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2023 Wings Over Willapa Festival, September 22-24




Photos by Paul Bannick

The Wings Over Willapa Festival

September 22 - 24, 2023 was a resounding success thanks to all of you who attended and/or sponsored.

See you all September 20-22, 2024!

Mission: Connecting people with birds, art, and nature in celebration of Willapa National Wildlife Refuge

This multi-day bird festival in one of the richest bird destinations in North America happens in the Willapa National Wildlife Refuge and sites on Washington’s Long Beach Peninsula. The Festival has something for nature lovers of all ages and skill.

Events include expert-led bird walks and programs ranging from wildlife tracking to birding with technology. Other highlights include a guided tour to Long Island to an old-growth cedar grove, handbuilding with clay to create your own bowl or mug, and a special Nature Play Day on Saturday for children and families.

Saturday evening’s keynote address, "The Owl and the Woodpecker," is presented by Paul Bannick.  Based on his book by the same title this program features entirely new photos, information and stories gleaned from the several years since Owl and Woodpeckers' release.  It takes audiences on a visual and auditory exploration of habitats of North America through the owls and woodpeckers that most define and enrich these places. This photographic field report celebrates the ways the lives of these two iconic birds are intertwined with one another, and their role as keystone and indicator species for their environment. Audiences are immersed in the sights and sounds of forest, grassland, arctic, and desert, and in the entertaining and informative details of Paul's narrative. The hidden life of these birds is obvious for those who know how to find it. Paul knows how to find it, and how to bring it to life for his audiences through photos, sound, and story.  

We will also be hosting a Silent Auction during the Keynote! Proceeds from the auction will go towards future Wings Over Willapa Festival events, support of education and accessible facilities, and other projects on Willapa National Wildlife Refuge. Doors open at 5:30 with heavy hors-d'Ĺ“uvres and a complimentary beer or wine (and glass) are included with registration. A cash bar is also available.

Registration and Visitor Information

We require a $5 general festival registration, nominal fees for some of the classes, and a $35 registration for the keynote speaker Paul Bannick. All Nature Play Day activities are free. Registration page can be found here.

 Festival event descriptions and Documents: 

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