Verde Valley Birding and

Nature Festival 2024

We hope to see you at Dead Horse Ranch State Park for the 2024 Verde Valley Birding and Nature Festival!

When: April 25 – 28, 2024
Where: Dead Horse Ranch State Park, plus guided birding tours across the Verde Watershed

Hints and tips as you plan:

  • Check back frequently. We will add a menu item called "Changes" that will document any changes we make to the agenda items over the next 10 days as we work to finalize details. 
  • As you plan - identify backups in case you need to put yourself on a waitlist. Registrants are always allowed to switch to a waitlisted trip, even up to the last minute.
  • You may put yourself on as many waitlists as you like.
  • We will likely be adding trips after registration opens. If this happens, we offer the trip to Early Bird Registrants first, then to those who registered on Feb 1. After that we open them to the public. If you are registered, there is never a penalty for changing your agenda for something we add in later.
  • Waitlist policies - If you are registered, you are never penalized for taking a waitlisted trip, even if it is after our cancellation date.

Cancellation Date: April 5 at 11:59pm - any cancellations made after this date are non-refundable. Unless it is for a waitlist. You may always upgrade to a more expensive trip and pay the difference, but if your change is for a lower priced trip, you will not get a refund. 

Act fast! Many of our trips sell out before public registration opens. If you haven’t already, donate $50 or more to Friends of the Verde River to get on the early bird email list. This grants you exclusive access to registration before it opens to the general public. Find out more about the 2024 Verde Valley Birding & Nature Festival by visiting our website.

Click the button to make a donation and ensure you are on Friends’ email list to receive updates about the 2024 Verde Valley Birding and Nature Festival, taking place April 25-28, 2024! When you donate $50 or more, you qualify for Early Bird Registration. Be the first to select your field trips and workshops and ensure yourself a perfect festival schedule!

Early Bird Registration will take place January 29, 30 and 31, 2024. To qualify for Early Bird Registration, each registrant needs to have made a $50 donation to Friends of the Verde River before January 31, 2024.

About the Festival

Join us 100 miles North of Phoenix in North Central Arizona’s Verde Valley for the Verde Valley Birding and Nature Festival. Experience birding during the peak Spring migration season at Dead Horse Ranch State Park on the banks of the Verde River. Close proximity to the Verde, Oak Creek, Sycamore Creek, and other perennial waters offers a wide selection of guided tours, hikes, and workshops in one of Arizona’s richest birding habitats.

Our experienced guides have extensive knowledge of birds and the unique habitat that makes this region special. The festival, presented each April by Friends of the Verde River, is a purpose-driven community benefit organization and 501(c) 3 non-profit working to preserve one of the last perennial flowing rivers in the American Southwest.


The 2024 Theme is Migration

In 2024, join us as we explore the theme of migration and its impact on riparian areas in our environment. Our keynote speaker, Richard Crossley, will lead discussions, and the featured bird for the year is the common black hawk. 


Camping at Dead Horse Ranch State Park

Consider camping at Dead Horse Ranch State Park during the festival for an immersive experience. Check for availability with the park in advance and upon arrival. Camping fees are paid directly to the park. Please check with the park for current fee information. Campsites include a table and grill, with water and showers available. Reserve campsites online or by calling the reservation call center. The park also offers cabins for rent within a short walk to the River Day Use area. Advanced reservations are required; contact the park at (928) 634-5283 for more information.

Become an Early Bird - Donate!

Your generosity in giving to Friends of the Verde River supports your community and helps save the Verde River. Become an Early Bird now!

How to Volunteer

Ready to make a difference? Whether you’re interested in welcoming visitors, hosting workshops, leading field trips, or helping with festival coordination, there’s a spot for you!

Volunteer Opportunities

Get ready to spread your wings! Friends of the Verde River (Friends) is calling on enthusiastic individuals to join our volunteer team for the 2024 Birding and Nature Festival – Migration. From April 25 to April 28 at Dead Horse Ranch State Park, we’re seeking passionate volunteers to play a crucial role in the success of this extraordinary event.

Volunteer Gathering

Save the date for our volunteer gathering on February 15, 2024 from 4:30 – 6:30 PM at the Friends office in Cottonwood. Join us to meet fellow volunteers, both seasoned and new, and discover how you can contribute to this friendly birding festival. RSVPs are essential, so we have enough space for everyone. Ready to be a part of the Migration Movement? Sign up today!