Winter Newsletter| Schumacher Farm Park
February, 2018
Dear Friends of Schumacher Farm Park,

What a super year we've had at our historical property in 2107. Yet, the plans for 2018 are just as enticing and exciting. Other sections of this newsletter will highlight some of the 2017 happenings, but I would like to inform you of some of the happenings for 2018. 

The completion of the Center for Rural History is one of those major happenings. The bids came in quite acceptable and renovation of the interior building and surrounding grounds are scheduled to begin late February, with substantial completion anticipated by the fall. The completion of the Center will provide us with the space for both old and new programs, space for our cultural events, space for museum quality display of our artifacts and so much more!

We are so excited about offering an expanded educational summer camp that will focus on our era of the 1920s. This camp will be full days, held the week of June 25-29 and titled "Acres of Discovery and Adventure".  We hope to offer scholarships for those who might need assistance. More information will be posted to the website shortly.

Your involvement is so important for the future of Schumacher Farm Park. Active membership is the life-blood of the Park directly and indirectly. Thank you to all who have been faithful members. It shows you care about the historical park and want to be a part of this great facility. We are looking at the format of our membership and will update you in the next few months regarding some changes that the board feels will make it easier for you, our members. A lways keep in mind the diverse types of opportunities for volunteers here at the farm. It is up to you to decide in what way you would like to help out and how much time you have to contribute. Knowing your skills and how you would want to help creates a win-win opportunity for both you and the farm. Give us a call if you would like to investigate further.

Rosa Ropers, Friends of Schumacher Farm Park, Inc.
Accessioning Inventory Summary 2017
Hats off and a special thank you to our 2017 artifact and educational object donors:
  • Dwain Schroeder:  Magazines, chicken crate, household items, depression glass, wall table
  • Trel Gimber:  Hay fork 
  • Rosa Ropers:  1921 and 1927 Wis. license plates
  • Eugene Theis:  Wooden buggy jack
  • Sandra Sue Hartwig:  Snowball quilt
  • Molli Martin:  Horse fly net, bottle capper, horse bits
  • Patricia Leonard:  Farm implements
  • Carol Bleifield:  Pulleys, maul, fireplace tongs, bottle
  • Joseph Severa:  Anvil, crosscut saw, scythe, milk can
  • Dave Ripp:  Corn mill
  • Randy Lucey:  Plow
  • Leona Grubb:  Household items
  • Steve Keip:  Gaming wheel, ice tongs
  • Daniel Gosdeck:  Gambrel for hanging hogs, barn beam auger, paint mixer
  • Joseph Severa:  Cowbell
  • Carol Zellner:  Bench grinder
  • Ron and Jim Caldwell:  Sleigh (pending storage)
  • Lexi Kust:  Dishes
  • Lorna Everson:  Book on dating fabrics
  • Florence Smith:  Handmade wheel rugs


WI license plate from 1927.


--List  compiled and photo by  Barb Johanningmeier 
Volunteer Summary 2017
This infographic illustrates the very important role that volunteers play in maintaining and fostering farm programs. The members and volunteers of this organization are truly amazing and they know how to get things done!

Image created with

Furthermore, there were 120 people that attended the seven workshops and special events (ex: Holiday Teas) and 187 youth that visited the farm for 4th grade field trips or summer camp sessions. Stay tuned for more fun in 2018.

-Amy Jo Dusick, Park Administrator
Board Member Highlight - Jim Elvekrog

Photo courtesy of Jean Elvekrog
Like many of our board members, past and present, Jim Elvekrog has rural roots and grew up on a dairy farm in Stoughton, WI. He graduated with a Business Administration degree from UW-Whitewater, became a certified public accountant and worked at Great Lakes Higher Education Corporation for 33 years before retiring in 2014.

Since then, he has continued to stay busy by volunteering with multiple local organizations; St. John the Baptist Church, Friends of Waunakee Public Library, Friends of Children's Cooperative Book Center and Wisconsin Dance Council, to name just a few. 
He joined the Friends of Schumacher to return to the farm, reliving and reminiscing some of his youth by driving tractors and assisting with demonstration crops.  As the exiting Treasurer for Schumacher Friends Board (see side column), Jim has also served on the Finance Committee, Capital Campaign Committee, Sponsor Chair and is a frequent  volunteer at events along with his wife, Jean. 

He also visits the farm with his grand-daughters, Clare (4) and Bridget (2), where they check on the chickens, investigate new offerings from the Little Free Library and run around the farmyard.
Jim has provided a wealth of information, insight and steadfast financial guidance while serving on the board. He has graciously agreed to stay on as the accountant. We are very thankful for his contributions and so appreciate the continuing support. 
Woodland Restoration Efforts Continue
Staff from Dane County Parks and Schumacher lead restoration volunteer, Mike Shucha, will be on site in the coming month to continue clearing invasive shrubs and selective trees in our north woodland. The purpose of this activity is to increase the amount of sunlight reaching the ground, which will promote the germination and vigor of acorns and oak seedlings, as well as create a more suitable habitat for woodland wildflowers and grasses. The dense, aggressive shrub layer in this little wooded area makes native plant survival difficult to almost impossible. And studies have shown that native plants support a greater diversity and abundance of insects, which are the main diet of birds and other wildlife. (For a good read on this subject, pick up Bringing Nature Home by Doug Tallamy.)

In essence, more native plants means more wildlife and more wildflowers. Sounds good, right? It's a win-win for all of nature's community members.  Volunteers are welcome to help make progress on this project. Bring your own gloves and water, and dress in layers and sturdy boots. No restoration experience necessary. Sign up for dates below:

Friday, Feb. 23rd and Friday, March 2nd
9 am - 12 pm
*Arrive by 8:50 am for sign-in and instruction*
Click here for sign-up and more info.

"The creation of a thousand forests is in one acorn".
(Ralph Waldo Emerson)

Photo left: 
Shooting star 
( Dodecatheon meadia ), a plant commonly found in healthy oak savanna communities.

--Submitted by Amy Jo Dusick, Park Administrator 
In This Issue
Quick Links
Leadership Role Opportunity 
The nine-member Friends of Schumacher Farm Board will have two positions open on the board due to term expirations. Elections will be held at the Annual Meeting on March 15. The term for this position is 3 years.
  At this time, those with an interest in public relations or fulfilling the duties of a treasurer would be our major emphasis. That being said, anyone with a willingness to learn and devote time to the organization, a desire to help plan for the future of the site and/or historical knowledge would all be welcomed to apply. 
If you're not sure what the board position would require, please contact Nominating Chairs Rena Ripp or Dan Evans, or call the Park Office for further information.
Thank you for considering an opportunity to collaborate with an exciting organization where you can really make a difference.
Seasonal openings
We also have a  couple  LTE paid  positions to f ill for the upcoming year. Please take a look and see if one of these roles fits your interests, or forw ard to a friend.

Gardening Intern

Part-time, seasonal position to assist with  maintenance of heirloom garden and beds around the farmhouse.  Flexible schedule, ability to work with volunteers. Opportunity to learn about historical gardens.

Summer Camp Educator

Looking for an individual with elementary education or naturalist experience to assist with facilitation of 2018 summer camp (alongside the Park Administrator) during the week of June 25-29. Camp will serve children in grades 1-5. 

Email inquiries to the park office, attention o f the Park Administrator.
Junk to Treasure - Garage Sale Notice

It's that time of year when some of you consider downsizing, cleaning out those closets  and perhap s relocating. 
Would you donate any items that  you no longer want to the Schumacher Farm Garage Sale? We use the proceeds from the sale to classify, store and display artifacts.
The sale is will be held in conjunction with the Waunakee Community Garage Sale the early part of May. Items can be dropped off at the farm the end of April or 1st week in May. 

Please call the park office  for further information. (608) 849-4559.

--Rosa Ropers, President
Financial Updates

Click here for a synopsis of the 2017 year-end balances for the Schumacher General Fund, Capital Campaign fund and Endowment Fund. Thank you to ongoing membership renewals and to all who donated to the Capital Campaign. More detailed reports will be available at the Annual Meeting on March 15, 2018.

--Jim Elvekrog, Treasurer
Social & Work Farm Auxiliary Group

A group of interested people is starting at Schumacher Farm. This group would include social and work-related affairs and meet once a month or more, depending on group interests. The group would select preferable tasks as they promote the farm's everyday needs and activities. Meeting at the farm with a cup of tea in hand, they would share ideas and decide what project (s) they would undertake. Projects might include making phone calls, computer entry, mailings, decorating, refreshments for small events, sewing projects, and the list could go on and on. Choose your time commitment based on the project at hand. You can come for tea regardless!!

Please email me at: or call park office at 849-4559 if you would like to consider this opportunity.
Amazon Smile

Don't forget to consider the farm when making Valentine's Day purchases from Amazon. Select Friends of Schumacher Farm when signing into your Amazon account to shop or use this handy link:

All photos, except where credited to others, provided by Rona Neri-Bergmann of  Rona's Photography 
Upcoming Events:

Woodstove Cooking (with Chef Steve Keip) Sat., Feb. 17
Fresh rolls made in the wood stove.
       *Limited seating - register soon*

Seed Swap & Folk Stories  
 Tues., Feb. 27

Maple Sap Workshop  
 Sat., Mar. 10

Schumacher Farm Park | (608) 849-4559 | |