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St. Croix River Institute Offers Summer Courses

APRIL 27, 2007--Canoeing, hiking and fly-fishing are the topics of summer workshops and courses offered by the St. Croix River Institute at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls.

The institute offers courses May through August that provide participants with the chance to experience the beauty of the St. Croix National Scenic Riverway in an educational setting. The classes are open to the public.

Formally established in 2006, the St. Croix River Institute is a collaborative effort between the University of Wisconsin-River Falls and the National Park Service, which oversees the National Scenic Riverway. The institute's mission is to understand and sustain the St. Croix River and river valley communities by connecting people with the riverway through programs and classes.

The summer courses, which will be led by seasoned instructors, are among the perks of the partnership, said Angela Whitaker, UWRF marketing specialist for the outreach office.

"One of the benefits of the collaboration is the classes and the instructors, who bring a lot of experience and enthusiasm as well as knowledge," says Whitaker. "It's a way to have fun, get outdoors and experience the riverway."

For more information, contact the institute at 715-425-3256 or -800-228-5607 , or by e-mail at, or visit its web site at To learn more about the St. Croix National Scenic Riverway, visit

Introduction to Fly Fishing, May 19, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Osceola Landing Picnic Area, National Park Service St. Croix National Scenic Riverway; June 30, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., William O'Brien State Park; OR Aug. 4, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Wild River State Park. Free. Preregistration is not required. Contact John Weinberg with questions at 715-483-2275 or . Spend the day with local experts and practice basic techniques, see tying demonstrations and discover the importance of stream ecology, conservation and watershed stewardship. Equipment will be provided, or bring your own. Instructor National Park Ranger John Weinberg is known as the "Fly-Fishing Ranger." A geologist with extensive personal knowledge of the St. Croix River, he is joined by experienced volunteers from Trout Unlimited, Fly Fishing Federation, Minnesota Fly Fishing Women and St. Paul Fly Tiers. This course is open to adults and teens.

May 23-24, Lavas, Springs, Glaciers, Deltas: A Taste of the Geology and Hydrology of the St. Croix Watershed. 8:30 - 5 p.m., Location TBA, $99 or $89 if preregistered before May 14. Register online at ; a downloadable paper application from the site may also be printed and faxed or mailed. Amazing physical processes have shaped the St. Croix Valley. See the area with new eyes and discover interesting facts during this two-day field experience. Hike around Interstate Park and the Dalles of the St. Croix River, then trace the flow of water along the Kinnickinnic River from source to outlet. Low to moderate difficulty hiking is required. Instructors Michael Middleton, a geologist, and Kerry Keen, a hydrogeologist, are both professors in the UWRF geology department. They bring enthusiasm, humor and an extensive knowledge of rocks, waters, flora and fauna to the class. This course is open to people aged 18 and older.

Photographing the St. Croix Riverway, June 9, July 7 or Aug. 18, 8:30 - 5 p.m., National Park Service St. Croix National Scenic Riverway. FREE. To register call 715-483-2272; enrollment is limited to 16 participants. Learn to take better pictures and learn more about your equipment using the St. Croix National Scenic Riverway as a photographic canvas. Explore light, contrast and texture as you experiment with settings, formats and other tricks with your digital camera. Digital cameras are required; flash, tripod and camera manuals are also recommended. Instructor Joe Adams worked for more than 19 years as a photojournalist before finishing his career with CBS television. During that time, he received more than 500 awards for photos, documentaries and multi-media productions. This course is open to people aged 18 and older and limited to 16 participants.

Hook 'Em! Fly Fishing for Adults and Kids, June 12 and 14, 6 - 7:30 p.m., Willow River State Park, $85 per pair (adult/child). Registration: Details TBA at . Share your time and interest in fly fishing at this unique adult/child class. Adults can pair up with a young person for this two-day experience! An English professor at UWRF, instructor Ken Olson has taught people of all ages the basics of fly-fishing. This course is open to people of all ages.

River Canoeing, June 16, June 29 or July 20, 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., Osceola Landing, National Park Service St. Croix National Scenic Riverway. Fee: $105. Registration: Call 715-483-2272. Build basic skills, practice fundamental strokes and discuss safety. Paddle on Lake of the Dells and then down the river from Interstate Park to the Osceola Landing. Canoes, personal flotation devices and paddles are provided. This course is for people aged 18 and older in good physical condition with the ability to swim.

River of Words, June 23, July 14, or Aug. 11 9 a.m. - 1 p.m., National Park Service St. Croix National Scenic Riverway. Free. Registration: Call 715-483-2272; enrollment limited to 16 participants. Open the door for your personal interpretation of the river and connection to it through your own writing, art, poetry and journaling. Instructor and National Park Service Ranger Dale Cox has worked as a wilderness ranger, forest-fire fighter, naturalist, storyteller and educator. Cox stresses the importance of not just connecting people to the resource but of nurturing the creative voice as a way of encouraging stewardship, self-expression and community celebration. This course is open to people aged 18 and older.


Last updated: Thursday, 22-Apr-2010 16:08:16 Central Daylight Time


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