Blucher Park Enhancements to be unveiled at September 17 Grand Opening
Blucher Park, a well-known park popular with birders, has undergone a transformation receiving about $86,000 worth of improvements, which will benefit both the birds and the birders who enjoy them.
The Corpus Christi Convention & Visitors Bureau and the City of Corpus Christi will host a Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony and Grand Opening of the Blucher Park Enhancement Project during a press conference at 11 a.m. September 17, 2009 at the park located at the corner of Carrizo and Blucher streets.
Blucher Park is one of the major "Fall Out" or resting stops along the migratory pathway. The park is known worldwide among the birding community. The goal of the project is to enhance the visitor experience in Blucher Park through a defined trail system and educational signage with the protection of bird habitat at the forefront.
The improvements include a trail system mulched with native wood chips, a pedestrian bridge, eight individual seating units, 12 way-finding markers, removal of invasive plants and the addition of two chimney swift towers within an interpretive kiosk. The Chimney Swift kiosks will serve as nesting and roosting sites for the birds. Improvements will be completed in time for fall migration.
Chimney Swifts are sleek birds with crescent-shaped wings and acrobatic flight patterns. They migrate to North America from the Amazon River Basin each spring to breed and raise their young. They can be seen arriving in Corpus Christi in March and usually make the city their home thru the summer months to roost and nest, leaving the area with the first major cold-front. Large flocks of Chimney Swifts will roost in a single chimney or tower, however only one nesting pair will nest in a chimney at a time. To help conserve the Chimney Swift the CVB partnered with local birders and architects to design the two chimneys.
The CVB spearheaded the Blucher Park Enhancement Project and challenged the public and private sector to fund the $86,000 project with matching funds provided by the CVB. Funding was secured by in-kind services, grants and sponsorships from: Coastal Bend Bays & Estuaries Program, American Birding Association, AEP Texas and the City of Corpus Christi Parks & Recreation Department. The project was generated from the Coastal Bend Nature Tourism Initiative, a project of the CVB.
The Coastal Bend Nature Tourism Initiative fund-raising effort allows stakeholders the ability to improve several sites throughout the area that can draw significantly more visitors when improved, interpreted and packaged for marketing. Blucher Park is the first of three planned park improvements, which have been initiated and organized by the CVB.
It is the goal of the CVB to be a nationally recognized Nature Tourism Destination within five years and internationally renowned in 10 years.
The Coastal Bend alone has an impressive 153 nature & birding sites in the area available to birders and nature lovers year round. For more information on Blucher Park and other birding sites in the Coastal Bend, visit http://www.birdthebend.com/