FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, May 23, 2023
Contact: Heidi Hagemeier, director of communications and visitor experience, 541-382-4754 ext. 166, firstname.lastname@example.org
Museum Kicks Off Summer with Return of Raptors of the Desert Sky Flight Program
BEND, OR — The High Desert Museum’s signature outdoor flight program, Raptors of the Desert Sky, returns beginning Saturday, May 27. The demonstration takes place daily during the summer at 11:30 am through Labor Day.
Hawks, owls, falcons and even turkey vultures soar from perch to perch directly over the crowd seated in a natural amphitheater nestled in the Museum’s ponderosa pine forest. A Museum expert narrates the action, sharing the hunting strategies and natural behaviors of these spectacular birds of prey, as well as what we can do to help preserve them in the wild.
“The outdoor flight program is a highlight of the High Desert Museum summer season,” says Museum Executive Director Dana Whitelaw, Ph.D. “For so many visitors, it’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to witness the power of these extraordinary birds up close while learning about their incredible adaptations from wildlife staff and volunteers.”
The program takes place weather and air quality permitting. The Museum website will be updated to reflect any time changes, such as an earlier start time to accommodate for high temperatures that might stress the birds.
Tickets are separate from Museum entry ($5 for members, children 3-12 and seniors, $7 for non-members, free for children 2 or younger) and must be purchased at Admissions by 11:00 am. They are not available online. Tickets often sell out before 10:00 am. The Museum strongly recommends that visitors arrive when the Museum opens at 9:00 am to secure tickets from Admissions.
Raptors of the Desert Sky is made possible by Fly Redmond with support from Bigfoot Beverages. Learn more at highdesertmuseum.org/raptors-of-the-desert-sky.
In addition, the Museum’s summer schedule of daily talks begins Saturday. Visitors can meet a mammal in the popular Desert Dwellers talk at 3:00 pm, and they can also learn about wolves, raptors and other High Desert species in other talks. Daily talks are free with admission. Talk details are at highdesertmuseum.org/daily-schedule.
The historic High Desert Ranger Station will be open weekends from 10:00 am — 3:00 pm starting Saturday, as well. The U.S. Forest Service ranger station was built east of the Sierra Nevada in 1933 and moved to the Museum in 2008 in partnership with the Pacific Northwest Forest Service Association of Forest Service retirees (known as the Old Smokeys). Old Smokeys staff the station to engage with Museum visitors. The ranger station will be open daily starting July 1. The building’s history is at highdesertmuseum.org/high-desert-ranger-station.
And an immersive art exhibition that evokes the High Desert history of vaqueros and braceros, Vistas del Cielo, Views from the Sky in Spanish, also opens May 27. Artist Justin Favela uses piñata paper to create immense, colorful murals. The exhibition is open through November 26. Learn more at highdesertmuseum.org/vistas-del-cielo.
Learn more about visiting the Museum at highdesertmuseum.org.
ABOUT THE MUSEUM:
THE HIGH DESERT MUSEUM opened in Bend, Oregon in 1982. It brings together wildlife, cultures, art, history and the natural world to convey the wonder of North America’s High Desert. The Museum is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization accredited by the American Alliance of Museums, is a Smithsonian Affiliate, was the 2019 recipient of the Western Museums Association’s Charles Redd Award for Exhibition Excellence and was a 2021 recipient of the National Medal for Museum and Library Service. To learn more, visit highdesertmuseum.org and follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.