“He really was an enchanting person. In some way he was like the spiritual father of everybody…. It is hard to imagine Central Park without Charles Kennedy.” Marie Winn, author of Red-tails in Love, and close friend of Charles, remembering him after his death in October 2004

Friday, September 5, 2014


Well finally, I've begun to set up a new website. I'm not the blogger I thought I'd be, but still want to preserve the legacy of Uncle Charles and connect friends old and new to his life's work. So.... I'll continue to blog right here AND connect this blog to the new kennedyworks website wherein lots of good info will be housed. kennedyworks.com is the place. It's under construction, but out on the web. Come and check it out, leave a message, help out with your ideas for making it the best place possible. Thanks!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013


 303-455-3123 OR 800-783-3338 marilyn@bloomsburyreview.com

                                                         Click above to view the film trailer
I am sooo pleased that this great film will have it's Colorado premiere screening for the benefit of the legendary literary review magazine, The Bloomsbury Review. "Blooms" is taking an exciting new direction so this will be a rare opportunity to support a Denver institution and see a fabulous nature documentary––all in Montview Presbyterian's beautiful Miller Center.

Montview Boulevard Presbyterian Church 1980 Dahlia Street
Reception @ 6:30 p.m.
Screening @ 7:15 p.m.
Chat with filmmaker post-screening

The Bloomsbury Review is cause for celebration by anyone who cares about books and literature. At a time when newspapers and magazines across the country are cutting back on their book review pages, The Bloomsbury Review has become a national treasure.”
—Pat Schroeder, former President and CEO,Association of American Publishers

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Pale Male Soars in Houston!!

Deb and I just had a fantastic experience with the great people of the Houston Audubon Society. Wow! What gracious folks––staff and members alike. After spending the month of October enjoying a variety of interactions with the Houston group as part of their annual gala, we flew down to Houston for a screening of “The Legend of Pale Male”, which took place on Thursday evening. It was a moving experience to accept an award from Houston Audubon honoring Charles’s dedication to nature conservation, birds, and Pale Male….. and honoring his body of work as a photographer and writer.

I look forward to future work with the Houston folks as we develop new materials for educators based on the film and Charles’s books. Charles loved serendipity and synchronicity. I think we’ve found both here in Houston!

Thanks again, Houston friends!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012


Hi Folks, 

Tomorrow (Thursday) night!!!! 2ND AND FINAL ONLINE CHAT!   hometweet.org

The Houston Audubon Society is offering one more chance to meet the amazing filmmaker Frederic Lilien and learn more about the powerful documentary "The Legend of Pale Male" featuring the famous nesting Red-tailed Hawks of NYC. 

The Houston Audubon group has been soooo gracious in honoring the film, the filmmakers, and my late uncle's work all month long that I hope we can return the love by having a bunch of you all joining in with us!

Thursday, October 18
7:00-8:30 p.m. CENTRAL.  6:00-7:30 p.m. MOUNTAIN. etc.......

The last chat was a kick, and the Houston group has cleaned up some technical glitches so this event should be smooth and a lot of fun. 

Please join us for any or all of that 90 minute window---- you can chime in, ask questions or just lurk at the site. :-)   We're hoping to pack the (virtual) house tomorrow night.


My video thanks to Houston Audubon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dgue-v-Vdf4

Wednesday, October 3, 2012


WELCOME, HOUSTON AUDUBON FANS! I invite you to peruse this site honoring my late uncle, Charles Kennedy. Make sure you check out the resources down the right side of this site.

And to all visitors:

CHECK OUT HOUSTON AUDUBON's GALA site!! http://www.hometweet.org/heroes/

They are honoring the Legend of Pale Male, filmmaker Frederic Lilien, screenwriter Janet Hess, and my sweet, late Uncle Charles!!!!!

They have a great online auction going on from Oct 1-18. Get in there and bid it up. A great cause!

There will be online chats with Frederic, Janet, and yours truly on October 13 and 18. JOIN US!

Thanks so much, HOUSTON AUDUBON!!  
(video thanks! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dgue-v-Vdf4 )

Leadership in Conservation Advocacy

Please join Houston Audubon in honoring these amazing people behind the film Pale Male and The Legend of Pale Male. Their involvement in the creation of these beautiful works of art and the years of dedication toward subsequent advocacy efforts for birds and wildlife are appreciated and acknowledged here. We are humbled to know them by their leadership, generosity, and grace. Their lists of achievements are long and noble, and may their positive impact on society be everlasting.

Frederic Lilien

Frederic Lilien
At the age of 23, Frederic Lilien left his native country of Belgium for NYC. His first film, Pale Male garnered 15 international awards and has aired in more than 75 countries. His work has been featured in documentaries for HBO, Canal Plus, Turner Broadcasting, and PBS. The Legend of Pale Male is his first feature film and the culmination of 16 years of following New York’s love affair with one remarkable hawk. Today, Frederic dedicates the film to helping nonprofits raise awareness for their missions for the benefit of birds and wildlife everywhere.

Janet Hess

Janet Hess
Janet Hess is the Series Editor of NATURE, the premier natural history series from Thirteen/WNET for PBS. She has written and produced some 20 documentary programs. She collaborated with Frederic Lilien on his first film, the original “Pale Male,” for which she was awarded the 2004 Emmy Award for writing.

Steven Kennedy and the late Charles Francis Kennedy

Charles and Steve Kennedy
Writer and retired educator Steven Kennedy received a rare inheritance: the unpublished photographs, essays, haiku poems, and papers of his late uncle Charles F. Kennedy, the beloved New York City naturalist and photographer well-known for his passion for birds and especially Pale Male. Steven’s charge from his uncle is to “make my life’s work available to anyone who might enjoy them when I’m gone.” Steven has aptly done so, and is Adjunct Professor of Special Education at the University of Northern Colorado. He and wife Deb, reside in Aurora, Colorado and are avid birders.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

On the Anniversary of Charles's Death

On October 20, 2004 Charles died, one day after his 67th birthday. A couple of weeks later NPR's Margot Adler offered a heart-felt tribute piece in remembrance of Charles. Here's a link to that piece: http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=4159505

Some years the October 20th date has sneaked right by before I could capture it, but not this year. Charles and I shared a love of this season and autumn has been breathtaking here this year. There have been many times during this month that I have thought about phone chats with Charles about rare migrating birds in chill air surrounded by flaming colors. I went across the big road today to ogle a rare Red-throated Loon on the state park lake. The bird was a fine specimen, but it was upstaged by the scene around it––large flotillas of migrating ducks and grebes; golden sunlight igniting all the raging yellow cottonwood trees; cool, sweet late morning air; a backdrop of  lightly-powdered mountains nestling up into a cerulean sky.  So, I came home and listened to the NPR story just to hear Charles's voice waxing ecstatic about nature. Bittersweet.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

An Owling Family and Central Park in the Dark

Charles Kennedy in action!
One of the loveliest parts of bringing Charles's collections to publication is that it keeps me close to members of his New York City 'birding family'. So, in order to shine a light on the owling portion of that family, I'm posting a piece of my introduction to the Owls of Central Park.   
     While I am at it, I will urge you to find and read Marie Winn's book, Central Park in the Dark, which features all of these same characters and many more in masterfully told tales of nighttime naturalist excursions in the greatest urban park in America.  Marie has graciously allowed me to use material from her fine books in the Charles collections for which I am eternally grateful. 
From my introduction to Owls of Central Park:
     The last time I was with Charles was two weeks before he lost his battle with cancer. During that last quiet time together, what he most wanted to do was read to me from his newest compilation, his “owl book.” He had engaged his friends in producing, by hand, large copies of the book--in part to keep them from focusing on his deteriorating health, and in part to make sure it was finished and available to his close network of friends and family. As Charles read his book about Central Park owls he charged me with tending to his large body of written and photographic work. So this book has a special place in my heart. It also is a favorite among Charles’s friends and acquaintances. 
     As I prepare these comments, I am paging through an original, hand-bound copy of the owl book. I strain to hear Charles’s warm, vibrant voice, adding pithy, parenthetical notes about the photos and the stories. The main bookbinders at Charles’s bedside were his closest birding buddies: Marie Winn, Noreen O’Rourke, Lee Stinchcomb, and Jim Lewis. They were original hawk-watching stalwarts, and they appear in Charles’s hawk tribute, Pale Male and Family (Cerberus Press). They all became Central Park owling buddies, so they are main actors in this book as well.
     You will also meet up with Central Park über-birders Tom Fiore and Sharon Freedman as well as Central Park Conservancy woodlands boss, Regina Alvarez.  And look for cameo appearances by Big Apple luminaries such as Joe DiMaggio and Edward Kennedy “Duke” Ellington. It’s true! Charles always brought his love of art, music, literature, and sports to his encounters with nature.
     In this book, Charles indulges other passions as well. He takes us deep into owl science, at one point providing evidence that refutes a belief that owls’ eyes are fixed in their sockets. And, as always, he illuminates his feathered subjects in masterful haiku poems. The haiku Charles chose for his owl-tribute book are perched throughout.*At Charles’s urging, Ms. Winn wrote her lovely book, Central Park in the Dark: More Mysteries of Urban Wildlife (Farrar, Straus and Giroux).  Her book paints, on a larger canvas, the fascinating nighttime, nature adventures of Charles and his friends. 
     This collection contains the original owl book (as Charles created it) with special excerpts from Ms. Winn’s book––offerings of call-and-response and contextual harmony. Charles also kept an audiotape journal of well-developed ideas for magazine articles. His journal is excerpted throughout this volume as well.