MADISON – Join the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources at the 2016 Wisconsin State Fair! The department will be offering activities and exhibits around the theme of “Join Us” in caring for Wisconsin’s valuable natural resources.
You can find the DNR Park in the southwest corner of the fairgrounds – next to the expo building and the cream puff building. The park is open 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily with a wealth of fun and educational opportunities for the young, and the young at heart.
- Take a turn at shooting a bow (for those 8 years and older). This is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily.
- Try casting a line for fish from 2 to 4 p.m. daily.
- Be reminded of Smokey Bear’s favorite message – “Only YOU can prevent wildfires” – at the Smokey Schoolhouse open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily.
- Swing by the Natural Heritage Conservation corner of the Natural Resources Park to see exhibits containing native animals and get your photo taken at the “Be a Biologist” photo booth. Pick up a free tote bag featuring our new eagle license plate and enter our free giveaway for one of 10 eagle license plates.
- Watch your kids build, play and imagine in the great outdoors as they go “camping” or “cook” you a burger in the Kids’ Camp open daily from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
- Learn about Wisconsin’s turtles from a park naturalist from 10 a.m. to noon daily.
- Test your knowledge of knot-tying, tracking and other outdoor skills from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. daily.
Learning opportunities also abound throughout the DNR Park. The wildlife exhibit in the north building of the park focuses on the 100th anniversary of the signing of the Migratory Bird Treaty, North America’s first attempt at stemming the tide of bird extinction. In the south building, the forestry exhibit showcases the importance of forest products to our daily lives and to the economic well-being of our state. Come see a sampling of the 5,000+ items made from trees.
If you need hunting or fishing licenses, or an admission sticker for state parks and forests, the customer service staff can take care of you just inside the entrance to the DNR Park. At other exhibits, adults may pick up an Endangered Resources tote bag, a 2016-2017 Wisconsin’s Great Lakes calendar, or enter to win a Midland All-Hazards Weather Radio (donated by the Wisconsin Division of Emergency Management).
In addition to the daily activities, other special events at the DNR Park during the fair include:
- A tree climbing demo by the Wisconsin Arborists Association on Saturday, August 6th from 10:30 a.m. to noon.
- A birthday visit from our favorite wildfire prevention icon on August 9th from noon to 3 p.m. as Smokey Bear celebrates his 72nd birthday.
- Visit with a Natural Resources Board member.
So if you want to feed your mind and spirit at the DNR Park before you head next door for a cream puff, or if you’re just in need of a shady place to sit and rest, we have you covered. Join us!