Treasures of Oz

Celebrating the Natural Gems of Ozaukee County

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We Are Ten!!!!

Written by Marjie Tomter
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Hard to believe it but Treasures of Oz 2019 marks the tenth year of our event. Even more amazing is that Ozaukee has even more places to discover than than we did ten years ago.

Ten years ago OWLT had 12nature preserves in Ozaukee and Washington counties.  At the end of 2018, that number had risen to 32.  IN 2018 the Ozaukee Washington Land Trust has created two new preserves in Ozaukee County - so new they are not even up on their website, nor ours as of yet - but they will be.  They are in the project area near Cedarburg Bog and are just beautiful.  They will need volunteers to help with trail creation, so don’t hesitate to sign up for the STEW NEWS on the OWLT website.  Right now you will need to call in to do that...ask for Josh.  262 338-1794.  My opinion is that both sites will be really rewarding projects.  Trail building is cool because you can see what you have done right away and then bring family and friends and show off the cool trail you just helped build.  We are hoping one of these sites will be on the 2019 Eco-Tour.

Ozaukee County has added 2 more parcels of land to their newest park. River Oaks County Park along the river in the Town of Grafton.  The creation has come about through buying and restoring the land through a state flood grant and federal hazard mitigation programs.  June 15th is going to be too early to showcase this little treasure, but when it is, we will get it on the website.  

As for our 2019 Eco-Tour - June 15th is the magic date - as always, the Saturday before Father’s Day.

Besides cool treasure sites, there will be opportunity again to learn how to raise a Monarch from egg to adult butterfly at the Observatory's Monarch Workshop. Attendees who have a good supply of milkweed, the only plant Monarch caterpillars can eat, will be able to adopt Monarch caterpillars.  Monarch experts will be on hand.

Have you heard about the ArtServancy Project?  This forward thinking project places area artists in a selected OWLT preserve with a mission to create a work that reflects the preserve.  This is not just about painting but includes photography, sculpture and other media.  Some of those artists well be present at our 2019 treasure sites on June 15th!  You may discover them off and on during the year working away in their preserves.  Maybe this will give you an idea because there is nothing like extended time in a natural place to change the way you look at the world and to stir your imagination.

Speaking of art, there is another really BIG piece of artistic creation in another of our treasure sites for 2019.  Can you guess? You may have seen it - it would be really hard to miss.  Perhaps you or one of your children worked on it.It will be featured in June.

The downside of being 10 is that we have sort of run out of newness in terms of getting grants for "new" things.  A few of you were so kind as to send us a donation at the end of the year, and for that we are really thankful.  We expect some of our sponsors will continue their support as well.  Our largest expense for the event is advertising - but then, when we do the survey at the end of the event, most people report they heard about this through friends and family.  So, you all have a mission this year - to keep spreading the word.

The easiest way to get the word around is through social media - sharing our posts.  That can make al the difference.  Talk to your kids scout and 4-H groups as well.  (4-H will be joining us at our treasure sites this year although the details are still in the works.)  Remember to include your church groups and places where you work.

We will be seeking volunteers again to greet and stamp at our treasure sites and help out with the auction. You will be able to sign up right here on the webpage.  We have not yet finalized our sites, so wait a month or so and remember to check back.  If you follow us on social media, you will get informations about signing up.

While June comes up so quickly, sort of sneaks up on us like Christmas does each year, there are still good chunks of time to discover and enjoy other outdoor activities in Ozaukee.  Keep a watch on our social media - we will try to get as many up there as possible - and watch our calendar on the website.