2020 Marsh Madness Events

The 2020 Kickoff Banquet will be held on Friday, Feb. 28th.

Saturday (Feb. 29th) events will be held at various locations in Greene County, Indiana

The schedule for 2020 has not been set, but you can check the 2019 event schedule (below) to see what sorts of attractions lie in store.

Guide to the 2019 Marsh Madness Sandhill Crane Festival

Presented by the Friends of Goose Pond

Find us at:  www.friendsofgoosepond.org

        mail@friendsofgoosepond.org & on Facebook


Welcome to the 2019 Marsh Madness Sandhill Crane Festival. Marsh Madness is a community-based bird festival celebrating Greene County’s abundant natural resources, especially the annual spring migration of Sandhill Cranes and waterfowl to the area.

Marsh Madness has something to offer for almost everyone. There are guided bus tours, self-guided driving tours, an Arts & Crafts fair, kids’ activities, speakers and presentations, exhibitors, live birds of prey from The Dwight Chamberlain Raptor Center at Hardy Lake SRA, and live reptiles from the Wabash Valley Herpetological Society.

A festival such as this doesn’t happen without the support of the community. The planning committee wishes to thank the following for their support.


Bill & Theresa Gray

           McDonalds Restaurant of Linton

Benefits 7, Inc.

Sullivan County Community Hospital

Greene County General Hospital

Capital Planning Systems, Inc.

First Group Engineering

Crane Credit Union

   Timothy K. Meek - Edward Jones

 Welch & Cornett Funeral Homes 

Eagles Nest Camping

Goose Pond Cabins

Pleasant Grove Farm

Anderson-Poindexter Funeral Home

McHenry Homes

Mutual Bank

Mike and Jane Steward

  In addition to financial support, it takes an army of volunteers and other contributors to make Marsh Madness happen. They include:

Friends of Goose Pond       City of Linton

Sassafras and Indiana Audubon Societies   

Linton First Christian Church

Indiana Dept. of Natural Resources Div. of Fish & Wildlife

A special thanks to Linton Elks Lodge 866

for their hospitality.

Most importantly the planning committee wants to thank you, the festival attendee, for your interest and support.  We hope you enjoy the 2019 Marsh Madness Sandhill Crane Festival.  Thanks again.  Enjoy your visit to Greene County Indiana.  We hope to see you again.

Marsh Madness Planning Committee

 Bus Tour Schedule (Saturday Only)

All buses arrive and depart from the East Cabin in Humphreys Park.  There will be exhibitors set up in the East Cabin. Stop in and check them out while waiting on the buses.

Bus                Departure      Return

1                     8:30               10:00

2                     9:30               11:00

3                    10:30              12:00

1                    11:00              12:30

2                    12:00              1:30

3                    1:00                2:30

1                    1:30                3:00

2                    2:00                3:30

3                    3:00                4:30

1                    3:30                5:00


 Schedule of Events

Friday March 1st, 2019

Venue: Goose Pond FWA

  • Birding 101 – a classroom/field experience for beginning birders. This is a members-first event with preregistration required.

Venue: Park Inn Shelter

Friends of Goose Pond Marsh Madness Festival Art Exhibit.

The work of Indiana Wildlife Artists is featured in this exhibit.

Friday 2-5:00P Exhibit Opening, Awards (12 noon), Reception  Saturday: 10:00A-5:00P. Exhibit continues.

This exhibit continues through the month of March (5th-30th) at the Carnegie Heritage & Art Center 110 E Vincennes St. Linton, Indiana.

Venue Linton Elks  SR 54 E.

2019 Marsh Madness Kickoff Banquet 

5:00PM                 Doors open.

Cash Bar open / Silent Auction Items Available.

5:50PM  Welcome comments – Dane Strahle

President, Friends of Goose Pond

6:00PM                 Buffet dinner line opens.

7:30PM                 Keynote Speaker Dr. Henry Loope,  Research Glacial Geologist   Indiana University

8:00PM                 Live Auction with                                      Auctioneer Brian woods.

9:00PM                 Closing remarks and                                      auction checkout

Saturday March 2nd, 2019

Venue: Linton Cinema

11:00A - Goose Pond: The Story of a Wetland and Its Neighbors a film by Bill Barnes documenting the Goose Pond FWA restoration. (Admittance by wristband. These may be purchased at the theater or at the Roy Clark Bldg., Humphrey’s Park)

Venue:  Roy Clark Community Building in Humphreys Park

7:30AM – 7:00PM              Self-guided                                         driving tours (see map)

8:00AM – 4:00PM       Fish King Concessions                                 by Trent Wilkes

9:00AM – 4:00PM              Art & Craft Fair

10:00AM – 4:00PM           Live Birds of Prey                                            Program

10:00AM – 10:45AM        Hardy Lake Birds of Prey Program

10:00AM – 4:00PM           Wabash Valley Herpetological Society Live Reptile & Amphibian Display

2:00PM – 2:45 PM             Hardy Lake Birds of Prey Program



Venue:  Girl Scout Cabin in Humphreys Park

11:00AM – 11:45 AM       An Owl Pellet Activity for Kids Young and Old. Amy Kearns. Join Amy for a hands-on investigation of the diet of the barn owl. Become a bio-detective as you dissect an owl pellet and identify their favorite prey.

12:00PM – 12:45 PM         Birds of Goose Pond FWA Month by Month. Friends of Goose Pond board member. Jim Brown will present attendees with information about the what and when of Goose Pond birds. This presentation will be very helpful as you plan your next visits to GPFWA.

1:00PM – 1:45PM             The Invasive Plant Problem in Indiana. Amber Slaughterbeck, Regional Director of the Southern Indiana Cooperative Invasives Management Project, will discuss invasive non-native plants, the problems they create, and how to manage these destructive aliens.

Venue:  East Cabin in Humphreys Park

8:30AM – 5:30PM              Bus Tours of Area (Refer to bus schedule in this guide)

Venue:  West Cabin in Humphreys Park

9:00AM – 3:00PM              Kids’ Activities, Bird House Construction. Open to kids 12 & under who are accompanied by an adult.

       2019 Marsh Madness

Presenter Biographies

Jim Brown - is a long-time serious recreational birder and citizen scientist.  For several years, he has been visiting Goose Pond FWA almost weekly for relaxation, doing bird and frog surveys, and attempting to collect interesting photos.  He is a FoGP board member working with the social media team.  If you follow FoGP Facebook page, you have seen several of his photo posts.

Leslie Grow – Indiana Dept. of Natural Resources.  In 2009 Leslie became the Fulltime Naturalist at Hardy Lake after spending 3.5 years as the Assistant Manager at O'Bannon Woods State Park.  After completion of her BA she worked at the Louisville Zoo as a Zookeeper until receiving the appointment of Assistant Manager with the DNR. The Dwight Chamberlain Raptor Center is the only State owned wildlife rehabilitation center. The Center was named after a longtime supporter of the rehab. His family continues to support the Lake and the Rehab Center. The Center takes in well over 150 injured or orphaned Birds of Prey each year. Much of the money supporting the Rehab center comes from our very active volunteer group, "The Friends of Hardy Lake"..

Justin Guyer – Wabash Valley Herpetological Society. Justin is the President of the Wabash Valley Herpetological Society. This organization was founded in May of 2012 in order to bring reptile breeders, hobbyists, and enthusiasts living in south eastern Illinois and south western Indiana together. The WVHS focuses on education both within the members of the group and with the community in general. They are heavily involved in educating the members of the community on the role of reptiles and amphibians in our environment as well as providing education of high standards regarding captive reptile and  amphibian  husbandry. Businesses represented within the WVHS include Guyer Genetics, Taylor Made Morphs, Artistic Morphs, and Nick Boles Reptiles.


Amy Kearns – Assistant Nongame Bird Biologist Indiana Dept. of Natural Resources. Amy Kearns is assistant nongame bird biologist for Indiana Division of Fish & Wildlife. She enjoys poking around barn lofts looking for signs of (state endangered) Barn Owls, and puts up nest boxes to help these owls. Goose Pond FWA is one of her favorite places in the state, and you can often find her out hiking and exploring there with her husband, Noah, and their two children.

Amber Slaughterbeck - Regional Specialist for Southern Indiana Cooperative Invasives Management Also known as the “Turtle Girl,” Amber is also the Founder of the Wabashiki Turtle Research & Rescue team in West Terre Haute, IN. Founded in 2009, the volunteer team has since rescued over 3,000 turtles from the historical Highway 40. For the past six years she served as a Naturalist at the state and county parks where she battled invasive species with environmental education programming and eradication workshops. She serves on the board of Trees Inc. and Ouabache Land Conservancy. She volunteers with several organizations including Catholic Charities, Wabash Valley Audubon Society, and the Vigo County Public Library.

In her free time, you can find her with her family kayaking, mountain biking, hiking, at the range or native gardening.


Self-driving Tour Directions

Be safe. Be aware of the other vehicles around you.

  1. Do not stop in the middle of the road. Leave room for other vehicles to pass.
  2. DO NOT pull off the side of HWY 59 unless it is into a marked parking area.
  3. Be respectful of private property. This driving tour passes through both public and private ground.  Do not go onto private property without permission.
  4. If you stop to watch some cranes in fields, it is strongly recommended that everyone remain in their vehicle. Not only is this more safe, but the cranes are much less likely to become nervous and leave the field.
  5. Be as quiet as possible. No horn honking, engine revving etc..
  6. This driving tour is on State, County and City roads. All applicable traffic laws apply.
  7. The majority of this tour is on gravel roads. You may encounter rough spots in the road.  Your vehicle will get dirty.

From the NW corner of Humphreys Park:

                Take E Street NE west approximately .7 miles to 4th Street NE

                Take 4th Street NE south approximately .25 miles to HWY 54

                Take HWY 54 west approximately .25 miles to HWY 59

Take HWY 59 south approximately 1 mile to county road 25S

Take county road 25S west approximately 2 miles to county road 1400W

Take county road 1400W south approximately 1.75 miles to county road 200S

Take county road 200S west approximately .6 miles to county road 1450W

Take county road 1450W south approximately 1.9 miles to county road 400S

Be sure to stop and check out the new Visitor Center. The office will be staffed throughout the day to answer questions.

Take county road 400S east approximately 1.5 miles to HWY 59

Take HWY 59 north approximately 3.0 miles to county road 200S

Take county road 200S east approximately 2.0 miles to county road 1000W

Take county road 1000W north approximately 1 mile to county road 100S

Take county road 100S west approximately .25 miles

Take county road 1050W north approximately 1.0 miles to Baseline Road

Take Baseline Rd. east approximately 1 mile to county road 1000W

Take county road 1000W north approximately 2 miles to SR 54. Go west to return to Linton/Humphrey’s Park.