Evenings with Audubon



When: March 15, 2016 at 7:00pm to 8:30pm
Location: Capitol Lakes Main Ballroom
Address: 333 W. Main Street, Madison, WI (View Map)
Led by: Doreen Pfost, nature writer and communication consultant
Cost: FREE - books available for purchase

Each spring, a half-million sandhill cranes converge on Nebraska’s Platte River, transforming this agricultural region into a land wild with birds. The Platte’s migration habitat draws not only sandhill cranes, but ducks, geese, whooping cranes – and tens of thousands of birdwatchers and nature-lovers. Yet, the Platte River and its migration spectacle were not always as revered – or even as well known – as they are today. Indeed, without Audubon’s involvement, the Platte River habitat on which so many birds depend might have been lost before most of the world learned of its existence.

Author Doreen Pfost will talk about the importance of the central Platte River to migrating cranes and waterfowl and will share the story of an irrigation project that threatened the river’s demise. She will tell about the grassroots campaign in the 1970s, spearheaded by fledgling Audubon chapters, to stop the Midstate Reclamation Project, and she’ll talk about the sanctuary Audubon established at the heart of the threatened stretch of river. Rowe Sanctuary has been a leader in forging conservation partnerships to restore and maintain habitat along the Platte. And it has helped foster a worldwide appreciation for the river, which is perhaps the most effective protection of all.

Doreen Pfost is a nature writer and communication consultant. A Wisconsin native, she lived for six years in Nebraska, where she immersed herself – figuratively and literally – in the Platte River to learn about its ways, its wildlife, and its history. The result of her effort is This River Beneath the Sky: A Year on the Platte, a collection of essays that follow the Platte River through the changing season. Copies of the book will be available for purchase after the program.

PLEASE NOTE: Capitol Lakes has free no-hassle ramp parking. Enter off Washington Place (between West Main Street and West Washington Avenue). Take a ticket and park in spaces marked “Capitol Lakes Reserved.” Please ask the front desk to validate your ticket on the way out. The Ballroom is located just inside the main entrance to the left.


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