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Volunteers welcome to join annual Willmar area Christmas bird count Dec. 14

Local citizen-scientists will venture out Dec. 14 for the 58th consecutive year to conduct the National Audubon Christmas Bird Count in the Willmar area. Anyone interested in the outdoors or birding is welcome to participate by meeting at 7:30 a.m. that day at the Calvary Lutheran Church in Willmar.

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WILLMAR — Volunteers are welcome to join as citizen-scientists for the annual Willmar Area Christmas Bird Count on Saturday, Dec. 14.

Participants should meet at 7:30 a.m. in Bethany Hall at the Calvary Lutheran Church, 302 Olena Avenue S.W., Willmar. Dress for the outdoors.

This will be the 58th annual count in Willmar as part of the National Audubon Christmas Bird Count, which dates back 119 years.

Last year in Willmar, 25 volunteers gathered. Some took to the field, while others kept track at feeders. They counted 51 different species of birds in the count area, including 6,354 individuals.

Dave and Ardy Lais will continue the tradition of offering a warm beverage and a small treat to those who stop by their house east of Sibley State Park between 9 and 11:30 a.m. Dec. 14.

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Everyone is welcome to gather at 5 p.m. for supper and a chance to discuss the day’s work at Calvary Lutheran Church.

A meal will be provided and a freewill donation taken to offset the cost.

For more information, call or email Joel Halbritter: 320-235-6358 or 320-894-7751 (cell), jchalbritter@gmail.com; or Joel Schmidt: 320-599-8068, joelallenschmidt@gmail.com

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