Southwest Chapter is in the heart of the Driftless Area of southwestern Wisconsin. The area contains dry hill prairies, river terrace sand and wet prairies, and oak savannas. We have many TPE-owned properties that require our care in managing and restoring. Our chapter was one of the first chapters formed, and we have a rich history!  

The Southwest chapter covers Grant, Crawford, Richland, and Iowa Counties in Wisconsin. We invite you to join us!

Learn more by visiting About our chapter and Sites and projects web pages.

Chapter contact: Steve Querin-Schultz, 
Board representative: Gary Eldred, (608) 375-5271
Facebook:  Chapter page

What's New?

Exact Sciences, located in Madison, allows their employees to take two days off each year, with full pay, to work for non-profit organizations. Rachel Walsh, an Exact Sciences employee, took advantage of this and joined us at a TPE work party on Double Oak Savanna and recently at Eldred Prairie. She apparently believes in what we are doing and hopes to get some of her co-works to join us in the future.

Rachel is seen here with SW Chapter members, Bob Costanza and Roger Smith.           


Upcoming Events

Iris Drive Prairie Bonfire

Join the Southwest Chapter of The Prairie Enthusiasts for a winter bonfire on the prairie.
Saturday morning, January 18 from 10 am until 1 at the Iris Drive Prairie site near Gays Mills, WI.
Officially this is a work party, but there is not much work to do, because the wood piles are set and all ready to be burned. so unofficially, it's a social event!

Dress warm, bring a comfy chair, maybe a bag of marshmallows or some hot dogs and relax on one of the prettiest prairies in the area.

Bring a garden rake, old broom or pitchfork if you would like to help with the fire.

A group of us will be meeting at 9 am at The Cenex Marketplace store at 180 Misty Valley Ave, Gays Mills and then drive over together to the site.
This will give you a chance to get a hot cup of coffee or snacks to bring along.
Southwest chapter will provide some items for grilling and buns and a few assorted snacks and beverages.

Directions to the prairie site;
The address is 18663 West River Road, Gays Mills, WI 54631.
From the village of Gays Mills, WI drive west on HW 171. As you cross the Kickapoo River take the immediate next left onto River Road. Continue south for 2 miles to Iris Drive on your right.
To access the prairies, turn right onto Iris Drive and continue for 1,000 feet. There is a farm lane entrance on your right that you can turn into and park off of the road. DEPENDING ON THE SNOW DEPTH, you may have to park on the road.


Gary Eldred interview on WRCO radio show 

 The Morning Show recently featured Gary talking about prairies. Have a listen.