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New Smokies Audubon chapter forms

A new Great Smoky Mountains chapter of the National Audubon Society formed just a few months ago but can already claims a few hundred members in its ranks.

The Great Smoky Mountains Audubon Society meets at 6:30 p.m. on the second Tuesday of the month at the Maggie Valley Pavilion. A program on creating “Backyard Habitats” will be featured at the next meeting, held on Tuesday, Aug. 10. Sara Martin, biology instructor at the Haywood Community College and volunteer for the National Wildlife Federation, is the presenter.

The chapter will offer a venue for birding and wildlife education, guest speakers and birding excursions in the area.

The Great Smoky Mountains Audubon chapter is a part of a larger birding initiative to turn Maggie into a bird sanctuary.

“Over a year ago, I envisioned Maggie Valley as a real bird sanctuary and birding community,” said Kathleen Klawitter, a Maggie Valley resident, who spearheaded the club’s creation and the Maggie Valley Bird Sanctuary Birding Project.

Last week, a N.C. Birding Trail sign was placed at Lake Junaluska, a point on the birding trail with support and donation of materials from Joey’s Pancake House, Haywood Builders Supply, Maggie Mountaineer Crafts, Legends Sports Grill, and The Bird Place.

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