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Feelings, turtles, bees, and flowers!

The girls at Prairieview got to go outside and spend some healing time in nature today. “Mindful Excitement” This is an experience you want to live to see.  Have you ever seen something so exciting, But so mindful? This flower is working, but all you see is stillness.  There is much more to this flower than what you are seeing.  Be Mindful yourself, and you just may see that this flower has a little MOVE to it. “Pink Beauty” My Name is Monnee Ne’Wese Haack and I am here at NWP to work on the things that will make me healthier and happier. When I needed protection, You were there. When I needed love, You were there. When I needed an escape. You were there.   But you didn’t help, You harmed. And you didn’t love, You lied. And you weren’t an escape, You were an addiction.   And now I am learning to help myself, Love myself, And escape into my own soul. And I will fight you, And I will win. “Minding its own BEEsiness” I love spring. I love seeing everything turn green, and the snow melt away. I love the blossoms on trees and bushes. Being able to “bee” outside with only a sweatshirt comforts me. It’s warm. It’s nice. Lots of people dislike when the weather

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Sharp-tailed grouse dance in the Namekagon Barrens

Sharp-tailed Grouse dance in the Namekagon Barrens By Ian Karl, Northwest Passage Experiential Programming Coordinator Sharp-Tailed Grouse, with their mottled dusky feathers and signature short pointed tails, once populated a vast swath of North America. They could be seen from Alaska to New Mexico and they dominated the pine barrens of North Western Wisconsin. Through years of extreme habitat change, the population of Sharp-Tailed Grouse in Wisconsin was severely impacted. In recent years however, conservation efforts of organizations such as the Wisconsin Sharp-tailed Grouse Society and Friends of the Namekagon Barrens Wilderness Area (FNBWA) have begun to restore the population of these magnificent birds in their native habitat. Once a year, for a few short weeks, the males display their stunning purple and gold accented breeding plumage and perform a truly breathtaking dance in a courtship ritual to win the favor of the hens. In late April Northwest Passage was presented with an unprecedented opportunity by the FNBWA for one of our residents to view and document this fleeting event to share with the world. Weston, one of our star photographers from Passage I, joined Seth Pearson, Northwest Passage Creative Arts Teacher, for a very early morning in one of the FNBWA’s viewing blinds “lek” (courtship dance location) in the pine barrens of the Namekagon River, part of the St. Croix National

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An Interview with Sam Thayer

An Interview with Sam Thayer By Ian Karl and Garrett with assistance from Holden, Photographs by Weston and Dylan The young men at Passage I spent an afternoon on the Ice Age Trail with best-selling author and national expert on wild edibles, Sam Thayer . The day with Sam was the third in a series of community member interviews Passage I is undertaking, to meet with outdoors experts from our region who are passionate about regional wild foods. Northwest Passage Program Coordinator, Ian Karl, worked with residents, Garrett and Holden, to conduct the interview. Sam became interested in Wild Edibles at a very young age. He said that he grew up with a lot of siblings and food around the house wasn’t necessarily that abundant and his parents weren’t real interested in cooking. “Eating mostly cereal, I was always hungry and looking for something better to eat.” At four years old he got tired of it and decided to start taking matters in to his own hands. That is where his passion started. As, “necessity is the mother of invention;” the cards we are dealt in our youth, when properly played, can lead to successful careers. This was just the case for Sam. His childhood interests led to a hobby which led to years of research and study and ultimately authoring two of the

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Thank you, Tropical Wings!

Well, the explorers have returned from their incredible journey – all the way from northwest Wisconsin to Costa Rica and back. In the following weeks, we’ll have lots to share…but while we’re sorting through 20,000 photographs, Renny and Ethan wanted to let the Tropical Wings Foundation know just how much this trip has meant to them. Dear Tropical Wings, My name is Renny and I’d like to take my time to thank you. I can’t thank you enough for funding this trip and giving me the opportunity to experience everything I did in Costa Rica. Exploring the jungle with a camera and taking magnificent boat rides… it was a dream.  Not only did I have the time of my life but in a way I found myself along the way,. Being able to have these life experiences changed my outlook on life. With this new knowledge I’ll be able to come home and continue on my path to a better life. Deep down I keep getting these feelings of true happiness and success, and it’s thanks to you guys. You have no idea how happy I am. Thank you all so much. Renny Fons   Dear Tropical Wings, I am extremely appreciative for the opportunity to come on this trip to Costa Rica. Down in Costa Rica we have seen

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Greetings from Costa Rica!

Funded through a generous grant from an organization called Tropical Wings, we’re taking two recent NWP graduates to Corcovado National Park in Costa Rica. This project is part of a “sister park” initiative involving our awesome partners at the St. Croix National Scenic Riverway, other national parks throughout the midwest and national parks in Costa Rica. The initiative centers on promoting conservation and awareness of our shared neotropical migratory birds: our winged friends that grace us with their presence half the year, and then spend the other half hanging out amongst the monkeys and palm trees in Central America. Our mission is twofold: First, to capture beautiful photographs of “our” birds in their Costa Rican habitat, and second, to connect with Costa Rican youth through nature photography. So, while this trip is about telling the story of a shared conservation mission across international borders, it’s also about telling the story of shared humanity. During the trip, we’ll be posting updates – so be sure to check back often!   Today we entered the rainforest.  By way of a bumpy ride on a 15-passenger prop plane from San Jose, we landed this afternoon on an impossibly small dirt runway flanked by astonishingly unfamiliar forest.  Even more astonishing was the 97 degree heat index that greeted us–giving new meaning to the idea

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Filmmaking Project at Northwest Passage I

This past few months marked the beginning of a very fun new project at Northwest Passage I – filmmaking! Eight boys worked as teams and individually to execute 8 amazing short films. There was no limit to their creativity; some boys chose to create fictional narratives while others chose to film more documentary style projects. Spearheaded by staff member Ben Treichel and intern Abi Leveille, the results of their hard work are astonishing. In December, the InaNewLight Gallery held a film premier, where over 25 people came out to view the films. We’ll be releasing one new short film each week! The first film, “BINGO” by Alex is so fun – with impeccable comedic timing!

Northwest Passage Receives Grant from the Green Bay Packers Foundation

  WEBSTER, Wisconsin: Northwest Passage has been awarded a grant from the Green Bay Packers Foundation to create a “therapeutic playscape” at their Webster residential treatment center. Mark Elliott, Northwest Passage’s executive director comments, “the power of play is often an overlooked piece in children’s mental health, and here is a profound link between physical and emotional health. This playscape affords our kids the opportunity to discover their own creativity and imagination, while also promoting a healthy and active lifestyle.” Featuring a

It’s Magical, but it’s not Magic: Equine Assisted Interventions

by Angela Fredrickson, LCSW  |  Clinical Director I have been inexplicably fascinated by horses for as long as I can remember. By the age of 13, I had pestered my parents (who did not have much of their own experience with horses) enough that they purchased me my very own horse. This has lead to a life in which I have always been in the presence of horses. My horses have helped to lift me out of despair and have been the source of great joy for me. They have been with me at every turn and they have inspired my career path. I first witnessed horses helping humans in a planned and deliberate manner when I was 16 years old. I had the opportunity to observe a therapeutic riding session in which a tiny, vulnerable looking little girl was lifted from her wheelchair and onto the back of a horse.

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