Special Events


Free with Registration / Tuesday 5pm – 7pm 
Join us on our new day! This event is a Festival must, more of a reunion with your fellow participants, guides, speakers, vendors, community officials and Festival folk at the historic Harlingen Arts & Heritage Museum – located on Loop 499, across from the Harlingen airport, at 2425 Boxwood Street. Hors d’oeuvres, beverages, and live music as you mingle and peruse the Dia de los Muertos Alters exhibit at the Museum. Always a fan favorite!


Free with Registration / Thursday, Friday 5pm – 6pm
You are “kordially” invited to happy hour at the Birders Bazaar for fun conversation, light appetizers (just a nosh to hold you over until dinner), and, of course, kordials! The Kiskadee Kordial is the popular and perfect prelude to that evening’s keynote presentation that immediately follows. Festival ID Badge required to be served


Free! Open to the Public / Saturday 6:15pm – 7:30pm
Come enjoy the flavors of South Texas with lively mariachi music and fiesta dancers! The Valley is known for its talented dance troupes and award-winning bands, so be prepared to be dazzled!.


Free! Open to the Public / Saturday 6am – 6pm
Does helping count birds from within a 17′ circle sound like a fun challenge? You bet! A past count included 50 Red-crowned Parrots sitting on high wires for their morning pre-flight chat. The Bay Area Birders, a local birding group, will host the circle and keep the list of birds seen. Join a rotating group of field trip leaders and Festival-goers for a come-and-go casual event on the Fair Park complex grounds. You can even try out some optics. Sit and scan for a bit, get a sticker, and be eligible for prizes.


During Kiskadee Kordial and After Speaker Presentations
So much talent is involved in the RGVBF, and our guides provide much more than pointing out birds. Many of them are noted authors, with books on birds and birding, identification field guides, and birding techniques that make us better birders in the field. You can purchase books at several booths during the Birders Bazaar, and during the Kiskadee Kordial, many attending authors will sign your books. If you leave your library at home, we will have labels for the authors to sign, then stick in your book when you get home. Come meet the authors who are part of the Festival family.


Sponsored by Canopy Tower Family, Panama
Carlos Bethancourt of Canopy Tours Family, Panama will present Birding 101 in Spanish to the Harlingen South High School Spanish Classes and to a specially chosen elementary school in the area. There is no one more charming and hospitable than Carlos – which makes this a community favorite, and the students talk about this day for years.

Trade Show


Free! Open to the Public / Thursday – Saturday 12noon – 6pm / Sunday 12noon – 4pm
Our Birders Bazaar, with free admission and open to the public, is much more than just a place to shop. Located within the Municipal Auditorium Complex, it’s the place to hang out after trips and between seminars. Visit the many unique vendors (think Christmas for your birding friends). Learn about birding hotspots in the area or plan an international bucket list trip. Add to your library and get your books autographed. Bid on great items and experiences in the Silent Auction. Sip during the Kiskadee Kordial. Visit the Raptor Project booth for up-close experiences with live birds. All not-to-be-missed and part of the Festival fun.


Thursday – Saturday Trade Show hours / Bidding closes 4:30pm Saturday
During your Birders Bazaar visits, don’t miss the Silent Auction offerings. This is the place to bid on good deals for optics, birding gear, books, artwork, tour packages, hotel stays, photography instruction, and much more. The sheer variety of offerings, many donated by our trade show vendors and local sponsors, guarantees something for everyone and Christmas-friendly timing. Furthermore, all proceeds aid the non-profit RGVBF and its programs. A win-win!!


On Display During Trade Show Hours
Free Educational Shows Thursday – Sunday at 1pm & 3pm
Jonathan Wood and his vast collection of magnificent hawks, owls, eagles, and falcons are a star attraction for us. With many national TV appearances, Jon is a Master Falconer, a licensed Wildlife Rehabilitator and, along with his wife Susan, an integral and fascinating part of the Festival. Come on in and get up close and personal with these non-releasable education birds and meet some of his new friends.