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Creating outdoor opportunities throughout Kansas!

Spring/Summer 2014

Wildscape Watch The inside scoop from the outdoor world of the Kansas Wildscape Foundation. The Kansas Wildscape Foundation is a private, nonprofit organization dedicated to conserving and perpetuating the land, the wild species, and the rich beauty of Kansas for the use and enjoyment of all. In other words, we’re all about getting people outdoors and creating the opportunities to do so.

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Cabins for Hillsdale KDWPT looking at Hillsdale State Park for cabin development. If placing rental cabins at remote Kansas state parks was a safe bet five years ago, then placing ten (10) new cabins at Hillsdale State Park in NE Kansas is a guaranteed winner! Located within 20 miles south of the Kansas City area, Hillsdale Lake boasts great fishing, scenic views, wellestablished hiking and equestrian trails and a new shooting range. Over the next year, the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks & Tourism (KDWPT) and Wildscape will be working together to raise $600K to fund the site preparations and construction of the cabins within the state park. Wildscape has already committed to allocating $230K of existing cabin funds towards the project, and will begin actively pursuing additional donations and grants once the project's planning and timelines have been established by KDWPT. Raising 100% of the necessary funding won't be easy, but given the close proximity to Kansas City, Wildscape believes it can be done with corporate and individual cabin sponsorships!

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Interested potential cabin sponsors contact Kansas Wildscape today for more information!

Wildscape cabins provide a way for people to experience the outdoors with all of the comforts of home.

To reserve a cabin, visit the KDWP website: www.kdwpt.state.ks.us


Creating outdoor experiences throughout Kansas!

Raising the Cold, Hard Cash. Wildscape raises over $25,000 for operations at new fundraising event!

T&C Wildlife played host to Kansas Wildscape’s"LAST GASP WINTER BLAST" pheasant hunt on January 2425, 2014. The event was an overwhelming success in many ways! Filled to capacity, the 30-person group of participants all thoroughly enjoyed the event and our auction well exceeded our expectations by raising over $25,000 with 16 auction items! Special guests at the event were former KC Chief and Hall of Famer, Ed Podolak; former KC Chief All-Pro center, Jack Rudnay; 2012 Bassmaster Elite Series Champion, Brent Chapman; 2009 KS State Duck Calling Champion, Corey Niccum; and Mike Miller the Turkey Killer of the Buck Commander TV show. It was great to meet all of the new participants, and it was also great to see some of Wildscape’s Advisory Board at the event, as Mike Vineyard, Bob Beachy, Bud Vick and Tom Garretson were all in attendance. Bud Walker, Terry Kunstel and the rest of T&C’s staff and facilities were very accommodating for the event and our participants. Great connections were made with new contacts that share Wildscape’s interests, especially for possible Hillsdale SP and Crawford SP cabin projects. There was also a strong interest in supporting Wildscape’s youth programs as well. Though a successful auction tends to define an event’s success on paper, it's the new relationships throughout the state that really strengthen Wildscape and the organization’s projects & programs in many ways. Also in attendance were three Kansas Wildlife, Parks & Tourism Dept. staff members: Linda Lanterman (Parks Acting Division Director) Alan Stark (Regional Park Supervisor) and Dave Goble (Crawford State Park Manager). Having KDWPT at the event helped highlight Wildscape’s ongoing commitment to support our state parks and wildlife areas whenever possible, and several people commented on

Next year’s event will be January 23-24, 2015. Reserve your spot ASAP!

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Behind Wilds

Interview with Wildscape boar

Clint Junghans has been a m 2007. He is the owner/broker Junction City, Kansas.

What is your favorite outdo

That’s a tough one. So man would be chasing the elusive with my father and brother d take off from work and we he buddies. There have been m many stories told. In a deer s wildlife up close and personal nature channel – live and in fu

In the summer, my favorite o and boating at Milford Lake. and at the campground. The the grill sizzles close by is abou

How did you become involv

I was attracted to Kansas mission and its activities. organization’s activities and None of our money goes to s organization or projects in o idea that we are not a lobbyi take a position on public/priv support the Kansas outdoor public and private entities to to people throughout Kan relationship and ties with KS I have been fortunate to grow had many opportunities provi that many others in our state had the same opportunities. M the Kansas outdoors has to Through creating awareness available and affordable, we’re


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Creating outdoor experiences throughout Kansas!

Memorial Strengthens O.K.Kids Event Webster State Park recipient of the Leo Bird Memorial.

In August 2013, the family of Leo Bird designated Kansas Wildscape Foundation as a memorial for their father. Leo Bird was a Stockton, KS native and an avid outdoorsman who enjoyed bird hunting and fishing. The family wanted to support an activity that encouraged children to enjoy the outdoors, and with Wildscape’s help, selected the Webster State Park “Outdoor Kansas for Kids” event as the recipient of the memorial. The contributed funds to the memorial were enough to assist the event for the next two years. In past events, about 30 youth registered for the Webster State Park event each year. On May 3, 2014, with the added support and enthusiasm for the event inspired by the Leo Bird Memorial, participant numbers nearly tripled to 82 participants. Webster State Park is already making preparations for next year's event with hopes to grow the event each year!

O.K.KIDS in the Press

Kansas! Magazine recognizes program in Spring 2014 issue. For the past 13 years, Wildscape’s Outdoor Kansas for Kids program has been attracting children and families to various outdoor sites throughout Kansas, with the vast majority of sites located at Kansas state parks. Averaging between 12,000-13,000 participants each year, it’s no secret that this program has been making a significant impact across Kansas. But it’s always nice to get a little ink in a quality publication! In the Spring 2014 issue of the Kansas! Magazine, O.K.KIDS program was listed as one of the “Reasons We Love Kansas” article. (pg18) From the article: “As part of the state’s initiative to get kids involved in an active recreational lifestyle, O.K.Kids revitalizes good old-fashioned (along with some newfangled) activities, including: fishing derbies and clinics, horseshoes, hiking, scavenger hunts, canoeing, sack races, archery and bird-watching at various sites around the state.”

In 2014, 45 state and local recreation sites have registered events, and we’re anticipating over 12,000 participants for the year. Go to www.kansaswildscape.org to find an event near you! 3


Creating outdoor experiences throughout Kansas!

WildLifers descend on Cedar Crest in Topeka! On May 30th, over 30 families took temporarily residence at the Kansas Governor’s mansion to participate in the first-ever, and first of five capital campouts which will occur across the nation this year. Over 65 children, 44 parents plus area boy and girl scout troops pitched tents and slept under the stars at Cedar Crest in picture-perfect weather.

Participating campers and ch urban neighborhoods and yo 101” and stargazing to catch and of course s’mores, camp outdoor experience. All cam provided by founding sponso who donated $31,000 of cam Department of Wildlife, Par time campers program. Parti home their new sleeping bag

The event, hosted by KDWPT, Coleman, the National Park Service and many others, assisted underprivileged families of Shawnee County to learn about the true camping experience. Most were first-time campers and their excitement was hard to contain! Participants rotated WildLifer Challenge activities throughout the evening and continued to work on the program until lunch the next day, completing 12 of the 15 activities necessary to receive a Coleman prize pack from the Kansas Wildscape Foundation. Families were encouraged to continue to expand their comfort zones for the outdoors in the weeks to follow and complete the program to become true WildLifers!

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Creating outdoor experiences throughout Kansas!

Participating campers and chaperones were selected from urban neighborhoods and youth groups. From “Camping 101” and stargazing to catching frogs and fishing activities, and of course s’mores, campers had a once-in-a-lifetime outdoor experience. All camping gear and equipment was provided by founding sponsor, The Coleman Company, who donated $31,000 of camping gear to the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism for its firsttime campers program. Participants were able to take home their new sleeping bags and backpacks.

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WildLifer Challenge & O.K.Kids programs are sponsored by:

Lattner Family Foundation Charles & Joanne McIllwaine Foundation 5


Creating outdoor experiences throughout Kansas!

Putting their money where their mouth is.

Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Kansas supports Wildscape’s youth programs in more ways than one. BCBSKS has been a strong financial supporter of Wildscape’s youth programs in recent years, and on June 4th, their employees showed up in droves at Wildscape’s booth at the Kansas Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Kansas Wellness Fair held at their corporate headquarters in Topeka. With over 700 employees stopping by the WildLifer table at a steady pace throughout the day, this booth proved to be one of our most effective recruitment efforts to date! Educated and focused on health-minded habits, nearly every Blue Cross visitor to the WildLifer Challenge booth took information. 61 participants signed up on the spot and before the event was even over, the WildLifer website had over 20 new participants with registrations continuing throughout the week. Many guests were already aware of the program and recognized it from Drew Switzer’s Friday morning WildLifer of the Week feature during his weather broadcast. Registrations at the event would have been even higher if it hadn’t been for the fact that many of BCBSKS’ employees had ALREADY completed the program with their families!

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Annual Fundraising Event January 23-24, 2015

In 2014, 45 st and we’re a Go to www Contact Wildscape to reserve your spots today. 785-843-9453 6


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Creating outdoor experiences throughout Kansas!

Behind Wildscape.

Interview with Wildscape board member, Clint Junghans. Clint Junghans has been a member of Wildscape since 2007. He is the owner/broker of the Junghans Agency in Junction City, Kansas.

What is your favorite outdoor activity in Kansas? That’s a tough one. So many options! In the winter, it would be chasing the elusive whitetail. I have grown up with my father and brother deer hunting. Every winter I take off from work and we head to Deer Camp with our buddies. There have been many memories made and many stories told. In a deer stand, you get to see Kansas wildlife up close and personal. It’s like your own personal nature channel – live and in full-color.

that gap. I also believe this will lead to happier, healthier families and a better society as a whole.

What is your favorite current Wildscape project or program? The Wildlifer Challenge. This program is aimed at getting kids and families involved with the outdoors, pure and simple. As a young adult, I have many friends who are starting to raise a family. When I mention the Wildlifer Challenge program, they immediately get excited and incorporate it into their homes. By providing a challenge to the kids and parents, it’s an easy motivator to get them away from the television and experience something even better. WildLifer also acts as a conduit for a bonding experience between parents and children. In my opinion, there is no better way to open the lines of communication and lead a young person in the right direction than spending quality time off the beaten path. Sometimes a simple task like building a fort or getting dirty are foreign to our younger generations. Kansas has too much to offer for parents to tolerate their kids sitting in front of the television all day playing video games.

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In the summer, my favorite outdoor activity is camping ! and boating at Milford Lake. I enjoy relaxing on the lake and at the campground. The setting sun over the lake as the grill sizzles close by is about as good as it gets for me.

How did you become involved with Wildscape?

I was attracted to Kansas Wildscape because of its mission and its activities. I liked the idea that the organization’s activities and efforts are Kansas-only. None of our money goes to support a national umbrella organization or projects in other states. I also liked the idea that we are not a lobbying organization nor do we take a position on public/private land issues. We simply support the Kansas outdoor ethic and will work with public and private entities to bring outdoor opportunities to people throughout Kansas, including our close relationship and ties with KS Wildlife, Parks & Tourism. I have been fortunate to grow up in the outdoors and have had many opportunities provided to me. But I also know that many others in our state - young and old - haven’t had the same opportunities. Many don’t even know what the Kansas outdoors has to offer and how great it is. Through creating awareness and making opportunities available and affordable, we’re definitely helping to bridge

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Looking ahead, what is Wildscape’s biggest challenge? Maintaining a strong board of directors. Over 20 years ago, Wildscape was formed and led by a key nucleus of business and community leaders, some of whom are thankfully still on our board today. But we have to find the next generation of Wildscape leadership, and that won’t be easy. It’s time for the next generation to step up for the next 20 years.


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Board of Directors Jim Booker – Kansas City Hank Booth - Lawrence Steve Brown – Salina Jim Champagne – Junction City Dan Drake – Wichita Jay Ewy - Andover Ted Gartner – Lenexa Warren Gfeller – Kansas City

Wildscape Staff:

Charlie Black Executive Director

Debbie Brandt Director of Administration

John Grange – El Dorado Debbie Hagen – Prairie Village Bernie Heffernon – Kansas City Robin Jennison – Topeka Clint Junghans – Junction City Gary Junghans – Junction City Britt King - Wichita Tracy Leopold – Wichita

Brad Mitchell – Wichita Michelle Ratzlaff – Bel Aire John Rose – Mission Hills Roger Sink – Manhattan Brady Scott – Wichita David Strohm - Wichita Dave Wheeler - Wichita

Become a Member Today! By making a tax-deductible contribution you are supporting: • Responsible use of natural resources by promoting a positive Kansas outdoor ethic • Education and awareness programs focused on Kansas youth • Enhanced access to and enjoyment of, both public and private land for outdoor recreation with respect for the rights and desires of landowners. Three Ways to Donate Online - Quick and secure, our online form available at www.kansaswildscape.org will have you partnering with us in no time. By Mail - Print out the Membership/Donation Form available on our website, then send it in with your Check or Money Order. By Phone - If you would like to charge your donation by phone to a Visa, Mastercard, or American Express, please call toll-free 1-866-655-4377 and our staff will be glad to assist you.

Lynn Gentine Director of Development

Join us today!

Kansas Wildscape Foundation 2500 W. 6th Street, STE G Lawrence, KS 66049 785.843.9453

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WildscapeWatch Newsletter  

The inside scoop from the outdoor world of the Kansas Wildscape Foundation. Spring/Summer 2014