Since its foundation in 2008, TSN Spring Challenge has always been a challenge to do more together. This year, we challenged our stewards and our communities to spend a little longer caring for their local lands and waters, to donate a little more to our vital cause, or to take that huge first step if they had not yet done either. While last year’s reboot of this program was a massive success, we focused and simplified the effort in 2023 to make it even more inclusive and impactful! Highlights from the final analysis include:
50,817 total hours of stewardship reported
13,604 total participants (our highest single-year total ever!)
$43,444 raised to keep our organization thriving ($21,722 matched 1:1!)
Over $1.6 million in work-hour value poured into our local ecosystems
An awesome mix of reports across all categories:
And all of the above represents tremendous growth year-over-year:
TSN Spring Challenge HONORS
Whether you reported one hour or ten thousand hours, we’re all on the same team and none of us can win alone when it comes to stewardship. That said, we’re always excited to make a big deal about the groups that take our “do more” challenge to heart and end up “doing the most.” Here are your reporting standouts for #TSNspring 2023:
The Community Cup WINNER: Huron Arbor Cluster
Awarded to the TSN Member Community reporting the most total stewardship hours
The Root Cup WINNER: West Michigan Conservation Network
Awarded to the organization reporting the most total pounds of invasive plants removed
The Partner Cup WINNER: Milwaukee Riverkeeper
Awarded to the organization reporting the most total stewardship hours from outside our network family
The Teacher Cup WINNER: Great Lakes Islands Alliance
Awarded to the organization reporting the most total education hours
The Solo Cup WINNER: Whitney & Lisa Field
Awarded to the unaffiliated individual or family reporting the most total stewardship hours
TSN Program Resources for Participants
Then and Now
What was once the Garlic Mustard Challenge and then the Spring Invasive Species Challenge bloomed anew as the TSN Spring Challenge in 2022, adding more ways to help so everyone can get outside and get involved during this vital season. While the program has grown in scope to include activities beyond its invasive species tradition, groups focused on that form of stewardship remain warmly welcomed and strongly encouraged to participate. What certainly hasn’t changed is the importance of this program, which since its first iteration in 2008 has pulled together over 39,000 people to create over $11 million in workhour value while removing over 2.4 million pounds of invasive plant species from local ecosystems.
In many ways, the spirit of TSN Spring Challenge is the spirit that formed The Stewardship Network itself. There is power in realizing that you are not alone in this work and there is power in showing the world just how much we can accomplish when we join forces. Some participants tell us that this effort helps with their own data management and some leverage the big group number to boost their own outreach efforts. Some have told us they’ve seen great benefits from being featured on TSN’s wide-reaching social channels and some say it just feels good to be part of it all. Whatever sparks your action, we love it and we thank you for your support!
New in 2023: BOOSTS
Look, we know how tempting it is to delay reporting and how much more inspirational it is for your peers if you don’t. This year, thanks to the support of some new sponsors and allies, we set out to make timely reporting an extremely compelling choice with TSN Spring Challenge Boosts!
Each Tuesday during the twelve weeks of this program, our staff drew a random name from amongst all the people who submitted a report before 11:59pm Monday night. If the name drawn was an independent steward with no stated organizational affiliation, that person was asked to choose any of the remaining tokens of appreciation we’d procured for this effort. If the name drawn had claimed any group affiliation, they got their pick and the organization did, too!
Boosts Claimed in 2023
Half Dome 2 REI tent! (1 of 1)
Duluth Trading gift card
(1 of many)
Trailmade 2 tent courtesy of REI! (1 of 1)
REI $50 Gift Card (1 of many)
This year, we were pleased to welcome the Consumers Energy Foundation to TSN Spring Challenge 2023! Their generous grant enabled us to enhance this vital program and deepen our collective impact in ways both subtle and significant. Thank you, team!