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The Link — Spring 2020 Newsletter

The Link is a quarterly newsletter produced in coordination between the National Wildlife Refuge Association and Coalition of Refuge Friends & Advocates.


Letter from Caroline Brouwer, VP of Government Affairs, NWRA:

We have been so excited to focus our Spring 2020 The Link on the amazing festivals that Friends groups hold across the country. With the current outbreak of coronavirus across the country, we understand that many festivals this spring will likely be canceled to protect the public. We are, however, still sending out this newsletter, in the hopes that we can start a conversation among Friends groups about what works and what doesn’t work with their festivals. We are all likely to have some extra time on our hands over the coming weeks, so let’s figure out how to make these events as successful as possible!

If you travel to National Wildlife Refuges or volunteer with a Friends group, it’s likely that you’ve attended or heard of one of the festivals held at refuges each year. From January’s Festival of the Cranes at Wheeler NWR to April’s Harney County Migratory Bird Festival at Malheur NWR to October’s Wings over Water in 6 North Carolina wildlife refuges, there are opportunities across the country to participate in one of these festivals, learn about the refuge, and meet amazing volunteers.

Community engagement around these festivals is an incredible opportunity to build public support for these fabulous urban and rural refuges. With festival attendees of all ages, from schoolchildren to retirees, wildlife refuges wouldn’t “work” without YOUR support.

But, do you know who else needs to know how incredible your refuge is? Your Senators and Member of Congress. And don’t forget their staff!

If you are running a festival this year, send an invitation to your Congressional delegation. When they see how much their constituents care about their local refuge, then they will too. Trust me, there is no better way to show your elected officials the amazing refuge in their district or state than to show them around your Festival and walk a trail with them.

So, find the email or snail mail address of your Congressional office, and send an invitation! We all win when Congress knows that their wildlife refuge is important and that people love these habitats and wildlife.


Articles in the spring edition of The Link*

  • The Magic of Festivals
    The Link reached out to six Friends groups to ask what they do to make their event special and successful.
  • Are you ready to celebrate?
    A quiz, guidelines, and resources for planning a festival on your refuge.
  • Focus on Friends
    Get to know the Friends of Malheur NWR located in SW Oregon
  • Survey
    Provide feedback on The Link and provide suggestions on topics you would like to see covered in future editions. Seriously, these things don’t publish themselves, we want your input.

*Articles are hosted on the NWRA website, just follow any of the article links above to access them all.