Menomonee Falls, Wis. – On Thursday, June 9, members of the International Association of Sheet Metal, Air, Rail and Transportation workers (SMART) – working with the Association for the Rights of Citizens with Handicaps (ARCh) – will volunteer their time, labor and expertise to prepare the Menomonee Park lodge for ARCh Camp Pow Wow, ensuring that area adults and children with disabilities are able to attend the annual summer camp.
“SMART takes great pride in being able to assist ARCh Camp Pow Wow with their reopening,” said SMART Local 18 Business Manager/President Mike Mooney and Local 565 Business Manager & Financial Secretary Treasurer Jesse Buell. “Camp Pow Wow has been a staple with serving the needs of the community for many years, and SMART is honored to be able to assist them.”
WHAT: SMART members rehabilitate Menomonee Park lodge for Camp Pow Wow
WHEN: Thursday, June 9, 2022, 8-11:30 a.m.
WHERE: Menomonee Park: W220 N7884 Town Line Road, Menomonee Falls, WI
WHO: SMART Local 18 & SMART Local 565, SMART members from across the country, ARCh staff
ARCh Camp Pow Wow has been providing outdoor recreational activities for adults and children with disabilities since 1959. With day camp options for our most vulnerable citizens, Camp Pow Wow offers options for swimming, fishing, gardening, fitness, arts and crafts, music and more. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Camp Pow Wow hasn’t taken place in person since 2019, and the site has fallen into disrepair. As a small non-profit, ARCh did not have the resources to ready the site for return to camp – and SMART answered the call.
“We are thrilled and honored to benefit from the enthusiasm and expertise of the SMART Army,” said Kristen Lindahl, Assistant Director of Operations at ARCh. “This project shows how much good can be accomplished through a dynamic partnership of organized labor, county government and the non-profit community. It takes this great ‘village’ to raise a camp!”
On June 9, members of SMART Local 18 (Milwaukee) and Local 565 (Madison) will be joined by SMART delegates attending the SMART Sign and Production Council in Milwaukee for a day-long effort that will renovate the lodge in order to accommodate guests of all ages and abilities. More than 120 SMART volunteers will remove all the contents of the lodge, clean and sanitize the entire building – rooms, kitchen, common areas and more – and clean and sanitize all the lodge materials before reinstalling all lodge furnishings. SMART members will also take care of basic landscaping, repair and maintenance needs for the lodge picnic area, music pavilion, tent boxes and swing sets: fixing picnic tables, setting up heavy-duty tents for campers to use throughout the summer, spreading woodchips and more.
“Although they have been challenging for everyone, the past two years have caused massive loneliness and frustration among children and adults with disabilities,” said Lindahl. “Thanks to the skill and dedication of the SMART Army, our campers can now safely and joyously return to the summer fun that they have missed so much!”
Those interested in supporting ARCh and Camp Pow Wow can do so here.