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SAMposium: Sam Pate Naturalist Symposium

March 14 @ 8:30 am - 6:00 pm

$65 – $75
SAMposium – Sam Pate Naturalist Symposium – a lecture series in honor of Sam Pate committed to sharing his passion for the natural world.

SAMposium: One of the true joys of living in the south, perhaps even a notch above great barbecue and compelling college football, is the year-round symphony of birdsong that plays outside our windows. Bird fever, which in some blossoms into a bona-fide addiction, is something that we plan to embrace and promote during our upcoming two-day Sam Pate Naturalist Symposium at the Columbus Botanical Garden. Named in memory of a local and regional birding luminary and nature-lover extraordinaire, this inaugural festival for Sam Pate will feature both a day of family activities aimed at introducing children and parents to the wonderful world of birds, as well as a day of lectures on all-things ornithological.

This series of speeches, emceed by WC Bradley Farms Wildlife Biologist Ashley Turner, will feature our Director, Stefan Bloodworth as well as Sam’s former students from Brookstone School Ryan Chitwood, Andrew Dreelin and Chris McClure. The day will be capped off by a keynote speech from a rock star in the world of birding, David Allen Sibley.

Mr. Sibley is the author and illustrator of the series of successful guides to nature that bear his name, including the New York Times best seller The Sibley Guide to Birds. He has contributed art and articles to Smithsonian, Science, The Wilson Journal of Ornithology, Birding, BirdWatching, and North American Birds, and wrote and illustrated a syndicated column for The New York Times. He is the recipient of the Roger Tory Peterson Award for Lifetime Achievement from the American Birding Association and the Linnaean Society of New York’s Eisenmann Medal. He lives in Concord, Massachusetts.

We hope you will join us for this special event. We live in a part of the world that is home to many unique habitats, and these natural spaces play host to a spectacular diversity of bird species throughout the year. Use this chance to celebrate that heritage, to learn, and to honor the memory of a man who devoted his life to fostering a deep relationship with the wild world around us in all those whose lives he touched.

Please note – If Sam Pate touched your life and you would like to see SAMposium continue annually, please donate to our SAMposium Fund. This fund will be strictly used to secure future speakers and cover the expenses of the festival. Donation and ticket links are included in the link below.

Schedule of Events:

8:30 – 9:00 Coffee and check-in

9:00 – 9:30 Stefan Bloodworth, Executive Director of the Columbus Botanical Garden

Topic – Birds in the Landscape

9:45 -10:45 Andrew Dreelin, Ornithology Masters Candidate at Cornell University

Topic – The Intersection between Ornithology and Technology

11:00 – 12:00 Ryan Chitwood, Masters in Ornithology at University of Georgia

Topic: A Bird’s Eye View of Climate Change

12:00 – 1:30. Lunch optional onsite food trucks or off-site as you desire

1:30 – 2:30 Chris McClure, Director of Global Conservation Science for the Peregrine Fund

Topic: The State of the World’s Raptors

2:45 – 3:45: David Sibley, Author and illustrator

Topic: The Art of Identification

3:45-4:15: Questions and Answer with David Sibley

4:15-5:00: Book signing with David Sibley


March 14
8:30 am - 6:00 pm
$65 – $75


Columbus Botanical Garden
3603 Weems Road
Columbus, GA 31909 United States
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