Monday, June 20 from 7:00 p.m. –9:00 p.m. ET

Summer Solstice Celebration

This is a fsolstice background2ree event, held at the Porkies Folk School that is open to all who wish to help us celebrate the longest day of the year. The schedule of activities includes:

6:00 p.m.–7:00 p.m. Play Kubb, a Scandinavian lawn game that involves two sides of up to six players on a side and listen to music.

7:00 p.m.–7:30 p.m. Be part of the fire ceremony which will include poetry and group singing.

7:30 p.m.–7:45 p.m. Join the snake dance, led by Kay Seppala, into the Folk School building.

7:45 p.m.–8:00 p.m. Attend a presentation on the astronomical explanation of solstice.

8:00 p.m.–9:00 p.m. Experience the  Ilon Kaiku in concert. This includes short Kantele concert by  Kay Seppala and 6 to 8 Kantele players. Kay will tell the story of how the Kantele instrument began as told in the Kalevela, using props to tell the story.  There will also be audience participation learning to play the instrument.

9:00 p.m. The evening will end for those who are ready to head home. Others will go back to the fire pit for a jam session, conversation and s’mores. Some may decide to stay inside for more conversation.

  Questions? Call 906-884-7663 or e-mail

When registering, please include your complete name, mailing address, phone number and email address.

This event has been sponsored.



A $1250 grant from Portage Health Foundation is funding the 2015-2016 Kidski program. This program brings five youngsters to the ski hill each Saturday for ten Saturdays during ski season, potentially serving a total of 50 youngsters. Students from the two Ontonagon County school districts sign up to participate in the program, and the Friends select participants on a first come, first served basis.

Greg Ferguson, Middleton, WI

photo by Greg Ferguson, Middleton, WI


Kurt SkiingIf you are a young Ontonagon County skier in need of a helmet, this is an opportunity for you! When a skier age 18 or younger purchases a helmet at the Porkies Ski Shop and fills out a form requesting assistance, the Kurt Blake Helmet Fund, a Friends of the Porkies program, will provide 50% of the price of the helmet, up to $50.00.


The Kurt Blake Helmet Fund is supported, in part, by the Portage Health Foundation which awarded grant dollars to support safe skiing by Ontonagon County youth.


The Kurt Blake Helmet Fund was established in 2008 in honor of Kurt Blake, a young man from Ontonagon whose fatal skiing accident inspired the its creation.



Lake Gogebic C of CComing soon! The 2016 Gogebic Times will include information about Park and Friends events, and their calendar will list dates and times for our activities. Copies available in early 2016 at the Historical Society museum and (later) at the Chamber Visitor Information Center. Thanks to the Lake Gogebic Chamber for including our information in their publication!


Friends of the Porkies is a 2016 member of the Upper Peninsula Travel and Recreation Association.Image


On October 15, 2015, Bob Wild, Porkies Naturalist, Jeff Gaertner, Unit Manager, and Sally Berman, lifetime member and Board member, Friends of the Porkies, attended the Great Lakes Center for Youth Development Volunteer Conference. The Friends was honored by the GLCYD as the U. P. Volunteer Organization of the Year. See the Friends of the Porkies Facebook page for more information about the other awardees.

Bob Wild award winners Bob, Jeff and Sally.jpb Bob, Jeff and Sally 2


Ramp Building Crew

October 26, 2015

This is a photo of six of the 9 – 10 Folk School ADA accessible ramp construction crew.Bruce Ruutila, Richard Knuteson, Jack Bauman – Project Manager, Jon Ollila, Dave Rasmussen, Steve Maass. The Folk School now has new windows, the ramp, an ADA accessible bathroom, a new propane heater and upgraded electrical thanks to Partnership […]

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Friends Receive Keweenaw Heritage Grant

June 13, 2013

The Friends of the Porkies have received the Keweenaw Heritage Grant through the Keweenaw National Historic Park.  The $1,000 grant is used to facilitate local school field trips.  The Friends match the grant with a $1,000.  Donations can be accepted to support this program.

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Winter Camping Blog in the Porkies

March 26, 2013

Northern Michigan Vacation: Winter Camping in Porcupine Mountains Posted by Jeff Smith on March 5, 2013 at 8:33am Camping compadre Tim, up on the Escarpment Trail, Porcupine Mountains, Michigan. I had the great pleasure recently of heading up to the Porcupine Mountains for a winter campout in the snowy backcountry with a couple of longtime […]

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Read Frank Hutton’s Blog Describing His Love of the Porkies

March 25, 2013

Read Artist Frank Hutton’s (2012) blog spot on his experience and what it can mean to participate in an Artist-in-Residence Program.

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