Coronavirus has clipped the wings of the Indiana Dunes Birding Festival, which has been canceled for 2020.
The four-day festival in May features more than 150 birding trips, programs and workshops at the Indiana Dunes National Park and the Indiana Dunes State Park. Now in its sixth year, the annual festival draws birdwatchers from across the Midwest every May to see all the different types of migratory birds that flock to the Indiana Dunes.
"Due to the current situation regarding the COVID-19 pandemic, Indiana Audubon must unfortunately cancel the 2020 event, scheduled for May 14-17, 2020. We have been monitoring the situation daily, and following the guidance of the CDC, as well as our site partners, it is in the best interest of our speakers, leaders, attendees, staff, and volunteers that we sit this year out and return May 13-16, 2021," organizers said in a statement. "It is with heavy heart that we cancel. It has been amazing to see the outpouring of support from everyone as this issue has been weighing heavily on our hearts and minds. We also want to thank the volunteers and staff that have worked tirelessly to put this year’s event together."
Early-bird registration had already begun. The Indiana Dunes Birding Festival includes a "birds and brews" craft beer sampling, art exhibition, and nighttime excursions to see owls and whippoorwhills in their natural habitat.