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Steppe Symposium 2020: Visions of Mongolia

Thursday, September 24, 2020 - 5:30 PM

Join us for an evening of steppe education with a live raptor demonstration, followed by the lecture “Observations of the Great Mongolian Steppe” by Scott Dressel-Martin and Mike Bone along with a viewing of the film “The Eagle Huntress.”


Golden Eagle Demonstration

Anne Price, president of the Raptor Education Foundation, introduces one of the Foundation’s golden eagles and talks about the ancient fascination with this bird, which has been popularized in the movie “The Eagle Huntress.”


Observations of the great Mongolian Steppe - Lecture

Both Scott Dressel-Martin and Mike Bone have traveled to Mongolia to experience life on the steppe. These travels as part of Denver Botanic Gardens Center for Global Initiatives help guide and influence our central Asian steppe collections and displays. Join Scott and Mike as they bring you on a journey through the beautiful Mongolian steppe in culture, flora and landscapes.


The Eagle Huntress - Film

Rated G | Sport/Adventure Documentary

Directed by Otto Nell

Narrated by Daisy Ridley


“The Eagle Huntress” follows 13-year-old Aisholpan as she trains to become the first female in 12 generations of her Kazakh family to become an eagle hunter, and rises to the pinnacle of a tradition that has been handed down from father to son for centuries. Set against the breathtaking expanse of the Mongolian steppe, “The Eagle Huntress” features some of the most awe-inspiring cinematography ever captured in a documentary, giving this intimate tale of a young girl's quest the dramatic force of an epic narrative film.


While there are many old Kazakh eagle hunters who vehemently reject the idea of any female taking part in their ancient tradition, Aisholpan's father believes that a girl can do anything a boy can, as long as she's determined. The story begins after Aisholpan has been training with her father's eagle for many months. As every eagle can only have one master, the time has come for Aisholpan to capture an eagle of her own. Clambering down a sheer rock cliff with a rope, Aisholpan retrieves a fledgling eagle from its nest as its mother circles overhead. Her eagle will live, train and hunt with her, until she releases it into the wild years later, so the cycle of life can continue.


After months of training her eagle with her father, Aisholpan is ready to test her abilities. She enters a renowned competition, the Golden Eagle Festival, and faces off against 70 of the greatest Kazakh eagle hunters in Mongolia. The most arduous challenge is yet to come, as the rite-of-passage for every young eagle hunter is to take part in a hunt. Aisholpan must ride with her father deep into the frigid mountains and endure freezing temperatures and perilous landscapes to prove she is a true eagle huntress.


Price: $42, $39 member

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