Youth & Family Programming

Thank you for your interest in the Point Reyes Birding and Nature Festival (April 28th - 30th). We have over 60 field events to choose from, many of which, are open to families with children ages 7 and up. Below is a listing of our Sunday youth and family events, but you can also check out our full list of offerings which detail best experience and age levels per class.  

We will also be co-hosting the Point Reyes Youth Bird-A-Thon (ages 10-16) in collaboration with Sonoma Birding on May 20. This two hour program is $5 per person, and will be held around Point Reyes Station and the Giacomini Wetlands. RSVP

Purchase Tickets: Please note, you will need to scroll through the list of classes to Sunday and check the class you would like to join. This registers the first person, and then it will prompt you for additional attendees, and if you want them to have the same choices, so you won't have to scroll through the list again. If you have trouble, or would like assistance, please contact us at (415) 663.9312, Tuesday - Friday between 10 am - 5 pm. 

Become an event sponsor and help us offer scholarships to families in need, and educators. Learn more

Live Birds with The Bird Rescue Center
Sponsored by the Station House Cafe

Sunday, April 30, 2017 | 10:00 am – 11:00 am | Youth & Family Programming
Guides: The Bird Rescue Center
Location: Dance Palace Community and Cultural Center
Ticket Price: FREE, thanks to our Station House Cafe Sponsor | Limited to 75 participants
RSVP Required | Questions? Contact us 415.663.9312 or

Calling all families with fledglings! Bring your brood out to the Dance Palace on Sunday, April 30 to learn more about birds and nature. This Youth & Family Programming will kick off with a special live bird presentation from the The Bird Rescue Center, and is sponsored by the Station House Cafe in downtown Point Reyes Station. Docents will bring three Education Ambassadors — (resident hawks, owls, and falcons whose permanent disabilities have made them non-releasable), including a great horned owl. This is a rare and memorable opportunity to see these wild birds up-close, and learn about our native bird species, their fascinating adaptations and the essential roles they play in our local ecosystems.  Afterwards join us for one of two Youth & Family bird and nature walks at Point Reyes National Seashore, or for a nature journaling class with our keynote speaker Julie Zickefoose, or have lunch then come back for our shark film and discussion with Shark Stewards founder, David McGuire.

Children must be accompanied by an adult.

The Bird Rescue Center is a rehabilitation center for Sonoma County’s wild native birds. Their mission is to assist in the rescue, treatment and release of injured, orphaned or ill birds in the northern San Francisco Bay Area, and to educate the public regarding their ecological importance.

Exploring Wetlands With Kids

Sunday, April 30, 2017 | 11:15 am – 12:45 pm | Youth & Family Programming Ages 5-10
Guides: Fiona O’Kelly
Scholarship Only | Limited to 15 total participants (including parents and children) | 11 spots left

Following our live bird presentation, guide Fiona O’Kelly will take families with kids ages 5-10 out to explore the Giacomini Wetlands and look for birds and other wildlife. Expect the unexpected, as nature sets the stage for discovery  - under logs, on the ground and in the sky! Fiona’s passion for all things WILD is contagious, which is perfect for kids just learning about the WILD WORLD. She will use interpretation and games to get kids jazzed about the outdoors. Afterwards, stick around for a late lunch, or join us for a shark talk back at the Dance Palace.

Children must be accompanied by an adult. Please limit to one parent attending per family group so that we can accommodate as many kids on the walk as possible.

Event Location: Giacomini Wetlands, Golden Gate National Recreation Area

Birds and Dunes of Abbotts Lagoon for Families

Sunday, April 30, 2017 | 11:30 am – 2:30 pm | Youth & Family Programming - Ages 6 - 18
Guides: Sharon “Heron” Barnett and Kevin “Kestrel” Stockmann
Scholarship ONLY | Limited to 15 participants | 14 spots left

Following our live bird presentation, join guides Sharon Heron and Kevin Kestrel on an easy walk to Abbotts Lagoon looking for birds and other wildlife along the way. Sharon and Kevin will help everyone get good looks at many types of birds that live in the coastal scrub, on the fresh water pond, on the brackish water lagoon, amidst the sand dunes and on the open ocean. They will teach about dune ecology, ongoing dune restoration projects, and the challenges of life on the beach for the threatened snowy plovers. We’ll also learn about scat, stink beetles, river otters- anything that catches our eye! This is a family-friendly outing, with special focus on kids ages 6-18. With its rich variety of habitats, Abbotts Lagoon is a favorite birding and nature destination at Point Reyes.

Event Location: Abbotts Lagoon, Point Reyes National Seashore

Youth Nature Journaling with Keynote Speaker Julie Zickefoose

Sunday, April 30, 2017 | 11:15 am – 12:45 pm | Youth & Family Programming - Ages 12-18
Guides: Julie Zickefoose
Ticket Price: $40   | Limited to 10 participants | 5 Scholarships Spots

Following our live bird presentation, join birder and artist Julie Zickefoose for a special class on nature journalling for youth ages 12-18. This is a family event where your kids will learn about nature and nature journaling. Learning how to listen and observe in nature enhances ones overall experience in nature. Bring a notebook or drawing pad and pencils along for the walk. We will explore nearby areas with flowers, plants, and birds to draw and write about.

Children must be accompanied by an adult. Please limit to one parent attending per family group so that we can accommodate as many kids on the walk as possible.

Event location: Point Reyes National Seashore

Sharks of the Bay and Pacific Coast
Screening of film and discussion with filmmaker and founder of Shark Stewards

Sunday, April 30, 2017 | 1:00 pm – 2:30 pm | Afternoon|
Guide: David McGuire
Ticket Price: $25 | Limited to 45 participants

Join shark expert David McGuire, founder of Shark Stewards, and dive into the underwater world of the "City by the Bay." Great White sharks used to live in the San Francisco Bay, but today's top predator is the sevengill shark. Little is known about sevengill sharks behavior, reproduction, and ecology. Since 2008, Aquarium of the Bay has worked with UC-Davis' Biotelemetry Lab to track, detect the movements and analyze sevengills in San Francisco Bay. In 2009, Aquarium of the Bay released "City of the Shark," a short documentary by David McGuire and SeaStewards Media, providing a close-up look at local species, with emphasis on the sevengill shark. Narrated by Mike Gibbons, the film takes you on board the Aquarium's research vessels and dives into the Aquarium's exhibits for an up close look at these enigmatic animals. Join David for a screening of his film, "City of the Shark," followed by a lecture and discussion with the group.

Event location: Point Reyes Station, CA