Celebrating 50 Walks!

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Looking back to our very first walk in High Cliff State Park back in June of 2011, it is hard to believe we have traveled to 50 different beautiful locations all across the state.  I am so grateful to everyone who has made this possible, and all of those who have attended each of the walks along the way!

The evening before the walk, we had a delicious dinner at Casey’s BBQ & Smokehouse in Egg Harbor with the Governor’s Council on Tourism and other members of the Door County Visitor’s Bureau staff.  We enjoyed a beautiful evening and a gorgeous sunset overlooking the bay.  It was a wonderful way to start this milestone event!

Peninsula State Park in Door County was the perfect place to hold such a special walk. This was our first outdoor walk of 2016, and an excellent way to kick the year off!  We were joined by the Governor’s Council on Tourism, including the Tourism Department’s Deputy Secretary Sarah Klavas and Secretary Stephanie Klett. In addition, we had a brave crew of nearly 70 attendees facing the wet and cool Wisconsin Spring weather.  Thankfully, the rain cleared and held off throughout the walk. Participants boarded the Door County Trolley and rode through the park before they arrived at the Eagle Bluff Lighthouse.  At the lighthouse, we celebrated and toasted to the 50th Walk with delicious Door County Cherry juice. Special thanks to Carrie Lautenbach-Viste of Lautenbach Orchard Country Winery & Market for the juice; it was a very special treat! After the toast, we set off into the misty weather to explore the beautiful woods of Peninsula State Park.

As we walked, we were led by Park Superintendent Kelli Burns.  Kelli was recently named Park Superintendent of the year and was a wealth of information along the path.  She told us that a recent windstorm knocked down much of the trees, and were never cleared to support the natural habitat.  Furthermore, she explained the nature of invasive species such as forget-me-nots, and even gave insight as to what plants are safe to eat from the wild.  We truly were lucky to have her with us!

After a 1.9 mile loop on the Trail Tramper’s Delight Trail, we ended back up at the Eagle Bluff Lighthouse.  Main Street Market in Door County and the Friends of the Park provided us with water, snacks, and a even delicious cake! We wrapped the walk up enjoying cake and more Door County Cherry Juice!

Thanks again to everyone who made this possible, particularly the entire Tourism staff, including Secretary Stephanie Klett.  Also, a big thanks to Brian Kelsey of the Peninsula Players Theatre who made sure this 50th Walk was one to remember.  Cheers to 50 Walks, hope to see you all next month in Waupaca