The Association of Retired Conservationists was organized by a group of retirees from the Wisconsin Conservation Department in the 1960's. By the mid-1970's, the WCD had been combined with the Department of Resource Development to form the Department of Natural Resources, and the retirees group had grown significantly, met monthly for lunch and began inviting speakers to address the group on issues of interest to the members. Today, the organization has more than two hundred members.

website contact:

Next Meeting
August 7
Doolittles Woodfire Grill
4323 East Towne Mall, Madison
11:00am Social Hour
12:30pm Lunch

Hi ARC people!

I’ve got a few news items from DNR to share:

Last minute reminder: On June 1 and 2 – THIS WEEKEND -- Wisconsin residents and visitors can fish for free, hike or bike state trails for free, enjoy free admission to state parks and forests and ride public ATV trails for free.

* No fishing license is needed to fish any waters. This includes inland trout and Great Lakes trout and salmon fishing, which normally would require a trout stamp in addition to a license. Fishing rules such as limits on the size and species of fish that can be kept do apply, however.

* All state trail pass fees on all DNR-owned state trails are waived and cooperatively-run state trails also may waive fees.

* All state park vehicle admission sticker fees on all DNR-owned properties are waived.

* ATV registration and trail pass fees are waived.

Free fishing equipment is available for loan at more than 50 state parks, DNR offices, and partner organizations, and free fishing clinics are scheduled at many state parks and popular waters, including Harrington Beach and High Cliff state parks and the Northern Unit of the Kettle Moraine State Forest.

Grab the grandkids and go!

DNR reboots podcasts: You can get the latest information about outdoor recreation in Wisconsin in the first episode of the Department of Natural Resources' relaunch of the agency's podcast: Wild Wisconsin - Off the Record.

The first episode launched May 20 and features DNR secretary-designee Preston Cole, Tourism secretary-designee Sara Meaney and Ben Bergey, DNR Parks and Recreation bureau director, with a focus on all things travel and outdoor recreation in Wisconsin.

Coming up, there will be episodes on keeping wildlife wild, fishing for dinner, cougars in Wisconsin, new ways to enjoy our state parks and much more.

To listen and subscribe to Wild Wisconsin - Off the Record on iTunes, Spotify, PodBean or Stitcher, find links by searching the DNR website,, for "connect."

Repairs in storm ravaged state parks, forests and trails: Many repairs have been made to fix damage from a series of storms and flooding events that hit DNR properties last summer. Some severely damaged properties will still have some closed areas while major repairs continue.

Between June and September last year, 32 state properties in 21 counties sustained nearly $8 million in damage due to rain, flooding and tornado events. Heavy rains across northwestern Wisconsin in June and again in August caused significant damage at Amnicon Falls and Pattison state parks, including the washing out of Highway 35 above the dam at Pattison, which drained Interfalls Lake.

Also in late August, heavy rains and storms caused the temporary closure of Wildcat Mountain State Park in Vernon County and approximately half of the Long Lake campground in the Northern Unit of the Kettle Moraine State Forest in Fond du Lac County, where the National Weather Service confirmed a tornado had touched down.

A number of state trails also suffered major washouts, closing sections of trails in both northern and southern Wisconsin—some still needing repairs. Check the DNR website for current condition updates as sections of trails will be opening as they are repaired throughout the season. Go to,  "Explore Outdoors," for a searchable database of DNR properties and activities. For more about state parks, trails, forests and recreation areas search "Parks," or "Find a Park."

Picnic alert: We will be starting signups soon for the ARC Picnic on July 10 at Lakeview Park. Stay tuned to your email. Remember, ALL DNR retirees and their guests are welcome at the picnic so spread the word! Meanwhile, my mouth is already watering for a Gritty Burger.  Been a while since I’ve had one.  See you Wednesday, June 5, Nitty Gritty Restaurant, 1021 N. Gammon Rd., Stonefield Glen Shopping Center, Middleton! Hey, if June 5 is your birthday, you get a free beer.