News from the Park

Park Updates 2023

Written by Rebecca Hall

The park has been a place for more activities in 2023.  Park manager Andi Schultz and park ranger Samantha Ortlieb were joined by LTE staff and campground hosts in late spring and summer to offer visitor and campers service. 

Trees – New and Old
More trees were planted (the blue tubes you see throughout the park protect the young trees); volunteers helped staff water them.  Staff continue to remove multiple dead ash trees in high-use areas.  Some of it is split into firewood by Friends volunteers and sold to campers.

Road MaintenancePark Improvements & Maintenance
A project to improve water drainage in the campground was completed.  Boardwalks were repaired or replaced.  A Mobi mat was lengthened to improve access to the north beach as the lake continues to lower levels.  In the fall, work funded by Wisconsin capital funds budget, was started on repair of the Stonehaven Trail road that was damaged by high water levels. It is expected to be completed in spring.

Programs & Events
The Friends organized a variety of events including: the annual meeting, Work Play Earth Day lunch for volunteers, Free Fun Weekend with a free Sunday breakfast, several summer musical programs, and a Fall Harvest Hike.  Friends’ member Amanda Mueller organized a group and led the Harrington Beach Hikers through the park on Sunday hikes throughout the summer, as well as on January 1st for the First-Day Hike.  Board president Becky Hall and others promoted the park and Friends of HBSP at various Belgium Chamber of Commerce events and at Coffee with Friends at the Ansay Center.  Information on our activities can be seen on our Facebook page, which are also seen on this web page under “news”.

Directional SignageDonations Making an Impact
Thanks to donations from some generous park users, new hospital beds and Hoyer lift, and other items were obtained for the accessible cabin.  The Friends also helped pay for some repairs on the cabin.  Through sales of campfire wood and HB shirts and jackets, the Friends were able to apply for and obtain matching grants from the Friends of Wisconsin State Park and WI DNR to pay for the replacement of the tiki torches used for night hikes, event flags, interpretive signage, purchase of a large grill to be installed this spring at Puckett’s Pond, and new directional signs.

Summer Nature Programs
The summer naturalist programs were organized by Samantha, with some funding from the Friends for the program presenters and supplies.  We encourage you to contact the park office (262) 285-3015) if you want to conduct a program in the coming season or if you would like to volunteer in the park.

Staff Departures
Sadly, the park will say goodbye to Park Ranger, Samantha Ortlieb at the end of January. You will find Sam at the Kettle Moraine State Forest – Northern Unit starting January 29th. In addition, Park Superintendent (Kohler-Andrae & Harrington Beach) Sara Crook moved into a new position with the DNR on December 17th. Please join us in wishing them all the best at their new locations!
See the website for information on how to apply to be a volunteer.