AP NEWS

International Festival of Owls is March 1-3 in Houston

February 21, 2019

HOUSTON, Minn. — The International Festival of Owls is now in its 17th year. Many events have become annual staples, like the live owl programs, international owl art contest, photography contest, pellet dissection, nest box building, owl prowls, banquet, World Owl Hall of Fame awards and Sunday birding trip.

But this year, organizers will have several very special activities, some free, during the March 1-3 event that takes over the city of Houston.

Professional chainsaw carver Molly Wiste will be back, this time to carve a very elaborate owl bench from a large log. The log will be carved in place in Trailhead Park, near the Houston Nature Center. The bench’s location is immediately adjunct to the future home of the International Owl Center. There is no charge to watch the carving.

A new, true children’s story will be released in April: “Greta the Great Horned Owl.” You will be able to purchase an advance-release copy at the Festival and have it autographed by author Christie Gove-Berg on Saturday.

“The Secret Life of Owls” aired on The Nature of Things on Canadian television in 2017, but has yet to be released in the USA. It is not even viewable online. This stunning film will be shown on Sunday afternoon during the Festival, and includes a segment on the Owl Center’s vocal research.

Expert woodcarver Robin Warburton will exhibit at least six of her life-size, extremely accurate owl carvings. These can only be seen by Owl Center members at the members-only event on Friday or by those attending the banquet on Saturday (pre-registration required).

Everyone can view some of the amazing artwork from the international children’s owl art contest on Saturday and Sunday at the Community Center, with no admission fee. If you really love a piece, you may bring one home to keep for a minimum $20 donation.

World Owl Hall of Fame award winners Dr. Paula Enriquez from Mexico and Dr. Richard Raid from Florida will both be speaking during the festival. They will receive their awards at the Saturday banquet.

Everyone who plans to attend more than one day is encouraged to become a member of the International Owl Center to save money (plus go through the shorter prepaid lines at the high school). You can find full festival details, register, get a membership or pre-purchase your daily admission at www.FestivalOfOwls.com.