Belwin Bison Festival is Saturday, May 18

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Community event will feature bison release, 5k trail run, interactive eco-arts, machinery petting zoo, live music, and food trucks.

Via Belwin Conservancy:

A herd of juvenile male bison from NorthStar Bison are released onto their summer prairie home
at Belwin Conservancy. Photo by Sharon Sykora.

Belwin Conservancy is once again inviting the public to welcome a herd of juvenile male bison to their summer home. The 2019 Belwin Bison Festival will be held on Saturday, May 18, from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., and includes previous-year crowd favorites like the bison release and 5k “Run with the Bison” fun trail run, as well as new activities like a machinery petting zoo.

Everyone is invited to attend this free community festival, taking place at Belwin’s Lucy Winton Bell Athletic Fields (15601 Hudson Road, West Lakeland, Minnesota).

Events at the 2019 Belwin Bison Festival

  • Bison release
  • 5k “Run with the Bison” fun trail run (small registration fee)
  • Live music by Red Eye Ruby, and Sarah M. Greer and Dean Magraw
  • Interactive eco-arts featuring artists Tom Bierlein, Ian Hanesworth, Mischa Kegan and
    Teri Power
  • Machinery Petting Zoo
  • Food trucks: Afton Alps, Alimama’s Sambusa, Current Restaurant, Habanero Tacos

For the complete schedule of events and link to register for the run, visit belwin.org/events/306.

Interesting facts about bison

  • As much as 99% of a bison’s diet is grass, with an adult bison consuming up to 30 lb. of grass in a single day.
  • A herd of approximately 40 juvenile males from NorthStar Bison will summer on Belwin’s 120-acre northern prairie, eating the native grasses that we have worked to restore on this former cropland.
  • Bison bulls range in height from 5.5 to 7 feet at the shoulder; bulls can weigh up to 2,000 lbs.
  • Both cows and bulls have horns, which do not fall off.
  • According to 2012 data, roughly 162,000 bison live on private ranches and farms.
  • Roughly 20,000 bison roam on public lands in the U.S. and Canada. Estimates are that 30 to 60 million bison may have roamed North America prior to 1600. Though they ranged across the continent, the majority lived on the Great Plains.
  • Less than 1,000 bison remained before restoration efforts were undertaken beginning in the late 1800s.

Festival Sponsors

  • Pioneer Press/TwinCities.com

Festival Partners

  • NorthStar Bison
  • YMCA of Woodbury
  • Western Wisconsin Photo Club

Festival Volunteers

  • Hyatt Regency Minneapolis and their business resource groups: HyPride and Women@Hyatt
  • Math and Science Academy (MSA)
  • And many other wonderful individuals!

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