New Mexico Department of Game and Fish
Media contact: Dan Williams, (505) 476-8004
Public contact: (505) 476-8000
dan.williams@state.nm.us

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, DEC. 26, 2007:

PRAIRIE CHICKEN FESTIVAL ACCEPTING POSTER CONTEST ENTRIES, REGISTRATIONS

MILNESAND, N.M. -- The New Mexico Department of Game and Fish is looking for a few good artists to help celebrate the Sixth Annual High Plains Prairie Chicken Festival, which will be April 11-13, 2008, in Milnesand , N.M.

Artists of all ages are invited to enter their original works in the festival poster contest. The grand prize winning entry will be reproduced on the annual festival poster, and the artist will receive $300. Top winners in three age categories: adult, grades 7-12, and grades K-6, will receive $50.

The deadline for artwork submissions to the New Mexico Department of Game and Fish for the contest is Feb. 15, 2008. Any two-dimensional media, including but not limited to prints, oils, pastels, acrylics, water media, pen and ink, graphite, photography and mixed media will be considered. Images should represent the lesser prairie chicken and its habitat.

Entries must be received by Feb. 15 in the Public Information and Outreach Division, Department of Game and Fish, 1 Wildlife Way, P.O. Box 25112 , Santa Fe , NM 87504 . Entries will be returned only if accompanied by a self-addressed, stamped envelope, or may be picked up from the Department after March 15. Artists should submit 35mm slides, prints, high-quality digital photos or original work. Artwork must have the artist's name, address, phone or e-mail and entry category. For more information about the contest, call (505) 476-8004.

The High Plains Prairie Chicken Festival celebrates the lesser prairie chicken and the Llano Estacado (staked plains) of eastern New Mexico . Festival participants see prairie chickens perform their remarkable early morning courtship dances, learn about the cultural and natural history of the southern Great Plains, take daily birding tours, and enjoy good food and western hospitality.

The 2008 festival will be April 11-13 in Milnesand , N.M. , in southeastern New Mexico . Attendance is limited to the first 100 participants who register and pay an entry fee of $90 per person. Participants are encouraged to register early. Registration is limited because of the sensitivity of the lesser prairie chicken during the breeding season. The fee covers all field trips, five meals and a commemorative poster.

The festival is made possible through a cooperative effort of the Department of Game and Fish, the Nature Conservancy of New Mexico, the Grasslans Charitable Foundation, and the community of Milnesand. Registration forms and more information about the festival are available soon on the Department's website, www.wildlife.state.nm.us . To register, send a $90 check made out to the 6th Annual High Plains Prairie-Chicken Festival, # 1 Pueblo Point, Clovis , NM 88101 . No refunds will be available after April 5.

For more information, contact Tish McDaniel, (505) 762-6997 or chickenfestival@yahoo.com .

###