Berkeley Springs Birding Festival September 21-23
The Fifth Annual Berkeley Springs Fall Birding Festival will be held in and around Berkeley Springs the weekend of September 21-23.
The festival is timed to coincide with the annual fall bird migration. It will include Friday and Saturday evening programs, bird walks and workshops during the day Saturday, and a bird walk Sunday morning.
Everyone is welcome to attend. All of the festival's events will be free except for the Friday and Saturday night programs. For ticket information contact the Nature Niche store at 304-258-0992.
This year's featured presenter will once again be Sharon Stiteler, the Minnesota naturalist who participated in last year's festival. She authors the popular "Birdchick.com" blog, which has been recognized in the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times and on NBC Nightly News.
The first event will be a reception and program at the Ice House the evening of Friday, September 21. The reception will begin at 6 p.m.; the program will follow at 7 p.m. with a presentation about raptors by Northern Virginia raptor expert Liam McGranaghan. At 8 p.m. Stiteler will give a talk entitled "Today's Office."
Saturday's events will begin with a free morning bird walk with Liam and Sharon that will start at 8 a.m. at the scenic Panorama Overlook on Route 9 west of Berkeley Springs.
Saturday afternoon, there will be two free events at Cacapon State Park. The first event will be a 1:30 p.m. birding workshop at the Park Nature Center. The workshop will be aimed at children but also open to beginning birders of all ages. It will be led by Park naturalist Renee Fincham and Smithsonian Institution forensic ornithologist March Heacker.
At 3 p.m., in the lower conference room of the Park Lodge, Ron Perrone of the Three Rivers Avian Center in Brooks will give a presentation on raptors featuring live rescued birds.
Saturday evening will feature two presentations at the Ice House. At 7 p.m., Marcy Heacker, who also participated in the festival last year, will give a talk entitled "Birding Then and Now; More Tales From the Nation's Attic."
At 8:15 p.m., Stiteler will talk about her experiences birding in other countries, most recently in Israel.
The Saturday evening event will include desert and coffee, and a silent auction of items donated by local artists and businesses.
The festival will wrap up on the morning of Sunday, September 23, with a free 8:30 a.m. bird walk at Sleepy Creek Retreat, a mountainside meadowland property south of Berkeley Springs. The property offers sweeping views and a rich variety of habitats, and it will provide good opportunities to see migrating raptors, blue jays and warblers.