This week we are going to talk about volunteers. Throughout the winter and early spring if you follow MUCC’s page you will have seen the numerous events for On the Ground and all of the volunteer opportunities that program provides for habitat restoration. All of these events have had great attendance by volunteers all over the state.
Last weekend it was camps turn to put the call out for volunteers. We had our annual camp clean up event May 1st and 2nd. This event brings volunteers and staff down to Cedar Lake to get the property cleaned up and ready for the spring season. As is true to form of MUCC members and those connected in the conservation community people came out in droves. On Friday the 1st we had 22 volunteers give a full day of work towards prepping the camp.
We had 12 employees from the Chelsea Proving Grounds Chrysler-Fiat organization donate their time to make a difference down at camp. This is the 3rd year this group has come out and they always are ready to work and help make a difference for the kids. The Chrysler group worked on trimming trees on the property to create an easement for emergency vehicles to travel around camp, (hopefully we don’t need that this summer), they removed our old ice damaged dock to prep the beach front for a new one, they helped clean the iron stains out of the showers and latrines, stained our new archery shed that was partially paid for with a grant from their organization and hauled brush to spruce up the grounds.
While they were focusing on their work, we had staff from MUCC headquarters including Dan Eichinger, Stephanie Rustem, Logan Schultz, and Lindsey LaSerra working in the lodge to get it prepped for the season. This group organized the resource room, disposed of old building materials from 20 years ago, and Dan pitched in by scrubbing all of the stainless steel in the kitchen including the chest freezers and the ovens and stove. This group filled a dumpster in less than 2 hours and they were tearing through the assigned chores.
On Saturday the volunteers were out bright and early and we had a turnout of 28 volunteers. Groups representing Perch Point Conservation Clubs, Livingston County Wildlife and Conservation Club, Huron Valley Conservation Association, Huron Sportsmen Club, as well as some of our off season renters were out in force and getting things done. These groups focused on sprucing up the cabins, raking and blowing pine needles off of the roofs and also did a bit of brush hauling. A special thank you goes out to Huron Valley Conservation Association for sending two cooks out to prepare lunch for the volunteers and for sponsoring the food for both days.
We started the weekend with a to-do list of 37 things and with the help of our 51 volunteers in two days we were able to accomplish each thing on the list. With everyone pitching in and donating their time camp is in fine shape as the season draws near. It was a great event weekend!
There are still a few more things to do before campers arrive including putting new shingles on the craft building and getting a hold of a new dock for fishing, but I am confident with volunteers like we had last weekend we will be ready when the campers arrive in June.
Speaking of campers, spots are filling fast so if you know a kid that needs some outdoors in their life get them signed up ASAP. More information can be found at www.mucc.org/camp.