Stewart Lake County park outside Mount Horeb was the setting for our first volunteer recognition event of 2018. It was fun to see some of our volunteers again who we haven’t seen since training or who we might never have met in person at all. We had about 60 people turn out for a lovely evening. Jen and Taylor gave a presentation that included some of our science updates from the last year of the project. Sarah got the privilege of handing out the recognition certificates to the volunteers. I was able to share some of the changes we have planned for Phase 2 of the project, including much needed improvements to our IT system. We had been planning on cooking the food ourselves but at the last minute decided we had enough on our plate without that and opted for catering. Some of our volunteers brought dishes to pass and the Snapshot crew brought some desserts. Thanks to all for contributing to a successful event!
Unfortunately, we had to cancel our 2nd event planned for September 20th at Lake Wazee due to forecasted severe weather. We are looking for alternate dates (and an inside location!) for later this fall/early winter. We will let folks know when it is rescheduled.
We are looking forward to transitioning to more of these types of events in future as we transition more fully to online training and don’t have to travel so much for in person training. All of our trail camera hosts who have participated for at least a year receive an invitation to our recognition events. Getting close to your one year anniversary? Keep an eye on your mail for a letter from us and a special gift!
October’s Volunteer of the Month is
Thomas from Marinette County!
Thomas has been a trail camera host since June 2017. Thomas is also an activate participant on Snapshot Wisconsin’s crowdsourcing platform, www.SnapshotWisconsin.org, where you may recognize his handle of @Swamp-eye. His username comes from the position of his camera overlooking the swamp on his property, the same piece of land where he was born and raised.
Thomas enjoys hunting, fishing, woodcarving and volunteering with Snapshot Wisconsin in his free time. He shared, “I have always been interested in the flora and fauna of this great county. I learned my hunting skills from my dad and my love of nature from my mom.” One of our favorite quotes from Thomas is, “you couldn’t find a better hobby” – we think we couldn’t find better volunteers!
Thank you, Thomas! Thank you to all our trail camera hosts and Zooniverse volunteers for helping us discover our wildlife together.
September’s Volunteer of the Month is
Mary from Bayfield County!
Mary has spent the past four decades sharing her love for science as a mom, scientist, educator and most recently as a volunteer.
In addition to hosting her own Snapshot Wisconsin trail camera, Mary has been an invaluable resource helping the Snapshot Wisconsin team put together a series of lesson plans for the project. She stated that her passion has always been in “designing and implementing hands-on tools that make learning science easy and fun for people of all ages.” Mary also works with local organizations and classrooms to continue getting students engaged with and excited about Wisconsin wildlife.
Check out the current Snapshot Wisconsin lesson plans on the newly redesigned website. Lesson plans are available for all ages, and as Mary shared, “The pictures from Snapshot Wisconsin inject excitement into the Wisconsin Science and Math standards. They transform abstract concepts into local experiences.”
Thank you, Mary! Thank you to all our trail camera hosts and Zooniverse volunteers for helping us discover our wildlife together.
Volunteer of the Month is a new addition to the blog with the goal of highlighting volunteers that go above and beyond with their participation in Snapshot Wisconsin.
August’s Volunteer of the Month goes to Skylar from Marquette County!
Skylar has been with Snapshot Wisconsin for over two years, one of his motivations for joining the project was to bridge his interests in nature and technology. As a teacher, he utilizes his Snapshot Wisconsin camera to help connect students with the diverse wildlife residing in their school forest. When asked about his fondest memories with the project, Skylar responded:
“It was really amazing to see our photos of a fisher, or fishers, at the school forest contribute to the southward expansion of that species’ known range in our state. That was something that was really exciting to share with the students especially because it showed them clearly why their work on this project matters and how they are contributing to science that has an impact.”
Thank you, Skylar and the awesome students at High Marq! Thank you to all our trail camera hosts and Zooniverse volunteers for helping us discover our wildlife together.
It has now been a year and a half since Snapshot Wisconsin launched to the public in the first two counties, Iowa and Sawyer County! To commemorate the wonderful volunteers who have been with us since the beginning, the Snapshot Wisconsin team recently traveled to Dodgeville and Hayward to hold our very first volunteer recognition events.
The evenings included locally catered dinners, a presentation about project updates and scientific findings, as well as certificates and a prize basket drawing. It was great to reunite with volunteers that we haven’t seen since trainings, and to have face to face contact with those who are used to hearing from us solely by phone or email.
Overall it was a wonderful experience, and something that we look forward to putting together again in the future. We hope all who attended enjoyed their evening, and as always we welcome any and all feedback!