Birds of a Feather by Deborah Bentley | 2022 Art Contest Winner

Festival of the Cranes 2022


The Much-Anticipated Return of Festival of the Cranes (and Crane Fiesta)

How long have you been waiting for your chance to attend our in-person Festival? Well, we have good news for you! We invite you to join us for virtual Crane Fiesta and the return of our in-person Festival of the Cranes this winter! For the third year in a row, we will once again host our virtual Crane Fiesta November 18-19, and we invite our friends from near and far to join us from wherever they are in the world for a wonderful variety of virtual webinars. Additionally, we are delighted to announce that, after a two-year hiatus, our greatly anticipated in-person Festival of the Cranes will return this year on December 1-3. Festival of the Cranes will look and feel a little different this year as we work to improve upon the visitor experience and ensure the safety of all our guests, given ongoing Covid concerns.

What You Can Expect at this Year’s Festival of the Cranes: December 1st-3rd

Thanks to our great partnership with New Mexico Tech (NMT), all indoor workshops will meet at Macey Center classrooms on the NMT campus in Socorro. The large NMT classrooms will allow us to keep the event safer, will provide instructors more reliable internet connections for their presentations, and will be a welcome (and warm) respite from the New Mexican winter. If you have attended Festival of the Cranes before, you likely remember that in the past, our largest classroom space was a tent, and unfortunately, the New Mexico weather isn’t always cooperative in December. We will hold all “field workshops” outdoors at Bosque del Apache National Wildlife refuge as usual.

Some of our most popular presenters will return to offer education, including: Sandra Noll, Erv Nichols, Paul Tebbel, Keanna Leonard, Matt Mitchell, Anne Lacy, and Lisa Langell. And we’ll welcome many new faces as well, like: Alexander Harper, Dr. Mostafa Hassanalian, Barnaby Briggs, and many more!

Announcing Expo Room (replacing Expo Tent) at the Refuge

Our vendor space, usually hosted in the outdoors Expo Tent, will now be located inside the refuge Visitor Center’s Lannan Room. The Expo Room, as we’re now calling it, will be smaller this year, but will still feature many of the same great vendors you remember. Among others, Hunt’s Photo and Video will have a booth in the Expo Room and plans to assist with many of the photography field tours as well, so registrants will have another expert in their workshops!

Friends Dinner and Exciting Keynote Speaker at NMT Macey Auditorium this Year

Our Friends Dinner keynote speaker will be Barnaby Briggs, who has a long and impressive career in environmentalism. Barnaby is a consultant with a focus on strategic implementation of ESG (environmental, social, and governance) programs, including social impact management, setting up management and governance systems and putting in place the best teams to deliver improved impacts. He has experience on the ground in Mozambique, Nigeria, Ghana, Argentina and beyond!

Crane Fiesta – For Those of You Who Can’t Come In Person (or want a Sneak Peek): November 18th-19th

Now that we’ve highlighted some of the exciting changes you can expect to see this year during Festival of the Cranes, let’s take a step back to Crane Fiesta. Crane Fiesta will provide a sneak peek for everything coming in December, but more than that, it will give everyone, regardless of travel concerns or distance, the chance to experience the awe of the sandhill cranes and the beauty of Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge. From the breathtaking sights and sounds of the Fly-Ins and Fly-Outs, to the exceptional photography and birding workshops, we hope that you’ll plan to join us from the comfort and warmth of your own home this November!

Stay tuned for more info as we will announce our speakers for Crane Fiesta soon.

Please download our Festival Catalog for full event listings and keynote information!



















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