Mountainaire Avian Rescue Society (MARS) will stage its second annual Walk for Wildlife fundraiser Sunday, April 21 in celebration of Earth Day.
This fundraising event leaves from the parking area, on the south end of the Courtenay Airpark, where fresh air joins with one of nature’s most interesting theatres for bird watching.
The walk is an easy one-kilometre stroll, skate, skip, or hop along the banks of the Courtenay River Estuary. The paved pathway easily accommodates wheelchairs and strollers and, of course, Fido is welcome to tag along.
Event organizer Lynda Hodgkinson enthuses, “The Walk is a great opportunity to wrap yourself in family, friends and the outdoors while helping to maintain a local avian facility for the North Island’s most vulnerable species.
“All proceeds go towards the demanding expense of providing 24/7 hospital facilities, plus costly medicine and food for the increasing number of injured and/or sick wildlife.”
In teaming up with the Canadian Wildlife Federation’s National Walk for Wildlife Campaign, the MARS spokesperson says the distance you cover will be added to the cross country efforts of all participants.
In addition, CWF will provide Walk for Wildlife buttons to everyone who participates!
While the drama of last year’s walk — when the MARS team rescued an osprey who tangled with a couple of bald eagles — may not be repeated, it is still a great opportunity to connect with and view the wildlife that is so prevalent in our Valley.
MARS ambassador birds will be on hand with educational outreach worker Reg Westcott, who will answer your questions and outline some of the challenges that face a wildlife rescue organization.
Once again, MARS acknowledges the generous donations of water (don’t forget your water bottle) from Water Pure and Simple, fruit from Quality Foods in Comox and the “stand by” assistance from St. John’s Ambulance.
Look for Scotia Bank and Coastal Community Credit Union tents and, of course, the MARS registration tent.
For those with a yen for something sweet there will be delicious Hot Chocolates’ eagles, a selection of MARS gift items, Royston Roasting Co. coffee and MARS Spring Raffle tickets for sale.
Registration begins at 9 a.m., with the event lasting until 1 p.m.
The $10 registration fee is waived if participants obtain sponsoring pledges from their friends, neighbors, co-workers, and families. You may download pledge sheets online at www.wingtips.org.
The forms are also available for pick up from various Comox Valley merchants which are listed on our website. Don’t forget to bring your pledge sheets and donation money.
Adult and child prizes will be awarded for the most pledges.
— Mountainaire Avian Rescue Society