Birding is for Everyone: The Bird Days of Summer Are Back!

by Camelia Zollars, Public Programs & Partnership Specialist

Birding is for everyone.

Birding is for everyone, but for me it didn’t always feel that way. The birding events I joined felt like a collective in-crowd, and I was on the sidelines all confused. Because, doing something new and being a beginner can cause us to feel like outsiders.

But maybe I didn’t need to be an outsider. Could I simply come, try, explore, and connect with nature and the people around me?

Summertime renews us with a childlike curiosity. The courage to dive in, try something unfamiliar and new. It brings up nostalgic summer camp times, drawing us in to connect with others and make new friends.

Camelia Zollars looking through binoculars
Birding in the forest

The Bird Days of Summer is a series of beginner-friendly programs for anyone curious about birds and nature. We combine community-building, exploration, and fun to create safe spaces for people to get to know each other, as well as the birds.

From June through August, Bird Alliance of Oregon’s Adult Education Team is hosting 17 “pay-what-you-can” events on a sliding scale of $0-$25, and we invite everyone curious about birds and nature to join.

We kicked things off in June with the dynamic duo, Candace Larson and Mary Coolidge, for Queer Birding to celebrate Pride Month.

In July and August, soak up some sun on Slough Run: biking and birding along the Columbia Slough. Or slow it down for the meditative and grounding Beginning Bird Noticing. Then we’ll gather for more summer vibes on Birds and Bevvies, with drinks and birdy trivia. And the adorable Baby Birds Walks for the Whole Fam will be back, along with new events featuring dragonflies, bats, and wildflowers!

Those nostalgic childhood memories of summer always seem to include someone else, maybe a new friend or members of your family. Today, it feels true that summer is still a time of making memories with others, a time for community.

Perhaps the piece that matters most about the Bird Days of Summer is community, doing something outside together. And this year we get to continue in community by collaborating with Güero Bird Club and People of Color Outdoors. We will sit, sip cool drinks, and watch birds with Güero Bird Club, a club focused on chill vibes, good food and drinks, and birds, for two Accessible Sunday Perch bird sits. And we’ll throw on all our birdy attire for Fly Fits BIPOC Bird Walk with People of Color Outdoors, where Black, Indigenous, and all people of color can enjoy nature in a caring community.

The Bird Days of Summer are back. Back for those who want to simply come and marvel at the wonder of watching birds while sitting, walking, and even biking. For people who want to feel the breeze of wind as dragonflies buzz past, to stand under the dusky sky and search for bats, who want to bring their families along and take cute baby bird photos. And for those who want to connect with nature and the people around them.