirrel boxes. It truly takes a community to make a county park shine!

Emilee Herbeck (front row, green shirt) and crew

Traveling Beer Garden returns

If it’s summertime in Milwaukee, it’s time for Sprecher’s Traveling Beer Garden to roll into Grant Park. This summer, look for the Roll Out the Barrel Tour in Grant Park from June 23rd to July 5th. The tap will be pumping brews Mon. – Fri. from 5 pm to 9 pm. Saturday, Sunday & Holidays 11 am to 9 pm. For more information, and additional dates/parks over the summer, visit travelingbeergardens.com.

Vintage Quilt Virtual Auction

We wish to thank Colleen Grundy for her winning bid of $200.

We are offering this vintage hand-quilted coverlet as a virtual auction item, beautiful as a wall hanging, useful as a lap warmer or baby blanket to be passed on to future generations.

Bidding will begin at $35, in minimum increments of $5, with the quilt awarded to the highest bidder as of 5 pm St. Patrick’s Day, Wednesday, March 17th. Bids will be posted on facebook and our website as we receive them.

The quilt can be inspected in person if arranged in advance.

Funds raised will support our summer Suburban Soles program speakers.

Bids received:

2/17/21: C.G. $200

Details:
56”x56″
100% Cotton top and back
100% polyester batting
Hand quilted
Casing on top and bottom to hold rods, included

A Practical Gift Idea

We have several natural canvas tote bags for sale. Take to the library, the beach, or wherever you go. If you are willing to bag your own groceries, these stylish and sturdy totes can help reduce the need for plastic or paper grocery bags… Also highlights our great park and benefits our group’s fundraising goals. Machine wash warm, hang to dry. To order, send email to friendsofgrantpark@gmail.com, and we’ll contact you regarding payment and pickup or local delivery.

Socially Distant Arbor Day

The friends of Grant Park were very fortunate to receive 200 Quercus rubra/Red Oak saplings donated by Caterpillar, Inc.  Oaks may be the single most important tree in North America for wildlife value. However, even though April 24th was Arbor Day, no one was gathering anywhere to honor the spirit of the day, let alone plant trees.

Quercus rubra

 
The plan last Fall was to make a tree available to every one of our incredible Weed Out volunteers in Spring 2020 for planting in the areas we have managed to clear (mostly, ahem) of invasive garlic mustard and old-specie Japanese Tree Lilac.  We hoped to help make the connection as to why we even bother with the weeds.  It’s for the trees and the forest that we commit our annual spring efforts to removing invasive species; so it makes sense that we carry forward with a new generation of tree planting, right?

 
Our problem was obvious: the valuable Oaks arrived last week and we’re presented with the question: how do we spread the task of transplanting them among volunteers who have been instructed to avoid gatherings and stay at home? The answer we found: one planter or family unit at a time using printed “how-to” directions, social distancing, and masks. Several intrepid volunteers from our group agreed to plant in an area recently cleared of a dense growth of the invasive Japanese Tree Lilac which had been spreading via root systems unchecked in our original County Parks nursery for 100 years. Working independently, or as a single unit family group, transplanting was begun on April 26th. We hope to have 200 trees in the ground by May 1st.


Thank you to our family and solo units: John & Peyton; Becky, Rob, George & Peter; Pam & Dave; Betsy, Rick, Deb, Jody and Lynn for their help at this time. We are hopeful our efforts take root, and that flagging for the new small trees will help visitors to the park avoid stepping on them.