Thanks to all who joined us at Riverview Park in Sebastian on Saturday, March 16, 2013, for the 110th anniversary celebration of Pelican Island as the first National Wildlife Refuge! It was a spectacular day and another great event, put on by all the wonderful volunteers and guests who make it possible. President Roosevelt once again emceed the event for us, leading the crowd in the singing of the Star Spangled Banner to kick off the event, with the arrival of Mike Beck, completing his 1400 mile “Pelican Ride” bike ride from Washington, D.C.
Thank you everyone for helping us make this another successful event, and we look forward to having you join us again next year. The date of the 22nd Pelican Island Wildlife Festival will be Saturday, March 15, 2014, and it’s never too early to let us know that you would like to volunteer and help out! Please see details on the “Volunteer” page under the “Get Involved” menu above.
Free Parking. Free Admission. Free Activities.
All the event activities at Riverview Park are free, except for kayaking, boat and birding tours. The pontoon boat tours to Pelican Island are a suggested donation of $15/person, and the birding tour is $25/person. Pontoon boat tours run throughout the event, approximately every hour.
All proceeds from this event supports the Pelican Island National Wildlife Refuge.
This year’s event also includes the special “Pelican Ride 2013” bicycle ride from Washington, D.C. to the Pelican Island National Wildlife Refuge over a two-week period. This is an “awareness” ride celebrating the 110th anniversary of, and bringing awareness to, the National Wildlife Refuge System. Mike Beck, husband of PIPS President Kristen Beck, will be riding his bike and stopping at wildlife refuges along the way to celebrate this special anniversary, ending with a short ride the day of the festival, from the Pelican Island NWR to Riverview Park in Sebastian. There are opportunities for sponsoring Mike and the ride, and even joining him for all, or segments along the way. For more information about the itinerary and how to get involved, please visit the special Pelican Ride 2013 website at www.pelicanride.com.
Mike is scheduled to arrive at the Pelican Island NWR on Friday, March 15, at 6 PM. Everyone is encouraged to come out and welcome Mike on his arrival from Washington on his Pelican Ride. Please join PIPS members and the Pelican Island NWR staff at the Centennial Trail to welcome Mike on his arrival to the refuge!
The 110th Birthday Celebration of Pelican Island and the National Wildlife Refuge System
A Celebration of the Treasure Coast’s natural resources and the 110th birthday of Pelican Island National Wildlife Refuge. An average of 8,000 people expected. Many exhibitors line the sidewalks of Riverview Park, including arts & crafts, environmental, and food vendors. Live wildlife shows feature birds of prey and reptiles throughout the day. Discounted Pelican Island tours by pontoon boat depart every 45 minutes. Special kid’s activities are offered non stop throughout the day. An incredible photography display features entries and winners of the festival photography contest. A full day of fun and leisure for the whole family.
This year’s emcee will once again be Teddy Roosevelt, aka Joe Wiegand. Mr. Wiegand has studied President Roosevelt extensively and has re-enacted Theodore Roosevelt in Chatauqua-style events for many years! He is “…A lifelong student of American history, government and foreign policy, Joe is a political science graduate of The University of the South in Sewanee, Tennessee, and a former graduate assistant at the Center for Governmental Studies at Northern Illinois University in DeKalb, Illinois.”
So be sure and say hi and chat with President Roosevelt and learn a thing or two about history! For more information on Mr. Wiegand, his expertise and reprisal of President Roosevelt, please visit his website at: www.teddyrooseveltshow.com.
Unfortunately the photo contest had to be canceled this year. We apologize to all of those who were looking forward to viewing the beautiful photography by the many talented photographers attracted to our festival. We look forward to having the contest again next year.
For those who entered this year’s contest, we will be refunding your entry fee and you will receive a letter with more information shortly.
A raffle drawing will be held at the Pelican Island Wildlife Festival. The Grand Prize is a custom made wooden kayak, valued at $1450! The kayak is hand crafted by Mike Beck of Treasure Coast Wooden Boats of Sebastian.
This is a photo of a previous kayak raffle prize made by Mike. You may also find more information and photos of kayaks built by Mike at www.treasurecoastwoodenboats.com.
Raffle tickets are $2 each and can be purchased at the Pelican Island Preservation Society/Festival Information tent on the day of the festival.
The raffle drawing for all prizes will be held at the end of the day of the festival on March 16, 2013. You do not need to be present to win.
Bird Watching by Boat
The Pelican Island Wildlife Festival includes boat tours through the Indian River Lagoon to Pelican Island. Wintering birds seen on the island may include White Pelicans, Brown Pelicans, Roseate Spoonbills and Forster’s tern.
Over 30 species of birds use Pelican Island as a rookery, roost, feeding ground, or loafing area. 16 different species of birds nest on Pelican Island, including the Brown Pelican, Wood Stork, Great Egret, Snowy Egret, Reddish Egret, Cattle Egret, Great Blue Heron, Little Blue Heron, Tricolored Heron, Green-backed Heron, Black-crowned Night Heron, Double-crested cormorant, Anhinga, White Ibis, American oystercatcher, Common moorhen.
Wintering birds include the White pelican, double-crested cormorant, Roseate Spoonbill, Blue-wing teal, Lesser scaup, Red-breasted merganser, Ring-billed gull, Forster’s tern, and Common Loon.
Your name could be here!
James Smalley Utility Buildings
Treasure Coast Herpetological Society