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Charles L. Sommers Alumni Association, Inc.

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Upcoming events

    • March 08, 2024
    • 4:00 PM
    • March 10, 2024
    • 4:00 PM
    • Alliant Energy Center at 1919 Alliant Energy Center Way, Madison, WI
    Registration is closed

    Canoecopia is the world’s largest paddle sports expo, and the Charles L. Sommers Alumni Association, Inc. will be staffing the Northern Tier booth! 

    Registration to volunteer is now closed! However, we look forward to seeing you at Canoecopia!

    Please consider volunteering at the Northern Tier booth during the weekend of March 8-10, 2024 at the Alliant Energy Center in Madison Wisconsin.  Volunteers are needed to staff two two-hour shifts. You’ll also have plenty of opportunity to attend numerous educational seminars as well as see the latest canoeing and camping gear from hundreds of vendors.

    We will be planning a dinner for volunteers on Saturday evening at approximately 6:45pm.

    Register to Volunteer!

    When: Friday, March 8 to Sunday, March 10, 2024. Volunteer shifts are listed below. Registration closes Saturday, March 2nd.

    Where: Alliant Energy Center (1919 Alliant Energy Center Way, Madison, WI).

    Who:
     
    Charles L. Sommers Alumni Association, Inc. (SAA) members in good standing (when registering, use the email address associated with your membership or log in). Become a member on our website prior to registering.

    If you need assistance registering, please contact us.

    Volunteers are needed for the following shifts:

    • Friday - 3:00 pm to 5:30 pm
    • Friday - 5:30 pm to 8:00 pm
    • Saturday - 9:00 am to 11:30 am
    • Saturday - 11:30 am to 2:00 pm
    • Saturday - 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm
    • Saturday - 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm
    • Sunday - 10:00 am to 12:00 pm
    • Sunday - 12:00 pm to 2:00 pm
    • Sunday - 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm

    • May 10, 2024
    • 3:00 PM
    • May 20, 2024
    • 9:00 AM
    • Northern Tier, 14790 Moose Lake Rd, Ely, MN 55731
    Register

    The upcoming Red Renner Memorial Work Week is from Friday, May 10th to Monday, May 20th.

    You can stay for the whole time, weekend, or just a day. We will be providing cabin lodging and meals at no cost. 

    It is your chance to support the Northern Tier program. Enjoy camaraderie with your fellow alumni while giving back. Bring your skills and enthusiasm; we will provide on-the-job training and tools. 

    Register Today!

    (When registering, use the email address associated to your membership. 
    Not a member yet? Join here first.)

    Volunteer activities will focus primarily on the weekends of May 11th to 12th and 18th to 19th. Arrivals begin the afternoon of on Friday, May 10th at 3pm, with departure by 9am on Monday, May 20th. You can even extend your time Up North by booking a personal canoe trip outfitted by Northern Tier (advance reservations required).

    Volunteer Requirements

    • Be a member in good standing of the Charles L. Sommers Alumni Association, Inc. Become a member online. Membership is open to all adults who support the mission and programs of Northern Tier. 
    • Complete “Youth Protection Training” before arriving (valid for two years). This course is free, and you do not need to be a member of the BSA. See this post for details.
    • You must also bring a “BSA Annual Health and Medical Record” form. If only volunteering for a weekend (less than 72 hours), you do not need a medical exam. See this post for details.
    • Review and agree to the Registration and Event Policies (see below)


    Frequently Asked Questions

    Can I come for just part of the work week? Yes. You can come for a few days or the entire week. We ask that you come for one of the weekends as this is when most work will be occurring. You can then extend your stay into the week in-between.

    Will there be social opportunities? There will be plenty of camaraderies as we work to get Northern Tier ready for the season! The primary focus and expectation are that we’ll be collaborating on work projects. If you are more interested in social activities, we recommend signing up for our future regional and national reunions!

    Can I stop by to visit? Alumni may only visit if they are registered in advance to participate in this event. 

    Can I bring my dog? Visitors are not allowed to bring pets (except service animals) to the property. There is no exception. 

    Can I lodge elsewhere and volunteer? Yes, you can stay in town and volunteer. When registering, we ask if you are staying at Northern Tier. You can find a list of lodging options at https://www.ely.org/lodging/.

    Do I need to be a member? Yes. As we are a member organization, you need to be a member before registering. Membership is open to former staff and those who support the mission of Northern Tier. You can join at https://holry.org/joinus.

    Can I bring a guest? Immediate family members can volunteer. You can add them during registration by clicking the option to add a guest. If bringing a family member under 18, contact us to ensure we have appropriate volunteer activities planned.

    Can I bring my children? If bringing a family member under 18, contact us to ensure we have appropriate volunteer activities planned.

    Do I need to know any specific skills? To volunteer, you do not need to know any specific skills! There are plenty of projects for everyone.

    Where will be lodging and eating? We will be lodging in bunkhouses (crew cabins). You will need to bring your bedding (sheets, blanket, or sleeping bag) and a towel. We will be eating meals in the dining hall.

    Can I go on a canoe trip? You can go on a short canoe trip during the day. You must follow specific rules when using a Northern Tier canoe or launching from the Northern Tier landing.

    If you are interested in an overnight trip, contact Northern Tier directly regarding rental options. You can learn about renting canoes from Northern Tier here.

    What are the COVID-19 requirements? We are committed to Northern Tier having a healthy and successful season! Please do not come if you have symptoms or someone in your household is sick. 

    Do I have to complete Youth Protection Training? Yes. You must complete and have unexpired Youth Protection Training regardless of how long you are volunteering.

    Do I need a medical exam and health form? If staying less than 72-hours (for example, a weekend), you only have to complete the health form (parts A and B) yourself. If staying longer, you need to have a medical exam (in the last 12 months) with part C completed by your medical provider.

    Registration and Event Policies

    • Participation: The primary participant must be a member of the SAA when registering and attending the event (learn how to become a member). If you are not a member now, you must join before registering. For planning purposes, all participants must be registered in advance. 
    • Guests: Registration of guests is for immediate family members, including significant other.
    • Deadline and Walk-ins: Registration closes after May 5th. There will be no walk-in registration.
    • Cabins: When registering you may choose to lodge at Northern Tier in cabins (used for staff and participants). Cabins for individuals are shared and assigned by gender. Families/partners are assigned their own cabin. The cabins have twin beds, and you must bring your own bedding or sleeping bag. Availability of cabins is on a first-come basis when registering.
    • Dietary restrictions and special assistance requests (accommodation of disability)Dietary restrictions and special accommodation requests (accommodation of disability) must be received at the time to registration to help ensure we can accommodate it.
    • Visitors: We kindly remind all our alumni and members that during the event, The Base (Northern Tier) and all the scheduled activities will be exclusively open to those who have registered in advance.
    • Pets: Pets are not allowed at any time at Northern Tier. Only service animals are allowed (dogs that are individually trained to do work or perform tasks for people with disabilities).
    • Alcohol and Drugs: Tobacco (including electronic cigarettes or vaporizers) is only allowed in a designated area. Illicit drugs (including marijuana) are not allowed. Consumption of alcohol at Northern Tier is not permitted.
    • Boy Scouts of America (BSA) Policies: All established rules and policies of the Boy Scouts of America must be followed while at Northern Tier.
    • Canoes: When launching a boat from Northern Tier or using Northern Tier equipment, you must follow BSA policies, including wearing a Type III Personal Flotation Device (PFD), having a “buddy boat,” and advising of your expected route and return time. 
    • August 21, 2025
    • 3:00 PM
    • August 25, 2025
    • 9:00 AM
    • Ely, Minnesota - Northern Tier
    • 200

    Save the Date!

    Join us for a reunion at Northern Tier High Adventure’s Charles L. Sommers Wilderness Canoe Base near Ely, Minnesota tentatively planned from Thursday, August 21st to Sunday, August 25th. Registration will open on March 1st, 2025.

    When registering, remember to register using the email address associated with your membership.

    Questions? Contact us!

    (We ask that you do not contact Northern Tier, as they are not organizing the event.)

    Registration and Event Policies

    • Participation: The primary participant must be a member of the SAA when registering and attending the event (learn how to become a member). If you are not a member now, you must join before registering. For planning purposes, all participants must be registered for the reunion in advance. 
    • Guests: Registration of guests is for immediate family members, including significant other.
    • Payment: Payment is due at the time of registration (major credit and debit cards accepted). Registration not paid within 15 minutes of sign-up will automatically be canceled.
    • Refunds/Transfers: Registrations canceled on or before July 21st, 2025 receive an 85% refund. Cancellation requests received on or after July 22nd, 2025 are not refundable. Contact the SAA. Registration is specific to an individual and cannot transfer to another person.
    • Deadline and Walk-ins: Registration closes after July 21st. There will be no walk-in registration for the reunion, dinners, or activities.
    • Cabins: When registering you may choose to lodge at Northern Tier in cabins (used for staff and participants). Cabins for individuals are shared and assigned by gender. Families/partners are assigned their own cabin. The cabins have twin beds, and you must bring your own bedding or sleeping bag. Availability of cabins is on a first-come basis when registering.
    • Dietary restrictions and special assistance requests (accommodation of disability)Dietary restrictions and special accommodation requests (accommodation of disability) must be received at the time to registration to help ensure we can accommodate it.
    • Visitors: We kindly remind all our alumni and members that during the event, The Base (Northern Tier) and all the scheduled activities will be exclusively open to those who have registered for the reunion. The generous support and participation of those signed up for the reunion make it possible for us to offer these incredible facilities and activities.
    • Pets: Pets are not allowed at any time at Northern Tier and other reunion venues. Only service animals are allowed (dogs that are individually trained to do work or perform tasks for people with disabilities).
    • Alcohol and Drugs: Tobacco (including electronic cigarettes or vaporizers) is only allowed in a designated area. Illicit drugs (including marijuana) are not allowed. Consumption of alcohol at the event and reunion venues is not permitted unless specifically served by the Charles L. Sommers Alumni Association, Inc. 
    • Canoes: Northern Tier’s canoes are only available during planned reunion programming. When launching a boat from Northern Tier or using Northern Tier equipment, you must follow BSA policies, including wearing a Type III Personal Flotation Device (PFD), having a “buddy boat,” and advising of your expected route and return time. 

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