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News.bytes Extra, issue 474

Spring Festival at Big Morongo Canyon Preserve 

Hundreds of nature lovers attended the annual Morongo Valley Spring Festival at the Big Morongo Canyon Preserve on March 26.  The festival rings in the arrival of spring to the high desert and showcases the efforts of local community groups that work with the BLM and other land managers in the Morongo Basin area of Southern California. (text continues below)

people outside a building, oblivious to an apparent mountain lion on the roof
The Education Center at Big Morongo Canyon Preserve

a girl watches a snake curl around her arm
Junior Docent Britney Sessum with friend

a woman holds an outstretched snake
Barbara Croonquist and Volunteer Dee Dechert, of the BLM's California Desert District

a woman holds a small tortoise in her hand
Volunteer Pat Stoner, Director of Environmental Education at the Preserve

a man and woman staff a display table
Photo # 7668 BLM Youth Initiative educators Beatriz Pacheco and Gerardo Garcia

two young ladies staff a display table
Junior Docent Trainee Selah Kness and Junio Docent Samantha O'Connell 

a woman smiles while standing behind a display table
Volunteer Jane Olson

a smiling man in a hat leans back in a chair
Preserve Host Dee Zeller

a man in a historic costume speaks with visitors
Greg Hill appears as a frontier naturalist, sharing information with visitors

The event was held at the BLM’s Big Morongo Canyon Preserve ACEC and the adjacent Covington Park in Morongo Valley.  Sponsors of the event included the Friends of Big Morongo Canyon Preserve, the Morongo Valley Community Services District, the Morongo Valley Chamber of Commerce, and the Golden State Water Company.

BLM staff and volunteers from the Palm Springs-South Coast Field Office and the California Desert District presented programs on history and environmental education.  The Preserve’s Junior Docents and members of the Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountains National Monument H.I.K.E. program delighted youth and adults alike with wildlife displays and nature-based activities.  The weather was perfect, the birds have started arriving, and the Big Morongo Canyon Preserve is ready for another season of wildlife viewing.

Greg Hill, Palm Springs-South Coast Field Office, 3/29/11

BLM-California News.bytes, issue 474
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Last updated: 03-31-2011