Crane Festival gets underway this weekend


    The spring thaw has started in the San Luis Valley and the Sandhill Crane migration has begun. You are invited to the 31st annual Monte Vista Crane Festival, March 7-9.

    The 2014 Monte Vista Crane Festival will feature:

    • Noah Stryker, featured speaker at Central Auditorium — “Bird World: Insights for Humans-The Amazing Lives of Birds.”

    • Our traditional crane viewing tours — 7 a.m. and 4 p.m. Friday and Saturday; 8 a.m. Sunday.

    • Friday evening guest presentation.

    • Craft and Exhibit Fair — 10 a.m.-4p.m. Friday; 6 a.m.-4p.m. Saturday; 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Sunday.

    • Valley Raptor Tours — 10 a.m. Saturday and Sunday.

    • Birding Tour — 10 a.m. Saturday.

    • Saturday Evening Dinner — 7 p.m.; cost $23; seating limited to 100 people.

    Saturday educational workshops include:

    • Ron Garcia — The Making of a Wildlife Refuge.

    • Stuart Bryan — John C. Fremont’s Fatal Fourth Expedition (1848-1849).

    • Rio Grande Headwater Land Trust — “A Fierce Green Fire.”

    • Hawks Aloft — All About Owls.

    Viewing tours, raptors and dinner reservations are recommended.

    For more information, call (719) 852-3552 or visit