My 10th article entitled "The Santa Fe Trail in Missouri" was published in the September / October issue of AAA Midwest Traveler magazine
In 2009 I made 28 slide presentations. Of these presentations 12 were about Abraham Lincoln (understandable since we celebrated the bicentennial of his birth), nine were about bird/wildlife photography, and six were about some aspect of the Lewis and Clark expedition.
One of my most unique presentations was given at the Illinois History Conference on "Using Photography to Teach History in the Classroom". There I spoke to an audience of 40 history teachers. I had hoped that the presentation would stimulate requests for presenting the program locally to more teachers, but as yet that had not occurred. In September I made a "Lincoln" program presentation to about 120 at the Heart of Illinois Investors Conference in Springfield. I also made my second presentation to the Missouri Nature and Environmental Photographers club in St. Louis.
In 2009 I attended five Elderhostel programs (bringing my total to 40).
In January I learned about the wildlife of Florida at an Elderhostel in St. Petersburg. While there I was able to photograph birds at Fort DeSoto State Park a well-recognized bird photography site in western Florida.
In March I attended two Elderhostels in Lafayette, Louisiana. While participating I learned much about the history and food of the Cajun culture and had the opportunity to photograph wildlife at Lake Martin and other sites in south-central Louisiana.
In May I participated in an Elderhostel in Chadron, Nebraska and learned about the history and culture of the Lakota Sioux tribe (including a visit to Wounded Knee). On the way to this site, I stopped at Valentine, Nebraska to photograph wildlife at Fort Niobrara and Valentine National Wildlife Refuges. I also stopped at a number of steamboat museums along my journey.
Finally, in September, I traveled to the Cincinnati, Ohio area for an Elderhostel on the history of Cincinnati, Steamboating, and the Ohio River. On my way to this Elderhostel
I revisited Abraham Lincoln sites in Indiana and Kentucky.
Other Activities:In other activities. In January, I attended the 12 Annual Space Coast Birding Festival in Titusville, a five-day celebration of birding and bird photography. While there, I participated in in-the-field workshop by such noted bird photographers as Arthur Morris, Milton Heiberg, Reinier Munguia, and Joanne Williams. I also attended classroom sessions by these photographers an others. I plan to return to this festival in 2010.
In September I attended the 12 Santa Fe Trail Symposium in Arrow Rock, Missouri. There I learned much more about the history of the Santa Fe Trail. This has stimulated me further to want to complete and photograph this historic trail (I have already done so for most of the Lewis-Clark Trail, California-Oregon Trail, and Mormon Trail).
Also in 2009 I had my second Photography Show at Rock Springs Center (and have been asked to another in 2010).
Overall, 2009 was a very productive year for Mindmeld Photography and Don Chamberlain. I also have many opportunities to visit with and photograph my beautiful granddaughter. Throughout the year I took more that 2000 photos of her.
I thoroughly recommend retirement (providing you take advantage of the freedoms which come with it).