I’m sitting at the picnic table without a jacket, so it looks like summer is finally here. Another great season to get out and explore and enjoy Wisconsin’s resources. It could be something as simple as a game of golf with old friends. It could be a slightly more challenging goal with people you love, like camping at unfamiliar locations. My wife and I have always liked short day hikes at parks around the state, now we’re setting a goal to hike the entire Ice Age National Scenic Trail. It’s 1200 miles of trails and connecting routes located entirely in Wisconsin, featuring the beautiful landscapes that the glaciers gave us.
As I’m writing this, the conference in La Crosse is only 5 months away. It’s hard to believe that my term as president is more than half over. With things being the way that they are I regret not being able to get around the state, meeting more of you and learning about your projects during my term. That can change now that people are getting vaccinated and mandates are being loosened. The WWOA Board has made the decision to allow regional meetings to be in person following local guidelines. Might not be the perfect situation yet, but we’re getting there.
Preparations are going forward for an in-person conference. The website is being updated so some things are a little behind. By the time you read this more detailed conference information should be available on the website. Remember to fill out nomination forms for a deserving person. Our regions are full of people that have done something outstanding or innovative. Perhaps they have “just” quietly worked to keep their facilities operating well day in and day out to serve the community and protect the waters that we all rely on. This is the opportunity to recognize their contributions. Regional Operator of the Year Award nominations should be submitted to your regional officers by July 24, 2021. All other awards need to be submitted to Rick Mealy, the WWOA Awards Committee Chair by August 1, 2021.
I was saddened to hear of the passing of Past President Tim Nennig. Although I served with Tim on a DNR advisory committee many years ago, I never got the opportunity to know him really well. He seemed like a good person and I respected his knowledge and opinions. I always thought of him as a good example of what dedication to our profession and involvement in WWOA should look like. My prayers go out to his family, he will be missed.
I’ll close this the way that I did in my last message. Keep doing the things that you do to protect the waters of Wisconsin so we can enjoy them all year long.
Take Care Everyone,