Birds in The Hills

Birds In The Hills 2020

Birds in the Hills Festival was originally scheduled for May 8-10 at Eclipse Company Store in The Plains, Ohio. Because of COVID 19 and the associated health concerns, we are postponing the festival until spring of 2021. We are hoping to host a one-day event during fall migration in 2020, so stay tuned and stay healthy. 

Birds in the Hills is an affordable three-day festival that features family-friendly activities as well as tours to local birding hotspots. We welcome anyone with even a remote interest in birds and the outdoors, including those who have never picked up a pair of binoculars. The registration fee will be $10 and field trips will be available at an additional cost.

Birds in the Hills Festival will feature birding by kayak with Touch the Earth Adventures, an all-day birding tour of the Little Cities of Black Diamonds region, tours of the local breeding population of Prothonotary Warblers, a birding by bicycle tour, and hike at United Plant Savers searching for birds and spring wildflowers. Participants can expect to see and hear a plethora of breeding and migratory songbirds such as Scarlet Tanager, Yellow-Billed Cuckoo, Indigo Bunting, and most of the migratory warbler species. We look forward to highlighting the best birding locations in Athens County and the Little Cities of Black Diamonds region.

We will have family-friendly activities, art for sale, live music, and keynote presentations at Eclipse throughout the weekend. The base admission fee is $10 and field trips will be on an ala carte basis. If you are a vendor interested in setting up shop at the festival, please email Madison Donohue at

Birds in the Hills shirts coming soon!

  • Contact Madison Donohue for more information: 740-767-2225;
  • Camping is available at a variety of local spots, including Lake Snowden and Strouds Run State Park. Thanks to the generosity of the Broeker family, we can offer a limited number of free camping opportunities at their property about 15 minutes from Eclipse (contact Madison to reserve your spot). Potable water and a portable pot included.
  • Tenderfoot Learning Lab is offering a package deal for $25 per person, which includes camping at their property, access to indoor restroom,  and an outdoor cooking class. 
  • Visit the Athens County Visitors Bureau website for a full listing of lodging options and other things to do in the Athens area.


2020 schedule (click to enlarge or download)

Click here to get email notifications as soon as new information is available.

Click here to view the 2019 schedule.

2020 Activities 

  • Bird Banding with Bob Scott Placier at Hocking College
  • Making bird feeder gifts for Mother’s Day
  • Live music at Eclipse
  • The Art of Awareness with Megan Bee and Jen Reeder
  • Family hikes to explore vernal pools, check bird nest boxes, and see spring wildflowers
  • Hike and craft at the Dairy Barn in Athens

2020 Guided Field Trips

  • All-day birding tour of the Little Cities Region, including hiking a brand new birding loop of the Buckeye Trail
  • Warbler migration field trip to Zaleski and Lake Hope with Bruce Simpson
  • Birding the Athens Conservancy’s Bluebell Preserve with Jeremy Dominguez
  • Birds and Herbs hike at United Plant Savers
  • Birding by kayak and bicycle (separate trips, of course)


Keynote Speakers 

  • Lynn Holtzman, professor at Hocking College: “Birding Ohio’s Bike Paths” Friday, 7:00pm at Eclipse
  • Pat Quakenbush, Ohio State Parks: “Live Birds of Prey” Saturday, 6:30pm at Eclipse

The Birds in the Hills Festival welcomes everyone and does not tolerate harassment of any kind. If you experience or witness any sexist, racist, homophobic, transphobic, xenophobic, or otherwise problematic behavior, please notify someone from Rural Action at the event and we will handle it accordingly. We’d like our event to be as safe a space as possible.

Birds in The Hills 2020 is sponsored by