Umpqua Watersheds Blog

Guest Column

Umpqua Valley Audubon Society AmeriCorps Update

Published March 8th, 2023 in Guest Column

……by Tracy Maxwell:

The new year is rolling along.  I am about halfway through this 11-month service year. We have made a lot of progress in these 6 months. A lot of the work has been foundational to the goals I developed with Audubon at the start.

Currently, I am in contact with four local fifth-grade teachers who want us to provide curriculum for their science camps this Spring.  Our goal was to be able to say “yes” to teachers requesting lessons and we are there!  Umpqua Watersheds will also be with us at these camps providing curriculum for these events as well.  We are also now working with Jeff Plummer and participating in the 4-day program at Eastwood called “Eastwood Nature Days”  Jessica Saxton (UW) will join me at this event as well.  We will be serving 8 different schools during the week of this event!

Earth Day was established as a target event for me in my Workplan for this year. As it turns out, Douglas Co. Global Warming Coalition (DGGWC) is not sponsoring the event at the fairgrounds this year. Since I found this out, I have been exploring options. One option currently being considered is to table at the Farmers Market (FM) with UW and other community nonprofits. Wait, hold your horses!  Hot off the press!!! Farmers Market just said “yes” to hosting us from 9-1 pm on April 22, 2023!

I spoke with an individual with another DMO (Destination Management Organization) like Experience Roseburg, but this one is a regional DMO, called Travel Southern Oregon (Douglas Co. is 1/7th of their region) They are proposing to create, “The World’s Largest Dark Sky Sanctuary” In Lake Co Or. He gave me great resources for getting a Dark Skies program moving in Douglas County. In my opinion, this could be a great effort to work towards with a small volunteer group. Let me know if anyone reading this is interested in this project!

Finally, I was happy to attend the Winter Wings Festival in Klamath Falls this month! I was able to get in and sign up for classes because I was volunteering to help there.  Getting into classes at the festival is VERY competitive!  I went to go to see how other professionals are teaching beginning birding and bird identification. I brought back some great ideas for future public and school programs.

This month I am adding an item here that is something I am hoping for:  We could use a nice round office table and decent chairs for our UW office space.  If you can keep an eye out for these items it would be great.  We would be thrilled to inherit someone’s office furniture! Thanks for taking the time to read all of this!

Onward and Upward, for the birds!


Enjoy this blog? Please spread the word :)