Access for All Articles

Access for All special event! Join us in Madison on June 27th

Access for All special event! Join us in Madison on June 27th

National parks belong to all of us. Friends of the Apostle Islands is working with. a growing list of supporters and partners to support the accessibility projects of the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore through the Access for All initiative. Join us at the new Rutabaga Paddlesports store, just off the Beltline in Madison for a free gathering on Tuesday, June 27th from 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. We will celebrate what's already been accomplished and let you know how you can add your support to major new accessibility features within the park, including a 520-foot wheelchair-accessible ramp at...

Friends hosts “A Taste of the Apostles” fundraiser for Access for All

Friends hosts “A Taste of the Apostles” fundraiser for Access for All

What better evening than enjoying a place you love with good people for a good cause and topping it off with fine food? On Saturday, June 3rd, Friends of the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore teamed with Wilderness Inquiry to host a fundraising event called “A Taste of the Apostles.”Held at the Wilderness Inquiry Outpost near Little Sand Bay, the event featured a tour of Meyers Beach, the site of the proposed accessible ramp project replacing the 45-step stairway that now impedes easy access to the beach. “Of all the places we run trips, this project at Meyers Beach would go the furthest...

Sold Out! Annual Friends Cruise planned for August 10th

Sold Out! Annual Friends Cruise planned for August 10th

It is the highlight of the season at Friends of the Apostle Islands: a time to gather with friends, members, supporters, new faces, and enjoy the very place we all work so hard to protect. This year, our Annual Cruise is slated for Thursday, August 10th. We will board the Superior Princess of the Apostle Island Cruise Service at the Bayfield City Dock at 5pm and cruise Lake Superior passing Basswood Island, Hermit, Oak, and others. Along the way we will enjoy a buffet and drinks, stories of the islands, watch the scenery slip by and our destination – Stockton Island – looming on the...

“Why I support the Meyers Beach accessible ramp may surprise you.” Public comment period ends May 12th

“Why I support the Meyers Beach accessible ramp may surprise you.” Public comment period ends May 12th

An unseen patch of late-winter black ice changed my life in an instant. My feet took flight as I went airborne. I landed on my side with a bone-shattering thud, a shout and a groan. In that instant, I became something I never expected. I became physically disabled. During many months of recovery, I experienced varying degrees of mobility challenges. I learned to use a wheelchair. A walker. Then a cane. I also felt what it’s like to require help from others for even the most-basic tasks. This accident taught me a valuable lesson: We are all an instant away… whether by accident, by illness or...

Friends endorses Meyers Beach ramp, Little Sand Bay trails, encourages you to show your support before comment period ends

Friends endorses Meyers Beach ramp, Little Sand Bay trails, encourages you to show your support before comment period ends

With the public comment period winding down, now is the time to show the National Park Service your support for Access for All and the exciting Meyers Beach accessible ramp project, as well as a companion project that includes a new trail system at Little Sand Bay. You only have until May 12th to add your voice on the National Park Service website.Last month, the Park Service published a draft Environmental Assessment covering both projects. The 54-page document says, “Providing an Architectural Barriers Act-compliant ramp would provide long-term, beneficial impacts to visitor experience via...

An Earth Day letter to you from the daughter of Gaylord Nelson

An Earth Day letter to you from the daughter of Gaylord Nelson

Dear Friends of the Apostle Islands: In 1970, my father Gaylord Nelson was at the heart of two major movements in this country – the founding of Earth Day and the legislative designation of the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore in northern Wisconsin. Both efforts to celebrate and protect the life-sustaining and life-enhancing wonders of our planet were bound by his undying commitment to inclusion. I believe they are connected.Tia and Gaylord Nelson - Ked Martin photoWith Earth Day, dad changed the way all of us view and celebrate the planet we live on. By protecting this soul-stirring...

Access for All: National Park Service wants your comments on plans for accessible ramp at Meyers Beach, Little Sand Bay trails

Access for All: National Park Service wants your comments on plans for accessible ramp at Meyers Beach, Little Sand Bay trails

Plans for an accessible ramp at the popular Meyers Beach kayak launch take a significant step forward in April, as the National Park Service publishes a draft Environmental Assessment and asks for public comment for the next 30 days. The 54-page document says, "Providing an Architectural Barriers Act-compliant ramp would provide long-term, beneficial impacts to visitor experience via access to the beach and primary kayak launching location to the mainland sea caves, increase safety and improve capacity for visitors of all abilities. " "This is an important step in achieving Access for All,...

Connect with your Friends at Canoecopia in Madison, Wisconsin March 10-12

Connect with your Friends at Canoecopia in Madison, Wisconsin March 10-12

If paddling the amazing sea caves in the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore is on your bucket list, we invite you to see us at Canoecopia in Madison, Wisconsin next weekend, March 10-12. This annual event includes more than 100 educational presentations and clinics on kayaking, canoeing and related topics, including two by Friends Executive Director Jeff Rennicke. You'll also be able to learn from the experts what gear you need to safely explore the islands.Alliant Energy Center1919 Alliant Energy WayEvent host Rutabaga Paddlesports of Madison says Canoecopia is the largest paddlesports...

Adventure Healing: Can an Apostle Islands adventure be a part of recovery?

Adventure Healing: Can an Apostle Islands adventure be a part of recovery?

Clinical psychologist and Access for All Advisory Board member Dr. Daniel Skenderian thinks so.As a psychologist working in a physical rehabilitation hospital in Southern California for the past few decades, I’ve seen the dramatic effects physical injuries and catastrophic illnesses can have on one’s sense of self, family, and activities of daily living. Traumatic brain and spinal cord injury, stroke, cancer, multiple sclerosis, orthopedic injuries, amputations, along with their emotional impact on lives makes coping with these disabilities extremely difficult. Sometimes removing the...

An accessible dream: kayaking the Apostle Islands

An accessible dream: kayaking the Apostle Islands

Janet Badura is a traveler, an adventurer, a birdwatcher. She is also someone with a progressive disorder who requires a power wheelchair. For years, Janet had a dream: to kayak the Apostle Islands sea caves. “As a person with a progressive disability, and a power wheelchair user,” she says, “joining a kayak trip, was not without some hesitation or concern.” But through Wilderness Inquiry, a partner in our Access for All initiative whose mission is to offer outdoor adventures to all, regardless of ability and background, she finally got the chance.Then she saw the 45 steps leading down to...