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Narratives Worth Exploring

Cycling, Film preview, Outdoor Recreation / 19.03.2010

Fans of the documentary “Take a Seat” by adventure filmmaker Dominic Gill will be happy to hear that the biking Britain has a new project in the works. On the heels of his trans-continental trek from Alaska to Argentina, Dom is now planning to take a 74-year-old California man on a tandem bike ride across the United States.

In 2006 Ernie Greenwald was retired and living quietly in the town of Lompoc. Six months to the day that his wife passed away, Ernie met Dom. And inspired by the spirit of adventure the two peddled 60 miles together on Dom’s tandem bike to Santa Barbara. Now despite suffering from Lymphocytic Leukemia Ernie is heading out on a grand journey to explore his country. Riding a custom tandem/upright/recumbent hybrid bike Dom and Ernie plan to peddle coast to coast in search of the American Dream.
Capital Region Business Journal, Gardening, Madison, Magazines / 17.03.2010

Jesse Kurzicki is one of those rare kids who loves eating his vegetables, and not just the peas and carrots his mom piles on his supper plate. The 7th grader enjoys garden produce he grows himself. “I grew up with gardens,” Kurzicki said. “Strawberry gardens my mom loves so much. And my dad who lives up north has a garden with corn and beans and carrots. All the green that comes from them, I think they’re great!” At 12 years-old Kurzicki is a member of the Sherman Middle School garden club. This after school program provides a small plot of land for the cultivation of vegetables. There students can grow everything from tomatoes to broccoli to cucumbers. But in addition to offering a fun outdoor activity, the garden club also helps young people acquire a taste and an appreciation for fresh nutritious food.
Charitable Giving, Madison, philanthropy / 16.03.2010

First you fill out the paperwork. Two quick swabs to inside of each cheek and you’re done. That’s easy enough. Providing this tiny tissue sample is all it takes to register for the national bone marrow donor database. Charitable contributions and commitments such as this can become part of leading a balanced active lifestyle. “It only takes 10 minutes save a life,” passersby heard us say as we handed them a flier. Throngs of people streamed past our booth near the entrance to Canoecopia. We had a prime spot to...

Film Review, Fun Film Friday, Video / 12.03.2010

This poignant short film by Sean Mullens is a portrait of humanity’s struggle toward our inherent excellence. One man’s daily challenge to overcome his disability and indulge a desire for ecstatic play models for the rest of us the joy that can be achieved in perseverance. “You can transcend,” the film’s star Michael says. “You can get to a place where you’re sort of free, to be able to dance, to be able to be fluid, to be able to be so in the moment, to just be natural…to be what you were meant to be.”
Capital Region Business Journal, Charitable Giving, Madison, Magazines / 11.03.2010

[caption id="attachment_2859" align="aligncenter" width="480" caption="Keep Wisconsin Warm executive director Tim Bruer"][/caption]

Wisconsin’s most vulnerable residents stave off the chill through the cold winter months with the assistance of Schoep’s Ice Cream.

“I suppose someone out in California might think that sounds a little funny,” said Alan Thomsen, Schoep’s vice president of national sales. “But here in Wisconsin there are people in their homes trying to stay warm. With all the stories out there we know that people need some help.” Throughout the Capital Region and across Wisconsin frigid temperatures well below freezing each year put at risk a growing number of the elderly, the disabled and families with young children. A state-wide program called the Keep Wisconsin Warm Fund provides low income households with small financial grants to pay rising heating costs as the economy slowly recovers.  Local companies like Schoep’s are actively involved in a number of fundraising initiatives such as an ice cream social that aims to give area residents a little boost with the weather turns cold. “This is our first year helping out,” Thompsen said. “We handed out about 12,000 dishes of ice cream. At $3 to $5 apiece we were able to make a good contribution.” Not to be outdone the frozen custard franchise Culver’s has also made sizeable donations to KWWF. Along with more 7,000 small to large businesses such as Park Bank, CUNA Mutual Group, Rayovac, The Gialamas Company and Glowac Harris, many local institutions provide funds to help the less fortunate manage their home heating needs. City of Madison Common Council president and KWWF spokesman Tim Bruer said keeping poor families safe and warm through the winter is an easy cause to support.
Assignment Earth, Environmental Protection, This American Land, Video / 10.03.2010

For 10 years, the Ski Area Citizens Coalition has published its ski area environmental report card, a rating system that grades ski resports across the west according to their impact on the natural environment. Paul Joyce, a conservation assoicate at the environmental protection group Colorado Wild, says a ski resort’s grade depends on how well it plays in its own backyard. “When a ski area expands into the back country, expands into habitat, affects wildlife, affects vegetation, thereby affecting water, watersheds, water quality,” Joyce said, “those things weigh really heavy with the report card.” Resorts owned by the Aspen Skiing Company dominate the highest rated resorts in the west. “People listen to us in part because we’re an interesting news story, but also because we’re business people.,” Auden Schendler, environmental affairs director at Aspen Skiing. “Ultimately we’re not environmentalists. We’re business people. And we see climate changes as an existential threat to business. In this edition of This American Land we explore ski resorts that employ environmentally sustainable practices to protect natural areas that surround their slopes.