About luannsidney

I love to travel internationally, especially in Japan and Europe. My interest in traveling began when I studied French in college and Japanese later during graduate school.

Saving Small Lives with the Prairie Dog Coalition

Prairie Dog Coalition pic

Prairie Dog Coalition
Image: humanesociety.org

The principal consultant at LNS Consulting Services in Victoria, Minnesota, Lu Ann Sidney has spent over 20 years in her current position. Away from work, Lu Ann Sidney donates to philanthropic organizations, including the Prairie Dog Coalition, which is sponsored by the Humane Society of the United States.

Enjoyed by visitors to zoos and nature preserves, prairie dogs are an essential resource on American prairies, currently deemed an endangered ecosystem. Within the last 100 years, increased agriculture and booming urban development have caused massive destruction to prairie dog habitats. Further, rampant disease and exterminations are causing the population of these creatures to drastically plummet.

The Prairie Dog Coalition focuses on all five species of prairie dogs, which range from Montana and North Dakota all the way south to Texas and New Mexico. Recently, the Thunder Basin National Grassland in Wyoming is being used as a habitat for these animals, and has helped over 180,000 prairie dogs to thrive. Many of the creatures here have been relocated from habitats at risk.

Volunteer opportunities with the Prairie Dog Coalition range from field work to community outreach and advocacy. Simple monetary donations are also appreciated.

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American Chemical Society Looks to Provide Post-Hurricane Support

 

Miracle Doctor of Ginde Beret, Ethiopia

From 1956 to 2004, Tom and Elaine Coleman provided medical care to some of the poorest people in Africa.  Their first clinic in Ginde Beret, central Ethiopia, was a small wooden shed.  This grew as hundreds of people came from all over Ethiopia to be treated for broken bones, leprosy, tumors, intestinal diseases, cancer, and gunshot, spear, and arrow wounds.  Tom and Elaine’s journey has been chronicled in a documentary film, “The Tom Coleman Story,” which premiered this April in Cambridge, Minnesota.  I attended the celebration prior to the showing with my parents, since we are relatives of Tom.  It is remarkable people in Ginde Beret to this day fondly remember Tom and his work.

 

 

 

 

Como Park Conservatory

img_2057img_2065It has been years, maybe decades, since I visited the Como Park Conservatory in St. Paul, Minnesota.  I believe my first experience visiting was as a child as part of a Bluebird trip.  The same star-like lights were still hanging in the Sunken Garden and the tropical trees looked the same, although they have been cut back a huge number of times.  The Conservatory is free to all, although a donation is gladly accepted.

 

The Unique Indian Pipe Plant

For the first time ever, I spotted several Indian pipe plants, with their nodding flowers, in the woods near our house.  These rare plants are usually white and do not have any chlorophyll.  Indian pipe plants are parasitic, relying on certain fungal hosts associated with the roots of trees in dense forests.  Here, the plants flowered in later August after several days of heavy rain.

King William Cultural Arts District, San Antonio

In the late 1800s, many wealthy German merchants built elegant and lavish homes along the San Antonio River, just south of downtown San Antonio.  Known as the King William District, the neighborhood is known as one of the most beautiful residential areas in Texas.  King William Street, named after King Wilhelm I, King of Prussia, is lined with many of the most famous homes.