Holiday Open House and Annual Bird Count Help Celebrate the Season at Wind Cave National Park

A Hairy Woodpecker is one of the bird species that might be seen on the Wind Cave National Park Christmas Bird Count held on Sunday, December 17. (NPS Photo)


 November 29, 2017

WIND CAVE NATIONAL PARK, HOT SPRINGS  S.D. – Holiday events this year at Wind Cave National Park begin Wednesday, December 13,  with the park’s holiday open house followed by the 22 Annual Wind Cave National Park Christmas Bird Count on Sunday, December 17.

The open house will run from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. at the visitor center. Light refreshments will be served, and students from the Hot Springs’ third grade will present their Christmas program at 1:30 p.m. The students will also decorate the visitor center Christmas tree.

“The open house and Christmas bird count are fun ways to celebrate the season,” said Park Superintendent Vidal Dávila. “We welcome these opportunities to meet with our neighbors, and we wish everyone a happy and safe holiday season.”

During the open house, the public will be able to view park exhibits and browse through the park store operated by the Black Hills Parks and Forests Association.

Bird count participants should dress for the weather, bring field guides, and binoculars. Plan to meet at the visitor center no later than 7:45 a.m. on December 17. Afterwards, there will be a potluck supper around 4:15 p.m. in the visitor center; bring a dish to share.  RSVP by calling the park at 605-745-4600.

The Christmas Bird Count is patterned after the National Audubon Society’s effort to document trends in wintering birdlife throughout the United States. The count area will include all of Wind Cave National Park and areas of the Black Hills National Forest and Custer State Park.

The visitor center and cave will close on Christmas and New Year’s Day to allow staff to celebrate the holidays with their families. Throughout the remainder of the winter, the visitor center will be open daily from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. with cave tours at 10 a.m., 1 p.m., and 3 p.m.

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