Powered Up Baraboo, Inc. is a 501(c)3 organization that seeks to increase the use of renewable energy, energy conservation, and environmentally sustainable practices in the Baraboo and Sauk County area through:
Community Education Efforts
• Producing community education workshops
• Creating and distributing Information materials about renewable energy, energy conservation, and
• Sharing renewable energy, energy conservation, and sustainable living news through social media
Climate Change Solution Advocacy
• Working on projects at the City and County level
• Partnering with various local organizations to reach goals
Organizing community volunteer projects
Grants & Fundraising
• Seeking and applying for grants to further our mission
• Raising funds for specific renewable and energy conservation projects
Powered Up Baraboo
The local face of the global transition to a clean energy future.
Our Wins in 2021-2022
A look back at the
ways we helped to educate the public,
and promoted the use of renewable energy, energy conservation, and sustainable practices in the Baraboo area.
We took part in Grow Solar Sauk County 2021 (as we did in 2018). PUB helped encourage 28 property owners to go through the program with a total of 235.06 kW of solar capacity being added in our area.
We held a meet and greet with State Assembly Rep. David Considine on December 1, 2021 to learn about the status of state-wide legislative efforts to promote renewable energy.
We partnered with Habitat for Humanity to publish a brochure on how to save money on your utility bill and save energy, geared towards middle and low income people. It was distributed to ten different nonprofits and government offices, and many people who stopped at our information booths.
We supported efforts to pass a city resolution on “No Mow May”.
Tom Kriegl, a member of the Home & Business Action Team, recruited Patrick Huelman, Associate Extension Professor of Cold Climate Housing Coordination at the University of Minnesota, an expert on energy efficient home construction, to provide three presentations at the Midwest Renewable Energy Fair in June, in Custer, WI.
We created a guide to local food producers who use rotational grazing in their operations, encouraging support of these farmers doing the right thing for the climate. We distributed this through our information booths.
We received grants from Rooted in Conservation Fund of Community Foundation of South Central Wisconsin and Free Congregation of Sauk County to help pay for our projects.
We supported the completion of the solar project at the Jack Young Middle School, and facilitated the installation of e-gauges at the JYMS so students can monitor solar production in real time.
We raised $60,000 to help make it possible for solar arrays to be added to Baraboo High School.
We produced a video introducing PUB’s work (made possible by a Good Idea Grant from Sauk County).
We sponsored a Lunch and Learn at the Baraboo Chamber of Commerce on May 26, 2022 to inform local businesses about our efforts.
We maintained a regular presence at the Baraboo Farmers’ Market, handing out literature and signing up new supporters.
We formed a core team of young families to launch a new PUB parent group.
We updated our website to offer information in a convenient form.
All this would not have been possible without our community partners, including Carnegie-Schadde Memorial Public Library, First United Methodist Church, Habitat for Humanity, Sauk County Department of Land, Resources and Environment, First Presbyterian Church and Relish Tray Bistro.
We sponsored the following free educational events:
Home Energy Audits webinar with Torrance Kramer on March 22, 2022 to outline ways home owners can reduce their energy bills.
A sustainable garden tour on June 11, 2022 with local landscape professional Marcy Huffaker, to educate local homeowners about the benefits of native plantings, rain gardens, and more.
"Why Trees Matter" program with City of Baraboo Director of Parks, Recreation, and Forestry Mike Hardy, highlighting the role trees play in carbon sequestration and the city’s role in tree planting September 30, 2021.
Why Farmers Matter” with Serge Koenig and Roman Miller on February 26, 2022 to highlight regenerative agriculture practices being utilized by local food producers.
A light bulb exchange on August 20, 2022, inviting people to bring in their old incandescent light bulbs and exchanging them for LED light bulbs.
"Rain Barrel Basics" program with Rick Eilertson, stormwater professional September 10, 2022. Eight rain barrels were given away free.
"Let's Get Composting" program with Rick Eilertson, certified Master Composter October 15, 2022.
Our purpose is to help the Baraboo area reach the economic, environmental, and citizen health opportunities presented by the global clean energy transition through forming collaborations between, and working with, local citizens, government entities, and businesses.
Click here to see our Bylaws.
Powered Up Baraboo works toward a vision of Baraboo as an energy-independent community whose carbon footprint is net-zero. Our community will be part of a worldwide network of communities whose local actions have ignited and supported their nations' climate-saving commitments and progress.
Getting an organizational structure in place
2015 – Leaders from Baraboo's First United Methodist Church and the Baraboo Range Preservation Association began congregational and community conversations about climate change and sustainability practices.
Early 2019 – The informal community group decided to incorporate as a non-profit using the name Powered Up Baraboo, Inc. so it could serve as a conduit for grants and projects if needed. Powered Up Baraboo "...seeks to increase the use of renewable energy and environmentally sustainable practices in Baraboo and Sauk County area through education, advocacy, grants/fundraising and other volunteer efforts.
Powered Up Baraboo is a non-member organization guided by a board of directors. A copy of our bylaws may be downloaded here. Supporters connect with Powered Up Baraboo via signing on to receive periodic updates and taking part in action teams as individual time allows.
Powered Up Baraboo began by focusing on a call for solar installations on Baraboo School District properties, especially the current Jack Young Middle School renovation. Mike Kohlman, Baraboo School Board member, credited Powered Up as the catalyst for the Baraboo School District to explore a solar installation project at Jack Young Middle School. Because solar was not part of the Jack Young Middle School renovation referendum, it must be funded outside referendum dollars. However, the district has contracted with Hoffman Planning, Design & Construction to provide preliminary design estimates and economic analysis for a solar project on its own merits.
Building a base of supporters
Spring of 2019 – A small group of original planners, in cooperation with the Baraboo Public Library, decided to create a four-part public education series, Baraboo 2030, in hopes of invigorating community involvement in actions to reduce carbon emissions. The public information sessions, held in September and October 2019, culminated in the decision to form local action teams to work on specific projects.
Thursday, Nov. 7, 2019 – Planners of the public library education series discussed how their work might fold into Powered Up Baraboo. On Friday, Nov. 8, Powered Up Baraboo’s Board of Directors accepted folding the results of the community education series into its work. This step brought an informal network of community members and potential projects under the umbrella of the non-profit. The advantages include streamlined coordination, communication, planning and enhanced leverage for specific projects.