WYO OUTDOORS: Wind River Country Trails & GTNP’s Active Trails Program

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image courtesy Wind River Visitor Council


Wind River Country Trails — Get Out There and Explore!

National Trails Day was June 1, but who needs one day to hit the trail and explore?! Fremont County in Wyoming is one place that is FILLED with trails for biking, hiking, horseback riding and more — check out our blog post from the Wind River Visitor Council for more info!

image by NPS

Grand Teton Launches Wellness Initiative with Active Trails Program

MOOSE, WY —  In partnership with St. John’s Medical Center, Grand Teton National Park will launch a new Active Trails program with a kick-off event June 6 from 5-7 p.m. at Miller Park in Jackson, Wyoming. The first 10 people to register for participation in the Active Trails program will receive a free annual pass to Grand Teton National Park, and a few lucky participants who attend a bear safety presentation will receive a free can of bear spray. Grand Teton’s Active Trails program is funded through a grant by the National Park Foundation, the official charity of America’s national parks.

Grand Teton is partnering with the wellness program at St. John’s Medical Center to launch this initiative focused on getting Jackson Hole community members active and outside. The partnership supports an online tracking portal where participants will log hiking and biking miles. Registered participants who log their progress on the portal are automatically entered in a lottery to win prizes that will get them back in the park for even grander experiences. Prizes will range from meals at restaurants located in the park to family adventure packages.

On the 13th of each month, Grand Teton park ranger naturalists will lead family friendly hikes for Active Trails participants. Free transportation will be offered to and from town to join these hikes. For details, please call 307.739.3399. Additional information about the hikes will be posted on the Active Trails portal.

To register as a participant in Active Trails go to www.sjmcwellness.com and create an account. Use the code AT2013 to create an Active Trails account.

Grand Teton was one of 22 national parks from across the country selected to receive a 2013 Active Trails grant from the National Park Foundation. Now in its fifth year nationally, the Active Trails program supports hands-on projects that encourage the public to lead healthy lives by actively engaging in activities that restore, protect, and create land and water trails across America. Since 2008, the National Park Foundation has granted nearly $1.7 million through its Active Trails program.

Grand Teton National Park is grateful for the ongoing support from Grand Teton Association and their contributions to this program. The National Park Foundation wishes to thank Coca-Cola and the Coca-Cola Foundation for their generous support of the Active Trails program.


The National Park Foundation, the official charity of America’s national parks, raises private funds that directly aid, support and enrich America’s more than 400 national parks and their programs.  Chartered by Congress as the nonprofit partner of the National Park Service, the National Park Foundation plays a critical role in conservation and preservation efforts, establishing national parks as powerful learning environments, and giving all audiences an equal and abundant opportunity to experience, enjoy and support America’s treasured places. www.nationalparks.org.

ON THE CALENDAR: May 3, 2013


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LANDER:  Lander Brew Fest June 7-8

Stay tuned to the Lander Chamber website for more details!


The inaugural “Spring into Yellowstone: Cody Birding and Wildlife Festival” will take place May 15-19th, 2013 in and around Cody and will feature top-notch speakers, exclusive tours, forums, a trade show and other events celebrating the wealth of birds and wildlife the Greater Yellowstone Region has.

Schedules and registration details on the official site.

WORLAND/TEN SLEEP:  Big Horn Mammoth 5K Run/Walk June 8

Half Marathon Run – 6:30 am   Transport bus leaves at 5:45 am.  Check in time begins at 5:20 am

Half Marathon Walkers – 5:30 am  Transport bus leaves at 5:15 am. Check in time begins at 5:00 am.

5K Run/Walk  – 7:30 am from Warrior Stadium  (possible route change) Check in time begins at 7:00 am

10K Run/Walk  – 7:30 am   Transport bus leaves at 6:45 am.  Check in time begins at 6:15 am

Register by May 17th and receive a free 2013 Mammoth Run T Shirt

Individual rates.  Family of same household rates.  Group rates.

Late fees apply for day of race registrations – $15.00 (no T Shirts provided)

Contact Kathy at the Worland/Ten Sleep Chamber of Commerce for more information:  wtschamber@rtconnect.net


CHEYENNE:  Black Dog Animal Rescue’s Summer Mutt Fair June 15


GRAND TETON NATIONAL PARK: International Migratory Bird Day May 11

MOOSE, WY —  Observance of the 2013 International Migratory Bird Day (IMBD) gets underway at Grand Teton National Park with a bird-watching caravan on Saturday, May 11. To celebrate IMBD and conduct the annual North American bird count, Park Ranger Andrew Langford will visit areas throughout Grand Teton that provide the best opportunities to locate, identify and record birds.

Anyone interested in birds is welcome to participate. The bird-watching excursion begins at 8 a.m. from the Craig Thomas Discovery and Visitor Center in Moose and finishes by 4 p.m. at Christian Pond by Jackson Lake Lodge. The activity is free and reservations are not required.

Throughout the day, participants will take short walks at various locations, so those attending should wear comfortable shoes and bring a lunch, drinking water, warm clothing and rain gear. Bird field guides, binoculars and spotting scopes are also recommended items. 

“Life Cycles of Migratory Birds” serves as the theme for the 2013 IMBD observance. This year’s theme focuses on all aspects of a migratory bird’s life, from migration and nesting to breeding and raising young. Most importantly, it addresses the need for conservation throughout all phases of avian lives. As always, the annual conservation theme is relevant to host organizations and participants throughout the world. Participation in Grand Teton’s IMBD tour offers a chance to learn about the importance of birds and their unique contribution to the health and beauty of the natural areas around the world.

Observed each year in May to celebrate and support avian conservation, IMBD serves as the hallmark outreach event for Partners in Flight—an international conservation program whose goal is to reverse declining populations of migratory birds by bringing attention to factors that contribute to worldwide declines.    

For more information about International Migratory Bird Day and the North American Migration Count, please call the Craig Thomas Discovery and Visitor Center at 307.739.3399.

Participants of the IMBD activity are reminded that park entrance stations are open, therefore a park pass is required for travel through these fee stations.

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WYOMING PEOPLE, ARTS & PARKS: February 27, 2013


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image courtesy Dee Mitchell



Grand Teton National Park was officially established February 26, 1929 by President Calvin Coolidge. For 84 years, millions have enjoyed its beauty from around the world. A new report indicates the tremendous impact that GTNP has on local and state economy.


Grand Teton National Park Generates Over $436 Million in Benefit to Local Economy — Part of $30 billion impact from national parks tourism that supports 252,000 jobs nationwide

MOOSE, WY — A new National Park Service (NPS) report for 2011 shows that nearly 2.6 million visitors to Grand Teton National Park spent over $436 million in gateway communities surrounding the park. That spending, in turn, supported 6,397 jobs in the northwestern Wyoming communities of Jackson, Teton Village, and Dubois, as well as the nearby Idaho communities of Driggs and Victor.

“Grand Teton National Park is one of America’s premiere attractions for visitors from across the U.S. and around the world,” said Superintendent Mary Gibson Scott. “While we generally focus on Grand Teton’s priceless natural and cultural resources as the principle rationale for its creation and enduring value, another—perhaps less obvious—benefit of Grand Teton involves the economic advantage that comes from sustainable tourism generated by this national park and others located throughout the Intermountain West,”  added Superintendent Scott. “National parks provide great enjoyment, inspiration and education to American citizens and international visitors who spend their vacation dollars in both the parks and their gateway communities. These federal lands are visited by nearly 280 million people a year, which ranks them as eighth among America’s top domestic travel destinations according to Forbes.”

The information on Grand Teton National Park is part of a peer-reviewed spending analysis of national park visitors across the country conducted by Michigan State University for the National Park Service.  For 2011, that report shows $13 billion of direct spending by 279 million park visitors in communities within 60 miles of a national park.  That visitor spending had a $30 billion impact on the entire U.S. economy and supported 252,000 jobs nationwide.

Most visitor spending supports jobs in lodging, food, and beverage service (63 percent) followed by recreation and entertainment (17 percent), other retail (11percent), transportation and fuel (7 percent) and wholesale and manufacturing (2 percent.)

To download the report visit www.nature.nps.gov/socialscience/products.cfm#MGM and click on Economic Benefits to Local Communities from National Park Visitation, 2011. The report includes information for visitor spending at individual parks and also by state.

To learn more about national parks in Wyoming and how the National Park Service works with communities to preserve local history, conserve the environment, and provide local recreation opportunities, go to www.nps.gov/Wyoming


Paws2Help Pet Pantry Outreach, founded in Casper, Wyoming, will reach its first milestone with the distribution of approximately 930 pounds of dog and cat food to citizens in need within the community on Saturday, March 2, 2013, commencing with Natrona County Meals on Wheels clients. The Pet Pantry Outreach will hold its official launch and reception at 1:00 p.m. hosted by Greiner Buick/GMA/Cadillac at 6302 East 2nd Street, Casper, WY 82609. The Keynote Speaker, City of Casper Mayor Kenyne Schlager, will be followed by guest speakers from Paws2Help Foundation, Paws2Help Pet Pantry Outreach, Wyoming Food Bank of the Rockies, Altitude Veterinary Hospital and Natrona County Meals on Wheels.

It was after the tremendous outpouring of donated pet food for displaced pets of the Sheepherder Hill Fire in October 2012 that Paws2Help Foundation Founder & President Lisa Craft identified a lack of an in-place organization providing the fundamentals helping feed pets in crisis in Wyoming. That is when Craft came up with idea of forming Paws2Help Pet Pantry Outreach, an organization that provides donated pet food to pet owners served by Meals on Wheels or those seeking assistance through the Wyoming Food Bank of the Rockies who are burdened by tough economic times, a health crisis or some other kind of emergency. Pet Pantry Outreach’s mission is to help avoid the surrender of these animals to already overcrowded shelters, prevent them from being set loose to fend for themselves, or taken for euthanasia. Their purpose is to help pet owners keep their beloved pets, as pets are usually viewed as part of the family and often offer emotional support, which is essential to a person’s well being. Their mission also addresses the very real problem of Meals on Wheels recipients saving and feeding a portion of their meals to their beloved pets, because of financial stress or the inability to shop for pet food. We believe that this program will provide a quality pet food diet for the animals and keep the human food where it should be—with the humans who are owned by their beloved pets.

Pet Pantry Outreach, which has a Facebook page, made its online debut through word of mouth. Craft said the Facebook page generated interest from people wanting to volunteer, as well as calls from pet owners in need. Paws2Help Foundation, which initially organized the effort provides financial assistance to homeless animals in need of medical care, has been serving Natrona County since 2006 backs its mission with the motto that every animal, whenever we can, however we can, will get the help it deserves. Paws2Help Foundation is especially proud of the ground breaking efforts that this special program is helping many families cope with enormously difficult times. Ensuring that our community’s companion animals never go hungry is one of the most basic, and most critical, aspects of animal welfare. A person’s inability to feed their pet could be due to unexpected bills or expenses, with the situation being temporary. By offering pet food assistance we hope to lessen the burden of homeless pets on local animal shelters and rescue groups. We hope families and individuals are rest assured they’re able to keep their beloved pet during their hardship.

The multi-organization collaboration supporting Pet Pantry Outreach’s efforts, says volunteer Denise Wendinger, is what is most exciting – the program has the support needed to sustain itself in the future as well as to expand throughout Wyoming. Towards the goal of expanding throughout Wyoming the Pet Pantry Outreach plans to expand its advertising efforts to increase services to the community. We expect to attribute increased donations and dispersals to increased awareness of our services by having several local food banks voluntarily post our advertising on their premises. Paws2Help Pet Pantry Outreach is sponsored by Paws2Help Foundation and a collaboration by the Wyoming Food Bank of the Rockies, Altitude Veterinary Hospital, and Natrona County Meals on Wheels.

Financial donations are essential for us to continue to carry out our mission. We are one of a relatively small number of pet food assistance programs throughout the US and have seen the effects of the importance of our mission on the local community. If you are interested in helping the Pet Pantry Outreach or would like more information, please see the Pet Pantry Outreach’s website at paws2helpwy.org or contact the Program Coordinator, Melissa Fenster.

Families in need can visit distribution location: Wyoming Food Bank of the Rockies, 4967 Paige Street, Mills. Donations are tax deductible. If you are interested in helping Pet Pantry Outreach or would like more information, see the Pet Pantry Outreach’s website at “www.paws2helpwy.org”.

CONTACT: Melissa Fenster Program Coordinator of Paws2Help Pet Pantry Outreach  Tel. 307-298-0213    Email: petpantryoutreach@paws2helpwy.org

Paws2Help Foundation – a 501c3 non profit corporation helping provide financial means for homeless animals receive medical care. With our additional community service programs Paws2Help4Pits, Trap/Neuter/Release – Wyoming (Casper), and Paws2Help Pet Pantry Outreach brings the community together by providing a full circle solution since 2006.

Website: www.paws2helpwy.org   Email: paws2help@bresnan.net    Phone: (307) 215-3034

Altitude Veterinary Hospital – providing comprehensive and compassionate veterinary care and pet services year after year, making us the animal clinic of choice for pet owners in and around the Casper community since 1957. Altitude Veterinary Hospital offers the Casper community medical, surgical, and dental services, as well as emergency vet care. We also have in-house boarding and grooming facilities, making our veterinary facility a one stop shop for your pet’s health and medical needs

Website: www.popishvet.com  Phone: (307) 234-7333

Wyoming Food Bank of the Rockies – Fighting hunger, feeding hope serving all 23 counties of Wyoming with the help of our 200 member agencies. In the past year, just over 5 million pounds of food was distributed to more than 55,000 of our Wyoming neighbors. Wyoming Food Bank of the Rockies is Wyoming’s food bank. With more than 9,000 volunteer hours as the driving force behind the success of our programs, we are working to end hunger in Wyoming. Please consider becoming a part of the effort to end hunger in Wyoming by supporting WFBR: donate food, funds, or time. You CAN make a difference.

Website: www.foodbankrockies.org/wyomingfbr/wyoming-home/ Phone: (307) 265-2172

Natrona County Meals on Wheels – To assist the elderly and/or homebound people of Natrona County maintain their independence and integrity, as well as their physical and mental health in the dignity of their own homes and environments, Natrona County Meals On Wheels prepares and delivers nutritionally tailored meals via caring community volunteers.

Website: www.mealsonwheels.com Phone: (307) 265-8659

“Around the Bend” featuring Beth Gleason on display at SAGE Exhibit Gallery in Sheridan

“Around the Bend,” featuring art work by Beth Gleason, will be on display March 1-29th at the SAGE Exhibit Gallery, located in Sheridan College Main St., 171 N. Main, in Sheridan.  The Artist’s Reception will be Thursday, March 14th, from 5:30-7pm.  This reception is open to the public and refreshments will be served.

Hours for the SAGE Exhibit Gallery are 9:00 am-4:30 pm, Monday – Friday. 

 The SAGE Exhibit Gallery is operated by the Sheridan Artists’ Guild, Et al.  Become a member of SAGE for just $40 per year.  For more information, visit the Sagebrush Community Art Center, located in the Historic Train Depot at 201 E. 5th St. in Sheridan, or online at www.artinsheridan.com

The five finalists for the National Museum of Wildlife Art’s 2013 Bull-Bransom Award feature illustrators’ unique takes on wildlife, from tiny mouse to friendly moose.

Five Children’s Book Illustrators Named Finalists for Bull-Bransom Award 

National Museum of Wildlife Art to announce winner in Jackson Hole May 3

Jackson Hole, Wyoming – February 25, 2013 – Five children’s books have been selected as finalists in the 2013 Bull-Bransom Award competition:

Bear Has a Story to Tell, story by Philip C. Stead, illustrations by Erin E. Stead (Roaring Book Press, 2012)
More, story by I.C. Springman, illustrations by Brian Lies (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2012)
Nightsong, story by Ariel Berk, illustrations by Loren Long (Simon and Schuster Books for Young Readers, 2012)
Oh, No!, story by Candace Fleming, illustrations by Eric Rohmann (Schwartz & Wade Books, 2012)
This Moose Belongs to Me, story and illustrations by Oliver Jeffers (Philomel Books, 2012)

Illustrators of the five books are under consideration for the award, which is presented annually by the National Museum of Wildlife Art in Jackson Hole, Wyo., to recognize excellence in children’s book illustration with a focus on wildlife and nature.  The 2013 winner of the Bull-Bransom Award will be announced at the museum on May 3, 2013, as part of its Celebration of Young Artists event, with the winning illustrator invited to attend.

“The illustrations in the five finalist books for this year’s Bull-Bransom Award are beautiful, creative, and interesting,” says Bronwyn Minton, assistant curator of art for the museum and a member of the finalist selection panel. “This award continues to highlight talented illustrators of animals and humanity’s relationship with nature.”

Sylvia Long won the 2012 Bull-Bransom Award for her illustrations in A Butterfly Is Patient (Chronicle Books), written by Dianna Hutts Aston. The 2011 award went to Kevin Waldron for Tiny Little Fly (Walker Books). Both Long and Waldron are serving on this year’s judging committee to select the 2013 winner.

Created in the tradition of such prestigious children’s book illustrator honors as the Caldecott, Coretta Scott King and Hans Christian Andersen awards, the Bull-Bransom Award is presented in the form of a medal and $5,000 cash award.  The National Museum of Wildlife Art named the award for Charles Livingston Bull and Paul Bransom, among the first American artist-illustrators to specialize in wildlife subjects.

A member of the Museums West consortium and accredited by the American Association of Museums, the museum, officially designated the National Museum of Wildlife Art of the United States by an act of Congress in 2008, provides an exciting calendar of exhibitions from its permanent collection and changing exhibitions from around the globe.  A complete schedule of exhibitions and events is available online at www.wildlifeart.org.  The museum is also active on Facebook and on Twitter at @WildlifeArtJH.


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