Meet up with Stilly River’s bald eagles for 2-day festival

ARLINGTON — The Skagit River’s bald eagles get plenty of attention, but the Stillaguamish River watershed also supports one of the largest populations of wintering bald eagles in the lower 48 states.

To celebrate the wintering raptors, the Stillaguamish Tribe and the city of Arlington offer the sixth annual Eagle Festival on Friday and Saturday.

Here’s a list of events:

Ride a raft on the Stilly from Cicero to Haller Park with longtime eagle watchers Jerry and Lori Michalec. Includes lunch. Cost is $60. Meet at 10:30 a.m. Friday at Haller Park, 1100 West Ave. Call North Cascades River Expeditions, 800-634-8433, to make reservations.

Country Carvers chain saw carving show, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., live auction 3:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Legion Park, 114 N. Olympic Ave.

Predators of the Heart wild animal show, free, 7 p.m. Friday, Eagle Creek Elementary, 1216 E. Fifth St.

Wine tasting and art show reception, 5 to 8 p.m. Friday, Magnolia Hall, 225 E. Third St. Features local artists and photographers. On Saturday, the exhibit is open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and includes textile art. Live music both days. Poetry contest exhibit, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, Fog Dog Gallery, 233 N. Olympic Ave.

Nature Conservancy Port Susan Preserve guided tour, 10 a.m. to noon Saturday, from Boe Road, located off Marine Drive, south of Stanwood. See the Stilly estuary, where freshwater meets saltwater and provides habitat for many species of birds, fish and other wildlife. Bring binoculars.

Visit city’s storm water wetland and Eagle Trail, 9 a.m. Saturday, Haller Park, 1100 West Ave. Meet Bill Blake, natural resources manager for the city, and learn how the wetland benefits the river and look for eagles.

Nature exhibits, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, City Council chambers, 238 N. Olympic Ave. With Sarvey Wildlife Care Center, Western Wildlife Outreach, Sound Salmon Solutions, Pilchuck Audubon and Snohomish Conservation District. Sarvey plans to show birds of prey at about noon. Learn about planting and managing at Tree Tenders presentation, 11 a.m. Saturday, Legion park visitor center.

Stillaguamish Tribe’s Salmon Stop, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Lifeway, 104 S. Olympic Ave. Make your own fish prints, learn fun facts about salmon and win prizes at the “Salmon Wheel of Fortune.”

Display of airplane and tractors, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, City Hall parking lot, 238 N. Olympic Ave. Arts and crafts projects, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Arlington United Church, 338 N. MacLeod Ave. Salmon Obstacle Course for kids, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Legion Park. Horse-drawn wagon rides, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, from front of City Hall.

Stillaguamish Valley Pioneer Museum, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, 20722 67th Ave. NE. Admission is $5 or $2 for children.

Gale Fiege: 425-339-3427; gfiege@heraldnet.com.

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