Off and Blogging
Wisconsin Sea Grant’s three 2015 Knauss Marine Policy fellows—that’d be Caroline Mosley, Catherine Simons and Kristina Surfus—have been in Washington, D.C. for about six months now. They’ve acclimated to their new and exciting situations, and, better yet, they’ve blogged about them. Surf on over to our Great Lakes Takes blog to hear how Mosely’s adapting to the fast-paced, acronym-heavy life as a comms specialist in NOAA’s Office of Atmospheric Research office, or how Simons is handling her stint with the Navy’s Task Force Climate Change. Surfus, meanwhile, has set up shop in the office of Wisconsin Sen. Tammy Baldwin and has some unique perspectives to share. All three will be submitting missives every couple of months. Find them at uwiscseagrant.tumblr.com.
New Photo Display Travels to Wisconsin Communities
Public libraries and venues across Wisconsin are signing up to host a new traveling photo display on Wisconsin Water, developed by Wisconsin Sea Grant and the Water Resources institute (WRI). The display engages Wisconsin residents with the role of water in Wisconsin and its deep connection to the economy, the environment and residents’ health. Display visitors will learn about water through the lens of Sea Grant and WRI research, education and outreach projects that study and promote the sustainable use of Wisconsin’s water. In addition to the photo display, the Wisconsin Water Library’s K-12 STEM curriculum kits and aquatic invasive species “Attack Packs” will be promoted for local teachers to borrow through the hosting venue.
“I am proud of the diverse projects around Wisconsin improving the health and sustainability of our water,” said James Hurley, director of Sea Grant and WRI. “This display is a great opportunity for residents to learn about the role of water in their lives and to think about how they can be good stewards of an important shared resource.”
The display has made landfall in Cross Plains, River Falls and Marinette, Wis., and made an appearance at the annual Nelson Institute Earth Day Conference in Madison. Look out for the display in a community near you!
If you know of a public venue in your community that would be excited to host the traveling display, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
This Summer, Get Down to the Water!
Wisconsin has 820 miles of coastline along the Great Lakes abundant with natural wonders and welcoming communities. With this resource in mind, Wisconsin Sea Grant developed the Wisconsin Coastal Guide (wisconsincoastalguide.org), an interactive website for residents and tourists to discover where they can pull off the highway to experience Wisconsin’s coast.
David Hart, assistant director for extension at Wisconsin Sea Grant, said the idea for the Wisconsin Coastal Guide developed after he took a circle tour trip around Lake Huron with his father. They left the main highways to explore small towns, and along the way his father shared knowledge from previous visits to the coast and their trip became a “deep travel” experience. The concept of deep travel, coined by writer Tony Hiss, describes the unique, heightened feeling of awareness we experience when we travel.
The Wisconsin Coastal Guide uses geospatial and Web technologies to gather information from disparate sources and display it in a user-friendly Google Maps interface. On the website, users select different map layers to explore beaches, bike routes, boat access points, lighthouses, marinas, parks, rustic roads, shipwrecks, state natural areas and nature centers. Otherlayers tell place-based stories and historical vignettes about the people who live on the coasts. To heighten the experience, Sea Grant staff captured more than 300 panoramic photos at publicly accessible sites along the coast, giving potential travelers a taste of the scenic views that await them.
A number of coastal towns have already embraced the project, and Hart plans to add new layers to deepen the site experience for coastal travelers. Ready to travel yet? This summer, tap into the Wisconsin Coastal Guide and get down to the water.