By Melissa Gabrielson & Caitlin Lenahan
For The Cordova Times
Registration is still open for the Copper River Delta Shorebird Festival, coming up May 3-6. There are also some great volunteer opportunities and ways to earn or win a free registration or a Copper River Delta Shorebird Festival T-shirt.
Can you find the shorebird flock? The shorebird flock, traveling around Cordova, is made up of approximately 20 wooden shorebirds, painted to look like some of the common species seen in Cordova. The first person to find the Golden Plover will win a free Copper River Delta Shorebird Festival registration! Hints on the flock’s location can be heard on KLAM and KCDV starting April 30. If you find the Golden Plover, bring the bird to the Chamber of Commerce on First Street for your free registration.
Want to be involved?
Festival volunteers will get a free registration or a T-shirt for one shift worked. Call the Cordova Chamber of Commerce for details.
All local registrants will be entered to win a half-day birding cruise with Auklet Charter Services during the festival. Observe sea birds, shorebirds and the wildlife of Prince William Sound from aboard this 58-foot classic, wooden vessel. Auklet Charter Services is also offering discounted trips throughout the festival weekend.
Shorebird airboat tours will also be occurring throughout the festival weekend. Join Jack Stevenson, of Riverside Inn, on a scenic airboat trip down Eyak River. The airboat glides over mudflats for a closer view of the birds and wildlife that call this area of the Delta home. Airboat tours will last approximately two to three hours and include lots of time for bird viewing and photography. Ask for the Festival Registrant discount! Call 907-491-1424 to sign-up before the trips fill up.
Practice your bird identification skills and join the Cordova Birding Challenge at 1 p.m. Sunday, May 6. Compete on a team of two to four people to see if you can complete the longest list. The goal is to see how many birds your team can see and hear in an eight-hour period. Species lists will be compiled and tallied at 9 p.m. at the Reluctant Fisherman. This event is free with festival registration or $10 for non-registrants.
And finally, look for the Birders Welcome sign at businesses throughout Cordova. For every $20 you spend at these locations, during the weekend, you will receive Birder’s Bucks. Turn in Birders Bucks by 10 a.m. Sunday at the Cordova Center, and be entered to win a pair of Vortex Diamondback 10×42 binoculars. Local businesses interested in participating and giving out Birder’s Bucks should call 907-424-7260. Birder’s Bucks and signage will be distributed before the event.
Additional information about the Copper River Delta Shorebird Festival and festival schedule can be found at http://www.copperriverdeltashorebirdfestival.com/events/.
Melissa Gabrielson and Caitlin Lenahan are members of the festival committee.