Ask the Swan Specialist
Date: 20 January 2006
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Stacey Sutherland
Orange Lake Resort & Country Club Hosts U.S. Daily Point of Light Award Presentation for The Regal Swan
ORLANDO, FLORIDA—January 18, 2006—The Regal Swan, a swan research organization dedicated to the humane treatment and veterinary medical care of captive swans, was awarded the prestigious U.S. Daily Point of Light award, # 3072, by the U.S. Points of Light Foundation at a ceremony today at Orange Lake Resort & Country Club. Orange Lake serves as one of The Regal Swan’s primary research hubs and is the home to six captive mute swans.
The Daily Point of Light Award honors individuals and volunteer groups that have made a commitment to connect Americans through service to help critical needs in their communities. The 26-member Regal Swan team, comprised of veterinarians, swan keepers, educators, photographers, writers and other professionals, was honored for its contribution to education. Regal Swan researchers received the award at a presentation ceremony at Orange Lake coordinated by Lindsey Turner, Heart of Florida United Way Volunteer Center manager on behalf of the national foundation. Wildlife partners in attendance at the presentation included Tim Williams representing Gatorland, a popular Central Florida attraction also committed to important wildlife research initiatives, and Sally Graziano, a Regal Swan team member from the Orlando Science Center.
Orange Lake is home to thousands of native Florida species, including many that are protected and endangered. In addition to supporting the research and education efforts of The Regal Swan team, Orange Lake’s commitment to wildlife protection, appreciation and education has expanded to include several new wildlife programs for owners and guests to enjoy during their vacation at Orange Lake:
• The weekly Gatorland Alligator Show enables guests to come face to face with these true Florida natives. Hosted by Gatorland professionals, this program informs and entertains guests while giving them an opportunity to touch live gators and other animal visitors.
• Guided nature walks hosted by Orange Lake’s resident wildlife experts provide guests the opportunity to trek through real Florida wetlands for a look at Orange Lake’s ecosystem and the solitary beauty of Florida nature.
• Orange Lake’s FOWL (Focus On Wild Life) phone hotline provides an information resource for guests and employees to learn more about wildlife and the various programs offered at the resort.
Orange Lake Resort & Country Club is the world’s largest single-site timeshare resort, with more than 2,000 villa, suite and studio accommodations. Founded in 1982 by Kemmons Wilson, the legendary business entrepreneur who built the successful Holiday Inn hotel chain, it encompasses over 1,250 acres of pristine surroundings with an enviable location just four miles west of Walt Disney World in the heart of Orlando’s world-famous theme parks and attractions, and is the vacation “home-away-from-home” to more than 100,000 owners from all 50 U.S. states and more than 120 countries.
U.S. Daily Point of Light Award Honoree
Team members from The Regal Swan® pose for a photo at Orange Lake Resort & Country Club in Orlando, Florida prior to being awarded the U.S. Daily Point of Light award for the program's committment to education and the humane treatment of captive swans. Left to right: Orange Lake's CEO and President, Don Harrill, Shirley Bolin, A.G.S., photographer; Geoffrey R. Gardner, D.V.M.; Sheila Bolin, M.S., Orange Lake's swan keeper and wildlife manager holding one of Orange Lake's mute swans; Rob Haynes, videographer, Full Sail; Kathleen Sterling, kneeling, Wade G. Gardner, D.V.M. retired; Fanchon F. Funk, Ed.D., professor emeritus Florida State University; Christopher W. Brown, D.V.M. holding another Orange Lake mute swan, Gloria Cooper, Shawn Boschert, Orange Lake and Regal Swan® horticulturist, Sally Graziano, electron microscopist, Orlando Science Center; Tim Williams and Holly from Gatorland Zoo in Kissimmee, Florida.
Award Presentation: Team members are honored during a special awards ceremony for the nation's highest volunteer award, the U.S. Daily Point of Light.
Fanchon F. Funk, E.d.D., professor emeritus, Florida State University; Kathleen Sterling, Christopher W. Brown, D.V.M.; Shawn Boschert, Orange Lake and Regal Swan® horticulturist; Shirley Bolin, A.G.S., photographer, Wade G. Gardner, D.V.M., retired; Geoffrey R. Gardner, D.V.M.; Sally Graziano, electron microscopist, Orlando Science Center; Rob Haynes, videographer, Full Sail; Sheila Bolin, M.S., Orange Lake's swan keeper and wildlife manager; and Orange Lake CEO and president, Don Harrill.
Orange Lake's two mute swans sit atop purple satin pillows laced with gold tassels during the awards ceremony. Pictured, left to right: Shawn Boschert, Orange Lake and Regal Swan® horticulturist, Christopher W. Brown, D.V.M., Wade G. Gardner, D.V.M., retired, and Geoffrey R. Gardner, D.V.M.
Regal Swan researchers, Christopher W. Brown, D.V.M. and Geoffrey R. Gardner, D.V.M, watch over two of Orange Lake's mute swans that participated in the group's research concerning botulism and the West Nile Virus.
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- Award to The Regal Swan® re: Humane treatment of captive swans -- Admin -- 20 January 2006