‘Protect Wild Places’ Program Launches with April Events

This April, Huron Pines will officially launch Protect Wild Places, a program to engage communities across the state in conservation efforts through volunteer, education and training opportunities. The program has been in the works since May 2021 when the nonprofit conservation organization was provided with a $200,000 Planet Award Grant by the Consumers Energy Foundation.

April marks the start of the 2022 Protect Wild Places event series with one live event in Gaylord April 2 and two virtual events April 5 and 12. All details for Protect Wild Places events will be posted at huronpines.org/events throughout the year.

The Protect Wild Places program gives Huron Pines the opportunity to work directly with local residents, municipalities and conservation partners to drive the long-term health of their environment. Participants will learn about natural resources and be encouraged to put their new skills and knowledge into practice on their surrounding lands and waters. Topics which will be covered through events and volunteer opportunities include invasive species prevention, leave-no-trace principles, native habitat restoration, forest management and waterway monitoring.

Several Protect Wild Places events will take place at Huron Pines preserves where attendees can hike the property, learn nature observation techniques and enjoy other guided activities similar to the nature walk at Emily Min Hunt Preserve, pictured here.

Additionally, with the help of partners and volunteer participants, Huron Pines will restore 5,000 acres of wildlife habitat and recreational land, and 150 miles of waterways and Great Lakes shoreline, over the course of the program.

“Michigan’s environmental threats can’t be solved by Huron Pines alone, however the collective effort of many motivated people can and will make a lasting impact on the wild places we all love,” said Community Program Director Abigail Ertel. “We can’t wait to work together to ensure a future rich with healthy water, protected places and vibrant communities.”

“It’s exciting to see Huron Pines grow the Planet Award we provided with these initiatives to give many the opportunity to actively participate in conserving, protecting and increasing the abundance of our state’s natural resources,” said Carolyn Bloodworth, secretary/treasurer of the Consumers Energy Foundation. “I’d encourage anyone with an interest in wild places to take advantage of these events.”


Insider Access
April 2
Jay’s Sporting Goods, Gaylord MI
RSVP here
Discover places to hunt and fish across Northern Michigan while you learn how to prevent the spread of invasive species and protect your favorite wild places.

Connect to Nature through iNaturalist
April 5
Virtual via Zoom
RSVP here
Learn how to make nature observations and contribute to community science using the iNaturalist app.

Connect to Nature through iNaturalist
April 12
Virtual via Zoom
4:30pm-5:30 pm
RSVP here
Learn how to make nature observations and contribute to community science using the iNaturalist app.

Huron Pines is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization established in 1973 to conserve and enhance Northern Michigan’s natural resources to ensure healthy water, protected places and vibrant communities. With offices in Gaylord and Alpena, Huron Pines improves economic, environmental, educational and recreational opportunities throughout Northern Michigan.

The Consumers Energy Foundation is the charitable arm of Consumers Energy, Michigan’s largest energy provider. The Foundation enables communities to thrive and grow by investing in what’s most important to Michigan — its people, our planet and Michigan’s prosperity. In 2021, the Consumers Energy Foundation, Consumers Energy, its employees and retirees contributed over $17.5 million to Michigan nonprofits. For more information, visit www.ConsumersEnergy.com/foundation.

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