Friends of Lapham Peak

We’ve expanded our cross-country ski and snowmaking capabilities with additional trails, providing approximately 90 days of good quality snow with state-of-the-art equipment for a best-in-class ski-deck. We have privately contracted for prairie burns to assist our habitat restoration crews in their efforts to maintain natural prairies and woodlands – working in partnership with the DNR for approvals. We’ve expanded our Butterfly Garden and are planning an expansion of a memorial brick pathway through the Garden, while at the same time we have nearly 100 memorial park-benches placed throughout the park. And with great excitement, we have State approval to begin fundraising and architectural design for a new centerpiece Lodge to be located near our Evergreen Grove trailhead.


Facebook Page

Friend's Group: Friends of Wyalusing State Park


Contact Name: Randall Paske

Accomplishments, Events, etc: Naturalist, We will be having Smoky Bear's birthday party in August, Shakespeare in the Park in June, and our Harvest festival with pumpkin carving and live band in September.

Web page:

Social Media:

Hashtags: #fowharvestfest, #fowsmokybear, #fowshakespeareinthepark 

Friends of Rib Mountain


Contact Name: Steve Kaiser

Accomplishments, Events, etc:

Concert in the Clouds is usually a very popular program in the summer for us, but might not take place this year due to COVID restrictions. We expect to have a new playground completed in the next few weeks which is probably going to be our biggest accomplishment this year.


Social Media: Friends of Rib Mountain - 

Friend's Group: Wisconsin Friends Explore Challenge


Contact Name: Wisconsin Friends Explore

Accomplishments, Events, etc: 22 challenges for visitors of all Wisocnsin State Owned properties


Social Media:

Hashtags: #fwfechallenge

Special:  Watch the video from Channel Three. (Video mentions free admission for weekend of 6/5-6. No longer applies. Here is video link. 

Friend's Group: Friends of Council Grounds State Park

Friend's Group: Friends of Peninsula State Park


Contact Name: Steve Strucely

Accomplishments, Events, etc: --Raised $750,000 towards the cost of the new Eagle Tower.

--Raised $360,000 for an addition to and upgrade of the Nature Center.

--Provided funding for interpretive signs, benches, and a kiosk at the new Eagle Tower.

--Entered into a partnership with the concessionaire at Nicolet Beach to receive a percentage of sales which will be used for park projects.

--Raising funds to replace the playground equipment at Nicolet Beach.

--Raising funds for Phase II of improvements to the Nature Center, including an amphitheater, accessible walkways, and expanded parking. Work on the amphitheater will begin in September 2021.

--Promoting tribute gifts, commemorative bricks, and bench donations to support park improvements.

--Funding a natural resources educator position during summer 2021.

--Providing volunteers for special events and grooming of ski and hiking trails.

--Selling merchandise to fund limited term (summer) employees and new equipment for the park.

--Maintaining two long-term funds at the Door County Community Foundation to support current and future programs and research at the park.

Friends of High Cliff State Park


Contact Name: Paul Stelter

Accomplishments, Events, etc: We built a new, ADA-compliant playground including upgrading surrounding infrastructure. In

tackling this project, The Friends of High Cliff State Park raised funds to build the playground, install a modern, low maintenance, cushioned play surface and remodel the adjacent restroom building to meet current ADA standards. Total expenditures for this reached nearly $200,000. Dedication is planned for July 14. Members of the Natural Resources Board, Secretary Cole and Governor Evers have been invited to attend.

We are currently installing new interpretive signage around Butterfly Pond Trail, and have just kicked off a major fundraising campaign, selling memorial plaques for placement at the trailhead sign for the signs and other future trail enhancements.

We've just received funding from a private foundation to upgrade and restore the welcome kiosk at the park entrance. We expect work to begin soon.

We have expanded sales of Friends of High Cliff merchandise (tee-shirts, caps and sweatshirts) to an off-site location (Dick's Family Foods in Sherwood). Our merchandise sales have been virtually non-existent because the park office remains closed and Dick's provides us an alternative resource.

We are planning a major fund-raising dinner on November 6, 2021. WBAY Channel 2 News

Anchor, Bill Jartz will emcee the event.



Seth Peterson Cottage Conservancy, INC


Contact Name: Kermit Traska

Accomplishments, Events, etc: Sharing Restoration and ongoing maintenance of a cottage designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, Open House tours the second Sunday of every month, and nearly 350 opportunities for people to experience an overnight stay in a cottage designed by Frank Lloyd Wright.

Social Media: , 

Friends of Lakeshore State Park


Contact Name: David Wenstrup

Accomplishments, Events, etc: We raise funds for and participate in educational programming, events, infrastructure and marketing efforts to build memberships and strategic alliances in support of the park.

Recent and future activities include:



Hashtags: #lakeshorestatepark

Friends of Devil's Lake State Park 

Contact:  Bernadette Greenwood, President


Accomplishments, Events, etc

The Friends of Devil’s Lake State Park (FRIENDS) was organized on January 18, 1996 for the charitable and educational purposes of supporting, assisting, and promoting the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources with interpretive, scientific, historical, educational, recreational, and related visitor services at Devil’s Lake State Park in Sauk County, Wisconsin.

The FRIENDS hosts events in the park including the popular Music in the Park held weekends in June, July, and August, candlelight hikes and snowshoe events, including the popular Halloween Hike and campfire (which for the first time in 2021 included a pumpkin carving contest), and volunteer workdays.

FRIENDS volunteer workdays are usually held the second Saturday of the month (except in winter), with events including garbage pickup in the park and along the FRIENDS Adopt a Highway segment, painting of benches and picnic tables, removal of graffiti from rocks and other items in the park and assisting with other park projects.  Information on volunteer days can be found in advance on our Facebook page and website.

The FRIENDS raise funds to support the park through selling dedication pavers (placed outside the North Shore Chateau, firewood and retail sales (FRIENDS merchandise), and collecting individual donations.

The FRIENDS, Devil’s Lake Concessions Corporation (DLCC) and Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (WDNR) have embarked on a campaign to design and build a new educational/interpretive center.  The center will be relevant and adaptable to accommodate and meet the needs of visitors of all ages and abilities.  It will serve as an outdoor recreation educational resource and hub within Devil’s Lake State Park, introducing visitors to the Baraboo Hills region, the entire Wisconsin State Park System, and our state’s numerous other nationally significant recreational, natural, and cultural treasures; a “gateway” by which visitors can venture outward.  This new center will help us strategically meet the needs of park visitors, while providing an opportunity to lessen impact on Devil’s Lake State Park by inspiring visitors to explore other areas of our great state.

The educational / interpretive center will provide dynamic, vibrant, and essential support in fulfilling the park’s mission.  By facilitating meaningful and enriching park experiences, the new center will play a mission-critical role — to instill stewardship and help visitors understand the historical, spiritual, cultural, and geological significance of the park so they will want to help care for those resources for generations to come.

The FRIENDS hired Baker Street Consulting Group of Stevens Point Wisconsin in July 2021 to embark on a 38-month capital campaign to raise funds for the new center.

For more information about the FRIENDS and our activities, please visit our website, social media sites and or email us.

Web Page:

Facebook Page: @friendsofdevilslake

Social Media: Instagram:

Friends of Interstate and Straight Lake Park. 

Contact:  Trudy Lorenz


The Ice Age Trail runs through both parks. We would like to see the State Friends network and have a working relationship with the Ice Age Trail to promote the great outdoors.

Emily Ford finished the Ice Ave Trail last winter by hiking through Straight Lake Park. She continued to Interstate Park where she camped overnight. The next day she hiked to the Western Terminus located in Interstate Park on the Pot Hole Trail.

We were unable to plan an event to welcome Emily because of Covid, yet many people came to congratulate Emily.

This Fall the Ice Age Trail had an October Mammoth  Challenge. We saw hikers from all over the state. Several came to our park gift shop and purchased numerous items, as well as gave the park cash donations.

We would love to see the State Friends reach out to the Ice Age Trail to collaborate to benefit both organizations.

Thank you so much for considering this request and answering this idea with a written response.

Warmest regards,

Trudy Lorenz

Friends of Interstate and Straight Lake Park




Friends of Willow River and Kinnickinnic State Parks 


Contact Name: Ashley Goldbeck

Accomplishments, Events, etc: Our organization supports the Wisconsin DNR’s interpretive, scientific, historical, recreational, and educational services at Willow River and Kinnickinnic State Parks. We pay the salary of the park Naturalist, who provides a variety of environmental education programs all year round. We run rental programs and classes for snowshoes, canoes and kayaks. We have funded and assisted the construction of handicapped accessible fishing piers, a woodshed, and various playgrounds through grants and volunteerism. We host large events such as the Trail Challenge, Halloween Bash, Candle Light Ski, OUTWIGO and more. We also staff the Nature Center and Gift Shop to provide information and help connect visitors to their next adventure!


Friends of Rock Island


Contact Name: Colleen Andrews

Accomplishments, Events, etc: FORI established a Lighthouse Museum in the park and has offered daily tours from Memorial Day Weekend through Columbus Day every year since 2004. A Camp Host cabin was built near the campground and will begin being used in 2022. The deck surrounding the historic Thordarson Boathouse was restored in 2020. We host an annual fundraiser picnic and silent auction each summer near the Boathouse. Fundraising on Giving Tuesday via Facebook has generated thousands of dollars for the park. Money has been put aside to aid the DNR in refurbishing the park dock which is in need of repair/replacement due to high and rough water in Lake Michigan.



Social Media: FB Group:

 Friends of Mirror Lake State Park

Contact Person: Anita Johnson, President

Accomplishments, Events, etc: 

Web Page:

Facebook Page: Friends of Mirror  Lake State Park

 Friends of Wildcat Mountain State Park

Contact Person: Marla Lind, Board Member

Accomplishments, Events, etc: Since 2015, we have been working hard preserving, improving and promoting Wildcat Mountain for the benefit of visitors, the ecosystem and the community.

What We’ve Achieved:

Trail Work

With our time and our money we’ve worked in some manner on every mile of trail in the park:

Erosion Control and Damage Repair

Invasive Species Management

Fallen Tree Clearing

Wayfinding Signage

Campground Improvements

At the family campground the Friends leveraged our money and time to secure a grant to pave the ADA campsite. In horse camp we did the same to install high lines, paddocks and manure pits. In both we do cleanup and invasive species management.

Visitor Programs

The Friends have facilitated and supported events like the Candlelight Ski and others to expand opportunities for visitors to recreate in new ways at the Park.

Community Outreach

The Friends have partnered with local organizations like the Norwalk-Ontario-Wilton school district to provide outdoor nature-based educational opportunities in the Park. The Community Club in Ontario is a partner for the Candlelight ski event. We are partnering with Kickapoo Valley Reserve and the Mississippi Valley Conservancy to establish a 13,000 acre Dark Sky area.

Protecting Native Species

The Friends actively monitor rare and threatened species in the park and do extensive invasive species control work to protect the native plants, insects, birds and mammals. We’ve adopted the embedded Mt. Pisgah Hemlock-Hardwoods State Natural Area for the same reason. We also maintain three dozen Bluebird houses.

Securing Grants

We write grant applications and leverage our funds and labor to secure grants that support a wide variety of projects.

Flood Recovery

With miles of river within the park boundary, floods have a major impact on Wildcat Mountain. The Friends have spent hundreds of hours scouting for trash and removing debris from the natural areas adjacent to the river.

Firewood Concessions.

The firewood we sell is a major source of funding for the projects we execute and the matching funds for the grants we secure. Buying your firewood in the park directly supports all the work we do.

Clothing Concessions.

The clothing we sell with Friends logos and our commission on trail pass sales are a major source of funding for the projects we execute and the matching funds for the grants we secure. Look for us selling both at Horse Camp on Saturdays all summer and check out the clothing at the Park office.

Web Page:

Facebook Page: Friends of Wildcat Mountain State Park

Friends of Copper Falls State Park

Contact Person: Karen Goetz, Board Member

Accomplishments, Events, etc: The Friends of Copper Falls was formed in 2008. Over the years, members have poured their love for Copper Falls into efforts to support the park staff and enhance the visitor experience through the various projects listed below:

Accessibility improvements within the park

Future and ongoing plans include:

Web Page:

Facebook Page: