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Dept. of Short Notice: Audubon Salon at Valley House Gallery Tonight

by Anne Bothwell 5 Aug 2010 5:00 PM

Connecting to nature is the topic at tonight’s Salon Series at Valley House Gallery.


Unfortunately, the podcast of Krys Boyd’s conversation with Chris Culak earlier this afternoon  isn’t yet posted. (Check here tomorrow) But if you missed the radio program, head out to Valley House tonight for their Salon series. Culack, director of the Trinity River Audubon Center, leads the discussion on the new ways Audubon centers here are continuing their longstanding mission to “connect people to nature.”

More details after the jump

From Valley House Gallery:

The longstanding belief of Audubon is to “Connect People with Nature.” And, that is what’s occurring at the National Audubon Society’s two north Texas facilities – the Trinity River Audubon Center and the Dogwood Canyon Audubon Center (currently under construction.) Join Trinity River Audubon Center Director Chris Culak as he details the unique story of how these two facilities came about, how their myriad programming efforts …are reaching thousands of schoolchildren and adults alike, and how these facilities truly “Connect People with Nature.”

He will also address the National Audubon Society’s participation in the clean-up of the Gulf Coast Oil Disaster.

Check out our Events page at for these other SHORELINES events in partnership with the Trinity River Audubon Center:

Saturday, August 7, at 9:00 am
Tour of Trinity River Audubon Center for Friends of Valley House Gallery

Saturday, August 21, at 8:30 am
Bird Watching 101 with Ben Jones, Trinity River Audubon Center Director of Education in the Valley House Garden

More info at:


Chris Culak is the Director for the Trinity River Audubon Center which opened to the public on October 18, 2008. Culak has more than seventeen years experience in fundraising and non-profit management, and came to Audubon after successful implementation and management of fundraising programs for Planned Parenthood, the North Texas Food Bank and the American Heart Association. Chris holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Health Care Administration with a minor in Psychology from Texas State University in San Marcos. Chris along with his wife Nichole and their daughter Zoë live in the Oak Cliff section of Dallas and enjoy being involved in Zoe’s school and spending time at their ranch near Austin. Chris is passionate about historic preservation, is past Board President of Preservation Dallas.


Trinity River Audubon Center (TRAC) opened October 2008 and serves as a flagship location for the National Audubon Society’s mission to conserve and restore ecosystems, focusing on birds and other wildlife and their habitat for the benefit of humanity and the earth’s biological diversity. TRAC is located just eight minutes from downtown Dallas on 120 acres of the Great Trinity Forest – the largest urban bottomland hardwood forest in the United States. TRAC offers programs throughout the year related to local ecology, habitat study and stewardship. Built on top of a reclaimed, former landfill, TRAC is the first major signature development for the Trinity River Corridor Project, a $2 billion City of Dallas public works project. TRAC is one of Dallas’ newest and most unique destinations for recreation and education where visitors can connect with nature.

From the rain harvesting system for irrigation to recycled blue jeans as insulation and boardwalks made of recycled milk jugs, the Center is pursuing LEED Gold Certification. Coupled with its aesthetic beauty, the Center is a true gem in Dallas. The building, designed by Antoine Predock, mimics a bird rising into flight over the forest. The center is managed by the National Audubon Society. Go to for up-to-date activities or call 214-398-8722. Open Tuesday-Saturday, 9 a.m.-4 p.m.; Sundays, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. On the third Thursday of each month, the hours are 9 a.m.-9 p.m., with free admission. Closed Mondays and major holidays. Admission is $3 children ages 3-12; $4 seniors 60+; $6 adults ages 13-59, free on the third Thursday of each month. Group discounts, private guided tours, and facility rentals are available. Memberships start at $60. The National Audubon Society’s newest center, Dogwood Canyon Audubon Center in Cedar Hill, is currently under construction with plans to open in April 2011. Dr. Patty McGill recently joined the team as the Dogwood Canyon Audubon Center Director.