During the month of August, hikers along the segment of Ice Age Trail from the Slack Road parking lot to the Merrimac Ferry will have an extra element to add to their enjoyment: Art on the Trail is returning for its third year.
This unique event is sponsored by the Lodi Valley Chapter of the Ice Age Trail Alliance as a way to bring together art and nature. All artists must apply to have their art included. Art on the Trail installations must be designed so they don’t harm wildlife and artists are encouraged to use materials from nature in their creations. Art in years past included a musical instrument made from an old log and cedar disks that featured quotes about nature.
The small group of Ice Age Trail volunteers who are taking the lead in organizing the event stated that Art on the Trail was inspired by a similar event that was done to mark the anniversary of legendary naturalist John Muir’s birthday. Another source of inspiration was the Art DTour in Reedsburg, where people drive around the countryside to see art installations. It occurred to the Art on the Trail organizers that the Ice Age Trail was a perfect venue for this type of event as you can walk the Trail and see art along the way.
Art on the Trail is free and people can hike the trail at their leisure to see the art. All art installations will be found along the Slack Road to Merrimac Ferry segment and will be marked with an Art on the Trail sign. Art will be removed at the end of August.
In keeping with the spirit of Art on the Trail and as a way to kick off the month-long event, the Lodi Valley Chapter held a “Create your own hiking stick” event on August 1st. Children were invited to come to the Lodi Public Library to pick up a peeled stick (compliments of the local Scout group) and a bag of decorating supplies to they could create their own hiking stick at home. They young artists are encouraged to carry their art with them as they walk on the Trail, just as the two boys pictured here are doing.
It’s a lovely time of year to be outdoors. We invite you to take a leisurely walk and enjoy the art that will be on display throughout the month of August….Along the Ice Age Trail.
Patti Herman live in the City of Lodi with her husband, Bill Welch. A retired educator, Patti is glad to be living in the Lodi Valley where she is surrounded by so much natural beauty, including the beauty to be found along the Ice Age Trail.