Interpretation Articles

Our Work – Articles about Friends’ work regarding interpretation.

Reading the sacred skies: new book offered by Friends

Reading the sacred skies: new book offered by Friends

Since long before books, humans have turned to the night sky to read portends, seek beauty and meaning, and to find their place in the universe. A new book, now offered on the Friends’ website, speaks to both the human connection to the night sky and hopes for its protection.Spirits Dancing: The Night Sky, Indigenous Knowledge, & Living Connections to the Cosmos features the photography of Travis Novitsky and text by Annette S. Lee. Novitsky, a member of the Grand Portage Band of Lake Superior Chippewa, uses his lens to capture the awe and wonder of the northern lights. Lee, both an...

Northern lights celebrated during 6th annual Aurora Summit at Red Cliff

Northern lights celebrated during 6th annual Aurora Summit at Red Cliff

The weekend of November 3-5th saw one of North America’s largest displays of aurora borealis (northern lights) this year, visible as far south as Colorado. While clouds obscured the display in the Apostle Islands, even cloudy skies could not dampen the enthusiasm of the several hundred skywatchers gathered at the Legendary Waters Resort in Red Cliff for Aurora Summit 23.“The Aurora Chasers knocked it out of this world over the weekend at Aurora Summit 23,” said Melissa Kaelin, co-founder of the Aurora Summit, and author of Below the 45th Parallel: The Beginners Guide to Chasing the Aurora in...

Meet the new Apostle Islands National Lakeshore division chief: Lucas Westcott

Meet the new Apostle Islands National Lakeshore division chief: Lucas Westcott

It takes a strong team to protect the natural and cultural resources of the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore, while enhancing the experience for more than a quarter-million people who visit the park every year. With that in mind, Friends board member Neil Howk sat down with the park's new Director of Communications and Education, Lucas Westcott. They talked about the skills and experience Westcott brings to the park, his first impressions about what makes the Apostle Islands a special place and about the important work that's ahead.Neil: Where are you from Lucas?Lucas: Originally, I’m from...

New Ojibwe educator hired for Apostle Islands National Lakeshore  (Wenabozho ominisan)

New Ojibwe educator hired for Apostle Islands National Lakeshore (Wenabozho ominisan)

Bayfield, WI – (National Park Service news release) Apostle Islands National Lakeshore, in partnership with Red Cliff Band of Lake Superior Chippewa, announce Peyton Martinson as the newly appointed park ranger cultural educator for Apostle Islands National Lakeshore. “In her new role, Peyton will work with the park’s visitor service and education team to enhance public and staff understanding of Ojibwe culture and help integrate Ojibwe language, traditional knowledge, and Ojibwe perspectives into park operations,” said Apostle Islands National Lakeshore Superintendent Lynne Dominy. “She...

WATERCOLORS: Five questions (+1) about painting in the Apostle Islands with watercolorist Dale Whittaker

WATERCOLORS: Five questions (+1) about painting in the Apostle Islands with watercolorist Dale Whittaker

Tinged with the colors of a morning sky, dotted with autumn leaves, reflecting the greens of pine needles and the soft orange of the sandstone walls, Lake Superior can seem like a work of art all by itself. The allure of those colors has long attracted painters seeking to capture even a glimpse of the natural beauty of Lake Superior and the Apostle Islands. Recently, Executive Director Jeff Rennicke spent a morning in the Islands with watercolorist Dale Whittaker drifting, talking about art and light and mystery and inspiration.As they talked, a painting began taking shape under the artistry...

Native plants are important assets to a healthy Apostle Islands National Lakeshore

Native plants are important assets to a healthy Apostle Islands National Lakeshore

After a winter of record-breaking snowfall – approaching 185 inches – the native plants are slowly emerging from the Gaylord Nelson Memorial Garden at park headquarters in Bayfield. Volunteers recently gathered to tease out the weeds and look for old friends that have been in residence since the garden’s establishment in 2006.“It’s always good to see our early bloomers, pasqueflower (an important food source for nesting female bees) and prairie smoke,” said Erica Peterson, one of the garden volunteers. Columbine was blooming and pollinators were busy in the wild geraniums. (Click to enlarge...

Marigolds: A simple tribute to a different era in the Apostle Islands

Marigolds: A simple tribute to a different era in the Apostle Islands

If you are ever lucky enough to be invited to sit on the deck at photographer Mark Weller’s home, you may notice a small planting of marigolds. Flowers on a deck are nothing unusual and you may not give the potted flowers a second thought. But look again. These flowers have more than beautiful blossoms: they have a story.“I am a lighthouse man,” Mark Weller says. “Over the past decade, I and a team of talented photographers have traveled to the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore to photograph the Milky Way behind some of the park’s famous lighthouses. We sell the images to support the...

The scoop about Coop: 10 questions with retiring Apostle Islands National Lakeshore Archeologist Dave Cooper

The scoop about Coop: 10 questions with retiring Apostle Islands National Lakeshore Archeologist Dave Cooper

We join the National Park Service in celebrating the retirement of David J. Cooper, Apostle Islands National Lakeshore Archeologist and Cultural Resource Manager. Superintendent Lynne Dominy recently praised Cooper's award-winning efforts. “Dave has spent his lifetime protecting the historical and cultural resources on and around Lake Superior." she said. "From portages to fish camps to lighthouses and shipwrecks, Dave carefully documented and communicated the human interactions and influences on the islands, shorelines, and lake beds of Lake Superior.” In the photo above, Dave enjoys a...

“Discover the night” in the Apostle Islands during International Dark Sky Week

“Discover the night” in the Apostle Islands during International Dark Sky Week

30 miles offshore, Devils Island and Outer Island offer some incredible views of the Milky Way set in a field of innumerable stars. And if you’re very fortunate, you'll witness the spectacular northern lights dancing in some of the darkest skies in Wisconsin. The featured photo above captures the northern lights as seen from the top of the Outer Island lighthouse. In fact, most of the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore offers great night sky viewing; night sky lovers, stargazers and photographers want to protect those views for generations to come.Milky Way over Stockton Island - Jon...

Watch the video presentation: National Geographic: the story behind the story

Watch the video presentation: National Geographic: the story behind the story

I'm leaving tomorrow to go to Ukraine for couple of months," photographer David Guttenfelder told the audience. "I’ve spent my whole life going as far away as I possibly could from where I grew up, looking for adventure and telling stories…" “I grew up on the shore of Lake Superior and I had picnics with my grandparents numerous times... but then I wanted to go away too," said outdoors writer Stephanie Pearson. With vastly different backgrounds and experiences, these two well-traveled journalists, now based in Minnesota, talked about the value of coming home and about feeling the allure of...