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Carden Nature Festival time is coming June1-3

Participants learn more about wildlife at the 2011 Carden Nature Festival. This year's Festival runs from June 1-3.

Festival Time is coming!  June 1-3, 2012. Now that we are heading into the late stages of winter, many thoughts turn towards spring with its warmth and sunshine.  And it’s a good time to remind everyone, that despite the weather, in just a few months, the Carden Nature Festival will be here for three days of nature related events.

Back for a sixth year, the Festival is expected to attract well over 300 participants, many of them returning attendees.   Registrations have been coming in daily for the Festival which runs from Friday, June 1 to Sunday June 3th.  Details can be found at www.cardennaturefestival.ca

The festival is an exceptional opportunity for naturalists and others with a budding interest in nature to learn more about the unique limestone plain known as the Carden Alvar.  It also offers an exciting and different way for visitors to experience a rural community and its diverse natural heritage.  The Festival features events led by knowledgeable and enthusiastic experts.

The area, located between Orillia and Lindsay and just north of the village of Kirkfield is familiar to many naturalists across Ontario for its grassland bird populations.  The Carden Alvar has been designated by Birdlife International as an “Important Bird Area.”  It is also home to globally rare alvar plant communities with flowers and grasses seen in only a few areas in Ontario.

Because of the high demand, we have added duplicate outings at the Festival for the most popular events.  Birding field trips are the most popular and the Festival has a variety of opportunities to learn including early morning sparrows by voice, and beginner birding.  There’s even a lawnchair birding event for those who want to view our feathered friends at a leisurely pace.

Plant life is abundant on the Carden plain and Festival events include alvar plants as well as exploration of the mosses and lichens found there.

For those participants interested in more vigorous physical activity, there are opportunities to see the area by bicycle or paddle on local lakes and rivers.

And the festival doesn’t stop at dusk!  Nighttime events such as star gazing, voices of the night, and moths are always a hit.

Kim’s Kids Nature Safari is back again to share the wonders of nature with the younger set.

Not to be missed is the majestic Birds of Prey show; a great chance to get a closer look at raptors on the wing.

Past years for the Carden Nature Festival have proven to be a tremendous success not only for the number of people involved but also for organization and delivery.  Last year more than 320 people registered and many events reached capacity before the festival started.

So what are you waiting for?  Check out the website for all of the events and to register online.

The organizers of the Carden Nature Festival, including the Couchiching Conservancy, would like to thank the volunteers who contribute to the success.  Every year more than 75 individuals, including event leaders and marshals, provide hundreds of hours of volunteer time.