2016 Crane Festival – Brief Summary
2016 Festival Activities
- Daily guided sunrise and sunset crane viewing sessions
- Crane Coloring Contest Award Ceremony for elementary students
- Educational displays about cranes and their habitat on display throughout the festival
- Optics display on the Library Lawn
- Nature-writing workshop with author Ellen Bonnifield
- Wildlife Photography Workshop taught by Gerhard Assenmacher and Abby Jensen
- Crane puppet making workshops for children taught by Heather Henson, founder of IBEX Puppetry and daughter of Jim Henson of Muppets fame.
- Wine and cheese reception and gallery show at Pine Moon Fine Art Gallery
- Sketch-A-Crane/Sketch-A-Raptor workshop with professional artist, Chula Beauregard
- Guided birding by pontoon boat at Stagecoach State Park
- Guided bird walks with Ted Floyd and the Yampa Valley Birding Club
- Guided bird walks with Jeff Birek and the Yampa Valley Birding Club
- Gondola ride and a guided nature/bird walk led by botanist Karen Vail on the Steamboat Ski Area
- Historic Carpenter Ranch homestead tour led by Betsy Blakeslee, TNC’s Facilities Manager
- Barbecue dinner at The Nature Conservancy’s historic Carpenter Ranch in Hayden including a talk by Birding editor, Ted Floyd, and followed by sunset guided crane viewing
- Crane yard art display and silent auction on the Library Lawn
- Family activities, dessert and crane viewing, Yampavian Ranch
- HawkQuest’s Live Raptors. A live hawk, owl, falcon and eagle were on display on the Library Lawn
- Tour by horse-drawn wagon of the TS Jost “crane friendly” working ranch with a discussion by the ranchers of how agriculture and conservation can operate hand in hand
- Owl pellet workshop for kids, find out what owls eat and how they process their food
- Photography Contest award presentation in Library Hall
2016 Festival Speakers
- Keynote Speaker, Nyambayar Batbayar- Director of Mongolia’s Wildlife Science & Conservation Center presented two talks: “Mongolia – Land of the Blue Sky and Cranes” and “Mongolia– Safe Haven for Largest Birds of Prey in the Old World”
- John Azua- Denver Zoo’s Curator of Birds gave a presentation entitled “A Community Approach to Conserving the Lesser Kestrel in the Ikh Nart Nature Reserve, Mongolia”
- Liz Schnackenberg- USDA Forest Service Hydrologist in a talk entitled “Cranes, Yaks & Floating Sedge Mats” shared information about wildlife and habitat in the Ruoergai Native Reserve in China where she has recently worked on research projects
- Dr. Barry Hartup- Chief Veterinarian for the International Crane Foundation gave a special talk for kids 5-13 entitled “Whooping Crane Fun Facts.” He also made two other Whooping Crane presentations: “Whooping Cranes in 2016: Recovery of an Iconic Species” and “Tales of a Whooping Crane Veterinarian”
- Paul Tebbel- Crane biologist, former director of Audubon’s Rowe Sanctuary on the Platte River in Nebraska, and currently Executive Director of the Effie Yeaw Nature Center in California presented “Understanding Cranes: A conversation about the biology, personalities & strong family ties of Sandhill Cranes”
- Barbara Walton of HawkQuest presented “Owls of the World” featuring 5 live owls.
2016 Festival Films
- Cranes of the Rockies: focused on the Rocky Mountain Population of Greater Sandhill Cranes and was produced by Colorado videographer Michael Bennett.
- Audubon: John James Audubon and the Birds of America: the story of a rare man whose work influenced every generation of nature lover that came after him and has helped to preserve a small portion of the wild lands he explored and documented.
- Bhutan’s Birds of Heaven: This film is a beautiful story about a young Bhutanese boy and his love of the Black-necked cranes that visit his Himalayan valley.
2016 Festival Sponsors and Partners
Abby Jensen Photography, Alpine Lumber, Bird Conservancy of the Rockies, Bud Werner Memorial Library, Ciao Gelato, City of Steamboat Springs, Steve Cobb, Colorado Parks and Wildlife, Gerhard Assenmacher Photography, Klauzer & Tremaine, Lone Oak Studio, Mogils on the Mountain Photoshop, Paul King, PhotoGraphicsArt, Pine Moon Fine Art Gallery, Post Net, Steamboat Ace Hardware, Steamboat Lumber, Steamboat Ski & Resort Corporation, The Nature Conservancy, Tom Thurston at Stagecoach Marina, U.S. Forest Service, Steamboat Resorts by Wyndham Vacation Rentals, Yampa Valley Birding Club, YVEA: Operation Round-Up, Yampa Valley Land Trust, Yampatika
The fifth annual Yampa Valley Crane Festival was held September 8-11, 2016 in Steamboat Springs and Hayden, Colorado.