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So far The Ozark Society has created 32 blog entries.
6 09, 2022

Upcoming Election of Ozark Society Officers

By |2022-09-06T14:40:29-05:00September 6th, 2022|Categories: Fall 2022, Pack & Paddle|Tags: |

By Lucas Parsch, Ozark Society Vice President The fall meeting of the Ozark Society will take place at Lake Claiborne State Park in northwest Louisiana over the weekend (Fri-Sun) of October 21-23, 2022.  One important order of business at the membership meeting on October 22 will be the election of officers to the Ozark Society Board of Directors.  Positions up for election to a two-year term are:  President, Vice-President, Treasurer, Secretary, Conservation Chair, Education Chair, Community Engagement Chair, Communications/Membership Chair-Editor, and Archival Chair.  In addition, State Directors (i.e., board members at-large) for Arkansas, Louisiana, and Missouri will also be elected.  The Nominations Committee is seeking nominees and/or volunteers who are interested in serving on the Board of Directors by running for one of these important Ozark Society positions.  Interested persons should contact one of the following nominating committee members for more information: Alice Andrews:  alice209ok.@yahoo.com or 501-912-4597 Luke Parsch:  lparsch@uark.edu or 479-442-3817 Sandy Roerig:  sandra.roerig@lsuhs.edu or 318-686-9481 Brian Thompson: thompsonadd@gmail.com or 479-879-0688 A listing of current 2020-22 Ozark Society Board members can be found at https://www.ozarksociety.net/about-us/officers/   Duties of officers can be found in the Ozark Society Bylaws at http://www.ozarksociety.net/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/os-bylaws-9nov2019.pdf

6 09, 2022

Ozark Society Buffalo River Float June 13-18, 2022

By |2022-09-06T14:38:11-05:00September 6th, 2022|Categories: Fall 2022, Pack & Paddle|Tags: |

By Marian Howard Ozark Society Buffalo River 50th Anniversary Float - June 13-18, 2022. This year’s Ozark Society Buffalo River Trip was a very special one. Not only was it the 50th Anniversary of the Buffalo River being designated as America’s first National River but it consisted of two groups of like-minded individuals who shared a deep love for the outdoors in general and the Buffalo River in particular. The two groups - Cate’s group and Stewart’s group - got along great and shared equally in all of the chores that are necessary to make a week-long river trip successful. Cate’s group consisted of Cate Davis Handley, Ken Leonard, Eric Bernheisel, JB Clark, Steve Harms, Becky Hartman, Hank Hartman, Steve Heye, Beth Keck, Jack Land, Marsha Land, Richard Owings, Norma Senyard, Peggy Bulla and Marian Howard. Cate’s Group Stewart’s group consisted of Rob Stine, Richard McFadden, Stewart, Ross, Ali, Willa, and Brady Noland, Larry, Carolyn, Andrew, Gavin, and Amelia Dillard, Laura Timby, Alice Andrews, John Slater, Pam and Mason Ellwood, Elizabeth Plummer, Jennifer McKinney, David Peterson and Roy Jutze. Seven of us were present at the 25th Anniversary float back in 1997 - Stewart Noland, Ross Noland, [...]

6 09, 2022

Ozark Society Fall Meeting October 21st-23rd

By |2022-09-06T14:32:16-05:00September 6th, 2022|Categories: Fall 2022, Pack & Paddle|Tags: |

By Marian Howard and Sandy Roerig Now is the time to make plans to attend the Fall General Membership Meeting that will be held in-person this year.  YEA! The Bayou Chapter will host this get-together for all Ozark Society members at beautiful Lake Claiborne State Park, near Homer, Louisiana.  This is the same location as the 2018 Fall Meeting and we’re hoping that many members show up to enjoy fun activities and fellowship with other Ozark Society members. Attendance by all Ozark Society members is encouraged - this is the meeting where officers are elected for the next two years.  Some key officers are retiring this year, so putting new officers in place will allow the Ozark Society to thrive into the future.  Plus, it’s a chance to meet members in other chapters and renew longtime friendships with chapter members who you don’t see very often.  There will be a $10 per person registration fee which will include a Saturday morning ham, egg and biscuit breakfast and a commemorative bandana. Accommodations: The park offers 10 glamping sites – which are tents already set up on wooden platforms, plus 10 premium campsites, 67 improved campsites, 2 unimproved campsites and a [...]

6 09, 2022

My Personal Encounter with the Asa Gray Disjunct

By |2022-09-06T14:28:27-05:00September 6th, 2022|Categories: Fall 2022, Pack & Paddle|Tags: |

By Fred Paillet, Ozark Society Education Chair The title of this piece prompts several questions.  Who was Asa Gray, what is a disjunct, and why does he have one named after him?  How did I manage to encounter his disjunct and what made it so personal?  It all goes back to my earliest outdoor experiences in the woods of rural Connecticut.  I grew up in a family that spent a lot of time in the outdoors fishing, hunting and just plain enjoying the scenery.  When not actively out there, we were usually reading about the natural world in general, and especially the great north woods where my French-Canadian ancestors came from.  Those interests eventually blossomed into a career as a geoscientist with the expectation that such a life would lead me to a career of outdoor adventure.  And, so it did.  I was delighted to have a job based out of Colorado with the Rocky Mountains at my doorstep, with projects all over the mountain west and even in Hawaii.  But something was missing. This was apparent as I became used to the rather monotonous conifer forests of the American west and northern Canada.  Ranks of Engelmann spruce or [...]

6 09, 2022

Saving Energy to Help Prevent Climate Crisis

By |2022-09-06T14:24:34-05:00September 6th, 2022|Categories: Fall 2022, Pack & Paddle|Tags: |

By Dina Nash, Climate Committee Saving energy involves cutting back on big-ticket items. For most people, we’re talking about house and office, yard, car, food, appliances, errands and investment choices. Start by making the decision to change your lifestyle. Then sign up for a free energy audit from your gas and electric utilities. The audits will tell you what needs to be fixed, tightened, insulated better or lighted (i.e., with LED bulbs). Then decide which of the following energy-saving tips to implement. You’ll save money, reduce emissions and set an example for your children and grandchildren. Yards - Reduce the square footage that is in grass or needs constant tending. Landscape cloth with mulch or gravel or sand on top can be attractive and functional for reducing water, tillage, pesticides, mowing and other labor. Or turn your lawn into a pollinator garden. Mow with an electric mower to reduce emissions. Houses - Live in the smallest house you can stand to live in or seal off unused spaces after consulting with your HVAC experts. Many people, especially retired ones, have half a house they don't use except when a guest comes about six days a year. Heating and cooling it [...]

6 09, 2022

In Memoriam

By |2022-09-06T14:19:59-05:00September 6th, 2022|Categories: Fall 2022, Pack & Paddle|Tags: |

For Judy Emily Woltjen Judy Emily Woltjen was born on May 18, 1939, in St Louis, Missouri, and passed on June 1, 2022 in Fayetteville, Arkansas. After graduating from Ferguson High School in Missouri, Judy attended nursing school and worked as a registered nurse for over 40 years.  In 1957, she met a young second lieutenant in the Army that recently graduated from engineering school named Duane Woltjen. They started their journey together of deep love and adventure which included cave exploring, whitewater racing, canoeing, hiking, trail construction and conservation activism. Judy and Duane were only one week away from their 63rd anniversary upon her passing. In 1969, as a young mother, Judy testified at a United States Senate hearing on clean air. Her testimony was part of a movement that led to the landmark legislation now known as the Clean Air Act of 1970.   This was just the beginning of Judy dedicating much of her life to conservation and preserving nature for all to enjoy. She lived a remarkable and exemplary life of faith, love, hiking, canoeing, and dedication to conservation. Judy, along with her husband and countless others, worked on preserving the rivers of Missouri and Arkansas. They also led [...]

6 09, 2022

The Ozark Society Youth Grants for 2022-2023

By |2022-09-06T14:17:08-05:00September 6th, 2022|Categories: Fall 2022, Pack & Paddle|Tags: |

By Roslyn Imrie, OSF Youth Grants Chair The Ozark Society Foundation (OSF) is soliciting proposals for a Youth Engagement Grant to local organizations that are working with students in environmental and conservation efforts.  Grants will go to organizations who encourage students to engage environmental awareness and conservation in the Ozark and/or Ouachita region. Successful projects range between $1000 and $3000 depending on the scope and needs of the project. Funds may be combined with other sources of funds to increase the size / impact of the project. To apply you must be affiliated with a 501c3 nonprofit or school located in Arkansas, Oklahoma, Missouri, or the Caddo, Bossier, Webster and Claiborne parishes of Louisiana. These funds may not be used for administrative operating expenses, including but not limited to postage, billing, computer software or systems, rentals, paper goods, food/beverages, or social functions. Direct costs, such as paying teaching staff, is permitted only for nonprofits. Projects should actively engage students in conservation efforts that have tangible outcomes. Hands-on learning, service learning, community projects, and advocacy is encouraged while listening to lectures or simply being taken outdoors is not what we will be looking for. Grant Timeline: Applications open Monday August 29, [...]

6 09, 2022

Board Recommends Liability Waivers

By |2022-09-06T14:14:14-05:00September 6th, 2022|Categories: Fall 2022, Pack & Paddle|Tags: |

By David Peterson, Ozark Society President At the summer meeting, the Ozark Society Board of Directors passed a recommendation that the Ozark Society and its chapters implement the signing of liability waivers at all hiking and paddling events. These risk and liability waivers generally have three parts: The participant attests that they are in good physical health and capable of participating in the hiking or paddling event, and that they understand that they may be exposed to a variety of hazards and risks, foreseen or not foreseen, that are inherent to the event, and that they have read and understood information made available by the organizers. They acknowledge that the event is at the discretion of the event organizer who can exclude those deemed unable to properly participate, set age limits, deny pets, and determine group size. Participants assume personal responsibility for all risks associated with travel to and from an event. A participant who leaves early during an event or continues after the conclusion assumes all risks in the decision with no liability against the Ozark Society. And finally they agree to waive, discharge claims, and release from liability the Ozark Society, its agents, assistants and other leaders [...]

25 05, 2022

Climate Change and the Ozark Society

By |2022-05-25T16:29:09-05:00May 25th, 2022|Categories: Pack & Paddle, Summer 2022|Tags: |

By Jennifer Ailor, Climate Committee Chair Climate change is the existential threat of our times. Where is it, you may ask. Melting glaciers, devastating hurricanes and tornadoes, raging forest fires, drought, 130-degree temperatures in Pakistan and India, massive flooding, warming ocean waters and expanding dead zones, these events are far away from the Ozarks and our beloved Buffalo River.           Watch out. Stream water is warming In the Ozarks, and we’re experiencing hotter summers, milder winters and shifting shoulder seasons. Invasives are moving in. Amphibians and fish counts are changing. Forests may begin drying out. Bird migration patterns and numbers are responding to hotter temperatures and habitat loss. We’re seeing wetter springs and drier summers. The Ozark Society states will not be spared further climate change impacts. The worst is yet to come. It seemed fitting in this 50th anniversary year of the Buffalo becoming the country’s first national river that the Ozark Society take a stand on climate change. In February, Alice Andrews, Brian Thompson, David Peterson, myself and Dr. Stephen Boss of the University of Arkansas put together a positioning statement and collected links to studies on climate change now posted at https://www.ozarksociety.net/about-us/os-climate-change-statement/.  [...]

25 05, 2022

Bayou Chapter Recognizes Roy O’Neal

By |2022-05-25T16:26:15-05:00May 25th, 2022|Categories: Pack & Paddle, Summer 2022|Tags: |

By Marian Howard and Shannon O’Neal The expression “the glue that holds everything together” is the perfect description of what Roy O’Neal has meant to the Bayou Chapter of the Ozark Society for over 3 decades. Roy has served 3 terms as Chairman - in 1995 and 1996 and again in 2018 when no one else volunteered to step up and serve.  He has been a board member for over 10 years because he said that was the only time he’d get to see his Arkansas friends!  He has been working with the Bayou Byline newsletter for almost 30 years, been the contact person for the annual Athens-Big Fork Trail Maintenance and has organized the local Duck Pond Cleanup a couple of times each year.  Not to mention his invaluable assistance in transporting several hundred pounds of crawfish to the Annual BCOS Crawfish Boil and making sure the burners are functioning and providing expertise in taste testing.  Roy can always be counted on to help out whenever and wherever the need arises.      Since he has a need to constantly do something, beginning with a morning crossword and moving on from there, Roy gets a lot done. He’s [...]

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