Notice: I've taken a part-time job, and it's definitely affecting my blogging time. I'll continue to add content here as often as possible. Pertinent guest posts are always welcome.


Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Youth on the NCT in the Chippewa

Youth in the Chippewa National Forest
Chippewa joins in National Day of Service with Community Day at Shingobee Hills.
from a National Forest Service Success Story, "National Day of Service event on the Chippewa National Forest," by Melissa Rikers, Jan 20 2009, used with permission

On a beautiful winter weekend, Chippewa National Forest staff joined in the National Day of Service connected with President Barack Obama's inauguration. In response to President Obama's call to make an enduring commitment to our neighborhoods, the Forest hosted Community Day at Shingobee Hills on January 17, bringing in families from the Walker/Cass Lake area and getting More Kids Outdoors.

Shingobee Hills is a historic National Forest Recreation site on the Walker Ranger District. Throughout the day, families visited the Civilian Conservation Corps- built chalet at the base of the sledding hill to warm up and learn more about Forest activities. By the end of the afternoon, over 70 people had joined in Shingobee Community Day.

The Cass Lake High School Science Club, part of the STAR program, also came in for a day and night at Shingobee Hills. The class of 8 High School students and two teachers came prepared for a winter campout. Forest employees helped get the class set up and started their day by teaching the finer points of quinzhee (snow shelter) construction. Kids from the community joined in, helping the high schoolers build the Inuit-style shelter.

Students followed soils scientist Jim Barrott out for a snowshoe hike on the Shingobee and North Country Trail systems. Many of the kids had never tried snowshoes before, but jumped in to the Forest snowshoes enthusiastically! "It was so good to get the kids outdoors and experiencing some winter sports," Howard said. "We actually went further on the trail than we had planned because we saw so much! The kids found animal tracks (grouse and deer) and even saw one deer bounding through the snow. It was a great time. And of course, they loved the [sledding] hill and the warm fire at the chalet."

Community day at Shingobee was a chance to connect kids with the outdoors, and connect the communities to recreation opportunities on the Forest.

Join us this winter on the Chippewa! Shingobee events are scheduled through March, and on February 27, take in the night trails at the 19th annual Cut Foot Sioux Candlelight Ski!

See Chippewa National Forest

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