top of page


2024 summer festival


Thursday August 1, 2024, 5:30 PM - 8:00 PM 
Cochise College Sierra Vista, Community Room, Bldg 1000
Julie Zickefoose3.jpg

We are privileged to welcome distinguished ornithologist, artist and author Julie Zickefoose as our Keynote speaker. She will be telling us about how she became a celebrated natural history writer and illustrator.

​Julie lives and works quietly on an 80-acre wildlife sanctuary in the back country of Whipple, Ohio. She is a prolific writer and painter who was an All Things Considered commentator for five years. Her illustrated work, The Bluebird Effect, was an Oprah's Book Club pick in 2012. After 37 years of contributing art and writing to Bird Watcher's Digest, Julie recently became Advising Editor to the new and improved BWD Magazine. Her heavily illustrated books include Natural Gardening for Birds, Letters from Eden, The Bluebird Effect, and Baby Birds: An Artist Looks Into the Nest. Her newest book is Saving Jemima: Life and Love With a Hard-Luck Jay, the intimate story of how an orphaned bird can save a soul.

Books, Birds and Following Passion’s Path

This is an origin story; a close look at the making of a natural history writer and illustrator. It follows the threads of inspiration from formative books and influential artists in Julie’s early years, to the creation of her own books. Zickefoose tracks in intimate detail the exceptionally close interactions she has with birds under her study and care. These experiences have given her deep insight into the way birds think and see the world. “There’s no better way to come to know a bird than to be its mama. Then, to let it go and watch it learn to navigate its world and become what it was meant to be—this is how I come to understand birds: from their beginnings on outward.”

Illustrated with Julie’s own photographs, drawings and paintings, this lecture brings viewers into her world, and that of the birds she has come to know. A brood of Carolina wrens: ferociously intelligent, surprisingly affectionate, inventive and comical, consumed Julie’s summer in 2023. You’ll leave with a far greater appreciation of these small brown birds, and all birds, who have been Julie’s best instructors in the ways of the wild.

The Keynote Dinner is $50 per person.

All registered festival attendees can purchase advance tickets to the Thursday night Keynote and dinner online in the field trip section of the Cvent platform. To register and reserve your space select Keynote from the Thursday August 1 field trip choices.

​If you are a local area resident you can reserve your space in person (without registering online), on Tuesday, July 30 from 3:00PM - 4:00PM at our Welcome Desk at Library in Bldg 900 at Cochise College, Sierra Vista campus.

​Come and enjoy a scrumptious Southwest themed dinner created by famed Chef Chris Przylucki of Cochise College's Aladdin Foods.

bottom of page