Migration Celebration may have been cancelled in 2020 and 2021, but area nature lovers can still appreciate the beauty of the great outdoors at Brazosport Art League’s newest exhibit opening this week. More than 60 photos from the Migration Celebration Photography Contest are on display in the gallery, featuring entries and winners from the last two years.
A project of U.S. Fish and Wildlife, the annual photography competition is underwritten by the Friends of Brazoria Wildlife Refuges. The exhibit at The Center features photographs in seven categories (birds, plants, mammals, insects, landscapes, around the world and digital art) and is being sponsored by Shintech. The show runs from Tuesday, May 11 through Saturday, June 5.
Lisa Myers, president of Friends of Brazoria Wildlife Refuges, said the Texas Mid-Coast National Wildlife Refuge Complex’s Migration Celebration has transitioned over the years from a bird-focused event to an annual, family-friendly weekend that celebrates nature and the outdoors.
“Originally a bird migration-related festival, Migration Celebration is now a free family event held each April that focuses on many aspects of nature and the outdoors,” she said. “This includes trail tours, birds of prey programs, kids fishing and nature art, reptile expo, butterfly encounter, touch tank, kayaking, marsh buggy tours, vendor displays and more.”
Kim Richardson heads up the committee that oversees the Migration Celebration Photography Competition, which survived the event’s two-year closure due to concerns about COVID-19.
“U.S. Fish and Wildlife, as a part of its mission, encourages nature photography,” she explained. “The Migration Celebration Photo Contest provides photographers with wonderful venues to display their photos. We haven’t been able to have Migration Celebration for two years, but the photo contest made it through! We want everyone to come to Migration Celebration in April next year. Much thanks to the Brazosport Art League for hosting the contest again!”
Myers explained that the photography contest has been an integral part of Migration Celebration for many years, as it celebrates and encourages the enjoyment of and participation in all aspects of nature, both locally and around the world.
“Entrants are not professional photographers, but those who seek to capture moments in the outdoors and share those moments with others,” she said. “Generally, all submitted photos are displayed at the Migration Celebration Kickoff fundraiser dinner and at the two-day event as well. The photo display is an attendee favorite and reminds viewers of the treasures we have in our refuges and other outdoor areas that are practically in our backyards. Many of the images have the ability to transport viewers to a lovely time and place and inspire us to pay closer attention to nature’s gifts.”
Tickets to the Brazosport Art League gallery, located at The Center for the Arts & Sciences, are free, but reservations and a mask are required. Hours of operation are 11:00 AM – 3:00 PM, Tuesday through Saturday.