[Bristol-Birds] BBC Shady Valley Cranberry Festival Bog Watch set Saturday

  • From: "Wallace Coffey" <jwcoffey@xxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: "Bristol-birds" <bristol-birds@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Tue, 5 Oct 2010 22:58:46 -0400

Members of the Bristol Bird Club invite all of you 
to join us Saturday at our Quarry Bog Watch 
in Shady Valley, Tennessee as we help
celebrate the 19th Annual Cranberry Festival and 
enjoy a good day of visiting and birding.

We will hosts birders Saturday beginning
at 8:30 a.m. until well into the afternoon..

Come loaf and bird with us in one of Tennessee's 
most 15 important biological areas, among pastoral
scenery sure to satisfy that craving for a drive on 
a crisp fall day.  This event has been very popular 
with our birders for many years.

The Shady Valley Cranberry Festival has been 
termed "The Best Little Festival in Tennessee."  
The event name and the festival was first proposed 
by the Bristol Bird Club in October 1991.  The
first festival was held Sept. 1992. 

Rick Knight,  Jacki Hinshaw, Carolyn Coffey and Wallace Coffey
will lead birding walks and host birders for other outing activities

The weather bureau is calling 
for a sunny Saturday with 
the high in the upper 70's 
(forecast 76 and overnight 
Friday, leading into
Saturday morning, is forecast 
for 43).  We may eventually
bird other exciting spots.

We may show you some of the best birding habitat and locations
you have visited in Shady -- possibly some you have never
heard about or never visited.

At least part of our birding will be in the best habitats we can
reach, hanging out to enjoy the scenery and whatever fall
color is coming to full flame.  In addition, we plan to take in
some of the more fun aspects of this small, rural, mountain 

It will be a sideline event of the famous 19th Annual Cranberry 
Festival. The watch will be held at the same time and birders who 
come to Shady Valley will be able to enjoy both.  

The bog watch will feature regular walks along the
trail, creek and in fields of the preserve which
is owned and managed by the Tennessee Chapter of
The Nature Conservancy.  This is one of the best
and more unusual birding habitats in East Tennessee.

BBC hopes there is a nice turnout.  Bring
your folding chairs, bag lunch, snacks and birding
gear.  If you have any boots to keep your feet dry, 
drag them with  you.  If not, then you are grown people
and know how to stay out of the water :-)

It was tremendous fun in previous years.  The birding 
has been good and the fellowship fabulous.

In October the bog produces 
Le Conte's Sparrow,
Nelson's Sharp-tailed Sparrow, 
Lincoln's Sparrow, and Swamp 
Sparrow.  You can also search 
for the Virginia Rail which breeds 
there.  Quarry Bog offers 
a chance to see a flock of Bobolinks, American Bittern, Sora, 
Sedge Wren, Marsh Wren, Savannah Sparrow and Henslow's 
Sparrow.  All have been found in Quarry Bog.

The bog, located on TN Route 133, is easy to find.
After you pass Shady Valley School (beautiful stone
building) watch in a dip for a huge oak tree right
beside a lane turning left as you head north from
the crossroads and school. Go down that lane to
the end and there you'll find BBC members.

From Bristol, TN follow U.S. Hwy 421 south 20 miles
to the crossroads and flashing light in Shady Valley
and turn left to the school and bog.  From Abingdon,
VA  follow U.S. Hwy 58 14 miles to Damascus, turn right
on Shady Lane in the middle of the town's main street
and go 14 miles to Shady.  From Johnson City, Tenn.
follow Hwy. 321 to Elizabethton, turn onto Hwy 91 north
about 20 miles to the Shady crossroads.

When you come on Saturday 
morning, the Cranberry 
Festival Parade will begin 
at 11 a.m. and tie up traffic 
for about 45 minutes for 
those coming from Tennessee. 
The Virginia route to the bog 
should be easy to access.  Before and after the parade you
will have no problem getting around.

If you are visiting Shady for the first time, you may have expected 
to see cranberries like you would in Massachusetts or Wisconsin. 
We don't want to disappoint you, but cranberries are not cultivated 
as a crop in the valley. Their presence here is more subtle and 
has continued for thousands of years. So, we want to share with 
you the story of cranberries in the Southern Appalachians, how 
they got here, why they are still here, and what is being done to 
perpetuate them. 

We may pay a brief visit with the Tennessee Nature 
Conservancy and the Shady Valley Ruritan Club while they 
are hosting free cranberry nursery and bog tours at Orchard Bog.  
Lynn Eastin, Todd Eastin, Jamey Donaldson, Rick Foster, Charles 
McQueen and Gabby Call will be guiding the public around, 
as they have done for years.

Come join us for this unique celebration of Shady Valley's
natural history and fun and birding at Quarry Bog with the 

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