Spring 2020 Newsletter| Schumacher Farm Park
Dear Friends of Schumacher Farm,

It's Spring of 2020, and although things are very different for all of us now because of the COVID-19 virus, our Park is still open for walking the trails, enjoying the great vistas, and getting some fresh air.

The start of spring also ushers in a new Friends board structure of 5 members, comprised of myself, Dennis Petzke, Gary Herzberg, Julie Waner and Mark Pelton. 

We remain hopeful the virus will soon pass and we can quickly resume our activities.

Although many State Parks have had to close, please spread the word of Schumacher being a County Park that is still open, and has so much to offer.  We hope to see you soon at one of our wonderful events, and in the meantime, just stop over to walk the trails and enjoy the great views.  

Dale Otradovec
President, Friends of Schumacher Farm 

Sponsor & Donor Addendum 
Please note a few acknowledgements that were inadvertently left out of our last newsletter. Much gratitude goes out to all our contributors and donors for helping us to meet our 2019 goals.

Additional 2019 artifact & educational donors: 
  • Steve Keip  -  Milk bottles
  • Tom & Bev Kennedy  -  Book
  • Kathy Van Sistine  -  Book & magazine
Additional sponsorships:
  • Sally Leong  - Capital Campaign 2019 Center for Rural History office furnishings, Heritage Fest 2019 and Valentine's Soiree 2020 sponsor
Sponsor forms for 2020 are available through the website or in the park office, once we reopen.
Visiting the Parks during COVID-19
Remember that Schumacher Farm Park and all of the Dane County Parks remain open for visitors to use trails and grounds. Park buildings and public restrooms are closed until further notice to reduce visitor exposure to COVID-19 virus.  

Please stay safe by following social distancing protocols, not touching shared surfaces such as gates/tables/benches, and bringing hand sanitizer or wipes. Visitors are also encouraged  to practice responsible stewardship by bringing a bag and gloves to pick up any trash they find along the way.
Other ways to engage with your Dane County Parks system this spring: 
  • Tag Us Challenge
Visitors are encourage to tag #danecountyparks in their photos as they visit our park properties. T ake a photo of your adventures and tag us on Facebook or Instagram for a chance to win a $50 Dane County Parks Certificate! Each week has a theme and each week participants are entered to win. This week's theme is 'New Growth' and your photo must be entered by April 20th to be included in the drawing.
  • BINGO Challenge
Park visitors can print DCP BINGO sheets and take them with them to our parks. When completed, they can mail them to the Lussier Heritage Center for a chance to win prizes. 
  • Conservation Corner Videos
Virtual tours and talks by parks staff coming in a few weeks as new life starts to grow in our park. Watch our Facebook and YouTube pages and share them! 

For more info on these activities and more, go to Dane County Parks Explore Page.

From all of us at Schumacher Farm Park, we send our best to all and look forward to getting back on track in the near future. Until then, take advantage of this pause to visit the park, get some respite, reconnect with nature and enjoy the outdoors.

-Amy Jo Dusick, Park Administrator
New Features on Farm Park Grounds
If you stop out to stroll the trails, you may notice several changes on the farmyard grounds happening this spring. 

In the heirloom garden, several raised beds are in the process of being installed, which will make tending and accessing the garden areas easier for volunteers, and promote an overall tidier appearance. With the help of Dane County Parks staff to deliver topsoil, we hope to have the beds ready by mid-May for planting. And take notice the garlic that was planted last fall has sprouted in the last few weeks of nice weather and is growing steadily. Heirloom garden volunteers are welcome to help maintain this demonstration garden. Inquire via email if interested.

One of six locations marked for the installation of gravel pads in the farmyard to exhibit antique farm equipment.

Under the guidance of Dennis Petzke and the Collections Committee, there will be six square gravel pads placed throughout the farmyard area, each highlighting a piece of antique farm equipment. These self-guided exhibits will have posted signage to describe the type of equipment and how it was used during the early 1900's farming history. 

Visit often to see the progress!
Former Board Member Highlight - Bruce Hosely
Bruce worked at the Wisconsin Legislative Reference Bureau, where he was editor of state statues and administrative code. During his one-year term on the Friends board in 2019, he used this background to provide useful guidance on legal matters and organizational structure. 

Photo courtesy: Rosemarie Hodulik
Like many of our board  members, he also has farm-motivated pursuits. With a green thumb and interest in native woodland ecosystem restoration, he made noticeable impacts on the landscape. Bruce re-established the spring ephemeral trail in the woodland corridor that had become overgrown. Next time you're at the farm park, take a saunter along the trail behind the farmhouse to get a closer look at the first wildflowers of spring. He also helped maintain and weed the new pollinator demonstration garden during it's first and most important year. Bruce and his wife, Rosemarie, are active volunteers at many events and educational programs.

Thank you, Bruce for your ongoing support and insight!
Historical wisdom for spring cleaning

A bit of rural traditional folklore from the scrapbook of Evaline, Marcella's mother, who saved clippings from a newspaper column called 'Do you Know That'. These clippings were likely from the early 1900's and this one in particular is quite timely for the wet and muddy springtime season.

"Mud stains on dark clothes should first be brushed and then rubbed with a freshly cut raw potato. This will remove any trace of stain."

In This Issue
Quick Links
Artifact Corner
While we're all trying to make the most of what we have on hand during this time, here is a bit of historical perspective from the 1930's. This is an table excerpt from Marcella's book, Mama, Papa and Me entitled "What We Have and They Didn't". Some text omitted or abbreviated for space.

Women did not have many of the labor saving gadgets that they have today. For example:

What We Have Now What Mother Used Then
Liquid soap Shaved, good old-fashioned Fels Naptha
Non stick cooking spray Hog rind, saved from butchering, or lard
Scouring pads Very fine ashes from the kitchen
Sprays to wax or polish furniture A goose wing and mixture of linseed, oil, or vinegar
Plastic scrapers Mother wiped out pans with the broad side of her forefinger
Window cleaner Panes were
washed with vinegar and polished with newspaper

Source: Schumacher Pendall, Marcella.  Mama, Papa and Me. 1993. Published by Marcella Schumacher Pendall.
Spring Blooming Bingo
Print up this activity sheet called BloomingBingo from Dane County Parks, grab a field identification book and bring them out to Schumacher Farm Park to scout for spring wild-flowers. We have all but four of them on the list!  Check along the spring woodland trail by the farm house  and Schumacher Prairie. Submit your bingo card to the address on the sheet to be entered for prizes.
Large-flowered trillium that blooms along the woodland trail behind the farmhouse.
Baby goats: Need I say more?
Although the spring Cheesemaking Workshop with Laura Purdy has been postponed, you can still catch up with Laura on her farm during the birthing of their baby goats.
Goat from Heritage Fest, photo by Rona Neri.

Laura is sharing their story via posts on the Facebook page Half Pint Homestead - Kinder Goats  or Instagram @halfpintkinders. Nothing says spring like baby animals, and these little fellas are wearing sweaters!
Spring Events Notice
In observance of the governor's COVID-19 orders, all Schumacher Farm Park programs and events originally scheduled in April and May have been cancelled or postponed. We will  re-evaluate how to proceed at the end of April, based on the current status of the pandemic and recommendations from Village of Waunakee and Dane County Parks.

We will provide program information updates on our website and Facebook page as we navigate through these decisions. Please don't hesitate to contact us with questions or concerns. The office is closed, so email is the best way to get a hold of us.
Furthermore, to ensure the safety and well-being of volunteers, our Chicken Wrangler Program and arrival of the chickens this spring is on hold until further notice. We do anticipate getting the brood to the farm by sometime this summer. For now, try out this joke for amusement. Did you hear about the hen who could only lay eggs in the winter? She was no spring chicken.  

All photos, except where credited to others, provided by 
Rona Neri-Bergmann of 

Schumacher Farm Park | (608) 849-4559 | schumacherfarm@gmail.com |