1 TREE MAIL The Official Newsletter of the Alberta Junior Forest Warden Association June 2012 AJFWA President s Message Al Wardale Spring has sprung all over Alberta and beyond with everything turning green, and the ice long gone on all the rivers and most of the lakes. JFW clubs have now converted to springtime programming, and that will soon include canoes and kayaks! But before we get to that, its tree planting season! It was just one month ago that many of us were gathered in Red Deer for the Spring Conference and AGM, and what a great time it was! I think everyone enjoyed the drumming circle that started us off, and gave us the rhythm for the weekend. You ll read much more about the Conference from the attendees in this issue, and many pictures that captured the excitement. We enjoyed great program sessions, great food, informative meetings, entertainment and a lot of time with our JFW family. We had an opportunity to celebrate many fine Junior Forest Wardens and Leaders at the Awards ceremony on Saturday night, and all were much deserving of the recognition. Read on in this issue to see it all! At the Annual General Meeting we also held our election and the position of Vice President changed hands. I would like to thank Derek Neumann for his service to the Provincial Board over the last 2 years as VP, and wish him well as he enjoys a bit more time with his JFW family at the club and regional level. Derek managed the busy Tree Planting and Online Store portfolios during his tenure and gave much of his time and passion to that work. I would also like to welcome and introduce Rondalene Schiebel as AJFWA s new Vice President. Rondalene is no stranger to the Board as a representative from YRC, and she is also busy at the club level with her own Onoway Osprey. She is passionate about the future of JFW and securing its place as a vibrant and relevant youth program. I feel we re lucky to have her. Many clubs have already begun their annual tree planting activities, and these will continue on well into June. It s such an endearing aspect of our program and I m glad that almost all clubs are participating. Truly all clubs should, and in the process we instill a greater appreciation for what it takes to keep Alberta green while we commit ourselves to forest and environmental stewardship. I cannot imagine that there is a place in Alberta that wouldn t be better for having received a box of seedlings planted with care. This year we are providing 30,000 seedlings free of charge to JFW clubs and through some partner projects with other associations we are on track to plant significantly more than that! Don t forget to mark these planting sites with JFW signage, and ensure that all your Wardens record their planting achievements in their planting booklets, all available from AJFWA. I just returned from our club campout where were able to enjoy two glorious days in the woods doing a host of activities. A walk on our trail in the first morning held a reminder of who we share the wilderness with. The muddy shoreline 70 meters from the cabin held fresh grizzly tracks! We planted a box of seedlings and checked on our previous years plantings that are growing very well. So much dry grass in the area had us nervous, so we used our fire equipment from SRD to dampen the whole camp area, learning techniques and having fun in the process. It was a good time here, and I hope you have the same with your next outing! Be careful in the dry and windy conditions out there this spring, and enjoy the program! This is a great time to be a Junior Forest Warden! Events Calendar AJFWA Events & Regional Events July Outreach July 5-8 Alumni Family Camp August Fall Leadership Workshop October Solo Outreach October PT South Winter Outreach February PT North February AC Conference April 12-14, 2013 AGM & Conference April 27-28, 2013
2 AJFWA Chief Warden Message Terry Garrett As the sun slowly warmed the great outdoors, the Junior Forest Wardens really got things heated up with great activities and lots of fun at the AGM and Conference in Red Deer. What a fantastic event that was - congratulations to everyone who helped to make that gathering such a success. It was wonderful to see so many people; we shared laughs and stories as well as a hug and shed a tear or two together. Congratulations to all the people who receive years of service or recognition awards - thank you for all your hard work for our organization. I am sure everyone has their own favorite memories. With only a month left in this JFW year, many of your are planning your club year end events. Remember to take lots of pictures and share the fun with your Tree Mail friends. Everyone would love to hear about your activities, so be sure you send in an article. This summer save room on your calendar to attend Summer Outreach for a paddle adventure down the North Saskatchewan River (Information in this Tree Mail). On that note, don t forget to keep track of all your paddling statistics so that they can be reported to Paddle Alberta in the fall. Keep trace of the number of days or hours spent paddling, general location (river or lake), age and number of participants. Thanks for your help and enjoy your time on the water. Summer Outreach 2012 North Saskatchewan River We would like to invite you to participate in this summers paddling Outreach adventure! July 5-8, 2012 This summer we will be taking a group of AC s paddling down the North Saskatchewan River. The AC s will be certified by Connie Gottselig and Ingo Hentschel in Paddle Alberta s Tripping and Moving Water courses. We will also be taking in a special program at the National Historical Centre in Rocky Mountain House. For this Outreach event we will be giving the AC wardens first priority as we are restricted on our numbers that we can certify and the number of boats we can have in our group. Leaders and parents you are welcome to still register; if we have room we will take first registered adults with us to fill all the spots. On-line registration will open up on June 1, 2012 and the cost will be $110 per person and because our wardens will be certified in Tripping they will be providing their own food. So practice up your strokes and get ready for one amazing adventure! Also if that is not enough of a challenge, come challenge yourself on our 24-hour solo survival Outreach! It will take place near Long Lake Camp on October 19-21, Keep a close eye on Tree Mail as more details will be revealed in the coming months. The Summer Outreach Committee Susie Neider, Clinton Blais, Terry Garrett
3 You Live In a Watershed! Local students Winners in Caring for our Watersheds contest May 7, 2012 Camrose, Alberta The Battle River Watershed Alliance is committed to community and environmental health throughout Central Alberta. Part of this commitment involves educating the future generations so that they may be the future stewards for the land and water. As a result, in 2007 we launched a contest for Grade 7-12 students called Caring for our Watersheds (CFW) with program sponsor Agrium. The contest is now held across North America and Argentina. CFW asks grade 7-12 students in Central Alberta to submit a 1000 word proposal that answers the question What can you do to improve your watershed? Students must research their local watershed, identify an environmental concern and come up with a realistic solution. 101 groups (made up of 216 students) submitted proposals from across central Alberta. 12 groups were invited to the final competition which took place Saturday May 5 th at the Reynolds-Alberta Museum in Wetaskiwin. 1 of the 12 groups in the finals are from the Stettler Swift Fox Junior Forest Wardens! At the final competition, each team is given five minutes to explain their idea to a panel of judges. This year s judges consisted of Wetaskiwin-Camrose MLA Veryln Olson, and representatives from Alberta Agriculture, City of Wetaskiwin, the University of Alberta, Agrium, and the Battle River Watershed Alliance. Students were competing for the $1000 grand prize for themselves and their school, however every students receives a cash reward. Agrium also has $10,000 funding available to help implement the students ideas. Every student who enters the contest is eligible for implementation funds. The final competition results: (names- project idea, town. Prize amount for themselves and school) 1. Hannah Hahn, Taylor Mathieu- Adopt a River Bank Campaign, Ponoka. $ Ben Brunen- Protect Wetland Vegetation, Wainwright. $ Kathryn Wyering, Vicki Wyering, Melissa Gartner- The Pollution Problem (book), Ponoka.$ Ashley Wipf, Jorden Wipf- Washout Prevention, Viking Colony. $ Chad Mailer, Cassidy Munholland, Hannah Shepherd- What s Going down your Drain?, Stettler. $ Alison Beier- No Idle Zone, Ponoka. $ Melissa Hirsekorn, Laci Schmidt- Rain Gardens, Pigeon Lake. $ Desiree St. Amant- Preserving My Backyard, Bonnyville. $ Joshua Feland, Connor Archibald- Water Toxicity Project, Ponoka. $ Francesca Middleton, Alyssa Klinger, Elizabeth Raine- Beads for Seeds, Ponoka. $300 Honorary Mentions Cole Howlett-McAuley, Chase Soosay- Trees along the Trail, Ponoka. $200 Jennifer Henderson, Ceanna Prediger, Kara Casper Knowledge is Power, Ponoka. $200 For more information on the Caring for our Watersheds Contest, please visit the webpage or ca If you or your office has any questions, please feel free to call the Central Alberta Caring for our Watersheds Program Coordinator Nathalie Stanley at We would be happy to provide you with more information on the group s proposal idea as well as contact information. The Battle River Watershed Alliance is a group representing government (municipal, provincial and federal), watershed groups, environmental organizations, industry, academia and private citizens in a collaborative initiative to plan for the sustainable management of land and water resources in the Battle River Watershed. Contact Info: Nathalie Stanley Education and Outreach Coordinator Battle River Watershed Alliance
4 Adventure Race Don t Spill! Hold on To your Shorts! The Hard Way! Ready, Aim, Fire! Dazed and Confused! Our 3rd annual Adventure Race, hosted by the David Thompson District, sported these station titles. The stations were designed to be fun and challenging, while the orienteering checkpoints were to help read maps, get closer to nature and get some sun! The kids and adults alike had a grand time tromping all over the bush, fields and rivers of Deer Valley Meadows: Trails, compass points, group bucket maneuvers and puzzle boxes a la survivor and river canoeing. The zip line component was the highlight of the race! Groups of adults and children, from Rocky Rams, Settler Swift Fox, Red Deer Woodchucks and Delburne Currents snuggled together in the campground and enjoyed fellowship and even a mothers day champagne breakfast served on picnic tables. In true warden fashion! The Adventure Race is a fundraiser for the DTJFWS, thank you for all the support from our clubs! Because of the spirit and commitment of race organizers, volunteers and participants there will definitely be a 4th annual- same date (May 11, 2013) so mark your calendars now!
5 In the Yellowhead Region... Another Event-full month in Yellowhead... a a a a AGM & Conference in Red Deer that saw our YRC Onoway Ospreys soaring above the clouds. Congratulations Rondalene on your election to AJFWA Vice President and Elsie Matthews took home the Golden Spruce Award. Pretty impressive for a Club in just it s second year after Chartering. Sunday after the Conference many of our members headed up the QE-II to join Chief Warden Emeritus, Ernst Klaszus and Chief Warden Terry Garrett for the Annual Tree Bagging for Arbor Day at the Muttart Conservatory in Edmonton. The trees are distributed to all the Grade One students in Edmonton and surrounding area. In under an hour, 10,000 trees were bagged with the usual amazing cheer and team spirit. YRC Clubs have all picked up their JFW Tree Planting seedlings and most are already in the ground. Saturday, May 12th, YRC Tree Planters were invited to the City of Leduc for their Arbor Day event. There is interest in starting a JFW Club in the city so we proudly came out in JFW Uniform to help with some tree planting and show Leduc that they NEED a JFW Club in their community. The Mayor, Councilors, Environmental Board Members and the public were impressed and interested in JFW. We have been invited to talk to the Rotary Club and feature JFW in an article for the local paper. The seeds have been planted; let s see if a new Club will grow. Flat Water Canoe Certification Course What : Canoe Course Where: Alford Lake When : June 22-24, 2012 Who: Adults Taught by Frank Jackson and Nic Martini Cost: $ includes course registration, camp, meals and equipment Contact : Frank at to register BIG News from the Membership Director!! Would you like to start registering your members for next year before summer holiday?? Well, this year, the AJFWA will have next year s registration forms available on the website by June 1, 2012! We hope this will ease your registration process come the fall! PLEASE NOTE AJFWA WARDEN FEES FOR HAVE INCREASED FROM $20 TO $25 PER WARDEN, PER YEAR.
6 A Journey to visit a Tree submitted by Kristi Cox, Wheatland Wild Things After National Camp in 2011, we headed west to visit with family on the coast of British Columbia. Having heard of the commemorative Douglas fir trees planted in Stanley Park on behalf of the Junior Forest Wardens, we thought we would attempt to find them. I made a couple of calls ahead of time, trying to get some clues as to where exactly they are located, but didn t have much luck with the short time I had, so we figured we d just give it our best shot. After a long day at the Vancouver Aquarium, we wandered out, and started our search. We re looking for a huge Douglas fir with a smaller Douglas fir near it, and there s a plaque at the base, that s all I know, I informed my brother and sister, who were along for the day. You mean like those ones? my brother asked, pointing. Just by chance, we stumbled upon them within minutes of beginning our search! As it turns out, the plaque is behind the large Douglas fir when looking from the pathway, so it is difficult to spot. I took the opportunity to get GPS coordinates for the plaque, and set a Geocaching Challenge to the coordinates. A challenge can be set to places where a physical Geocache cannot be placed, so I felt it was a good fit for this location. The challenge can be found at: challenges/cx27fe_hug_a_jfw_tree The GPS coordinates are: 'N 'W Please note! The GPS was very jumpy in this area, probably due to tree cover and therefore poor satellite connection. The coordinates should get you to the right area, though. If you are fortunate enough to visit beautiful Stanley Park, go hug a tree that means a lot to the Junior Forest Wardens! I
7 Trivia answer: Sun Arise ALUMNI PAGE ALUMNI CHAIRPERSON REPORT My name is Cacilia Wardale and I have stepped into the position of Chairperson of the JFW Alumni. I would like to thank Iris Morgan for her dedication and time as the previous Chairperson. She left some pretty big shoes to fill! Our Annual General Meeting and History Hour were both successes with great attendance at each event. We d like to thank the AJFWA for allowing us the opportunity to host our AGM in conjunction with their Spring Conference. It could not have worked out any better and we will definitely be doing it again next year! In the rush that is the month of May, we have had to reschedule a few events. Our May 8th conference call meeting has moved to May 30th at 7pm. I look forward to hearing from our membership! We are also postponing the Alumni Retreat scheduled for June 2012 until 2013 in order for us to make it the real relaxing, fun weekend we d like it to be! But fear not!!! All systems are still a go for the July Smoky River Canoe Trip and the August Summer Family Camp at Mackenzie Crossing. Watch the Alumni tab on for information on those great events! UPCOMING ALUMNI EVENTS May 30th 7pm, Conference Call Meeting July 28 29, 2012 Alumni Smoky River Canoe Trip August 10 12, Alumni Summer Family Camp at Mackenzie Crossing November Alumni Retreat - Jumping Pound Camp - Conference Call Meeting January Conference Call Meeting - Calgary Sportsman s Show February 16-18, 2013 Winter Skills Camp March Sarcee Fish and Game Banquet - Edmonton Sportsmen s Show, Expo Centre - Conference Call Meeting April Alumni Annual General Meeting June Alumni Retreat - Conference Call Meeting
8 JFW VOLUNTEER PROFILE Tara Van Camp is currently the WPT Coordinator for the Bragg Creek Bald Eagles. In only her second year as a JFW parent, Tara willingly stepped up to take on the role of coordinating activities for the Wanderers, Pathfinders and Trailblazers. Inspired by attending our last National Camp in 2011 despite being self admittedly an inexperienced camper, she managed to put together some amazing activities for the kids that kept them involved, engaged, and excited about being part of JFW. Tara will continue as Bragg Creek s WPT Coordinator for the season and will also represent her club as a CJF- WS rep. Tara and her family have further assisted this year by helping to coordinate the Earth Day celebrations in Redwood Meadows where they greeted people, shared their JFW experience and handed out tree seedlings. They also hosted the Bald Eagles Highway Cleanup Barbeque. We are thrilled to have volunteers like Tara in our midst! Sent by Jacquie Hromyk Leadership Development Committee As announced at the Resource Fair which took place at the 2012 Spring Conference and AGM, the formation of the new Leadership Development Committee is underway; the purpose of which is to facilitate the education of leaders and club executive by providing regular training opportunities in multiple locations throughout the province. Club coordinators will be contacted presently in regards to their input into this new initiative. As the purpose of this committee is aimed at the leaders and club executive, volunteers in these positions are asked to consider a list of their needs to share with the committee. No, we cannot supply you with a new car, or the winning lottery ticket numbers for next week s draw! But how often are you asked the question how can I help you? For more information regarding the above committee, or to find out how you can help, please contact Rondalene Schiebel at
9 AJFWA Conference and Annual General Meeting April 27th - 29th, 2012 Red Deer, AB THE HI-LIGHTS! AGM Spring Conference Terry G One thing I always enjoy about Junior Forest Warden gatherings is the opportunity for like-minded people to come together for a common cause. You actually get to sit and visit for awhile with others without having to run away to cook supper or do dishes - being in a hotel is a nice way to relax a little. When I began working with Ernst, our Chief Warden of Alberta Emeritus, I felt that he had such a positive impact on people and he was, and is an amazing mentor to me. It is my a personal challenge to try to help people realize their full potential and encourage them to try things that were just a little outside of their comfort zone. At the AGM I was deeply touched by members who were moved to tears as they told me of challenges they overcame because of conversations I had with them that they found inspirational. It wasn t until then that I realized I have followed more closely in Ernst s shadow than I was aware. Once again our JFW family came together from all over for a productive weekend, this time in Red Deer on April 27 29, The hotel worked out great for our needs. It seemed there were fewer kids there this year, possibly due to the waterslide and pool being a grand attraction. As usual, during the AGM of the AJFWA and also the Alumni, there were courses to keep the wardens occupied, entertained, and educated. This allowed the AGM s to charge ahead on their agendas and complete the business on hand. The evening socials are definitely one of the highlights. It provides the adults the opportunity to network and share stories and laughs as they reminisce about their experiences in JFW and contribute to the future development in a very informal and laid back atmosphere. The silent auction items that are donated continue to astound. Where else can you bid on a full antler rack from an elk, books on all sorts of outdoor topics, and a basket of goodies for the bath at the same time? As a trivia question, What was the song that Brian McBride brought out to be played in the morning? The answer is hidden elsewhere in this newsletter. I know that if I try to list everyone s names, I will miss someone, so many thanks to everyone that had a hand in helping to once again pull together another incredible JFW event that will live on in our memories. It was a fantastic time for all who were there. If you weren t able to make it, start planning now to attend the Fall Leaders Workshop and AJFWA General Meeting to be held in mid October and join the adventure.
10 AJFWA Conference and Annual General Meeting...more HI-LIGHTS! April 27th - 29th, 2012 Red Deer, AB What a great time it was at the Conference in Red Deer! While I talk to JFW s extensively from all over, it s not so often that I get to see them! Events like this draw members from each of the regions for many reasons, not the least of which is an opportunity to visit and share stories, experiences and challenges from their home area. From a President s perspective, it s so nice to have the face time with the extended JFW family. I find these opportunities inspirational to me, and perhaps never more so than when we honour individuals for their JFW achievements. People like Alicia and Chelsea receiving their Silver Honour Awards and Elsie and Paul being inducted into the Order of the Golden Spruce are much deserved and should motivate all of us to equal their commitment. And all the many recipients of Years of Service Awards were truly remarkable. Thank you for your commitment to the program and events like these, as you continue to inspire the next generation of Wardens and Leaders. Al Wardale AJFWA President 3 year service award 5 year service award 10 year service award Thank you to Derek, past Vice 15 year service award Golden Spruce Awards Silver Honor Awards 2012 Agm, Informative and fun or FUN and informative, I am not sure what my family thinks of our first AGM for AJFWA who am I kidding it was an absolute blast, so much so I do not believe the hotel was expecting the JFW element of fun like we had brought. From our welcoming first moments to the bombardment of when can we go to the pool? moments and the splendid kickoff from some great alumni thank you George Brewster. Saturday lent itself to an enriching meeting for the adults and fun for the kids at the workshop sessions, a diverse range of learning and exploring, from wildlife to knots to games. The formal dinner and awards were a fine fit for the entertainment that evening; great job to all the awardees and thank you to Dave Cullen, Terry Garret and Brian McBride for the inspiring presentations. And then the music started and the kids started to show the parents a thing or two man could they dance ha ha. A great wrap up on Sunday with the informative displays from the session presenters and just a little more fun in fellowship with the AJFWA crew! We are definitely looking forward to the next year of adventure and catching up at the next AGM! The Schmidt Family George Brewster Charlie Wilkinson
11 2012 AC Conference April 13-15, 2012 Another weekend of A/C Conference has come and gone, leaving those who went there with good memories. It was held at the Goldeye Centre near Rocky Mountain House. The first night there was Ice Breakers to get us energized and excited as well as pizza to feed our hungry tummies. The next morning, was session time and thanks to all that were teaching them. The sessions were: Celtic Knot Tying Nature Games Food Dehydration GPS Map and Compass Japanese Rope Weaving Saturday night there was a dance, after a fantastic presentation by the Medicine River Wildlife Centre and a grad ceremony for our departing wardens. The dance started at 8:00pm and went to 11:30. This was the first time, in a few years, that A/C Conference had a DJ. He had this really cool light show set up. There was a limbo contest and a prize for the winner. The next morning was more sessions, then, with a little sadness and regret, we had to pack up and leave, for our weekend was over. Tesslin Schiebel Got News you want to share? Starting now, Tree Mail will be coming to your inbox EVERY MONTH! You can expect it the first week of every month, therefore submissions for the upcoming issue must be submitted before the last day of the previous month. Please send your Tree Mail submissions to: Kirsten Wahlfeldt