Media representatives are invited to attend the grand opening for the new Connor Forestry Center classroom building at the UW-Madison Kemp Natural Resource Station at 2 p.m. on Saturday, October 15. The event will take place in the new facility at the station, located at 9161 Kemp Road, Woodruff, WI 54568.
This new building, made possible by a gift from donors Mary Connor Pierce and Dudley Pierce, will allow the station to expand its capacity to host Northwoods teaching, research and public outreach activities year-round. This is an important addition because the station’s existing classroom, located above a historic boathouse, is only usable a few months of the year.
The 4,500-square foot classroom building includes a lobby and gathering area, a large 80-person classroom, a smaller 35-person classroom, a catering kitchen and an outdoor patio area with a view of Tomahawk Lake. Built on the site of the Kemp family’s former tennis court, each room in the building features panels made from a different species of wood, locally sourced, and representing the common commercial species of Northern Wisconsin.
Speakers at the event include:
- Scott Bowe, superintendent of Kemp Natural Resources Station
- Tom Steele, emeritus superintendent of Kemp Natural Resources Station
- Mary Connor Pierce, donor
- Kate VandenBosch, dean of the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences
The facility includes a number of local elements:
- Teschendorf & Shrock Inc., a local general contractor from Rhinelander, WI, constructed the building.
- Lumber was locally manufactured by Pukall Lumber Company in Woodruff, WI.
- Siding was locally manufactured by Louisiana Pacific in Tomahawk, WI.
- Stone for the foundation was sourced locally.
The Kemp station is one of twelve research stations managed by the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences at UW-Madison. Annually, it hosts dozens of researchers from UW-Madison and other universities, the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, federal agencies and other natural resource organizations. The station hosts school groups and offers a number of educational events open to the public focused on topics such as forestry, wildlife and fisheries.