On July 25, a group of four young girls from Northwest Passage Prairieview hiked down to Schaefer Cabin for a day of recreation and relaxation. Schaefer Cabin, is tucked away in the woods sitting above the Namekagon River. The rustic log cabin, large grass yard, cozy fire pit area, and alluring forests surrounding this region makes it an ideal place to find privacy and peace. (Schaefer Cabin is in the process of being renovated to become a retreat center for residents at Northwest Passage.) On this day, the girls were there to play by the river, but they also had their first photojournalism assignment. Meet, interview, and photograph Branda Thwaits. Park Ranger Branda arrived shortly after the girls finished their picnic lunch. Branda stepped out of her truck with her inviting smile, hopeful eyes, and bright voice. She works as a ranger for the National Park Service and is considered to be an ambassador to the local river ways. She is a brilliant planner with a knack for connecting groups of people with positive experiences on the Wisconsin rivers. Branda brought along her mucking tools, and together we gathered on the shoreline of the Namekagon River to explore together. We began to investigate and learn about the small creatures that are usually overlooked by the paddlers and fisherman. One young
On July 11, 2015, a group of seven girls from Northwest Passage Prairieview set out to meet and interview Danette Olson – their first assignment as a photojournalist team. This summer the girls at Northwest Passage will meet many women throughout the St. Croix River Valley to learn from them and try to capture their stories. This is part of a summer program connecting the youth with women who have overcome obstacles and who also advocate for the environment. Danette is a leader and inspiration in the St Croix River watershed area through her work in humanities, the arts, and conservation. The meeting place was Glen Park in River Falls, Wisconsin. The girls gathered around Danette as we stood by the Kinnickinnic River. The authentic woman standing before us shared her passion for theatre and asked the girls to embrace their imaginations and tell a story with another by giving one word at a time. Together they created some imaginative short stories. The interview included thoughtful questions designed by the girls. One observant girl from Northwest Passage noticed Danette’s necklace. She begins the interview by asking about the meaning of the symbol on the necklace. Danette explained that she got the piece of jewelry, which depicts a metallic person hanging from the leather cord, almost 21 years ago. The symbol
The girls at our Prairieview program recently learned how to capture the suns UV rays, convert them into infrared rays, and use them to make food. Each girl was given a pizza box that had been donated by staff. With these boxes, the girls worked in teams to construct solar ovens using only basic materials. This activity had many benefits to the girls. They not only got to work on their team-building and communication skills, but they got to learn a new and fun way to cook, along with some fun facts: The amount of solar energy that strikes the Earth in one hour is more than enough to provide all of the Earth’s energy needs for a complete year! Solar ovens have a long standing history and are used all over the world, including places where firewood is scarce. They are a great way to make food without the use of electricity. After completing their project, they were even able to test their ovens, “roasting” marshmallows for s’mores. Brittany Bosak, Prairieview Teacher At Northwest Passage we strive to give the young men and women a well-rounded education. This includes many different and interesting things; like how to design and make solar ovens! Thank you to the staff who help make this possible.
Northwest Passage Riverside held their fourth annual Track and Field Day on Thursday, July 16. The boys at Riverside used different skills as they competed in some lighthearted events both individually and as a team, while also getting to enjoy some treats during the day. There were five teams; the blue, green, yellow, purple and pink team. Each team consisted of four or five kids and one staff member. During the events, the boys had to work together completely, using all their social and team-building skills. They had to review each challenge and figure out the best way to complete it. They used the problem solving skills they have been working diligently to improve and together came up with the best solution. They were there to help each other and always cheer on their teammates. The team activities included: two relay races, Oreo contest, golf ball toss, the obstacle course, and wet sponge dodge ball. They also had the opportunity to strive as individuals through a pie-eating contest, punt-pass-kick competition, soccer kick, 40 yard dash, and basketball shooting. These types of activities helped to keep the boys active while also reminding them of good sportsmanship. Each individual showed strengths and had something to be proud of at the end of the day. They all enjoyed themselves immensely and were given
The girls aren’t going to let a little rain slow them down. Check out their fourth week of underwater photography. They’re really getting the hang of it!
Join us for our artist guided workshops on select Thursday evenings this summer at Northwest Passage’s In a New Light Gallery. Seats are limited so register today! Pints & Poems July 16 6pm – 8pm | $10 per person Deconstruct the world of poetry and rebuild it with the courage of a beer. Sangria & Ceramics (Part I & Part II) July 23 & 30 6pm – 8pm | $20 per person Come and get muddy while creating a charming ceramic frog in this two-part ceramics workshop. Attendance in both sessions is required for participation. During the first session a ceramics artist will lead you step-by-step through the process of hand-building a frog that can serve as garden decor, wall pocket, or a flower vase. The second session will allow you to add extra personality to your frog during the glazing process. In the end you will walk away with a piece of art that will stand the test of time and is made by none other than you. Lemonade and the Living Dead (Zombies) August 6 6pm – 8pm | $10 per person Come along for a family friendly night of zombie sized fun! Learn the art of 88zombie making with an interactive program from a special effects artist that will teach you how to transform your loved ones into the
The boys of Northwest Passage Riverside ran in the City of Trails Trail Run 5K during St. Croix Falls’ Wannigan Days celebration! The team has been training hard in the mornings under the leadership of our dedicated staff: Josh, Ryan, Reid and Austin. Our residents: Garrett, Westin, Logan, and Carlos had great attitudes and put forth outstanding effort despite getting rained during the race. The boys started in the back of the pack and still managed to grab race places! Garrett placed 2nd in his age group and 5th in the overall race, Josh placed 2nd in his age group and 6th in the overall race, and as a team the boys received a golden shoe to celebrate that they were the fastest team! Ashley and I were able to work with our residents Andre and Holden to capture some of the memories. We’ll get the photos uploaded soon. Sarah Bach, M.S. Weekend Supervisor