President's Message

By Charlie Pelizza

Welcome to the new year, with all the hope and promise of good days to come!  As the sun begins to peek out from the clouds, we find ourselves hoping to spend more time outdoors with family and friends.  As you read through the newsletter, you will find articles about places to hike and birdwatch on the Willapa Refuge. 

For me, I’m watching our new pup watching the sky for birds heading north.  It’s instinctive for both of us to be watching and anticipating the coming northern migration of ducks, geese, swans, and other migrants.  While there are no pets allowed on the Refuge (to keep wildlife safe), we can still enjoy quiet hikes along the bay or the Willapa Hills with our human companions. 

Over the past few years, the Friends of Willapa National Wildlife Refuge has been quietly waiting for the opportunity to return to offering opportunities for members and our community. With the pandemic subsiding, we plan to host hikes, barge trips, wildlife festivals, and other events again! We are looking forward to seeing you all again and in person!

And if you are looking to be a bit more involved with Friends, we have several opportunities for you to help, ranging from spending a day planting native plants, to working as our new Event Coordinator, to joining in our Environmental Education efforts in Pacific County 4th grade classroom (no teaching experience required), to becoming a member of our Board of Directors. Whether you choose to simply participate in events or to help more directly, we look forward to seeing you soon on the Refuge. 

Photo by Pat Welle

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