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2013 Yampa Valley Crane Festival: Monday

Monday, September 9, 2013 - 12:00am
  • Community-wide

Monday's Yampa Valley Crane Festival events include a sunrise crane viewing, a coffee chat, crane storytime at the library, an update on the white-naped crane conservation project in Mongolia, the Art of Birding with Joan Hoffmann and the festival's keynote speaker, conservation photographer Michael Forsberg.

Most crane festival events are free, open to the public, and require no pre-registration.  A few activities or services require pre-registration due to a limit on the number of participants and/or a fee. These are indicated in the event descriptions below.

We've been scouting the Greater Sandhill Cranes' hangouts around the Yampa Valley! Download and view maps here to venture out where you're most likely to find them. The document is a four-page pdf for easy viewing and printing at home. During the festival, printed copies will also be available at the festival info desk outside Library Hall at the Bud Werner Memorial Library, 1289 Lincoln Avenue.

Monday's Yampa Valley Crane Festival schedule:

6:15 a.m.   Sunrise crane viewing
A shuttle departs from the Stockbridge Transit Center at 1505 Lincoln Avenue at 5:45 a.m. and returns there at approximately 8:45 a.m. 
**Pre-registration required for shuttle service only. To reserve a seat on the shuttle call 970-846-5556. $5 suggested donation to help cover fuel costs. Any unreserved seats will be filled first-come-first-serve at the Stockbridge departure site.

8:30 a.m.  “Cranes and Photography” with Michael Forsberg
An informal coffee talk with wildlife photographer Michael Forsberg at Wild Goose Coffee at the Granary. The chat follows the sunrise crane viewing, so start time is approximate. Wild Goose Coffee at the Granary is located at 198 E. Lincoln Avenue in Hayden. 
10 a.m.-5 p.m.  Crane Festival Art Show at The Depot
The official Crane Festival Art show, in partnership with the Steamboat Springs Arts Council, featuring more than 30 works in a variety of media on display at The Depot, 1001 13th Street..

10:30 a.m.  Crane Storytime at the Library
Children gather for crane stories with Librarian Sarah Kostin in the Storytime Room at the Bud Werner Memorial Library, 1289 Lincoln Avenue.
Noon   Update from the field:  White-naped Crane Conservation in Mongolia with Robert Skorkowsky
An update from Robert Skorkowsky, Rocky Mountain Region Avian Program Coordinator with the U.S. Forest Service, who has been working on a white-naped crane conservation project in Mongolia along with the International Crane Foundation. This project was spawned by a chance meeting at the 2012 Yampa Valley Crane Festival between Skorkowsky and ICF founder George Archibald. The talk is in Library Hall at the Bud Werner Memorial Library, 1289 Lincoln Avenue.

1-2 p.m.   "The Art of Birding" with Joan Hoffman
A reading, slideshow and roundtable discussion led by plein air painter Joan Hoffmann, expanding upon her recent Audubon Society Hog Island fellowship on the art of birding. Participants should bring an image or passage to share that touches on the creative experience and the inspiration that Sandhill Cranes and other birds provide in their lives. The group will gather in Library Hall at the Bud Werner Memorial Library, 1289 Lincoln Avenue.

2 p.m.   Screening of Raising Kid Colt
The film about a young Sandhill Crane, following the adventures of the young colt and his parents over two summers by Nina Faust, screens in in Library Hall at the Bud Werner Memorial Library, 1289 Lincoln Avenue. Run time: 35 min.

7 p.m.   Crane Festival Keynote: An evening with conservation photographer Michael Forsberg
The internationally renowned nature and crane photographer, presents  “From Cranes to Plains - A Photographer’s Journey Connecting the Heart of a Continent” in Library Hall at the Bud Werner Memorial Library, 1289 Lincoln Avenue.

About the keynote speaker
Michael Forsberg is a Nebraska native and has focused much of his work in North America’s Great Plains, once one of the greatest grassland ecosystems on Earth. His goal has been to try to capture the wild spirit that still survives in these wide open spaces and put a face to the often overlooked native creatures and landscapes found there. His hope is that the images can build appreciation and go to work to inspire conservation efforts on the land far into the future.

Mike received a degree in geography with an emphasis in environmental studies from the University of Nebraska, and worked briefly as a seasonal ranger in the National Park Service before accepting a job as a staff photographer and writer producing natural history stories for NEBRASKAland Magazine, the state’s conservation publication. He worked at the magazine for six years before starting his own photography business and gallery. Forsberg’s work has appeared in publications including Audubon, National Geographic, National Wildlife, and Natural History, and recognized in the Pictures of the Year and Wildlife Photographer of the Year competitions. In 2001, his image of a Nebraska tallgrass prairie was selected for an International Postage Stamp. In 2004, he was awarded a Conservation Education Award from The Wildlife Society. In 2007, Mike was featured in the PBS documentary Crane Song, and was the 2009 recipient of the North American Nature Photographer’s Association Mission Award. Mike is a charter member of the North American Nature Photographer's Association and a fellow with the International League of Conservation Photographers.

Mike’s first book project, On Ancient Wings – The Sandhill Cranes of North America, was the result of a five-year personal journey connecting the lives of the cranes and their habitats across the continent from western Alaska to Cuba, made possible with a grant from the International Crane Foundation. His second book, Great Plains – America’s Lingering Wild, came together traveling 100,000 miles crisscrossing the Plains from Canada to Mexico. It explores the wildlife, habitats and conservation challenges in the heart of the continent, with essays by South Dakota writer and rancher Dan O’Brien. Released in 2009 by the University of Chicago Press, the book was supported with a major grant from The Nature Conservancy.

Great Plains-America's Lingering Wild, the documentary film, was released in November 2012, a co-production of NET Television and Michael Forsberg Photography. Currently Mike is co-directing the Platte Basin Time Lapse Project in partnership with the University of Nebraska - Lincoln.The project is a multi-year effort that uses time-lapse photography to document water use in the Platte River Basin from its headwaters in the Colorado Rockies to its confluence with the Missouri River along Nebraska's eastern border.Mike lives in Lincoln, Nebraska, with his wife Patty, their two children Elsa and Emme, three unruly dogs and two rabbits.

Ongoing      Crane art display at Wild Goose Coffee at the Granary
Visit the display during regular business hours throughout September. Wild Goose Coffee at the Granary is located at 198 E. Lincoln Avenue in Hayden.  

Ongoing      Crane art in Steamboat Springs galleries    
Crane art is being featured at several Steamboat Springs galleries: The Artists' Gallery of Steamboat (1009 Lincoln Ave.) and Images of Nature (730 Lincoln Ave.). After the festival, the official Crane Art Show, in partnership with the Steamboat Springs Arts Council, will be open at the Depot (1001 13th St.) from 11 a.m.- 5 p.m., Tuesday-Friday, throughout September.

Links to daily schedules:

About the festival
The second annual Yampa Valley Crane Festival takes place September 6-9, 2013 in Steamboat Springs and Hayden. The Greater Sandhill Crane is an iconic species of the Yampa Valley. Returning in the spring, cranes nest and raise their young in wetland areas throughout the valley. In late summer and early fall, hundreds of cranes from the Rocky Mountain flock join the local birds to rest and feed before continuing their journey south. The festival includes daily crane viewings, expert speakers, films, art exhibits, workshops, family activities and more. All community activities and events are free unless otherwise indicated in the program!

About the festival sponsor
The Colorado Crane Conservation Coalition (CCCC) is a non-profit organization dedicated to the conservation and preservation of Sandhill Cranes in Colorado -- and lead organizer for the Yampa Valley Crane Festival each fall. Help support CCCC and the 2013 Yampa Valley Crane Festival by printing and submitting the donation form (A pdf, "CCCCSupport") at  the bottom of this page.

Festival partners
Abby Jensen Photography, BookTrails/Off the Beaten Path, Bud Werner Memorial Library, City of Steamboat Springs, Colorado Parks and Wildlife, Conservation Colorado, Council of the Humane Society of the U.S., Ciao Gelato, Gerhard Assenmacher Photography, Klauzer & Tremaine, Steamboat Ski & Resort Corporation, Steamboat Springs Arts Council, The Nature Conservancy, Tom Thurston at Stagecoach Marina, U.S. Forest Service, Yampa Valley Birding Club, Yampa Valley Land Trust & Yampatika

Questions about the Yampa Valley Crane Festival? Please send us an email.