Join us for the Fall
American Falls Birding Festival
on September 27th
at the AF Library
On September 27, 2014, the AF Birding Committee will be holding its fall birding festival in American Falls, following its spring festival that had been held in June.
“We had a nice turnout for our spring festival,” said Kurtis Workman, committee member and Greater American Falls Area Chamber of Commerce president. “We had adults and kids, newbies and pros. We’re hoping to bring together another great group of people for our fall festival.”
American Falls is one of the birding hot spots in North America because it is on the migratory route for birds flying south for the winter and north for the summer. The American Falls Reservoir and the Snake River attract a wide variety of birds.
At the spring birding festival, participants spotted 43 different types of birds, which according to Kristen Jensen (another member of the birding committee) is an impressive amount. “I’ve made special trips to go birding with my son to places touted as being a bird refuge, and we would spot two different types of birds after walking the field for hours. Here in American Falls, we’re blessed to have such a large variety of birds to watch and enjoy.”
The birding festival committee is working to raise awareness of the birding opportunities in Power County and has focused on holding a biannual festival as a way of doing so. The festivals are free to the public and everyone is welcome to attend and enjoy (children under the age of 13 need to be accompanied by an adult).
Several local companies have sponsored the event in order to make it free for participants, and the birding committee wanted to emphasize how much their donations helped out. “The monetary donations from Idaho Power, the Chamber of Commerce, and Magnida, and the bird seed and item donations from Mountain Seed Oil,” said Todd Winters, birding festival committee member, “helped make our spring festival a great success. We’re lucky to have such supportive local businesses.”
The September 27 festival will start at the American Falls District Library at 308 Roosevelt St, American Falls, ID 83211 at 8 a.m. The festival will open with a presentation on bird feeding in the backyard, then move to the American Falls Cemetery at 9:30. The cemetery, which overlooks the Snake River, is home to a large variety of birds and is also relatively flat.
“We want to make our festival accessible to as wide a variety of people as possible, so we don’t want to make anyone hike long distances up a hill,” stated Havilah Workman, another birding committee member. “That’s something we considered when choosing places to go watch the birds during our festival.”
At noon, the group will have a no-host lunch at The Bay Restaurant out by the Willow Bay Marina and listen to a speaker talk about local birds. Afterwards, they will walk some trails by the Marina to scout out additional birds, and then wrap up the day at 13 Bottles, a local smoke-free pub.
“The after-party at 13 Bottles is totally optional, as are all events during the day, but the owners are big birding fans and we found that relaxing there after a day of walking trails is a nice way to finish things off,” stated Havilah.
About the AF Birding Committee
A group of volunteers dedicated to raising awareness of the birding possibilities in Power County, Idaho, the four members put together and host a twice-yearly festival to encourage people to explore nature right in their backyards. Although the festivals are a relatively new event, the committee hopes to make them a tradition that brings in people from across the area to explore and enjoy.
The City of American Falls and Power County area provides a wide variety of options for residents and visitors alike. Nestled next to the American Falls Reservoir and Snake River canyon, it offers a multitude of activities for water sport enthusiasts, camping, and outdoorsman. The location is also an ideal spot in the Northwest, providing visitors a three-hour drive or less to some of the country’s best sites: Yellowstone National Park, Jackson Hole and the Tetons, Boise, Salt Lake City and Sun Valley.
The Snake River plain area is also rich in fertile fields with a strong influence of agriculture and industry. The area farms and businesses help provide a stable local economy and job opportunities for relocating families. American Falls and its surrounding area offers a rural, small town feel with amazing views and the added convenience of easy city access.
Located only 15 miles south of American Falls, the City of Rockland is located near the Sublett Range and Deep Creek Mountains. The spacious views and hometown feel provide a rural setting for families and offers the perfect retreat for the outdoorsman. Fishing, camping, hunting and snowmobiling in the winter are all ideal past times to be spent in the Rockland Valley.