Wolf Lake’s Winter Festival Coming Up
December 26, 2014 — Environmentalist Lee Botts and film producer Pat Wisniewski will discuss their joint venture to document the environmental history of Northwest Indiana on Saturday, January 17 at the 14th annual Winter Wonderland at Wolf Lake festival.
The two will show a segment of the film under production, Shifting Sands, at 9:30 a.m. at the Environmental Education Center, 2405 Calumet Avenue, Hammond. The festival, free to the public, is sponsored by the Association for the Wolf Lake Initiative (AWLI).
Known primarily for her work related to conservation and restoration of the Great Lakes, Botts has founded two successful non-profit organizations. In 1970 she founded the Lake Michigan Federation, the first independent citizens’ organization dedicated to the protection and preservation of a specific Great Lake. It is now known as the Alliance for the Great Lakes.
In 1997, she founded the Indiana Dunes Environmental Learning Center, which offers sleepover environmental education programs for grade-school students and teachers. It’s at the Camp Goodfellow site which was a summer camp for US Steel employees decades earlier.
Botts is co-author of the landmark Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement.
Wisnieski, owner of For Goodness Sake Productions, is a former steelworker in South Chicago. She returned to school after closure of the plant to begin a second career in film. She assisted in the production of Everglades of the North, a film about the Kankakee Marsh, before her current work with Shifting Sands. Her production team also includes Rana Segal, Paul Nelson, Tom Desch and Matthew Keene.
Their presentation will precede a talk by Les Marszalek on retrieving Native American artifacts.
Dr. Young Choi of Purdue University Calumet will conduct a birding tour of Wolf Lake’s north channel.
The afternoon session shifts to Chicago at the William Powers State Fish & Wildlife Area, 12949 S. Avenue O. Author Cynthia Ogorek will talk about the history of the Calumet River and its connection to the Chicago neighborhood of Hegewisch. This will be followed by a discussion of Wolf Lake history.
Besides the birding tour, outside activities will include cross-country skiing and skating, weather permitting.
Poster contest winners will be honored when the festival begins at 9 a.m.
AWLI is a bi-state organization and land trust that seeks to protect and enhance the Wolf Lake watershed. It is located at Calumet College of St. Joseph, 2400 New York Avenue, Whiting, IN.