Naturalist Programs

Saturday, May 28th

1:30 pm — Invasive Plants Hike

Invasive alien plants are threatening our beloved natural beauty by outcompeting native plants for resources.

Join us on an easy hike to scout out the invasive plants found in our area, and learn how to fight back against them or use them for our benefit.

Meet at the Paul Lawrence Building

3:30 pm — 4:45 pm — Scavenger Hunt

Discover some of our park’s natural “treasures” by participating in our scavenger hunt. Come find us at the Peterson Shelter any time between 3:30 and 4:45 to pick up your checklist. It's a great way for kids to interact with nature and explore the outdoors. Those who complete the scavenger hunt will get a small prize.

Meet at the Peterson Shelter

7:30 pm — Nature Trivia Night

Bring your family or friends down to the Peterson Shelter to compete in our Nature Trivia Night. Test your knowledge about our region’s animals, plants, and other outdoors topics. The winning team will get a delicious prize!

Meet inside the Peterson Shelter

Renew or Begin Membership

The last two years have been tough for many of us, including the Friends of Wyalusing State Park. We look forward to better days in 2022. We are currently working on a large project that will restore interpretive displays to the Peterson Shelter. This collaborative project with the DNR is well underway and we anticipate installation of the displays this year. We also anticipate a return to more in-person events and programs. More...

In order to continue with these important projects, we need your support. Your membership is vital in our continuing efforts to help the park we all love. Please consider beginning or renewal of your membership by clicking on the Members/Donate link found at the top of this website

The Friends of Wyalusing State Park Inc. is a certified charitable non-profit organization.

In addition, we really need more active volunteers. Some of our programs have been reduced and further cuts will be needed unless we can recruit more help. Please take a moment to consider what you can do for your park. To help out please contact us at friendsofwyalusing@gmail.com or at the park mail address above or contact any board member. We can never have too many friends.


Your Friend,

Bruce L. Klang

President – Friends of Wyalusing State Park Inc.

Wyalusing State Park receives a donation of $23,000

By Ted Pennekamp

In June of 2021, Wyalusing State Park received a donation of $23,000 from Mark and Sandy Tibbits of the Verona, Wis. area, for various projects to benefit the park. That donation has been coming to fruition.

“This generous donation will impact thousands of users of the park,” said Wyalusing State Park Property Supervisor Chad Breuer, who noted that a bench has been installed in the Green Cloud Picnic Area and other projects are underway. “The new bench overlooks a beautiful view up the river,” he said.

In addition to the bench, Breuer said numerous signs are in the design stage and will be put up near the Petersen Shelter. He said they will be interpretive signs with photos and different themes which will be placed in late spring or early summer.

“The signs will point out key features in the park and will be kind of a map,” said Breuer. “The signs will give visitors information about various features and where they are located.”

Breuer said the signs will inform visitors and point the way towards such features as Sand Cave, Treasure Cave, and lookout points, as well as good places to find various birds and wildlife in the park.

Wyalusing is one of Mark and Sandy Tibbits’ favorite state parks, and their donation is also improving the park’s naturalist program. Breuer said Josh Kozelka became the naturalist last year, and not only were more programs added, but the season has also been lengthened. Park visitors can now experience naturalist programs from the beginning of May through October.

“We’ve been able to solidify the naturalist programing and take it to the next level,” said Breuer who noted that several programs will take place in the old nature center building which has become a multi-purpose room.

Breuer said the Tibbits’ donation will enhance the experience of all park visitors, which last summer was a whopping 250,000.

Breuer also said that people who would like a park sticker and find that the office is closed can self-register at the park entrance for a sticker. The park staff will mail the sticker to the customer, or the customer can call the office to find out when staff is available.

2021 Gold Seal award for 2021 for Best State Park System Property for Observing Butterflies

Friends of Wyalusing President Bruce Klang (left) and Property supervisor Chad Breuer accept the Friends of Wisconsin State Parks 2021 Gold Seal award for 2021 for Best State Park System Property for Observing Butterflies. Thank you FriendsWIParks.

Wyalusing state park

Bagley, WI

Wyalusing State Park is located over 500 feet above the confluence of the Mississippi and Wisconsin River. The park contains 2600 acres including stunning bluff views, river wetlands, bluff-top forests, and home to hundreds of species of plants and animals including 284 distinct bird species.

The logo for Wyalusing State Park and The Friends of Wyalusing State Park features the Kentucky Warbler and Chinquapin Oak tree.

Within the park boundaries, three threatened species: Cerulean and Kentucky Warbler and Acadian Flycatcher can be seen throughout the summer. All are more southern species that nest along the steep slopes of this park.

(more...)

During the spring and summer, the rolling song of the Kentucky Warbler can be heard throughout the forests. The Kentucky Warbler spends most of its time on the ground in moist, leafy woodlands in search of insects. Despite its bright colors, it can be surprisingly hard to see in the shadows of the deep forest interior.

The Kentucky Warbler winters in the tropics of central Mexico and the Yucatan Peninsula. A group of Kentucky Warblers is collectively known as a "Derby" of warblers, perhaps, because it is named for the state in which it was first discovered in 1811, by Alexander Wilson.

The Chinquapin Oak, a Wisconsin Special Concern plant. It is native to eastern and central North America, ranging from Vermont west to Wisconsin and south to South Carolina, western Florida, New Mexico, and northeastern Mexico from Coahuila south to Hidalgo. It is very rare in Wisconsin, barely reaching the southwestern corner of the state on a few very dry sites near the Mississippi River. Chinkapin oak is generally found on well-drained upland soils derived from limestone or where limestone outcrops occur. Occasionally it is found on well-drained limestone soils along streams.

Support FOW by joining us.

Friends of Wyalusing Endowment

The Friends of Wyalusing is the very first friends' group of a state park in Wisconsin to start an endowment fund for a state park. We started by depositing $1000 in an "acorn fund" with the Natural Resources Foundation of Wisconsin. The goal was to deposit $1,000 each year until the fund reached $10,000. at that point, we could either withdraw 5% of the fund or let it grow. (More...)

Friends of Wyalusing were THE FIRST Wisconsin Friends Group to start endowment fund...

(Make Endowment to "Friends of Wyalusing")

The Friends of Wyalusing State Park are very proud to be able to leave this legacy for future generations and hope you will support us in making our "acorn" grow into a mighty oak for the future.

When asked about the meaning of the Endowment Fund for the future, Kathy Paske, Secretary of Friends of Wyalusing said, "The park is a special place in many different respects--historical, geographical, diverse flora and fauna and spiritual to name a few. We want to make sure future Friends have the means to continue our conservation and education efforts."

Bruce Klang wrote, "For all of my adult life, I have worked for Wisconsin State Parks. I have seen first hand the impact these natural areas can have on park visitors of all backgrounds. Our family grew up camping and enjoying our parks and we hope that future families will have the same opportunities."

The Friends of Wyalusing State Park Endowment Fund is a permanent endowment that was created by the Friends of Wyalusing State Park to provide a perpetual source of funding to support the natural resources and educational, interpretive and recreational needs of Wyalusing State Park. The Endowment fund was begun in February of 2009. The endowment is managed by the Natural Resources Foundation of Wisconsin. Contributions to Fund are tax-deductible and can be made by sending a check to the Natural Resources Foundation of WI, Attn: Friends of Wyalusing State Park Endowment Fund, PO Box 2317, Madison, WI 53701 or by donating online at www.wisconservation.org.

If you love Wyalusing State Park and want to help protect its natural beauty and recreational opportunities for future generations to enjoy and explore, consider leaving a legacy gift behind by including the Friends of Wyalusing State Park Endowment Fund in your will. To leave a bequest to the Fund, simply incorporate the following language in your estate plans: “I give [describe the gift] to the Natural Resources Foundation of Wisconsin [federal tax id # 39-1572034], a nonprofit corporation organized and existing under the laws of Wisconsin and with a principal mailing address of PO Box 2317, Madison, WI 53701. This gift shall be designated to the Friends of Wyalusing State Park Endowment Fund.”

Make a tax deductible donation.

Star Splitters of Wyalusing

Join the StarSplitters of Wyalusing for one of our 2022 Public Park Programs! Come check out amazing views of the night sky, including the rings of Saturn, moons of Jupiter, nebulas, clusters, and plenty of other deep sky objects!

Programs start at 8:30pm with a presentation by one of our members and viewing to follow.

Please park in the paved parking lot by the Turkey Hollow trailheads and walk down the gravel path. We ask that you use red lights only and if you need bug spray, you apply it up the path and not around others.

Program dates this year are:

  • May 21st

  • June 18th

  • July 16th

  • August 20th

  • September 17th

  • October 29th

Donations are appreciated and go towards our insurance and electrical bills to ensure we can keep programs coming.

Shakespeare in the State Parks: Much Ado About Nothing

Saturday, June 18, 2022

Wyalusing State Park

State Park Vehicle permit reuired

Workshop at 5:30 p.m.

"Inside Shakespeare's Story: Much Ado About Nothing"

This engaging, interactive workshop serves as a way for kids and “fun adults” to get comfortable with the play, Shakespeare’s language and the way nature plays into his works. Participants take part in Shakespeare games and exercises culminating in performing a short scene. 45 minutes long.

Play at 7:00 p.m.

MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING

Two couples find their romance interrupted by revenge plotting, mistaken identities and merry madness in this fast-paced adaptation of Shakespeare's classic comedy. Six actors assume the roles of heartfelt Hero and Claudio, witty Beatrice and Benedick, brave Don Pedro, wise Leonato, villainous Don John and a host of other colorful characters. 75 minutes long.