Polar Bears International

Behind the Scenes in Churchill: A Flurry of Activity

10/20/2011 7:53:42 PM

Behind the Scenes in Churchill: A Flurry of Activity

A polar bear cleaning its fur 

One thing we learned this week: life in Churchill is never dull!

The final PBI Leadership Camp concluded last Friday, though not without delays. The flight was cancelled due to weather, so campers had to stay overnight and fly out early Saturday morning. Over twenty people crammed into two small houses.....it was like a big slumber party! From Saturday on we have been getting everything prepared for coming visitors—scientists, sponsors, field ambassadors, and even a service dog named Lucky (check him out on Facebook, Dog Bless You).

One of the PBI houses

All of the hard work we have been doing in Churchill has been done by four people: Krista Wright and BJ Kirschhoffer of PBI, and the two of us, volunteers Sarah Bachman and Emily Goldstein. PBI is renting two houses and has purchased a house. All week we have been settling in. Settling in does not simply mean unpacking our luggage and boxes—it means shuffling and reorganizing between all three houses and even painting in the new house!

Sarah Bachman unloading groceries
Sarah Bachman stocks groceries in preparation for scientists, educators, and other visitors. Top photo: One of three PBI support houses in Churchill.

The weather has been fierce. For days it rained and had wild wind. The rain disappeared, turning into snow on Monday, but the wind remained. In fact, it was so windy that we could feel the houses rock at night when we went to bed! Today was the first day in a while that we actually saw the sun.

The city of Churchill is starting to get busy with all the guests arriving to see the bears and other amazing wildlife that surrounds this unique place!

Volunteer Emily Goldstein helps make the beds.
Volunteer Emily Goldstein pitched in to help with painting, cleaning, and making beds to house staff and volunteers involved with PBI's scientific and educational programs in Churchill.

Top photo by Daniel J. Cox/Natural Exposures, second photo by Melynda Coble Harrison. Remaining photos by Emily Goldstein and Sarah Bachman.

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