The eagles have landed

January brings the Skagit Eagle Festival, four weekends of family-friendly fun, to the Upper Skagit Valley, with entertaining and educational activities sprinkled liberally throughout Concrete, Rockport, and Marblemount. And, of course, eagle-watching.

Here’s a look at what’s on tap in each community.


The Skagit Eagle Festival Information Station is a good first stop as you head east. It’s located in the Concrete Chamber office, 45770 Main St., Concrete (360.853.8784).

Events and attractions in Concrete and the vicinity include:

Drop-in Arts & Crafts, Upper Skagit Library, 45770B Main St., Concrete. Every Saturday in January, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. (360.853.7939).

5K Salmon Run and Nature Walk at Double O Ranch, 46276 Concrete Sauk Valley Rd., Concrete. Jan. 5. Registration at 9:30 a.m.; walk anytime between 9:30 a.m. and noon; run at 10 a.m. (360.853.8494 or 360.466.8754).

Wildlife Hayrides and Campfire, Double O Ranch; call 360.853.8494 for details.

Photography Workshop at Concrete Theatre, 45920 Main St., Concrete. Jan. 19. For more information, contact the Concrete Chamber of Commerce at 360.853.8784 or [email protected].

Raptor Presentations at Concrete High School gymnasium, 7830 S. Superior Ave., Concrete. Free admission. For more information, go to or contact the Concrete Chamber of Commerce at 360.853.8784 or [email protected].

“This Beautiful Country,” with singer Marcia Kester, Concrete Theatre, Concrete, 2 to 3:30 p.m. Free admission. For more information, go to or contact the Concrete Chamber of Commerce at 360.853.8784 or [email protected].


With its boat launch at Howard Miller Steelhead Park and the pullout at milepost 100 (just east of the community proper), Rockport is a popular stopping point for visitors to the Upper Valley.

But its biggest destination during the Eagle Festival is the Skagit River Bald Eagle Interpretive Center, located just above the park, within eyeshot of the river.

The interpretive center has an incredibly diverse lineup of speakers and activities in the pipeline for January, including guided nature walks every Saturday and Sunday at 11 a.m., and special presentations at 1 p.m. (except Jan. 5). Here’s a closer look:

Sat., Jan. 5: Craig Romano, guidebook author: “Hiking in the Bellingham, Mount Vernon, and Anacortes areas” (11 a.m. talk, 1 p.m. nature walk).

Sun., Jan. 6: Andrea Reiter, Skagit Watershed Council Community Engagement Coordinator: “Salmon and trout of the Skagit River: Distribution, abundance trends, and habitat recovery.”

Sat., Jan. 12: Lucy DeGrace, Skagit Fisheries Enhancement Group: “It’s about WAY more than just salmon!”

Sat., Jan. 19: Fred Wilson, SRBEIC President: “George and Martha: Observations of an Eagle couple and thoughts about bald eagles.”

Mon., Jan. 21: Hollie Watne, science/environmental educator: “For the Love of (Bio)Diversity.”

Sat., Jan. 26: Holli Watne, educator, gardener, and amateur entomologist: “Garden Ecology: The Good, the Bad, and the Bugly.”

Sun., Jan. 27: Mike Larrabee, North Cascades National Park Complex physical scientist: “Glaciers of the North Cascades.”

For more information about the speakers and activities at the interpretive center in January, see the ad on p. 3 of this issue or go to

East of Rockport, at milepost 104, look for Glacier Peak Resort & Winery on the north side of SR 20. On Jan. 19 and 20, Glacier Peak will host a Raptor Show with falconer and raptor expert Craig Moran. Three shows are planned, sponsored by the Concrete Chamber of Commerce. For more information, see the ad on p. 7 of the January issue.


In keeping with its 35-year tradition, the Marblemount Community Hall will again host numerous native artists, musicians, presenters, and performers during the Skagit Eagle Festival, on Sat., Jan. 12 and Sun., Jan. 13.

With its doors opening at 10 a.m., the hall will fill with local artists and craft vendors offering traditionally native and nature-themed items for sale to the public.

From Salish carvings and dream catchers to North Cascades photography and handcrafted soaps, sales will be ongoing throughout the day. In addition, cooks from the Samish nation will make and offer hot, made-to-order fry bread tacos for sale from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., as well as a variety of hot drinks.

Presenters and performers are as follows, both days:

Noon to 1 p.m. Sasa Bella and Two Hats: Salish-style carvers, puppeteer, and storyteller.

1 to 2 p.m. Rosie Cayou, Samish nation: Drumming and local history.

Music concerts, both days:

2:30 to 3:30 p.m. JP Falcon Grady, Blackfoot nation, original rock/reggae/folk.

3:30 to 4:30 p.m. Peter Ali, “Flute from the Heart.”

4:30 to 5:30 p.m. Swil Kanim, Lummi violin, storyteller, and actor. A donation will be requested at the door after 1 p.m.

For more information, scheduling changes, weather and road conditions, etc., call the hall at 360.873.2323 and leave a message with your phone number. Someone will call you back.

A complete schedule for all Skagit Eagle Festival events is available online at For more information, contact the Concrete Chamber of Commerce at 360.853.8784 or [email protected].

—J. K. M. and Christie Fairchild

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