November 04, 2014

Hawk Mountain: Named 1 of the 10 Best birding destinations in the U.S.A.

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It's official: Hawk Mountain Sanctuary, Pennsylvania, is one of the 10 Best birdwatching destinations in the nation, according to USA Today's annual reader's poll. An expert panel selected Hawk Mountain as one of 20 nominees in October and the world-famous hawkwatching destination came in second place. The top contender was Magee Marsh in Ohio. 

"This is huge for Hawk Mountain and shows that our 2,500-acre Sanctuary can go up against places like the Platte River Valley in Nebraska, southeastern Arizona, the Everglades, and the Lower Rio Grande Valley in Texas," says president Jerry Regan.

"What's really special is that the top two winners are places with strong, not-for-profit organizations, and this is a wonderful opportunity to connect USA Today readers with our mission and programs," he adds. 

The contest brings enormous reach. The 10Best is promoted by USA Today across all Gannett media outlets, including the websites of its 81 local papers and 43 television stations, and in USA Today Travel Media Group’s digital and mobile products, as well as via social media.

“Our readers are well-informed, well-traveled and opinionated. At the end of the day, content on our platforms is a reflection of them. A destination, organization or business which finds itself the recipient of a 10Best Readers’ Choice Award has really accomplished something," says John Peters, president of USA TODAY Travel Media Group.

Stretching across the Berks and Schuylkill county border, Hawk Mountain Sanctuary this year celebrates its 80th anniversary as the world’s first refuge for birds of prey, and today is an international center for raptor conservation. The 2,500-acre Sanctuary, scenic overlooks and eight mile trail system attracts an average 70,000 visitors yearly, many from across the country and around the world, ranging from hikers to dedicated birders looking for bald eagles, ospreys and broad-winged hawks.

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