Wednesday, May 6
Lead-Up Event: Poets on the Wild Side
99 N Cascade St, Osceola, WI
6:30 – 8:30 p.m.
In the lead-up to the weekend St. Croix Flyway Bird Migration Celebration (May 8-9), the Watershed Café in Osceola will host an evening of poetry celebrating birds and other natural treasures of the river valley. Enjoy readings by selected local poets along with special guests. The Watershed Cafe’s terrific selection of house-made desserts, coffee, tea, wine and soft drinks will be available for purchase.
Friday, May 8
The Bird Migration Celebration kick-offs at the Phipps Center for the Arts in Hudson with a reception and program. The program featuring Ben Thwaites begins at 7 p.m. Ben is a nature photographer who developed a nature photographer program, “In a New Light” at Northwest Passage, a resident facility for emotionally troubled teens.
Saturday, May 9
Hands-on, family friendly activities providing information and education about migratory birds are planned at a number of locations in the St. Croix Valley. Activities will be held in the morning.
All locations will also include a variety of activities. Highlights at each event include photographing birds, a workshop at Wild River State Park, in collaboration with Interstate Park. Bird banding will occur at Warner Nature Center and at the Wisconsin Campus of Carpenter Nature Center south of Hudson (Troy Township). A Story Book Nature Walk will highlight activities at the Great River Road Visitor Center/Freedom Park in Prescott.
The reception and program on Friday and The St. Croix Flyway Bird Migration Celebration activities are sponsored by Tropical Wings, a group of citizens supporting the Sister Park partnership between 13 US national parks of the Upper Midwest and 7 parks and protected areas of Costa Rica’s Osa Peninsula. The Costa Rican parks and partners held the 2nd annual bird celebration in March, as birds were beginning their migration north. This is Tropical Wings’ 2nd bird celebration in the St. Croix Valley.
Announcing the Tropical Wings 2015 Poetry Contest
Celebrating our Migratory Birds
Seeking original poetry reflecting on themes related to migratory birds and their remarkable seasonal journeys, the connections between birds and people, the role of birds in the community of life, the nature of flight. All forms of poetry welcome.
Awards in youth and adult categories include:
- Opportunity to be featured in a public reading on Friday, May 8 in Hudson, WI
- Scholarship to be used as partial fee for art and science Phipps Summer Art Camp class
- Field guides to the birds and other prizes to be announced
Eligibility: Open to poets ages 8-108 who reside in counties bordering the lower St. Croix River from Taylors/St. Croix Falls to Prescott, including the counties of Polk, St. Croix and Pierce in WI, Washington and Chisago in MN.
To Participate: Submit up to 3 poems, any form, any length. E-mail email@example.com, subject heading Tropical Wings Poetry Contest, or send by regular mail attn. Tropical Wings Poetry Contest, The Phipps Center for the Arts, 109 Locust Street, Hudson, Wisconsin, 54016. Include cover sheet with name, address, phone, and email (if available). If older than 21, indicate Adult Category. If younger than 21, please indicate Youth Category and provide age. Entries must be received on or before April 24.
Winning entries will be selected by poet and National Park Service Ranger Dale Cox and environmental author/poet Laurie Allmann. Participating poets will retain all rights to their works, granting permission for noncommercial use of the submitted poetry by the sponsoring organizations (below), limited to educational efforts promoting the value of migratory birds and their habitat. Submissions will not be returned.
Questions: Contact Anastasia Shartin, 715-386-2305, ext 103, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
2014 Celebration Information
The Art Bench Trail kicked off with hands-on activities, information about Tropical Wings and neotropical migratory birds, and free limited-edition festival poster!
Bird Migration Events in the St. Croix Valley
Friday, May 2, 2014
Bird Migration Celebration Kick-off Reception in Hudson
The Phipps Center for the Arts, 109 Locust Street, Hudson, Wisconsin. Sponsored by Tropical Wings.
For information, call (715) 386-2305.
The Birds that Connect Us, a program by Craig Thompson, WI DNR
Wings and a Prayer poetry reading by writer/poet Laurie Allmann
There are No Borders an original song by students of River Crest Elementary School
Black Box Theater, The Phipps Center for the Arts, 109 Locust Street, Hudson, Wisconsin. Sponsored by Tropical Wings.
For information, call (715) 386-2305.
Saturday, May 3, 2014
8:00-11:00 am – Explore the St. Croix Flyway Bench by Bench
Enjoy family-friendly activities and learn more about migratory birds along the St. Croix Valley’s very own Art Bench Trail. Visit one or more bench in any order.
- Photographing Birds: Discover the wonders of birds and the flyway—through the lens of a camera. Jim Mallman, President of Watchable Wildlife, will be on hand with information about Digital Bridge to Nature and cameras to take photos of your own!
- Listening to the Birds: Participants will start to identify the songs and calls of common birds. There will be an option of walking the paved 1.0 mile trails using a game to help children and adults remember common bird songs. They may take home a list of resources and tips to use what they learn in their own backyard.
- Banding Birds: Observe bird banding and identify birds with Warner Nature Center staff and volunteer birders. Experience the “EnviroScape” in action! This interactive model demonstrates “best practices” for how to prevent water pollution. Join the flock of watershed stewards to protect water for our migratory and resident birds.
- Writing Bird Poetry: Write a community haiku, make origami birds, fly a kite, and enjoy a poetry reading featuring local poet Laurie Allmann winners of the Tropical Wings Poetry Contest. The poetry reading will begin at 10:00 a.m. Bring your own kite or borrow ours. Pick up your free limited-edition festival poster!
- Be Kind to Birds: There are small efforts each of us can do to remove some of the threats to migrating bird. Learn about some of the dangers, and then make a window decal to do a small part to be kind to birds.
- Birds in your Backyard: Participants will look for birds along the river and learn how to make their backyard more “bird friendly”. Examples of plants that attract birds will be on display, And guests will be given plant lists to use as a resource.
- Bird Migration Simulation: Our neo-tropical migratory birds encounter many challenges during their seasonal migrations from overwintering grounds in Costa Rica to their nesting habitats here in the Midwest. Pretend you’re a migratory bird to play a migration simulation game and experience similar challenges such as rough weather, scarce food, polluted water and more. Take away a better understanding for how humans can better help our “borrowed birds” to not just survive, but thrive!
8:00-10:00 am – Spring Birding Tour at Crex Meadows Wildlife Area
Join expert birders as they explore the wetlands and prairies for spring migrant and returning resident birds. Carpool from the Crex Meadows Wildlife Area Visitor Center. Pre-registration required. Fee: $5/person. First 10 people may reserve space in the van. For information, call 715-463-2739.
10:00-10:30 am – Tropical Wings Poetry Contest Winners at Somerset Art Bench
Poets will read their winning entries from the recent poetry contest focusing on themes of migratory birds and their remarkable seasonal journeys, the connections between birds and people, the role of birds in the community of life, and the nature of flight. Located in Larry Forrest Memorial Park in Somerset. For information, call (715) 386-2305.
10:00-11:00 am – Make & Take Mini Binoculars for Kids at MN Interstate State Park
Kids, create and decorate your own simple binoculars and then put them to use during a short bird watching adventure with the naturalist. Supplies are limited, first come first served. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Groups of 8 or more should call ahead. Meet at the stone picnic shelter near the river (at the park’s south/campground entrance). Program is free, but a Minnesota State Park vehicle permit is required. For information, call 651-465-5711 x225.
10:00 am-3:00 pm – St. Croix Valley Bird Club Festival in River Falls
This 4th annual event offers something of interest for birding enthusiasts of all ages and skills. Rain or shine, there will be a bird-banding demonstration, guided hikes on the White Pathway along the Kinnickinnic River and many hands-on children’s activities. Events are held at the White Pathway and the River Falls City Hall at 222 Lewis Street in River Falls.
11:00 am-12 noon – Banding Migrating Birds Presentation in Marine on St. Croix
Hear from Warner Nature Center’s naturalist and avian coordinator, Paul Smithson, as he recounts Warner’s forty-year bird banding history and describes how this research can be used to understand and help migrating birds. The talk is sponsored by the Marine Community Library and will take place in the upstairs of the Village Hall in Marine on St. Croix. For information, call 651-433-2820.
1:00-3:00 pm Migratory Bird Photo Exhibit Opening Reception in St. Croix Falls
Every spring birds from South America and the Caribbean return to the St. Croix valley to nest and spend the summer. Images of over 20 of these species are included in a photo exhibit by photographer Ron Winch, which will be on display in the St. Croix River Visitor Center (401 N. Hamilton St.) from May 3 until June 30. For information, call 715-483-2274.
6:30-7:30 pm After Supper Stroll for Birds and Blooms at MN Interstate State Park
You are invited for a leisurely evening stroll full of newly arrived birds and blooms. The naturalist-led walk will be approximately one hour long and one mile round trip. Meet at the Park Office to begin. If you wish, bring a picnic dinner and enjoy your meal with beautiful river views from the picnic area before the program begins at 6:30. Program is free, but a Minnesota State park vehicle permit is required to enter the park. For information, call 651-465-5711 x225.
7:00-8:00 pm Chimney Swift Program at Freedom Park in Prescott
Join naturalists at Freedom Park in Prescott to learn all about chimney swifts! Learn how habitat loss and changes to chimneys have resulted in recent rapid population declines and what you can do to help the species. See a tower recently constructed to provide nesting and roosting space for this gregarious bird and observe birds flying over the river bluffs at dusk. For more information, call (715) 262-0104.
Sunday, May 4, 2014
12 noon-4:00 pm Earth Day Celebration at YMCA Camp St. Croix
St. Croix County’s 10th Annual Earth Day Celebration will feature a host of programs and activities around the theme of water. Bird hikes will start at the Tropical Wings table. For more information, call (715) 531-1915.
A Sister Park Partnership Project
Tropical Wings formed in 2011 as a Sister Park arrangement was being developed among thirteen national park units in the Upper Midwest, including the St. Croix National Scenic Riverway, and seven parks around the Osa Peninsula in Costa Rica. The Costa Rican parks and partners held their first annual bird festival in March as our shared birds were beginning their migration north. This event echoes their efforts and welcomes the birds back to Minnesota and Wisconsin!
These events are made possible by Tropical Wings, the Art Bench Trail of The Phipps Center for the Arts, Rotary District 5960,River Market Community Co-op, the St. Croix Valley Foundation, and the St. Croix National Scenic Riverway