Creston Valley Bird Fest, Creston, BC, Canada

Northern Pygmy Owl  ©Jim Lawrence, Kootenay Reflections

The May 10, 11 & 12, 2013 Creston Valley Bird Fest  promises to be a celebration of all things Creston:  the birds, the art and the agriculture.  It's why life is good in this tiny rural valley.

The festival begins with a party.  On Friday night artists, photographers and musicians will display their craft in the Creston Room of the Community Complex.  Local vintners will provide samples of the valley spirits, along with the world-famous Tabletree cherry juice.  Locally produced cheese from the organic Kootenay Alpine Cheese fromagerie will enhance the hors d'oervres.

At sundown, festival patrons will follow Marc-Andre Beaucher deep into the Creston Valley Wildlife Management Area, listening for owls.

The fun continues Saturday morning as ten Bird Experts lead groups through different parts of the Creston Valley.  Mountain, wetland, river, lake grassland and forest habitats have their own species.  Profiles of our bird experts drawn from Victoria, Nelson, Castlegar, South Slocan, Cranbrook and Creston are described on our website.

Following a morning of discovery, lunch, catered by the Real Food Cafe, will be offered from 11 am to 1 pm in the Creston Room.  Two presentations are on the menu:  Ann Nightingale's 'Hummingbirds' and Dr. Rick Page's 'Cooper's Hawks'.

Several valley events have also been planned for festival enjoyment.  Because May is blossom time, cherry-producer Susan Low has offered to lead people through her orchard.  Lorraine Scott is eager to show her well-tended cacti garden.  Julia Miller has invited people to her veranda in Wynndel to view the hundreds of hummingbirds zipping about her feeders.  Nadine Harris-Ben Rabha has arranged a tour of her family organic diary and cheese-producing farm.  Nigel Francis and several community groups have been growing food year-round at the community greenhouses at the College of the Rockies.  Sandy Kunze has arranged an action-packed bus tour of eight art studios.

The Creston Valley Bird Fest is pleased to host two well-known presenters:  John Neville of Neville Recordings and Jim Lawrence, ecologically-sensitive wildlife photographer from the Lardeau Valley.  John Neville has proudced several CD's of bird songs and has supplied recordings to Parks Canada and the movies.  His talk, 'Owls of BC' is in the Creston Room.  Jim Lawrence's photography workshop is at the Wildlife Centre theatre utilizing indoor and outdoor spaces.

At 7:00 pm the Bird Fest ends on a high note in the PCSS auditorium with a wind-up species count, presentation of the festival art, and an audio-visual treat by world adventurer and videographer, Brian Keating.  Brian's presentation, 'Going High:  Three Spirit-Lifting Journeys' will take us on an incredible journey to the mountains of our planet - the Himilaya, the Andes and our own Rocky Mountains.  His theme is a plea to humanity to save our wild places.

But that's not truly the end.  Three bird experts will lead expeditions on Sunday morning to Corn Creek Marsh, Kootenay Pass and around the Wildlife Centre Trails.  It's a perfect way to spend Mother's Day.

Registrations for the Creston Valley Bird Fest are on-line at www,, at the Creston campus of the College of the Rockies or at the festival on Friday, May 10, 5:00 - 8:00 pm.

Creston needs a bird bestival to remind us that nature's diversity is worth celebrating.  This festival will bring people to where the wild things are, with the hope of fostering love, care and compassion for all creatures and places wild.

Submitted by:

Tanna Patterson
Project Planner
Creston Valley Bird Fest

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