Mobile Skills Crew Event a Success During Pandemic!

Ice Age Trail Alliance, Ice Age National Scenic Trail, Volunteers, Mobile Skills Crew, MSC, Boardwalk, LaBudde Creek Segment
A volunteer works steadily and safely while adding the kick plate, a finishing touch along the 248-foot-long boardwalk on the LaBudde Creek Segment. Photo by Patrick Gleissner.

Our first Mobile Skills Crew (MSC) event since February, the LaBudde Creek event brought a kaleidoscope of emotions:

  • anxiety, like when dancing after not having done so in a long while;
  • change, as when seeing with new eyes a way to navigate new norms;
  • gratitude, like when an old friend breaks silence with laughter.

Ice Age Trail Alliance, Ice Age National Scenic Trail, Volunteers, Mobile Skills Crew, MSC, Boardwalk, LaBudde Creek Segment
A volunteer at the LaBudde Creek MSC event refreshes trail signage. MSC volunteers were divided into groups to accomplish specific projects across the MSC site. Photo by Patrick Gleissner.

The August heat and humidity did not dampen 64 volunteers’ enthusiasm or the number of projects tackled and accomplished in 1,464 hours of service. The list is impressive by any measure:

  • Built 248 feet of elevated boardwalk.
  • Refreshed trailhead signage in 2 locations.
  • Created a beautiful, new ~1/3-mile of trail.
  • Shaped numerous drainage dips.
  • Removed berms that blocked water and kept it from sheeting across tread.
  • Removed vegetation encroaching on the trail corridor.
  • Crafted a needed reroute.
  • Beat back a mile of dense vegetation, 30 miles south on the Parnell Segment.

Click here to view the LaBudde Creek Segment Outcome Map.

See additional photos of the event here.

A special THANK YOU to the following:

  • Patricia Suemnicht and her husband allowed us to stage and store trailers and equipment and park cars on their property.
  • The Manitowoc County Parks Department provided basecamp at Walla Hi County Park.
  • The Cedar Lake Improvement District provided workspace to cut and pre-assemble boardwalk materials.
  • Lakeshore Chapter volunteers for advance mowing, boardwalk pre-assembly, and unwavering support.
  • Crew Leaders Mark Struve, Jerry Pfeiffer, Wanda Brown, Bill Welch, David Carew, Fred Nash, Mac Whitmore, and Allan Henn; and equipment operator Jerome Converse.
  • Project Team members Jerry Sazama and Patrick Gleissner.
  • All first-time and Reconnecting volunteers!
  • DNR staff: Luke Roeffler, Tanya Meives, Jason Quast, Melissa Vanlanduyt, Laura-Stremick Thompson, and Andrew Hanson.
  • Patrick Gleissner, Lacy Wittman, Kathy Claude, and Tim Malzhan photographed volunteers at the event. Their photos are featured in the MSC photo album.
Thank you for masking up and social distancing.
Thank you for facing uncertainty with discipline and thoughtfulness.
Thank you for Reconnecting.
Ice Age Trail Alliance, Ice Age National Scenic Trail, Volunteers, Mobile Skills Crew, MSC, Boardwalk, LaBudde Creek Segment, COVID, Pandemic Protocol
Extensive COVID-19 safety measures were practiced at the MSC event. Check-in stations with health protocols were spread out across the project site. Photo by Lacy Whitman.

The LaBudde Creek MSC was the first large scale volunteering event of the season, and it could only happen with extensive COVID-19 protocols in place. From the registration process to overnight camping areas to mask protocol, all were considered in the COVID-19 Mitigation plan developed by Ice Age Trail staff and approved by the WI DNR.

See more on how Alliance staff managed for coronavirus in this featured news segment: Ice Age Trail Improvements Underway with Coronavirus Considerations

LaBudde Creek MSC Event Overview

64 Volunteers

1,464 Volunteer Hours

Built 248′ of Boardwalk

Created 1/3-mile of New Trail

Refreshed Trailhead Signage

Cleared Trail Corridor

Next up:

September 17-20 (City of West Bend)

A 3-prong attack offers plenty of ways to help:

  • Build a boardwalk across a perennially wet area on the Southern Kewaskum Segment.
  • Demolish and remove the decrepit boardwalk at Waterford Road.
  • Prepare a worksite along the West Bend Segment. This project will need sawyers for chainsaw work, clearing corridor for future bridge and boardwalk construction.

Note: There is a 30-volunteer limit per project day, so sign-up now, if you’re interested.

Please register by Monday, September 7. Register here.

October 5-11 (Ringle Segment, near Wausau)

This event continues new trail construction in the heart of the reimagined Ringle Segment. Help put the exclamation point on 4.6 miles of new Ice Age Trail! Deep-woods stonework, tread construction, and more lies ahead.

Register here.

Ice Age Trail, Ice Age National Scenic Trail, Reconnect, Trail Improvement Days

Generous Sponsors of the 2020 Mobile Skills Crew Trailbuilding Season include:

Sitka Salmon Shares is offering all Ice Age Trail enthusiasts and trailbuilders a $25.00 discount on your purchase of a salmon or seafood share. They’ll donate $25.00 to our award-winning Mobile Skills Crew program.