CBC Fall Meeting—September 26–27 in Charleston, SC
Charleston, a city rich in history and nationally acclaimed for its beautiful landscapes and well-preserved architecture, will be our destination when we gather for our Fall 2014 Carolina Bird Club meeting the weekend of September 26–27. Charleston, a city of elegant, Southern charm, boasts fine dining at distinguished restaurants and unique shopping experiences. The city's cultural center, Historic Downtown, allows visitors to explore cobblestoned streets and experience unsurpassed, historic Southern architecture while enjoying various galleries and museums located adjacent to the scenic and historic harbor. Folks will find there is much to see and do in addition to varied and plentiful opportunities for fabulous fall birding!
Charleston's proximity to some of South Carolina's finest and most treasured natural coastal resources allows us to offer trips to habitats ranging from wild, scenic beaches to longleaf pine savannas. We expect excellent birding, and our field trips are being designed to offer participants the opportunity to enjoy the best this region has to offer. Destinations include notable hotspots in the Charleston area, coastal barrier islands, former plantations, beautiful gardens, old growth cypress swamps and much, much more. Shorebird migration should be going strong, and we will seek out these southbound migrants as well as many of the other marsh and sea birds associated with rich coastal environments. Fall along the coast can also be particularly exciting for Neotropical songbird migration, and we will explore some of the area's “migrant traps” in search of these colorful jewels. In addition to our exciting slate of field trips led by a competent team of top birders, participants have an opportunity to enjoy excellent evening presentations on bird-related topics. So make your plans and register now!
Our meeting headquarters is the Charleston Plaza Hotel (formerly the Inn Place Hotel, same place, different name), located at 4770 Goer Drive near the Charleston Airport in North Charleston just off I-26 and minutes away from downtown Charleston. Special room rates are being offered to CBC members for $89.00/night (not including taxes). Some rooms are equipped with microwaves and small refrigerators that are available on a first come first served basis and for an additional charge. To reserve a room contact the Charleston Plaza Hotel at 1-888-747-1900 and be sure to identify yourself as a Carolina Bird Club participant. Any requests for special room arrangements may be made at the time of your reservation. The reservation cut off date for these rates is September 11, 2014 so please don't delay. Check-in time is 4:00 PM.
The Charleston Plaza Hotel is a 100% non-smoking facility. The hotel has a restaurant that serves breakfast and dinner, but not lunch. Each room has a coffee maker, and the hotel offers complimentary Wi-Fi. Registrants arriving on Thursday evening, September 25th, may pick up their registration packets that evening. The hotel will be the location for our evening programs and other social events related to our meeting.
Our Friday night speaker is Melissa Bimbi, Endangered Species Biologist for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Melissa works in the South Carolina Field Office and will be speaking on some of the ongoing work in South Carolina involving Piping Plovers and Red Knots.
Our keynote speaker on Saturday evening is John Cely. John is well known to many in the Carolina Bird Club and his significant conservation work leaves a lasting legacy in South Carolina. John graduated from Clemson University with an M.S. in Wildlife Biology. After a long career with the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources, where much of his work involved avian research, he served as the Land Protection Director for the Congaree Land Trust for five years. In 2011, he authored Cowassee Basin: The Green Heart of South Carolina. More recently he contributed a chapter, “Big Woods,” about the Congaree Swamp, in a new book from USC Press, State of the Heart. He has served on the COWASEE Basin Task Force. John's presentation will focus on some of the bird research he has carried out over the years at Congaree National Park.
A more in-depth program agenda will be provided to registrants at check-in. We hope you will join us for an exciting weekend of birding and presentations!