The Cabin Restoration Project is a collaborative effort begun in 2012 to renovate group camp cabins in Pere Marquette State Park.
SPRINGFIELD — The Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) will honor two local organizations for volunteer service at the Illinois State Fair on Saturday, Aug. 16.
The local honorees include the Piasa Palisades Group of the Sierra Club and The Nature Institute in Alton.
The Sierra Club and The Nature Institute have formed a partnership to restore historical cabins in the upper group camp area of Pere Marquette State Park in Jersey County. The cabins were built by the Civilian Conservation Corps during the 1930s, and have been used for decades by Scouts, church youth groups, civic organizations and families. The groups have joined forces on an “Adopt-A-Cabin” program for restoration – one in 2012, three in 2013, and one during the spring of 2014, with a commitment to work on another cabin this fall. They have overhauled the cabins with siding, roofing, shutters, doors, windows and painting, raising more than $15,000 for materials and providing more than 2,200 volunteers work hours on the cabins. Group leaders are Virginia Woufle-Beile of the Sierra Club and Kevin Bennett of The Nature Institute.
The IDNR “Outstanding Volunteer of the Year Awards” are presented each year during a ceremony in Conservation World at the Illinois State Fairgrounds in Springfield.
“The annual volunteer awards program is one of the ways in which we say ‘thank you’ to some of the dedicated individuals and organizations doing great work at our state parks, state museums, and all over outdoor Illinois,” IDNR Director Marc Miller said. “Whether helping youth and families learn about nature, instructing safe hunting practices, or welcoming visitors to our state parks and state museums, volunteers provide valuable service to their fellow citizens throughout Illinois.”
This year’s volunteer recognition awards ceremony begins at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Aug. 16, at the Illinois Green Industry Association Amphitheater in Conservation World at the Illinois State Fairgrounds in Springfield.
For more information on volunteer opportunities, check the Illinois Department of Natural Resources website at www.dnr.illinois.gov/outreach/Volunteer.