Set aside Feb. 27 and 28 to attend the 2016 Eagle Watch ceremonies at Eagle Village in Round Butte Overlook Park's visitor center, 10 miles west of Madras. The two-day celebration runs from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sat., Feb. 27, and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sun., Feb. 28.
This will be the 21st annual Eagle Watch celebration at Round Butte Overlook Park, a free celebration honoring eagles and other raptors of the Oregon Country. Hosted by the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD), Portland General Electric (PGE), and the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs, the event features activities to explore the natural and cultural significance of the birds.
"This event has something for the entire family," said event coordinator and OPRD park ranger Erin Bennett. "Visitors will have the opportunity to glimpse our resident bald eagles and golden eagles, as well as learn about the significance of the eagle to tribal culture and traditions."
Central Oregon students in grades 4 through 12 entered the Eagle Art Contest with drawings, paintings, photography and carvings. Winners will be announced at noon on Sat., Feb. 27, and the artwork will be on display during the celebration.
Both days attendees can meet Aquila, a rehabilitated golden eagle. Children are invited to build a bluebird house (on Saturday) or a bird feeder (on Sunday) and make a commemorative Eagle Watch button to take home. The Madras Garden Center will demonstrate how to create a backyard refuge and enjoy bird watching year-round.
To cap off the event, the Quartz Creek Drummers and Dancers will provide a special presentation of tribal drumming and dancing sponsored by Warm Springs Power and Water Enterprises at 2 p.m. on Sunday.
Admission and parking at PGE's Round Butte Overlook Park is free; new Eagle Watch souvenirs will be available. Also, a silent auction will benefit the Oregon Eagle Foundation. Cash and checks are accepted, no ATM onsite.
For information, call Parks Information at 800-551-6949 or The Cove Palisades State Park at 541-546-3412 or visit oregonstateparks.org. Information will also be posted on the Cove Palisades blog, The Cove Rattler, at: covepalisades.wordpress.com.