Jeff Rennicke Articles

Articles that mention Jeff Rennicke.

A Few Quiet Words on Silence

A Few Quiet Words on Silence

Shhh. Just listen a moment. It is early, before the sun has even broken the horizon this soft summer morning. The lake is still, rising and falling as softly as the breath of someone sleeping. The sound of dripping water inside a shoreline cave along the north side of Oak Island, like the gentle pluck of harp strings.  This is morning in the Apostle Islands. This is natural silence.Morning in the Apostle Islands – Jeff Rennicke photoWhen we speak of the value of nature, it is often natural resources we speak of – timber, oil and gas, fisheries, stone from quarries. Even in discussions of...

Change Begins Here: Friends Represented at the Leadership Institute

Change Begins Here: Friends Represented at the Leadership Institute

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, concerned citizens can change world,” Margaret Mead once famously said. “Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” From April 24th to the 27th, our Executive Director Jeff Rennicke joined a small group of thoughtful, concerned leaders from Friends groups across the country at the first in-person gathering of the 2022-23 Leadership Institute in Portland, Oregon. Representatives from Yosemite, the Grand Canyon, Rocky Mountain, Virgin Islands, Acadia, Shenendoah, and Cabrillo National Moment were also in attendance.   A program of the National...

Of Sun Dogs and Sunlit Winter Mornings in the Apostle Islands

Of Sun Dogs and Sunlit Winter Mornings in the Apostle Islands

Peppermint. On mornings this cold – minus 8 degrees Fahrenheit with a wind chill dipping even lower – each breath tingles against your teeth like peppermint. Each step in the new snow squeaks beneath my boots. In cold like this, it takes a strength of will to get out so early but there are rewards too, like what lies in the sky just ahead. For many of us, the Apostle Islands are a picture-perfect summer postcard kind of place – the “singing sands” beneath your feet in Julian Bay, the sky-blue waves on the horizons, the echo of water dripping like notes played on a harp deep in the sea caves....

Explore the Top 10 Friends website stories of 2021

Explore the Top 10 Friends website stories of 2021

DRUMROLL PLEASE! It has been a big year in the Apostle Islands -- from fun and fanfare to tragedy averted. During this last week of the year,, Friends of the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore is counting down its TOP TEN Island stories of 2021. In sharing these stories, we thank you, our readers and supporters, for your support and we wish you an adventure-filled 2022 in the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore. 10 HERE WE GO: Weather stories always resonate with Island Lovers, so the #10 most popular story of the year goes to the tall birch trees dancing in the big gale. 9 At #9 on our...

The Day the Sun Stood Still: Winter Solstice

The Day the Sun Stood Still: Winter Solstice

Something important happened in the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore at 9:59 a.m. on Tuesday, December 21, 2021. No trumpets blared, no speeches were given, no fireworks punctuated the occasion. It was a quiet miracle as far as I could tell. Where I walked alone through the scant snow along the lakeshore, just a few notes of chickadee song tinseled the air. No other sound but the waves of my own breathing. But don’t be fooled. Despite the lack of fanfare, this was an event of monumental consequence: in the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore, the sun stood still. Beach ice glistens in the...

Dance of the Birch Trees

Dance of the Birch Trees

A walk in the dancing forest this morning reminded me of another windstorm, this one in December of 1874 and made famous by John Muir. While others ran for shelter, Muir “lost no time in pushing out into the woods to enjoy” the storm. Picking a sturdy-looking tree, he climbed as high as he could into the swaying wind, clinging to the trunk as the tree itself “fairly flapped and swished in the passionate torrent, bending and swirling backward and forward, round and round, tracing indescribable combinations of vertical and horizontal curves, while I clung with muscles firm braced, like a...

Sea Smoke: Winter in the air, and on the lake

Sea Smoke: Winter in the air, and on the lake

One morning, usually in December, the lake wakes with Winter on its breath: sea smoke. Officially, the explanation is "surface fog resulting from masses of frigidly cold air directly over warm bodies of water." The sunrise temperature in the Apostle Islands today was a chilly and still 0 degrees. As cold as that air temperature is, the thick body of Lake Superior cools more slowly than the air, greedily holding on to the slow summer heat. Lake temperature today was 43 degrees F. And the lake wrapped the islands in ribbons of sea smoke. Whatever the official definition of “sea smoke” is, it...

Friends of the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore names first Executive Director, positions itself for growth

Friends of the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore names first Executive Director, positions itself for growth

BAYFIELD, Wis. — Friends of the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore (FAINL) has selected educator, outdoor adventure travel writer and photographer Jeff Rennicke as its first Executive Director and his wife Jill Rennicke as Co-Director. The Rennickes started in their new roles on February 1.  “Jeff and Jill have been brought on board to steer the organization into its next phase of growth, said Erica Peterson, Chair of the Friends Board of Directors. “We’ve been an all-volunteer organization since 2002. The board is confident that this team can help us to grow our membership and our ability...