As like-minded conservationists -- anglers, hunters, and nature lovers of all walks of life, the Brown County Chapter works locally to promote our conservation mission. Our members' interests span the spectrum of outdoor recreation and conservation activities, ranging from angling and birding to stream monitoring, wildlife photography, hiking and hunting. But we all share one major goal: to protect and advocate for America's rich resources, ensuring a high quality of life for all people, now and in the future.
Our Chapter's primary interests are focused on local clean water issues, including watershed and wetlands protection. We advocate sustainable living and encourage outdoor users to protect our valuable and natural resources while they continue to enjoy the great outdoors. The Chapter also strives to reconnect children with nature so as to develop an appreciation for their natural surroundings with the hope to continue the legacy of the Izaak Walton League.
Past Accomplishments of the Brown County Chapter
Our members have been active in the Izaak Walton League of America and community policy for over 90 years. The Chapter has had several accomplishments over that span:
- The Brown County Chapter was one of the first chapters to join the national league in the 1920s. The Brown County Chapter was chartered in 1925.
- In 1948-49, the Brown County Chapter initiated Fox River pollution hearings leading to the formation of the Wisconsin State Committee on Water Pollution.
- The Chapter supported hearings in Oconto against mill effluent pollution to the Oconto River. This resulted in clean-up of the flowage above the Stiles dam.
- Former state and Brown County Chapter president, Virgil Muench, filed the Nameakago suit which established, through a ruling of the Wisconsin Supreme Court, the interest of all citizens in our public waters.
- Brought and prosecuted an administrative complaint against the Green Bay Metropolitan Sewerage District for which action in part resulted in the expansion of the district facilities to their current capacity.
- Led the clean-up of the Fox River by instituting legislation to make the paper mills take responsibility for pollution control.
- The Chapter raised sufficient funds so as to allow it to acquire 100+ acres of green space, including wetlands, on the East River to preserve as a natural area, which green space was deeded to the Village of Bellevue. The nature preserve is known as Osprey Point, as well as the East River Conservancy Project.
Ongoing Ike Projects in and around Brown County
The Chapter has several on-going conservation projects in Brown County, including but not limited to:
- Work on a Master Plan at Osprey Point that includes a natural playground, bee and butterfly maze garden and youth archery range. While work continues on the natural playground, sensory garden and bee and butterfly maze garden, the archery range is completed and fully operational. We run a youth archery program on Wednesday nights throughout the summer.
- Protector of 40 acres adjoining the Brown County Reforestation Camp, near the NEW Zoo.
- Provides annual college scholarships from the Past President Scholarship Fund for students interested in pursuing a degree in environmental sciences or related fields.
- Sponsors an annual handicapped fishing day for students from Syble Hopp School, along with other fishing outings for seniors and the physically challenged.
- Sponsor handicapped fisheries throughout the summer for residents of area assisted living centers and nursing homes.
- Sponsors a trout boil and auction at Osprey Point which is the Chapter's primary annual fundraiser.
- The Chapter also maintains Abbey Pond on Riverside Drive in De Pere. The Abbey Pond is a natural habitat for migratory ducks and geese.
- Protects and maintains a 100-acre nature preserve, Osprey Point, in the Village of Bellevue. Osprey Point includes walking trails, ponds, prairie grasslands, and a shelter.
- Provides environmental education opportunities to children in the community, including Family Adventures in Nature (FAN) Club, the Chapter's Annual Teddy Bear Hunt and Family Conservation Day.
- Protects and maintains a 6-acre parcel at the corner of Allouez Avenue and Bellevue Street (across from the Rite Place); working with the County on a pike restoration project for 2016.
- Provides opportunities for families to spend time outdoors and reconnect with nature.
Board meetings are held the second Tuesday of each month at 6:30 p.m. The Chapter also holds membership meetings throughout the year wherein different speakers are brought in to discuss conservation topics of interest to its members. The general public is encouraged to attend. Please check Calendar for meeting locations.
Location of Osprey Point
Osprey Point is located on Highway GV (3320 Monroe Road, midway between Hwy 172 and Hwy G).