Monthly Archives: September 2018

Big Cat Sanctuary Alliance Recap

2018 Conference at TCWR

September 27, 2018

This past Tuesday and Wednesday, Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge hosted the annual Big Cat Sanctuary Alliance Conference in beautiful downtown Eureka Springs. Over two days attendees participated in 25 panels about animal care, habitat building, education, safety, and more. Representatives from sanctuaries all over the United States and supporting organizations such as Tigers in America, IFAW, Outreach for Animals, and the Human Society, came together to collaborate, share ideas, and discuss the growing need of true sanctuaries.

The Big Cat Sanctuary Alliance allows true sanctuaries, like Turpentine Creek, to meet up and exchange ideas, discuss new methods of animal care, learn about different veterinary issues, find ways to work together, advocate with one voice, learn about what is happening in the field, and coordinate with each other on potential rescues. Although it is a relatively new group, having been formed in 2017, the sanctuaries have worked together in the past through organizations such as IFAW and TIA.

This year saw over 60 attendees, double the number from last year. Speakers came from all walks of life; our very own Curator, Emily McCormack, gave a presentation about habitat building and our Education team, Beckie Moore and Hannah Wherry, discussed the importance of educational programming at sanctuaries.

Overall this year’s conference was a success. After the conference was over, Turpentine Creek invited all the guests to come to tour the Refuge. They got the chance to see the animals, observe enrichment, behavioral training, learn about our custom feeding dishes, and meet our team including our interns. It was a great experience for the TCWR team and Big Cat Sanctuary Alliance visitors alike.

We would like to thank the Big Cat Sanctuary Alliance for choosing Turpentine Creek to host this year’s event. It took a lot of hard work to plan and execute the event, but overall, it was an amazing educational experience. We appreciate all the businesses who assisted us in Eureka Springs. The Mayor of Eureka Springs, Butch Berry, gave the introductory speech, welcoming the attendees to the event and the city. Having the support of our community is vital to our success as a refuge and we appreciate everything they do to help us continue our mission to rescue and care for big cats in need. Without their help, we could have never crafted such a wonderful event. We look forward to attending the 2019 conference. It will take all of us and our supporters to put an end to the abuse of big cats across the US.

Click here to learn more about the Big Cat Sanctuary Alliance on their website. 

Big Cat Sanctuary Alliance Steering Committee 2018

Sipping for Sanctuary

Inaugural Event

September 13, 2018

On Thursday, September 6, Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge hosted our first ever Sipping for Sanctuary. The free event was held in a beautiful venue at Sassafras Springs Vineyard in Springdale Arkansas. Sipping for Sanctuary was a free event to help promote Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge and our new membership tier program. We were astounded at the response from our community, and our 200 person limit was quickly filled through RSVPs.

The night kicked off with a live band, Red Ambition, playing toe-tapping songs and keeping the atmosphere upbeat and fun. Delicious heavy hors-d’oeuvres were served by Victor Smith with Catered Creations.

We also had a live artist, Amy Eichler, that spent the evening painting a one of a kind portrait of Shasta, one of our beautiful tigers at the Refuge. At the end of the event, Amy’s Shasta painting was live auctioned off with 100% of the proceeds going to Turpentine; she also donated 30% of any sales she made at the event to Turpentine.

At the end of the evening, Turpentine Creek had raised $8,586 to help the animals that call the refuge home. Over all, it was an amazing first-year event. The room was filled with supporters and potential supporters, who were given the opportunity to learn about the Refuge directly from the passionate people who dedicate their lives to helping the animals to create a wonderful life for every animal that calls Turpentine Creek home.

We are ecstatic at the support and turnout of Sipping for Sanctuary; we look forward to planning next year’s event. Please continue to watch our blog and social media accounts for announcements about next year’s event. Also, we encourage everyone to take a moment to learn more about our new membership tiers levels.  Help us, help them.