The presence of John Muir in Wisconsin has been well-documented since his days here in the mid-1800s, but right now, in 2014, I don’t believe there’s anyone doing a better job of remembering the famed naturalist and the role Wisconsin played in his young life than Wisconsin Friends of John Muir. This newly approved nonprofit is based in Marquette County where an adolescent John Muir roamed and reveled in the freedom of what he later called “that glorious Wisconsin wilderness!”
All summer the Muir Friends have been posting beautiful pictures to their Facebook page from John Muir Park and drawing comparisons between what we can see now with what Muir saw. (The Badger & the Whooping Crane wrote about Muir and the Muir Friends early this year). At the park you can enjoy a hike through restored prairie, Ennis Lake, and the Ice Age Trail which runs through the park alongside Ennis Lake.
Right now the Facebook page of Wisconsin Friends of John Muir includes these three significant news updates:
1.) The second edition of Muir Is Still Here by authors Kathleen McGwin and Daryl Christensen, has just been published with 70 new pages of photographs and essays. Let this be your guide to how and where you can still explore today the same natural places that Muir explored.
2.) At the end of September, the Friends will bring a dramatic production, “John Muir, University of the Wilderness” to Montello (the Marquette County seat) for a one-night performance. Tickets are $15 at the door for the 7 p.m. performance which will be presented September 27th, at Vaughn Hall, 55 West Montello St.
3.) The IRS has just recently awarded official approval of WI Friends of John Muir as a Federal 501 (c) (3) nonprofit. This will help the almost 3-year old Friends group preserve the park and the landscapes of Muir’s boyhood, and advance their mission to secure John Muir’s legacy in Wisconsin.
Congratulations to the 200 or so members and Facebook fans of the Wisconsin Friends of John Muir. The Badger & the Whooping Crane wishes you continuing success in all your endeavors.
And one more thing, author Kathleen McGwin has said that all sales of the new, 2nd edition of Muir is Still Here – that’s a photo of the book cover to the right – will benefit Wisconsin Friends of John Muir. See the author’s website, if you are interested in ordering a copy.