We have awesome volunteers.
On Saturday, April 15, we accomplished over 100 hours of work together! (more…)
Posted tagged ‘volunteer’
We have awesome volunteers.
This post appeared first in our late summer 2014 issue of Chip Notes.
The fabric of the Museum’s history has been woven by many people. A few add a strand or two of color, while others provide the very warp that holds it all together. Unfortunately, there comes a time to say good-bye to some of these people. We are grateful for them, and we will miss them.
Ed Everts, 1919-2013
Ed Everts was a dear friend and instrumental in turning the Birds of Vermont Museum into a reality. He provided the initial funding that allowed Bob to start carving. Ed, and his partner Raven Davis, are remembered not only for their support, but also for their friendship.
In addition to all he did for the Museum, Ed was devoted to his family, spreading peace, working with the Peace and Justice Center , and exploring the world (sometimes with Bob and Gale in a VW microbus).
Mary B. Fell, 1920-2014
Mary Fell was a resident of Underhill. In addition to time spent volunteering for the historical society, she was a dedicated volunteer for Meals on Wheels and also volunteered many hours at Audubon Vermont‘s Sugar-on-Snow parties.
The General Assembly of Vermont wrote a resolution honoring her for her work. Her friend, Carol Wagner, is spearheading a campaign to dedicate a bench to Mary. The bench will be placed in the gardens along the path to the treehouse.
Hubert “Hub” Vogelmann, 1928-2013
Hub had personal ties with the Museum through his connections to Bob and Gale. He and his wife, Marie, were two of the Museum’s charter members. He had a close personal connection with the Museum’s mission of conservation. Hub worked with Bob and others to preserve Vermont ridgelines and mountaintops.
Hub was a botanist whose groundbreaking work on Camel’s Hump led to national attention regarding issues with acid-rain. He also co-founded Vermont’s chapter of the Nature Conservancy. In addition to serving on state and national environmental boards, he served on the Museum’s advisory board.
This post appeared first in our late summer 2014 issue of Chip Notes.
Do you need a place to sit, feel the breeze across your face, see the clouds rolling across the sky, hear the brook cascading over rocks, listen to the sounds of birds singing, chirping, and calling to each other? If so, come visit the Museum’s new treehouse. Rain or shine, it’s waiting for you.
For years, the Museum’s Board members and staff have wanted to create a treehouse: a sheltered, elevated outdoor space, one more accessible for people of all abilities than some other outdoor spaces. We imagined a place for reflection, teaching, observation, and restoration. Last year’s flood interrupted our actual plans at first. However, with some unexpected volunteer assistance (an entire class!) and a little coordination with other needs, we have been able to roll the treehouse into the Bridges to Birds project… and complete it. (Find out more about the rest of the Bridges to Birds project on page 3.)
This project really began years ago and would not have happened without the insights, connections, funds, labor, and services donated by Bob Spear, Gale Lawrence, Dann Van Der Vliet, Mae Mayville, Shirley Johnson, Becky Cozzens, Evergreen Roofing, and the Essex Rotary Club. The treehouse itself and a wide walkway leading to it were built by the Center for Technology, Essex. The students, under the direction of their teachers, Shawn Rouleau and Brian Japp, designed, built, and installed an entire timber frame structure that is accessible to visitors of all ages. The students impressed us all with their skills and dedication.
Our treehouse is built out over a long stream bank to allow for elevated points of view and unique listening opportunities. When weather and foliage permit, the peak of Camel’s Hump can be glimpsed above the trees. Sherman Hollow Brook tumbles below, often hidden, delighting the ear. Nearby hemlock, apple, and maple trees provide perching and gleaning territory for many small songbirds. The wide, nearly level gravel path to our “elevated bird blind” begins near the back lawn, winds through new garden beds, tucks behind the dogwoods, and meets a short bridgeway to the treehouse itself.
The treehouse gives us an additional space with completely different perspectives, allowing new outdoor programming options. A recent grant from the Vermont Community Foundation’s Small and Inspiring program will help fund development of “Connections in the Canopy” activities and curricula.
We thank all of you who helped bring this vision into reality and we hope everyone will come visit. It’s for you.
A slightly different version of this post appeared first in our late summer 2014 issue of Chip Notes.
As you may recall, we “took advantage” of the devastating flood, integrated that with several pre-existing hopes and plans, and coordinated an initiative we call Bridges to Birds. This four-fold project will make (and already is making) the Museum more accessible to all, indoors and out, enabling better and more bird conservation, environmental education, and appreciation of Vermont’s natural communities.
One phase of the Bridges to Birds Project, Connecting to New Perspectives (the Treehouse), was completed this summer, and you can read more about it elsewhere in the blog.
Two other phases, Connecting to Nature (with Interpretative Trails) and Connecting to Conservation (with Bird-friendly Gardens) are actively underway, thanks primarily to several dedicated volunteers and interns.
Now we focus our attention on another phase: Connecting to People (the reconstruction of our parking-to-entrance access). This one is perhaps the largest endeavor, and you’ve probably seen and read about the planning, engineering, and design aspects already in previous issues of Chip Notes.
Early in August we heard the great news that in the next few weeks the town of Huntington will replace the culvert that funnels the water from the creek above the Museum, under Sherman Hollow Road, and down to “Bob’s Bridge.” This is an essential prerequisite to our own construction process. Once this culvert and Sherman Hollow Road have been repaired, the Museum can start the physical repairs to create a safe passage for visitors from the parking lot to the Museum doors.
While waiting for this construction to start, we all have been learning and researching ADA laws, erosion prevention techniques, effective interpretation methods, and the ways entrances can shape and enhance Museum-going experiences. We have also been consulting with designers and engineers, writing grants, and working on other fundraising to bring this phase into reality.
So Far, with Gratitude
We are grateful for the support already given for work to date:
- FEMA helped fund some of the emergency work last year: clearing downed trees and debris; removing electric lines ($800)
- Vermont Community Foundation’s Special and Urgent Needs grant helped support initial personnel time (staff and consultant) as we began the planning and design of both temporary and permanent measures to bring people safely to the Museum, and storm water through the property ($5000).
- Museum members and community donors help pay for some of the additional staff time as we continue to plan, apply for new grants, and develop related presentations and literature. Some of these donations will go directly to the initial construction costs ($7000).
We also recently received a grant from the Vermont Better Back Roads program to address stormwater runoff, preventing damage in the future. If you have seen the photos of the parking lot, or stopped in recently, you know from your own experience how essential this is to protect the riparian habitats along the tributary creek and Sherman Hollow Brook.
The Next Steps
We are about to embark on a fundraising campaign for the bulk of entrance-access construction. These costs are great. There will be costs for detailed plans and oversight from structural and civil engineers, the site work, bank stabilization, stream bed restoration, the ADA-compliant bridge and walkway construction, materials, and interpretation. One member has already promised to match all donations!
As space here is limited, look for another mailing with more information about the entire project. It will include detailed goals for each phase, costs, donation information, and a generous list of thank you gifts, from watercolor prints by Libby Davidson, to a very special one donated by Denver Holt, renowned Snowy Owl biologist.
Thank you to all who have donated so far! We will continue to post pictures as progress is made. This is a very exciting time as we not only repair what was damaged but create a fully welcoming space that connects people to the essential and exciting world of birds.
You can help
Make a financial donation
We happily accept donations online through JustGive, NetworkForGood, and PayPal. Or use the phone or address below.
Renew yours, become a new member, or give a gift membership to a bird-loving friend or family member. Use our online membership form (PDF).
Volunteer with us
Opportunities abound! Our Volunteer page has more info.
Bird Conservation Choices
Use your everyday choices, from the coffee you choose to the laws you enact, to create a world better for birds.
You can also call (802) 434-2167 with your credit card info, or send a check in any amount at any time toBirds of Vermont Museum
900 Sherman Hollow Road
Huntington, Vermont 05462
Please come to the Birds of Vermont Museum for Volunteer Work Day!
On Saturday, April 26, from 9am – 2pm, please help prepare the Museum for the open season. From trail work to hanging art, we have opportunities for all. Come for an hour or all day, bring yourself, a friend, a family. All welcome.
Please let us know if you plan to come so we can provide lunch for everyone. Call (802) 434-2167 or email email@example.com
If you can’t come this day, please consider a couple of hours, a day, a weekly rotation, or something else! Whether you are out in the meadow, helping visitors at the front desk, or deep in the office, we would love your company and assistance. We train, too.
Got some time to volunteer? We’re looking for you, whether you have an hour, a day, or a week. Take a look at the days of needs below, and let us know if you might be able to help on one or more of these days.
Note: There’s always a staff member or very experienced volunteer with you if you’re new, no one needs to work alone! Also, these time slots are suggested; we will happily work with your schedule.
If you would like to come on a regular schedule (e.g., one a week, twice a month, and so on), we can really use help with the projects and activities listed at the bottom of this post as well. (more…)
Fabulous Fall Festival
Saturday, October 13 • 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Live birds, music, soap and wood carving, kids’ crafts, face painting, and more!
$2 / Free if you are 3 and under or show your Museum or Green Mountain Woodcarver membership card
Our schedule of events (but check when you get here to be sure):
10:00 Carving Workshop : Spirit faces in bark (2 hours; $10 fee but this includes all-day admission also)
11:00 Soap Carving
11:00 Live Music by Northeast Field (terrific Celtic music)
1:00 Live Bird Talk
2:00 Soap Carving
2:15 Face Painting
3:00 Nature Note cards
3:59 Announcing Winner of the Kids Raffle
All Day / Ongoing:
- Admire the Art Contest Entries and discover the Winners (Pick up your ribbon and prize if it’s you)
- Used Books and Other Treasures Sale
- Explore the Museum (can you find all 535 eggs? Did we count right?)
- Get a ticket for a Raffle: Kids Raffle (Saturday only) and Decoy Raffle (winner announced October 31)
- Scavenger Hunts
- Nature Quests
- Live birds at our feeders, in the woods, in the meadoews
- Snacks available for sale
- Yet more games and crafts
- Walking trails (have you found the pond? The stone wall? The new bench? All the items on the Unnatural Trail?)