2023 Holiday Hike Challenge Results

A big red holiday bow hangs on a tree in a nature preserve

2023 Holiday Hike Challenge Results

This holiday season, many of you set out to find the big red holiday bows hanging on trees in 16 of the natural areas the Land Conservancy has helped protect. You travelled across West Michigan with your friends, family, and pets and discovered gorgeous natural places—some for the first time! 

A hearty thanks to everyone who participated in our Holiday Hike Challenge! Today we are excited to share with you the results and prize winners. 


  • 116 participants
  • 5 (pictured) furry companions 
  • 393 total preserve visits
  • A record 13 participants visited all 16 nature preserves!


Congratulations to our winners! We will be reaching out to everyone who won to arrange redemption of prizes. A special thank you to our prize donors, Conservation Resource Alliance, Brewery Vivant, Querkus Creative, REI, Blandford Nature Center, Designs by Nature, Field Sparrow Studio, Grand Rapids Public Museum, John Ball Zoo, Frederik Meijer Gardens, Orvis, New Holland Brewing Company, The Patient Artist (Matthew Goetzka), The Pottery Lane, and Wild Ones Wellness.

GRAND PRIZE: Framed Original Painting by Jerry Gates, donated by Conservation Resource Alliance

Awarded to the first person to submit photos from all 16 preserves
Winner: Janalyce Fletcher

FIRST RUNNER UP: Gift Package with selections from Brewery Vivant and Broad Leaf Brewery & Spirits

Awarded to the second person to submit photos from all 16 preserves
Winner: Anna Tarach

SECOND PRIZE: Gift Package from Querkus Creative

Awarded to the first person to successfully identify the most trees.
Winner: Andrew Lidral

SECOND RUNNER UP: Backpacking Bundle from REI

Awarded to the second person to successfully identify the most trees.
Winner: Lea Sevigny

SOCIAL MEDIA PRIZE: Backpacking Bundle from REI

Winner drawn from raffle of individuals who submitted their entries on social media.
Winner: Anna Felkers


Amy Schenkel
Christine Malmsten
Clarence Rudat
Tari Koziatek
Pattie Gaddy
Cari Draft
Holly Dumond
Jen & Jeremy Patzer
Anna W
Hannah Barnsdale
Heather Bell
Bethany Sebree
Nic L.

Tree ID Answer Key 

Anderson Woods Red maple (Acer rubrum)
B.D. White White oak (Quercus alba)
Brower Lake Black oak (Quercus velutina)
Dune Pines Red oak (Quercus rubra)
Flower Creek Yellow birch (Betula allegheniensis)
Kuker Van-Til Black cherry (Prunus serotina)
Lamberton Lake Fen Black willow (Salix nigra)
Maas Family Jack pine (Pinus banksiana)
McDuffee Creek Northern White Cedar
Minnie Skwarek Eastern hemlock (Tsuga canadensis)
Palomita Sugar maple (Acer saccharum)
Richmond Woods White pine (Pinus strobus)
Saul Lake Bog Pignut hickory (Carya glabra)
The Highlands Silver Maple
Upriver Nature Preserve Bigtooth aspen (Populus grandidentata)
Wege Foundation Sassafras (Sassafras albidum)


Thank you to our prize donors!

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