Monday, May 18, 2009

New Flowers... New Friends...


I promise you this gorgeous flower actually does exist. We met this flower and tons of new friends at at the Spring Wildflower Symposium presented by the Wintergreen Nature Foundation.Yellow Lady Slipper!
The Spring Wildflower Symposium is a celebration of natural history at the height of spring in the Blue Ridge Mountains. The instructors included geologists, botanists, entomologists, archaeologists, plant ecologists and .... BirdCouple.

To say we were honored to be included in this group is an understatement.

And, the best part about this bunch of esteemed individuals is that each of them had a genuine enthusiasm for their area of speciality and enjoyed sharing the smallest bit of information from their large knowledge base.

Cute Husband and I led three walks during the weekend.

We would like to say the birds were the highlight of our walks, as we did get some great looks at several warblers, but the highlight of the weekend was really the people who joined us. Curious, caring folks who made the whole experience more than just a discovery of birds, but also a really good time.

Everyone knows that birding is the bomb, but add in some people who also want to check out all the other cool stuff around them.... bugs, plants, trees... while trudging through mud and slipping on rocks and laughing through the whole adventure.... now that is really great birding!

In fact, we liked so many of the people who joined us that we thought about having them all over to our back yard for a stick, downed tree and dried leaf symposium.

No wildflowers in our back yard.
Way too many deer.

To say we were thrilled to show a few birds to these folks is an understatement.

And, if all that wasn't enough, we also met a new nonprofit that is doing really admirable work. The Wintergreen Nature Foundation's mission is to promote the understanding and appreciation of the natural and cultural history of the central Blue Ridge of Virginia.

Through the leadership of the Foundation's Executive Director, Doug Coleman, the Foundation has been instrumental in the conservation and protection of over 6,000 acres of the Blue Ridge. Acres that are preserved and maintained for research, educational programs and habitat for native plants and animals.

To say we are proud to be affiliated with this organization is an understatement.

Thanks for a weekend we are still smiling about....


Dawn Fine said...

Howdee birdie couple,
Nice wildflowers here..especially that Yellow lady slipper...I just photographed a pink on recently.
I am waiting patiently for you both to go on tour...
Maybe you could tout your stick, dried leaves and downed tree symposium as a gig..tee hee

Kelly said...

Wow! How exciting to be part of the symposium. I know I 'd love to come on one of your tours! (Beautiful wildflowers...) I like your banner. Did you paint it?

Warren and Lisa Strobel said...

Kelly - we'd love to HAVE you on one of our tours. Thanks about the banner - yes Warren painted it with Chinese watercolors a couple of years ago during a weekend at the beach where we dreamed and planned our little 'ol blog.

All the best!

Felicia said...

Nice pictures of those wild flowers... Flowers are my most favorite...