Category Archives: General

April message

Dear Friends,

Pictured above is the first Starkweather Creek work day of 2020. Brave volunteers cleared pathways and remove invasive brush in the beautiful woods along Starkweather’s west branch by the Carpenter-Ridgeway neighborhood in January and February.

Since those days, we’ve had to adjust the ways we operate as a group to allow for social distancing. Our board meetings are occurring over the phone, and we are relying on email and social media to communicate about the creek. ome groups you could follow: Friends of Starkweather CreekFriends of Hartmeyer Natural AreaSave Voit FarmFriends of Acewood Conservation Park.

We think that time outdoors is more important than ever. While we will have to reschedule our outdoors events in the coming weeks, we invite you to take a self-guided walk along the Starkweather Creek bike path.

Even better, since our usual spring clean up is postponed, consider picking up a bag of trash near Starkweather Creek on your own or as a family in honor of the upcoming 50th Anniversary of Earth Day.

1/21 board mtg 7-9pm at GCC

I invite all interested in the Starkweather Creek watershed to our monthly board meeting Tues. 1/21 at 7pm at Goodman CC on Waubesa (Street of the Swan). Recent controversies re PFAS pollution and F-35’s have put Starkweather in statewide spotlights. 

I welcome your presence & essence to help heal & honor people & place… synergizing head & heart, inner & outer, self & other, ego & soul, physical & metaphysical.

Carl Landsness
Starkweather native, invasive, prodigal son and Friends of Starkweather Co-Chair

PS I will be available for an hour before and after to answer questions…
or dream new possibilities and paradigms

Draft agenda

ORGANIZATIONAL (Business/Administration)

  • Centering and connecting: Carl – 2 min
  • Past minutes approval/ plans for future minutes: all – 3 to 5 min
  • Treasurer’s report: Doug – 3 min
  • Strategic planning report: Dave – 5 to 10 min
  • Website/FB/Google Docs/Communication status and plans: Dave/all –  5 to 10 min
  • Future meeting format: Dave/Carl/all – 5 to 10 min



  • Starkweather Woods 1/25 workday plans: Dave – 2 to 3 min 
  • Native plantings, invasive removal, grants: Jeff – 3 to 5 min
  • City Engineering $5K budget: Lance – 3 min
  • Voit plans: Dea/Matt Diebel? – 10 to 15 min
  • Chloride study status: Carl – 1 min
  • PFAS reports, petitions, film, forums and plans: Lance – 10 to 15 min 

As we heal the watershed, the watershed heals us
As we heal ourselves, we heal the watershed

12/21 Solstice walk (and possible paddle)… re hidden gifts and grace

Carl Landsness (Starkweather native, invasive and Friends of Starkweather Creek co-chair) will facilitate a “shortest day” solstice walk (Sat. 10am at Goodman CC) to explore the pregnantly potent possibilities for new birth that this day represents…including from the dark articles in the WSJ and  Cap Times recently re PFAS in Starkweather:

DNR: High levels of PFAS found in Starkweather Creek, Wisconsin RiverChris Hubbuch | Wisconsin State JournalLevels of two compounds — PFOA and PFOS — were measured at concentrations more than 30 times the safe level se…

Unknown fear: Madison residents are increasingly alarmed by PFAS levels …Steven Elbow | The Capital TimesLance Green has been collecting water samples from Starkweather Creek for years. As a volunteer for the state De…

Carl will invite sharing of reactions to these articles (or related rumors and feelings)…
and explore rebirth possibilities or perspectives…
to co-create something better than had this not occurred…
i.e. hidden gifts and grace disguised as pain and problems

This will emerge while walking to stunningly uplifting places (from Goodman CC) on and near the creek (e.g. Olbrich Gardens and FSC canoe launch
120A04D7 B2E2 473E A550 22DBFE267D69Olbrich magic 1

October winter wonderland 1Two days after warm weather canoe launch
to revere the beauty…
and dream of new birth, beauty and FUN…including a possible paddle Saturday afternoon (if weather, water and whims call)…

12:12 launch 1 of 4 At Starkweather mouth for 4:14 full moonrise

12:12 launch 2 of 4

12:12 launch 3 of 412:12 launch 4 of 4

Carl finds such incredible beauty and magic an intriguing contrast to fear-focused images of Starkweather that many read in the media articles. 
STARK weather? Or stimulating beauty?
Focus on fear? Or faith and FUN (i.e. Friends of Urban Nature fun)?

Meet: Goodman Community Center 10 a.m.

More infoMadison Parks Bird & Nature Outings

Annual Meeting Th Nov 7 6:30pm at Goodman CC

Annual membership meeting
Thur. Nov. 7
6:30 to 8:30pm
Goodman CC Brassworks Bldg
214 Waubesa

“Healing & Honoring People & Place”

  • Guest speaker: Jojo O’Brian of Madison stormwater engineering
    re collaboration projects with Friends of Starkweather
  • FSC report on past and planned projects, issues and opportunities
  • Special recognitions
  • Board member elections

Light snacks and cider

Annual Meeting Announcement

Friends of Starkweather Creek Annual Meeting

Healing & Honoring our People & Place

  • History in the watershed: Missy Tracy, Ho-Chunk Nation
  • Friends of Starkweather mission, vision, values and report
  • New board elections – All are welcome to join our board
  • New input: What do YOU want or envision?

Goodman Community Center, Brassworks Building, 214 Waubesa Street, October 23, 7:00 p.m.

For up to date information visit our Facebook page


December Board Meeting Minutes

Friends of Starkweather Creek

Board Meeting


Meeting notes


Parks Report – Deborah is completing the report to Parks. Last piece that is needed is a survey of the group to see if anyone used the canoes for personal use. No one except Carl and he emailed Deborah already.


Solstice Celebration – Event starts at 4:00 with drummers. Parking at Olbrich Gardens is allowed. Fire will be lit at 4:30. Lance and Doug will be there early.


Miles Varna Contact – wants to volunteer to do some GIS mapping. Contacted us through facebook. Lance will follow up with him.


Revolution Cycle Meeting – Art event last Friday night. FSC received $50 in donations at the event. Good partner group. Opportunity to partner on extending the bike path to Sun Prairie. Need more representation at their meetings. is leading the charge. Jeff at Revolution is the contact. Dave will set up a meet up.


2018 Madison FUN Calendar and Events – Paul passed out a 2018 draft events list. Good year last year with lots of events.


2018 Events are at

Starkweather Outings (Draft)

January 20 – Deborah Crabtree – sledding and hot chocolate

February 17 –

March 17 – Jeff Steele: Spring Phenology Signs

April 21 –

May 19 – Jeff Steele: Woodland Ephemerals

June 16 – Tom Murn: Nature Lives in the City

July 21 – Lance Green: Monitoring the Creek & Critter Viewings

August 18 – Biking the creek

September 15 – Carl Landsness: Canoeing Starkweather

October 20 – Tom Murn: Autumn Traces of Nature

November 17 –

December 15 –


Treasurer Report:

$1,000 Annual meeting

$     50 Revolution Cycles

$ 160 Mailing

$   60 renewals

$1,270 Total


2018 Meeting Dates: keep the third Tuesday. Lance will book the Goodman Center.


Darbo-Worthington Proposed Canoe Access – $35,000 is available build canoe/kayak access for the neighborhood. Marsha Rummel requested a letter from our group to the Mayor to say how good this would be for the neighborhood. Lance will write a letter in support of a canoe launch. Carl will think about setting up a meeting with the neighborhood.


Garver Construction – access to the creek during construction. Last nature outing was forced out into the wetlands. Carl will reach out to the project manager for Baum and take a walk to see where the access is blocked. Lance will put it on the agenda for the meeting with the city.


Spring Planting Project – Feb 1st application deadline to get native plants for our plantings. Pictures need to be taken. More plants are needed where the fall planting happened in 2017. Early January subgroup should get together to decide on sites. Jeff, Dave, Deborah, and Carl want to be on the subgroup. Jeff is on the Eken Park Neighborhood Association and will approach that group to see if we can do a joint planting.


Meeting adjourned at 8:27


Friends of Starkweather Creek

2017 Annual Meeting

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Come Hear about FUN and SCIENCE on Starkweather Creek!

Goodman Community Center
149 Waubesa St, Madison

Co-Chair Dea Larsen-Converse will present our past year’s activities

Co-Chair Lance Green will present on the creek’s health

We will elect board members

All are welcome to help plan and direct our next year’s actions

Drinks and refreshments for all!

Thanks for your support!

Here’s video taste of our adventures this year:

Paddling Adventures