Visit La Conner for the Skagit Eagle Festival

eagleLooking for a Northwest getaway weekend in January that offers quiet and beauty, with the opportunity to view and photograph one of our most majestic icons? Visit us in the Skagit Valley during January and you’ll have abundant opportunities!

Make La Conner your home base, and then head out to eastern Skagit County for the month-long Skagit Eagle Festival. You’ll get the best of both worlds – fabulous accommodations, plus shopping and dining options in La Conner, and outdoor activities and sightseeing within an hour’s drive.

The festival offers four weekends of recreation, entertainment and education; activities are held on Saturdays and Sundays from Jan. 5 through 27, with eagle-watching a primary focus.

A variety of festival activities are planned at venues in Concrete, Rockport, and Marblemount, including:

• Eagle-watching stations in Rockport and Marblemount
• Boat trips on the Skagit River
• Tours of the Marblemount Fish Hatchery
• Photography workshops
• Shows by wildlife rescue centers
• Native American dancing and drumming
• Hayrides and bonfires
• Raft trips and wine tastings
• Bluegrass and box lunches
• Recycled art show and contest
• Presentation on wolves in the North Cascades
• Tours of hydroelectric projects
• Raffles and drawings

For the enjoyment of visitors of all ages and abilities, many indoor activities are included this year, including an art contest, craft sales and more. Organizers emphasize that most of the outdoor activities are held regardless of the weather, so visitors should come prepared.

“The winter weather adds a rugged charm to it,” said Valerie Stafford, president of the Concrete Chamber of Commerce and organizer of the event. “You bundle up and trek along the river or through the trees and are rewarded by spotting these incredible birds. In the process, you learn from the experts from the US Forest Service and many trained volunteers, about the river, salmon, and all kinds of wildlife, as well as environmental issues.”

A series of events planned for Saturday, January 5 will kick off the festival, including a free presentation, “Bald Eagles of the Northwest,” at 10 a.m., bluegrass music and box lunch at 11:30 a.m., and a performance by the Neqax Kwelengsen (Black Eagle) Singing Group at 2:00 p.m. These events will be held at the Concrete Theatre, located at 45920 Main Street in Concrete. For more information: 360.941.0403 or www.concrete-theatre.com.

The Skagit Eagle Festival Information Station is located in the Concrete Center, 45821 Railroad Avenue in Concrete. Brochures, maps, souvenirs, arts and crafts, free coffee and restrooms are available from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., every Saturday and Sunday in January.

A complete schedule is available online at the Eagle Festival Website.

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