In October we were delighted to attend the wedding of Richard Wanerman and Cindy Drakeman in Princeton NJ. (Richard’s father Rob is Robert’s second cousin.) And since we were “in the area”, it was a perfect chance to get to another national park (Valley Forge National Historical Park) and to go birding down in Cape May, at the very southern tip of New Jersey, home to the famous Hawk Watch.
We started out in Philadelphia several days before the wedding festivities, first birding at the John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge at Tinicum (Philadelphia). The NWR covers over 1000 acres and is said to be the first (only?) “urban” wildlife refuge. The walking trails there gave us our first (cold) taste of the local birds. A stop at Valley Forge followed, where Washington’s Continental Army wintered in 1777-78; for full effect it might be best to go there in winter when it is snowing, but it certainly was a beautiful site in the fall.
From there it was on to Cape May, where we spent a fairly cold (for us!) and windy few days birding. While a birding festival had just concluded a few days before our arrival, there was still plenty of action. And it’s really less for us about what birds you see than it is the sheer numbers – really astounding. For more on the birds with many photos, click here.
If we thought it was cold and windy in Cape May, we had our first nor’easter experience up in Princeton for the wedding weekend. Brrrr! We were at a lovely rehearsal dinner at Agricola in downtown Princeton on Friday night; the wedding ceremony itself was at the gorgeous Princeton University Chapel on Saturday; and the marvelous reception followed at the Jasna Polana Private Golf Club. We also attended a “Sunday sendoff” brunch at Jasna Polana the next morning. Endless admiration to Cindy for the chilly photo shoot outdoors after the ceremony! – but the photos will undoubtedly be drop-dead gorgeous.
The wedding announcement appeared in the New York Times, you can read it here.
For all (non-bird) photos from the week, see below.
And yes, Buddy Bison was there too!