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The Birds of Vermont Museum: Where History Meets Art

By Elisha Neubauer

The Birds of Vermont Museum in Huntington, Vermont is a unique facility featuring history, art, and birds. Opened in 1987, the Museum has been a go-to for anyone with an appreciation for arts, nature, and history.

While those three items have been displayed in museums across the US for decades, the combinational path taken at The Birds of Vermont Museum is a refreshing look at these concepts. The Museum was launched to be a destination for children, residents, and tourists alike. It takes its inspirational cues from a love for birds and educational awareness.

"By integrating science with art, we enable each visitor to connect to birds from both comfortable and new perspectives," Erin Talmage, Executive Director, said.

From the moment you approach the Museum, you are surrounded by a calming feeling of natural wonder. Located on a quiet dirt road, you are immediately pulled away from the hustle and bustle of city life and transplanted into a natural wilderness. The Museum itself features 500 life-size, biologically accurate bird carvings depicted in natural habitat settings. The majority of the intricate carvings portray birds found locally in the Vermont environment, with a selection displaying birds located in more tropical regions, as well as a handful of extinct species.

A bulk percentage of the carvings were created by Bob Spear, the Museum's master wood carver. Spear's initial goal was to provide education, nurture an appreciation of the environment, and study birds and their habitats through the use of woodcarvings and other museum resources. Spear's goal developed, becoming the Museum's initiative as well.

"The Museum property comprises multiple habitats, offering opportunities for guided or self-guided walks through native flora and fauna," Talmage said. "Providing opportunities for listening, looking, and learning is at the core of our mission."

The setup allows you to explore at your own pace, which in turn enhances discovery and appreciation of your surroundings. The Museum has learned that an enjoyment and connection to nature, wildlife, and physical places within one's community can directly correlate to overall happiness and well-being in everyday life. They now strive to provide such associations for their local community.

"The direct and positive influence the Museum exhibits and activities have on children and adults in our community adds to people's happiness and health," Talmage said. "In turn, this increases residents' (and others') awareness, appreciation, and curiosity about birds, the environment, and how Vermont's ecosystems are connected to the world."

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About The Author

Elisha Neubauer is a freelance editor, ghostwriter, book reviewer, and author. She is...

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