Due to the current situation regarding the COVID-19 pandemic, Indiana Audubon must unfortunately cancel the 2020 event, scheduled for May 14-17, 2020.  We have been monitoring the situation daily, and following the guidance of the CDC, as well as our site partners, it is in the best interest of our speakers, leaders, attendees, staff, and volunteers that we sit this year out and return May 13-16, 2021.

It is with heavy heart that we cancel. It has been amazing to see the outpouring of support from everyone as this issue has been weighing heavily on our hearts and minds.  We also want to thank the volunteers and staff that have worked tirelessly to put this year’s event together.


All scheduled trips, programs, workshops, and social events are cancelled for this year.  This includes all pre and post festival events as well.  The exceptions are:

IDBF Silent Auction: This year’s silent auction will continue online starting Friday May 1, and ending Saturday, May 16 at 8pm (CT).  Please note that items not picked up locally after the auction will be shipped, at the cost of the winning bidder.  Please consider this when you are bidding.

Dunes Birds in Art: This year’s exhibition has been postponed to August 30-September 26.  Please mark your calendar and plan to attend our opening exhibition later this fall.  The deadline to submit your art has been extended to July 12.  Our exhibition open house will also be postponed to September 13, at 6pm.  Many of the same events scheduled that night are taking place on this new date.


Cancelling the event is both a huge disappointment to all that enjoy the marvelous spring migration in the Indiana Dunes, and a major financial setback to the conservation, education, and research projects that Indiana Audubon supports.  Please consider the following options available to you. 

While it is logistically impossible to transfer your Individual registration to next year, we want to provide the opportunity to donate your registration fees to Indiana Audubon.  Next year’s event will be back bigger than what we planned this year.  Our keynote speaker, Scott Weidensaul, will be back in 2021, as well as our great leaders and experts.

If you’d like to donate all or part of your registration to Indiana Audubon, simply message us at [email protected] or at Indiana Dunes Birding Festival, PO Box 820, Chesterton, IN 46304. All donations are tax-deductible.  The new CARES Act Stimulus package designates a new universal charitable deduction, also known as an “above-the-line” deduction for donations made in 2020. That means taxpayers can easily claim the deduction on their tax forms without having to go through the extra step of itemizing it next year.

If you donate your full registration, you will receive a special code to register for the 2021 event, 72 hours before ANYONE else next year.   Additionally, those that donate their registration fees will also go into a drawing for a full 2021 IDBF Package, including full priority registration, 4 nights lodging, a Vortex Viper HD (angled 20-60×85) spotting scope with Manfrotto fluid head tripod, a $50 gift basket from Chesterton Feed and Garden, and 2021 festival fine art print and t-shirt.  A $2,000 value!  The drawing will take place May 18, 2020.

For a full refund of all registration fees paid, you may simply request the full refund at [email protected] or at Indiana Dunes Birding Festival, PO Box 820, Chesterton, IN 46304.  After April 15, we will begin issuing full and partial refunds.  Due to the massive number of refunds right now, please anticipate a 3-4-week process for us to issue all refunds.  All cancellation and administrative fees will be waived this year.


If you’re a registered vendor for the Migration Marketplace, you’ll be contacted individually regarding your marketplace booth, and have the option of a full refund or transferring your registration to the 2021 event. 


As difficult as this decision has been, we hope these difficult times don’t deter you from enjoying the birds around us, whether in your own backyard or from the safety of our state and national parks right here in the Indiana Dunes.  We want you to know how amazing it is to put this event together each year and to see all our growing Indiana Dunes birding family each year.  We know we’ll likely see many of you birding this spring or later in the year. 

All Indiana Audubon and National Park staff are currently working from home and will answer any questions you may have as soon as possible.  Don’t hesitate to email us at [email protected]

Thank you for your patience and be safe birding this spring!


Leave a reply

Copyright © 2024 Indiana Audubon Society, Inc.

Log in with your credentials

Forgot your details?