By Jessica Tuggle
During the Aug. 21 county commissioners meeting, representatives for the inaugural Treasure Coast Birding Festival presented their event concept to the commissioners.
Rather than focus on one area for the event, the festival organizers are planning tours to various bird-watching locations in the county, such as the salt marsh, said Debbie Avery, events and fundraising volunteer for the Cultural Council of Indian River County.
The natural resources of Florida make it an excellent tourism destination, Ms. Avery said.
An annual birding festival in Merritt Island in January attracts thousands of bird-watching and environmental enthusiasts and Indian River County and the Treasure Coast have just as much to offer.
Ms. Avery said she expects to start off much smaller, maybe expecting 100 participants at the beginning, but growing each year as the word spreads.
The festival is scheduled for Oct. 26-28, and is a joint effort between the Pelican Island Preservation Society and the cultural council, Ms. Avery said.
By holding it in October, participants will be able to witness some of the migratory birds that visit Indian River County.
Commissioner Wesley Davis said he was glad to find another way to showcase the natural habitats that have been preserved in the county and also stimulate the local economy with new guests even before the busy season starts in earnest.
The organizers are looking for vans to shuttle the participants to and from the locations from their main gathering at the Bethel Creek House.
For more information about upcoming county government meetings, visit www.ircgov.com.