The Upper Mississippi River National Wildlife & Fish Refuge (Refuge) Winona offices recently honored volunteers and their guests at a volunteer recognition event. During 2018, over 100 volunteers contributed more than 1,200 hours of service representing nearly $28,000.
Volunteer activities included assisting with the Refuge booth at community functions, biological surveys, youth fishing days, river cleanups, invasive species monitoring and control, and youth educational activities.
The 2018 Volunteer of the Year award was shared by Roger Harms and Jay McLaren both of Rochester, MN. The two men were recognized for their efforts in mapping and establishing the Chippewa River Canoe Trail, a nearly seven-mile paddling trail located near Nelson, WI. The two men also annually assist Refuge Ranger Ed Lagace with maintenance of four water trails on the Refuge which have obtained National Recreation Trail status.
The volunteer program is an excellent way to gain experience, help wildlife, meet interesting people and is open to all ages and abilities. If you would like to enjoy a productive and rewarding experience as a Refuge Volunteer, please call 507‑494‑6236.