Tag: Fox Valley

Day trips: Seven options to explore wonders of Wisconsin beyond Appleton

High Cliff State Park is a 20-minute drive from downtown Appleton. (Photo courtesy of Travel Wisconsin)

Story by Ed Berthiaume / Communications

The bubble is a thing. For many Lawrence University students, much of life during these four years will take place on or near campus. We are, after all, a residential campus. Located on the eastern edge of Appleton’s downtown, walkability often sets the boundaries for how far students will explore.

But when opportunities present themselves—friends with cars, family visits—there are plenty of day trip possibilities. We’re here to guide you through a few nearby options if you want to roam beyond Appleton. There are many other worthy destinations, of course, but here are seven to get you started.

High Cliff State Park

High Cliff State Park features 26 miles of trails. (Photo courtesy of Travel Wisconsin)

Wisconsin has more than 40 state parks; the closest to the Lawrence campus is High Cliff, situated on the east side of Lake Winnebago. Named for the limestone cliff of the Niagara Escarpment, this gorgeous slice of nature is a 20-minute drive from downtown Appleton. It encompasses nearly 1,200 acres, with more than 26 miles of trails suitable for hiking, running, biking, skiing, and snowshoeing. There also are opportunities for swimming, boating, and camping. You’ll need a state park sticker on the car to enter. A one-day pass will cost you $8 per carload ($11 if out-of-state plates). If you plan multiple visits, a sticker good for the calendar year will cost you $28 (add $10 if out-of-state plates). Stickers are available on site. See details here.

Wolf River rafting or tubing

Whitewater rafting on the Wolf River. (Photo courtesy of Travel Wisconsin)

While we’re exploring the great outdoors, how about a day floating down the Wolf River? But let’s be clear. There are a couple of different options here. There is the casual float down the river with friends on giant inflatable tubes and there is the more adrenaline-filled whitewater rafting trek if you’re feeling more adventurous. Choose carefully. Both options are available within a reasonable drive. For the more placid float, you’ll find outlets near New London, about a 35-minute drive from campus. For the more adventurous version, your best bet is to go an additional hour to the north. Do a digital search for Wolf River tubing or Wolf River rafting to find available locations and details. See details on rafting and tubing options here.

Point Beach State Forest

Rawley Point Lighthouse at Point Beach State Forest. (Photo courtesy of Travel Wisconsin)

Lawrence is a one-hour drive to the shore of Lake Michigan. If you go straight east along U.S. 10, you’ll come to the Point Beach State Forest near Two Rivers, a wonderful introduction to the joys of Lake Michigan’s western shoreline. The more than 2,900 acres of state land stretches across six miles of the Lake Michigan coast. There are more than 17 miles of hiking trails and several beaches. Be sure to check out the Rawley Point Lighthouse, which dates back to 1894 and, at 113 feet, is the tallest octagonal skeletal lighthouse on the Great Lakes. And if the history of the Great Lakes is an interest, the Wisconsin Maritime Museum in nearby Manitowoc is worth a visit. You’ll need that state park admission sticker for entrance to Point Beach. See details here.

Door County

Bjorklunden is a great spot to begin exploring Door County. (Photo by Rob Kopecky)

You will have opportunities to explore Door County, thanks to Lawrence’s beautiful Bjorklunden property. You could spend a month or more in Door County and not run short of new things to explore. From state parks and beautiful beaches to shops and restaurants, it is one of the wonders of the Midwest. Bjorklunden, known as Lawrence’s northern campus, will be a great introduction. Take advantage of every opportunity to go there. The 441-acre estate is situated on the Lake Michigan shore just south of Baileys Harbor. It was bequeathed to Lawrence in 1963 by Donald and Winifred Boynton and has now been an important part of the Lawrence experience for decades. See Door County details here and Bjorklunden details here.

EAA Aviation Museum

EAA Aviation Museum is 30 minutes away in Oshkosh. (Photo courtesy of EAA)

If aviation is an interest, you will want to pay a visit to the EAA Aviation Museum in Oshkosh. Located less than 30 minutes from Lawrence, this is a world-renowned museum showcasing everything and anything tied to flight. From aircraft of past wars to the wonders of space flight, you’ll find it here. And for one glorious week each summer, the grounds of the EAA become the gathering place for the world of aviation, with thousands of enthusiasts bringing homebuilt, classic, experimental, and state-of-the-art aircraft to Oshkosh for the EAA AirVenture Fly-In. It is literally a sight to behold both on the ground and in the air. See details here.

Lambeau Field, Green Bay

Lambeau Field is located 30 minutes north of Appleton. (Photo courtesy of Greater Green Bay Convention and Visitors Bureau)

Whether you’re a football fan or not, Lambeau Field should be a destination. Located just 30 minutes to the north of the Lawrence campus, the stadium is one of the most iconic in all of sports. There is no logical reason a city of 100,000 residents should be home to an NFL team. And yet it is. The Green Bay Packers have been among the most successful teams in the history of the NFL. That success, the team’s community ownership, and the history that has unfolded in Green Bay puts Lambeau Field on the bucket list for many sports fans. But you don’t have to go to a game to enjoy. Stadium tours are available daily, and the Green Bay Packers Hall of Fame is housed within Lambeau. See details here.

Explore the Fox River

The Fox River near Lawrence University. (Photo by Danny Damiani)

Lawrence’s location along the Fox River adds to our campus beauty. If you want to further explore the river, you won’t have to go far. Fox River Tours operates two touring boats, one based in Appleton and one in De Pere, between mid-May and late October. The one in Appleton is a 32-passenger restored canal boat known as River Tyme Too. Look for tour options that include passage through the hand-operated locks and narrated lessons in river history. Another bonus: It docks not far from campus. See details here.

Ed Berthiaume is director of public information at Lawrence University. Email: ed.c.berthiaume@lawrence.edu

Lawrence, Wisconsin School of Business collaborate to offer skills development

Lawrence University will be home to a series of business skills development courses.

Communications

Lawrence University and the Wisconsin School of Business Center for Professional and Executive Development (CPED) have launched a partnership to offer learning and development opportunities to the business community in the Fox Valley.

The partnership, facilitated through CPED, is providing immersive programs on critical skill development. The courses are being delivered online during the COVID-19 pandemic but will shift to in-person sessions on the Lawrence campus when it’s safe to do so.

Lawrence leadership first began talking with CPED Director of Corporate Partnerships Mark Seifert in late 2018, expressing interest in using Lawrence facilities and expertise to provide educational outreach in business skills development. Surveys and several rounds of meetings with executives from area organizations indicated there was interest.

Lawrence President Mark Burstein called the partnership a great opportunity for Lawrence to support area organizations in new ways.

“Many CEOs in northeastern Wisconsin have asked me over the past few years if Lawrence could offer learning opportunities for their staff that would be practical, tailored to their business needs, and locally delivered,” Burstein said. “Teaming with CPED has allowed us to fulfill this need, relying on the expertise of the Wisconsin School of Business and Lawrence’s local knowledge and talent.”

The first session in the partnership, How to Influence Without Direct Authority, held earlier this year, drew associates from Jewelers Mutual, Johnsonville Sausage, Michel’s Corporation and Schreiber Foods.

“This was a great cohort; each of them worked on creating a strategy for influencing something pretty big in their organizations,” said Susan Finerty, CPED instructor and author of Cross Functional Influence. “In a lot of ways, when it ended, I felt like I was leaving in the middle of a really great movie. I am anxious to know how all of these changes, ideas, and initiatives turn out.”

The responses from the course have been promising. It is traditionally a two-day immersive program helping leaders positively expand influence beyond their formal authority in order to ensure professional and organizational success. But with the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, the program shifted to an online delivery, running six weeks via 75-minute weekly learning sessions.

The interactive sessions offered participants the opportunity to grow their professional networks and get real-time feedback on their progress. The Live Learning Sessions were complemented by pre- and post-work activities that included a multi-rater assessment tool, videos, readings, discussions, and a final project.

“I enjoyed the content presented and the time spent in the program,” said Rick Heck, business manager – enterprise projects at Schreiber Foods. “The content fit exceptionally well with my responsibilities of leading a team of dedicated project managers working cross-functionally in our organization. I recommend this program to others if their role requires them to truly influence others on a regular basis. The Influence Planner provides a framework from which to ‘script’ influence conversations and will be helpful going forward.”

A second cohort is scheduled to launch on Jan. 20. For information on this and other upcoming sessions, contact Mark Seifert at mark.seifert@uwcped.org or visit www.uwcped.org

Ed Berthiaume is director of public information at Lawrence University. Email: ed.c.berthiaume@lawrence.edu

Study: Lawrence’s economic impact in Fox Valley tops $70 million

Mark Burstein hugs Cathie Tierney during Tuesday's Report to the Community.
Lawrence University President Mark Burstein hugs Cathie Tierney after awarding her an honorary Bachelor of Liberal Studies degree at Tuesday’s Report to the Community.

Story by Ed Berthiaume / Communications

A new economic and community impact study released Tuesday offers new data on just how significant Lawrence University’s ties are to the community it calls home.

The study from Appleseed, an independent economic consulting firm, shows Lawrence’s annual impact on Appleton and the greater Fox Cities totals nearly $70.3 million — from employee earnings, goods and services, construction projects, off-campus spending and visitor spending. It also highlights how the liberal arts college’s contributions to the community go well beyond economics, highlighting ongoing cultural and charitable relationships.

The first-time study, commissioned by Lawrence, details those deep ties between the school and the community.

Nearly 200 leaders from Lawrence, area governments, and the business and nonprofit communities gathered on campus Tuesday for Lawrence’s annual Report to the Community, which included the rollout of the study and the granting of an honorary Bachelor of Liberal Studies degree to Cathie Tierney, president and CEO of Community First Credit Union and a longtime community leader.

“The Appleseed study is a testament to how ideally situated Lawrence is here in the Fox Cities,” Lawrence President Mark Burstein said. “It speaks to how tightly woven we are into the very fabric of this community. Lawrence is proud of that, proud of our deep roots in Appleton and the economic, cultural, charitable and intellectual contributions that come from our faculty, students and staff.”

A crowd of nearly 200 people take in Tuesday's Report to the Community in the Somerset Room.
Nearly 200 leaders from Fox Valley government bodies, the business community, nonprofits and Lawrence University attended Tuesday’s Report to the Community in the Somerset Room in the Warch Campus Center.

See a copy of the full economic impact report here.

The report estimates that in fiscal year 2017, Lawrence, its students and visitors directly and indirectly accounted for 1,059 jobs in the Fox Cities region, with earnings totaling $44.1 million, and nearly $70.3 million in regional economic output.

The fortunes of Lawrence and Appleton have forever been intertwined. After all, Lawrence and Appleton have grown up together, Lawrence having been founded in 1847 and Appleton incorporated six years later. The new village — it would become a city in 1857 — was named for the wife of the school’s founder, Amos Lawrence. Her maiden name was Appleton.

The new study demonstrates just how significant those ties remain and how important the relationship is going forward.

Pastor Mahnie, executive director of B.A.B.E.S., a nonprofit child abuse prevention program, was among the speakers embracing the connections between Lawrence and the community.

Lawrence is a host site for the Funding Information Network and provides workshops for area nonprofits to help them pursue needed grants. It’s an important piece of the puzzle that allows nonprofits to do their work.

“Your willingness to not only house the Funding Information Network, but to also host free workshops to educate us on how to utilize the database and improve our grant-writing skills is invaluable,” Mahnie said.

“Thank you for the access. Access gives us knowledge. Access leads to progress. Access to the Funding Information Network is vital for the work of serving our community.

“Lawrence University, the Oshkosh Area United Way, United Way Fox Cities and the Community Foundation for the Fox Valley Region, thank you for helping us to feed the hungry, to clothe the naked, to rescue the lost, to give hope to the hopeless, to diaper their infants, to educate the young and inexperienced parents, to tutor their children, to supplement their household cleaning and personal hygiene items, and the list could go on and on. Because of you, because of your generosity, because of access, we, the nonprofits of the Fox Valley, we can accomplish our mission to serve.”

Economic impact studied

The economic data provided in the Appleseed report shows just how significant the Lawrence footprint is in the Fox Cities. Among the notable numbers:

  • 886 Lawrence graduates live and work in the Fox Cities (5% of area residents with a bachelor’s degree are Lawrence graduates).
  • $1.44 million in financial aid is provided to LU students from the Fox Cities.
  • 605 faculty and staff are directly employed by Lawrence, with a payroll totally nearly $29.9 million. The earnings of faculty and staff employed full-time averaged $58,240 in 2017.
  • $1.4 million was paid to contractors and vendors in the Fox Cities for various construction and renovation projects in 2017. Another $2.2 million went to contractors elsewhere in Wisconsin.

Lawrence is a residential liberal arts college with an enrollment of about 1,500. During the 2016-17 academic year, Lawrence provided $36.9 million in financial aid from its own resources.

The school’s impact on the community goes far beyond economics, the study says.

  • Faculty, staff and students have ongoing relationships with 100 agencies and organizations in the Fox Cities. Nearly 10,450 hours of community volunteer work was reported in the 2016-17 academic year.
  • Nearly 1,500 children across the Fox Cities participate in the Lawrence Academy of Music, a division of the Conservatory of Music.
  • Lawrence plays a major role in the arts community in the Fox Cities. The Conservatory features upwards of 20 performances throughout the year by internationally recognized artists. Three convocations a year bring in nationally recognized speakers. The Wriston Art Gallery presents about 10 art exhibits a year. All are open to the public.
  • The Warch Campus Center has become a popular location for booking community and corporate events, as well as weddings and other celebrations.
  • Lawrence has worked closely with local leaders in efforts to make Appleton and the Fox Cities a more welcoming and inclusive community for people of all backgrounds.

“Lawrence and the Fox Cities are forever linked,” Burstein said. “Progress for one is progress for the other, and neither of us can afford to rest on what we’ve already accomplished. We share similar goals, including the need to attract and retain talented employees and students. That means ensuring that our communities offer people from diverse backgrounds attractive and welcoming places to study, live, work, build careers and have families. We can never relent on those efforts.”

Honorary degree to Tierney

Tierney, meanwhile, was honored for her long and distinguished leadership in the Fox Cities. She studied at Lawrence before embarking on her career.

“I’m astonished, delighted and humbled at this amazing honor,” she said.

Tierney has been with Community First Credit Union since 1976 and has held multiple executive officer positions, spending much of her career as vice president of marketing and branch operations. In 1993, Tierney graduated from the first CU Executive Leadership Program at the Stanford University Graduate School of Business and was named president/CEO of Community First in 1994.

She had attended Lawrence for a year before leaving school for family reasons. Despite the success she would later find in the business world, she said that decision to leave school has always haunted her. But she maintained a strong relationship with Lawrence as she became a community leader.

“We all know of Lawrence’s incredible academic rigor, the quality of the faculty and the enriching experience gained through an education at Lawrence University,” she said. “As a lifelong citizen of Appleton, I have seen first-hand the significant contributions that Lawrence University, its staff and faculty and graduates have made in our community, our state, our country and our world.”

To now get an honorary degree — and to be called a Lawrentian — is humbling and moving, she said.

“Through this process I have learned, there is no right path, only your path,” she said.

Ed Berthiaume is director of public information at Lawrence University. Email: ed.c.berthiaume@lawrence.edu