The 2022 Fall Convention of the Arkansas Audubon Society will be held October 14-15 at the Hilton Garden Inn West hotel in Little Rock. The Hilton Garden Inn West is at 10914 Kanis Road, just west of Shackleford and southwest of the intersection of I-430 and I-630.
All meals and meetings will be held in Garden Inn West. The hotel has an indoor pool, fitness center, free five-mile radius shuttle to nearby attractions, and pet-friendly rooms, as well as the usual amenities.
Room rates are $102 per night plus tax. To make a reservation, call the hotel at (501) 227-4800 and indicate you are part of the Audubon conference or click on this link: https://www.hilton.com/en/book/reservation/rooms/?ctyhocn=LITWSGI&arrivalDate=2022-10-14&departureDate=2022-10-16&groupCode=AUDBON&room1NumAdults=1&cid=OM%2CWW%2CHILTONLINK%2CEN%2CDirectLink.
Reserve your room by September 30 to ensure your special AAS room rate. Other hotel options can be found in west Little Rock.
This convention will celebrate the 50-year anniversary of the Arkansas Audubon Society Trust, which funds scientific research and education. All of our speakers are former trust grant recipients. Friday night, Dana Ripper, the Director of the Missouri River Bird Observatory in Arrow Rock, Missouri. She will speak on "Bird Conservation in the 21st Century." The Saturday night speaker will be Dr. Charles R. Preston, the Willis McDonald, IV Founding and Senior Curator Emeritus of the Draper History Museum at the Buffalo Bill Center of the West, located in Cody, Wyoming. The title of his presentation is "The Eagle and the Rabbit--Apex Predator and Prey in an Imperiled Landscape."
On Saturday afternoon, we will offer a symposium featuring Dr. Dan Scheiman, Chair of the AAS Trust Board, who will present a brief history of the Trust and share some statistics. He will be followed by students who are recipients of Trust research grants, who will present their research.
Two field trips will take place at 1 PM on Friday, and four on Saturday beginning at 7 AM.
The usual door prizes and silent auction will take place. We hope you can join us for a weekend of watching and learning about birds!
Arkansas Audubon Society COVID-19 Policy: COVID-19 proof of vaccination OR a negative test result taken within 72 hours of arrival is required for meeting participants. Indoor Society activities will follow current CDC guidelines as they are updated with regard to masking indoors, social distancing, etc. Arkansas Audubon Society meeting participants assume all risks related to exposure to COVID-19 and its variants.
About our speakers:
Dana Ripper has a BA in Biology from North Central College (1999) and an MS in Wildlife Ecology from Arkansas State University at Jonesboro (2002). Dana’s thesis work on the ecology of Hairy Woodpeckers in managed forests was sponsored by the Arkansas Audubon Society Trust. After Arkansas State, she remained in Arkansas doing conservation-related ornithological work for several years, at which time she joined Rocky Mountain Bird Observatory (now Bird Conservancy of the Rockies) as a private land conservation biologist (2005-2007). In 2010 Dana co-founded the Missouri River Bird Observatory (MRBO), a Missouri-based nonprofit dedicated to the conservation of birds, all wildlife, and their habitats. MRBO works in Missouri’s most imperiled habitats documenting bird population trends and their response to habitat management practices. It then takes that information to landowners, colleagues, the general public, and legislators to advance bird conservation.
Dr. Charles R. Preston has served as a professor of biology at UA Little Rock (1982-1989), as well as held adjunct appointments at several other universities. He chaired the Department of Zoology at the Denver Museum (1990-1998), where his research and public education initiatives contributed to the establishment of Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge. His tenure at the Draper Natural History Museum in 2018, as its Willis McDonald, IV, Founding and Senior Curator and Director garnered international recognition of his visionary design and development. He has been widely recognized as a leading thinker concerning conservation issues in Greater Yellowstone. He retired from the Draper Museum in 2018 and since then continues to direct research monitoring of golden eagles in Wyoming’s Bighorn Basin as the Senior Research Associate with Teton Raptor Center.
There will be a silent auction this year. Peggy Smith has donated some of the late Dr. Kim Smith's art collection. Proceeds from the sale of these prints will go to the AAS Trust.