April 2014
A Call For Feedback On The Natural History Series 
We would like your feedback on the Natural History Series!
To all of you who have participated in our Series evenings, we would very much appreciate your comments, both good and bad, on how we are doing to date. For example, have you enjoyed the subjects and speakers, are the presentations too long or too short, and what future topics would you enjoy hearing about? 
We would like to see even more folks attending these evenings, if you have any groups that we could email, give postcards to, or talk to, just us know and we will add them to our outreach list! 
Please email Board Member Vikki Pynenburg at
A big thanks to all of you that have attended the Series so far, we hope to see you at the next one on June 19th!  
Spring Volunteer Trainings Are Here!  
Get Involved at your Local Wildlife Refuge
Check out these upcoming volunteer trainings, and be sure to share them with friends, family, and anyone you think would like to get involved at the Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge! If you cannot make the trainings, but would like to get involved, contact Josie Finley at or call (360) 887-4106 to arrange an alternate training plan. 
Click flyers to enlarge:
Plankhouse Volunteers                              Field Trip Volunteers

Cathlapotle Plankhouse Update & Events  
Plankhouse Will Reopen April 12th&13th, with a Spring Opening Celebration on April 13th! 

Spring is here and the Cathlapotle Plankhouse is preparing to open! We've got a new roof, new docents, and new programs coming up this season! There is still time to get involved as a volunteer and help share the story of the Refuge and Chinookan Peoples of the Lower Columbia. If you'd like to become involved as a Plankhouse docent on weekends or with school groups, contact Sarah Hill at, or call (360) 887-4106 and she can help get you started!
  •  April 3,10,17, Field Trip volunteer training: If you want to be involved in our field trip educational programs we will host a 4 week education training. Each week will focus on a different topic, the natural environment of the Refuge, the cultural history of the refuge, how to work with students and good interpretation skills, and the activities and content of our school group educational programs. Contact Josie to RSVP or for more info.

  • April  5th 10am-3pm is the new docent training! Spread the word to friends and family that might want to get involved. Though this training is not required for experienced docents, it would be a great refresher before the season starts. 

    *Location change! *Instead of meeting at the Plankhouse, we will meet at the 65th Street Fire and Rescue Station.
    911 N 65th Ave, Ridgefield, WA 98642
    We will start in the Fire and Rescue station and move onto the Refuge in the afternoon.

    Topics covered will be history of the Plankhouse Project, steps to becoming a docent,  material culture craft time (cordage, mini cattail mats, processing cedar for basketry and a small simple weaving project) and if
    there is time, the ethnobotany trail walk.
    *Materials are limited, so please RSVP to Sarah Hill at so she can make sure there are enough materials for everyone. 
    If you or someone you know wants to be involved, but can't make the training, have them contact Sarah and she can arrange alternate training plans.
  • April 12-13th, Plankhouse Opening Weekend and First Second Sunday event! 
    The Plankhouse will now be open on weekends from 12pm-4pm Saturdays and Sundays depending on volunteer availability.  Check the Plankhouse calender for event and potential closure updates.  

Spring Plankhouse Opening Event April 13th,
Sewing seeds of the past and planting for the future;
A camas planting and First Food presentation
Several species of camas, Camassia quamash and Camassia leichtlinii are key parts of the Gary Oak ecosystems that span the west side of the Cascade Range from British Columbia down to Northern California. Today widely regarded as a beautiful wildflower, camas plays a crucial part in the traditional lifeways and cultures of many Indigenous peoples in the Northwest. Before colonization by euro-American settlers, Chinookan Peoples, Nimi'ipuu (Nez Perce), Kalapuya, and many other Tribes  tended, dug, traded, and are camas corms since time immemorial. Camas is still regarded as a special First Food for many Tribes in our and is still tended and dug with care. For our spring opening we will honor and celebrate this beautiful lily with  a special presentation about the cultural significances of camas, learn how to restore the camas prairies that have painted the hills and valleys of our region blue for generations, and begin a camas meadow restoration project next to the Cathlapotle Plankhouse.

12pm-4pm : Children’s activities, Plankhouse tours, and Gary Oak Ecosystem restoration information.

1pm : Presentation on Cultural and Historical significance of Camassia  spp.
2pm :Camas Blessing and Restoration Work Party

Other Regional Events Highlighting Native American Cultures:
Burke Museum, Native Arts and Artists Day! 
Sat., Apr. 19, 2014 | 10 am – 4 pm 
Included with museum admission; FREE for Burke members or with UW ID
Join the Burke Museum for a celebration of Northwest Native art. Watch demonstrations and examine the incredible artwork of local Native American artists, who are experts in mediums such as weaving, basketry, and beadwork. Take part in hands-on art activities for kids and adults. Also attend talks about supporting indigenous artists and various basket and weaving techniques of Northwest Native Peoples.  For more info visit:
A River of Baskets: An Exhibition of Columbia River Tribal Basketmakers
Wenatchee Valley Museum Seeks Funding for Event
Wenatchee Valley Museum & Cultural Center, a non-profit organization with a successful 75 year history, is seeking funding to help support a comprehensive and beautiful exhibit honoring thirteen contemporary Native basket makers of the Columbia River, and the work of their ancestors who created baskets.  These artisans are preserving the enduring traditions of their people, and are held in high regard in their own communities.  They represent tribes from the headwaters to the mouth of the mighty Columbia River. The Museum is seeking funding to ensure this exhibition is of the highest quality and pays proper respect to the Basketmakers, both contemporary and historical, who carry on this ancient craft.

Learn more and make a contribution at:
Cedar Clam Gathering Basket Workshop, April 26 and 27
Stephanie Wood,  Santiam Kalapuya, Clackamas Chinook and Takelma Rogue River and seventh generation basket weaver is hosting a  a 2 day class on her family farm in Dayton Oregon.
Class is limited to 10 people that have paid for their spot by April 15th.Class fees will include: Instructions, Western Red Cedar and other weaving materials (juncus, raffia, available Yellow Cedar-additional charge), local and tribal history, oral traditions, learn some Chinuk Wawa words and play a traditional Native American game! Kitchen, bathrooms, showers and wi-fi available, also a bonfire pit and pond that can be hiked/walked around.
Date: April 26th Saturday and April 27th Sunday 2014. (10-4pm weaving both days). Cost: $70.00 RSVP by April 15th to Stephanie at
Cedar Weaving and a Camas and Salmon Bake, June 7&8
Stephanie Wood,  Santiam Kalapuya, Clackamas Chinook and Takelma Rogue River and seventh generation basket weaver is hosting a 2 day class on her family farm in Dayton Oregon. Saturday morning we will start digging camas, clean and start the bake-usually 12 hours+. While the camas is baking, we will take turns tending the fire and also spend this time weaving our baskets. Sunday we will finish the camas, start the salmon as well as finish our baskets. Western Red Cedar baskets will have a twined round bottom, with a twined, plaited with cedar and using, red cedar, colored raffia and sweetgrass sedge for twine. Sunday will conclude with a salmon and camas dinner!
 Time: 10am-5pm Saturday, Sunday 10am-5pm; Fee: $150.00 per person*; RSVP to by May 1st 2014 to reserve your spot. *Students can also bring unfinished projects to work on for a discounted price.
 Events Highlighting Global Indigenous Peoples, Anthropology, or Archeology
ARCE Lecture: "Burying Man's Best Friend: Canine Catacombs in Ancient Egypt" 
By Dr. Salima Ikram, Egyptologist, American University in Cairo  
Wednesday, April 2, 2014, 7:30 pm. Room 338, Smith Memorial Student Union, Portland State University
Ancient Egypt has a long history of animal mummification and burial, both ritual and pet.  Among the many animals buried in Egypt, dogs are amongst the most commonly found. In the cases of ritual (votive) deposits, the dogs are buried in groups together--separate from human remains--while a handful of pet burials indicate that dogs were buried near their owners.
Dr Salima Ikram, one of the world’s leading experts on mummification, will describe this little-known area of Egyptology, focusing on the different types of burials of man’s best friend. 
Free admission and open to the public.  Park Free in PSU parking structures after 7:00 pm

May OAS Meeting & Presentation: Tuesday, May 6
"The Prehistoric Cave Art of Europe” presented by Dr. Jean Clottes
 Noted international rock art expert and author, Dr. Jean Clottes, is coming to the OAS on Tuesday, May 6! Dr. Clottes, and excellent speaker, will discuss "The Prehistoric Cave Art of Europe”, covering the types of images found and the techniques used to create the images. The existence of cave art for the first time was recognized in 1879 with the discovery of the Altamira cave paintings in Cantabrian Spain. There are now nearly 400 identified sites with wall art all over Europe, from the south of Spain to the Urals in Russia, including Lascaux, Chauvet, Altamira, and Niaux. The works of art testify not only to the artistic abilities of our remote ancestors but also to their ways of considering and celebrating their world. The presentation is at Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI) at 7:45 PM, and is free and open to the public. The talk is preceded by a general business meeting beginning at 7 PM, that is also open to the public. 
See or call 503-727-3507 for more information.

Bushman of the Kalahari; The lifeways challenges of Contemporary Hunter-Gatherers, Presented by Dr. Nicole Apelian
April 22nd, 7pm Mississippi Studios, $10
Ever wonder what it’s like to live with the Bushmen? Want to know what their day to day life is like? What kinds of ancient technologies are still in everyday use? How have they maintained their way of life in the fast-paced modern world? Nicole will be giving a slide-show presentation about her work studying and documenting the ethnobotany and lifeways of the Naro Bushman in Botswana. The presentation will cover the kinds of technology they use in everyday life and their efforts to preserve their cultural ways.  This presentation is part of the "Think Globally, Rewild Locally" Earth Day Party and Fundraiser for Portland Based non-profit Rewild Portland. There will also be live music, ancestral skills demonstrations such as friction fire, basketry, simple stone tool making, and a silent auction. For more info visit:
Habitat Restoration 
Update & Events  

April Tree Planting & Maintenance
Carty Unit: Wednesday, April 9th! Last maintence day of the season! 
JOIN US for volunteer work days in the wild and beautiful setting of the 5,200-acre Refuge as we plant native trees and shrubs, maintain/repair past plantings, and install wire fencing for protection. Please share our full season schedule with others who might be interested. Come out and enjoy the cranes, geese, eagles, hawks, swans, and other wildlife who keep us company while we work!

All workdays are from 9am-12:30pm rain or shine. Wear waterproof footwear, bring gloves, and dress for the weather. Light refreshments will be provided. Registration is encouraged but not required. Contact staff: 360-887-3883 or 
Ridgefield Refuge Complex 
News & Events

Bird Walks at Ridgefield, Steigerwald and Pierce Refuges
Join a Refuge volunteer naturalist for a series of birding hikes on Ridgefield, Steigerwald Lake, and Pierce National Wildlife Refuges. This is an excellent opportunity to sharpen your birding skills while enjoying Refuge trails. All hikes start at the respective trail head. Space is limited, so please reserve your spot early.

The hikes can be found on the Ridgefield Refuge's webiste here:

April 16 Lunch & Learn "Spring Wildflowers" 1pm-3pm
Volunteers and Friends Members are invited to attend! 
Spring has arrived at the reufuge and the plants have taken notice! All sorts of wildflowers have began to bloom at the Refuge, Indain Plum, Trilliums, Red Flowering Currant, Fawn lilies, and many other blooms are brightening up the Oaks to Wetlands Trail. In this lunch and learn, Plankhouse Coordinator Sarah Hill will talk about common spring wildflowers, how to identify them, and their place in our Refuge's ecology. We will also take a walk around the Oaks to Wetlands Trail to see how many species we can find! 
Potluck item for snacks/lunch optional but encouraged! We will meet in the Plankhouse at 1pm for the presentation, and head out on to the trail after that.
Please contact Josie Finley at 360-887-4106 or email for questions and to RSVP. 

Thank you for visiting the refuge and supporting conservation! If you have any questions regarding activities and regulations on the refuge, call the office Monday through Friday 7:30 to 3:30 at

Shop At Fred Meyer? Enroll in the Community Rewards Program and Help the Friends!  


Fred Meyer is donating $2.5 million per year to non-profits in Alaska, Idaho, Oregon and Washington, based on where their customers tell them to give. Here’s how the program works:
  • You still earn your Rewards Points, Fuel Points, and Rebates, just as you do today!

  • Sign up for the Community Rewards program by linking your Fred Meyer Rewards Card to Friends of Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge at You can search for us by our name or by our non-profit number 89824.
  • Then, every time you shop and use your Rewards Card, you are helping the Friends earn a donation to support the Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge!
  • If you do not have a Rewards Card, they are available at the Customer Service desk of any Fred Meyer store.
  • For more information, please visit
Website  Facebook  Email us 

In This Issue...
Welcome to our First Business Member! 
A warm welcome to our first Business Member, Kim Kelleher of Windermere Real Estate! She is the first to take advantage of our brand-new Business Membership program premiered at the January Ridgefield Business Association meeting. In this new program, businesses who support the Friends and the Refuge will be identified on our website and in our e-newsletter for twelve months based on the membership level they choose. Business Friends at the $100 level have their business name listed on our website and e-newsletter. Business Allies at the $250 level have their business logo in both areas. For more information or to schedule a presentation on the Refuge and our programs at your business group, please contact us.
Friends Board Seeking New Members 
Board Member Openings
Friends of Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge
The Friends of Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge is looking to expand its Board Membership. The Board is seeking individuals with a deep passion for the environment and wildlife, appreciation of the area's rich cultural heritage, maintenance and restoration of habitat, and environmental and cultural education. We are looking for individuals with interests and skills in dealing with the intersection of organizations, the government, and business; advocacy; and fund raising. Board Members are expected to attend monthly meetings, lead and participate in designated committees, Bird Fest and Fund Raising events, and other community activities and events.
Please send resume and letter of interest to:
Our Sponsors

Clark Public Utilities
National Environmental Education Foundation
National Fish& Wildlife Foundation
Environmental Paper & Print
Pacific NW Best Fish Co.
Parr Lumber
Portland Audubon
Umpqua Bank
Business Members
Business Friends
You could be our First Business Friend! For more information or to schedule a presentation on the Refuge and our programs at your business group, please contact us at 

Business Allies
Kim Kelleher 
Principal Broker ABR, GRI
Licensed in Oregon and Washington
phone:  503-209-6587

Bring Bluegrass Back to Bird Fest!  
We need YOUR help! 
For many years, the twangy tunes of bluegrass music echoed through the streets of Ridgefield during our annual BirdFest celebration. After a two year hiatus, the Friends and many Ridgefield Community members want to bring Bluegrass back to the festival on October 4th and 5th. To make it happen, we need help fundraising and organizing the music part of the event. If you are passionate about bluegrass music and want to help bring it back, email board member and local business owner Terry Hurd at
Interested in Membership? 
Besides receiving the monthly E-News with Refuge updates, upcoming events, and wildlife news, members enjoy member- and volunteer- only events. Also, with any $50+ membership you will receive an annual Refuge Pass, which covers entrance fees. With any $100+ membership, you will receive a gift certificate for a 3hr. paddle with Ridgefield Kayak Rentals. Check out Ridgefield Kayak's website for more details:

Don’t forget to glance at the
Refuge calendar,  your one-stop shop for fun activities and volunteer opportunities!  
Discounts at Local Businesses for New and Renewing Members! 

Would you like to enjoy a cup of coffee from Ridgefield's Season's after a morning hike on the Refuge? Or perhaps breakfast before you head out on auto tour route at Pioneer Street Cafe or lunch at Vinnie's Pizza inbetween the River 'S' and Carty Units. Dinner and drinks at the Sportsman's Resturant and Lounge after a long day of wildlife viewing? Or maybe you would like to get a discount on some supplies at Shorty's or Backyard Bird Shop?  
Become a Friend or renew your membership today, and receive a member card with great discounts at these wonderful local businesses! Feel free to contact us for any questions or inquiries.  
Friends Members and Volunteers Get a Pass to the Adidas Company Store!  
March 28-April 11

Through this invitation The Friends is granted access to the Adidas Employee Store from March 28-April 11, during which Members and Volunteers will receive 50% off retail prices*. Remember to bring a physical print-out of the shopping invitation with the bottom portion complete! This is required to enter the store.

Click on the Image to enlarge, then print out the invitation, fill it out, and go to the Employee Store! 

  "Our mission is to support, protect, and enhance Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge and its wildlife habitat; and to broaden public awareness and participation in its environmental, cultural, and educational opportunities."

Friends of Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge
P.O. Box 1022, Ridgefield, WA 98642

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Address postal inquiries to:
Friends of Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge
PO BOX 1022
Ridgefield, WA 98642
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