By Arwyn Rice
Peninsula Daily News
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More than 20 bald eagles and golden eagles have taken up spring residence in Neah Bay, said Dawn Laurence, an organizer of Eagle Fest.
“The eagles are abundant on the Front Beach. I can look out my window and see one at any time,” Laurence said.
Eagle education, a bazaar, traditional eagle art, a guided hike and a dinner will celebrate the Neah Bay eagles.
Printed event schedules will be available beginning at 9:30 a.m. at Eagle Fest headquarters at the Makah Marina.
The schedule for Saturday is:
■ 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. — Village RV Swap Meet, 1184 Bay View Ave.
■ 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. — At the Eagle Fest Bazaar at the Makah Tribal Community Center, 81 Third Ave., artwork, T-shirts, books and Indian tacos and other food will be on sale.
“It's a good place to get a unique gift for Mother's Day,” Laurence said.
■ 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. — An eagle exhibit will be on display at the Makah Cultural and Research Center, 1880 Bayview Ave.
A free museum tour will begin at 11 a.m.
Non-tour admission to the exhibit is $5 for adults. A $4 reduced admission is available for children and students with school identification, for seniors ages 62 and older, and for active-duty military in uniform. Children ages 5 and younger are admitted free.
■ 10 a.m. — Julia Parrish, a University of Washington seabird researcher, will offer a free lecture on eagles at the Makah Marina.
■ 11 a.m. — Clam chowder or chili and buckskin bread lunch will be offered at the Makah Marina for $4 each, while a chili and frybread lunch will be sold at the Makah Tribal Community Center for $3 for chili, $3 for frybread or $5 for both.
■ 1 p.m. — A guided hike of the Cape Flattery Trail will begin at the trailhead parking lot, 6 miles west of Neah Bay on Cape Flattery Road.
The hike will include details about plants, animals and birds in the vicinity of the trail, provided by a guide from the Makah Cultural and Research Center, Laurence said.
The hike is free, but tips for the guide are appreciated, she said.
Use of hiking trails and visits to Cape Flattery beaches requires a Makah Reservation Recreation Use Permit for each car.
The pass is good for a year and can be purchased for $10 at any business in Neah Bay that displays a sign advertising the pass.
The stores are clearly marked with sandwich boards in front, Laurence said.
■ 6 p.m. — A halibut or chicken dinner will be available for $15 at the Makah Tribal Community Center.
The annual Eagle Fest is held at the height of the breeding season.
Laurence said breeding eagles look like they are fighting, then fall together to complete their mating flight.
It's a common sight in Neah Bay, she said.
Bald eagles and golden eagles are common to the Pacific Northwest, but not usually in the numbers that have been seen in Neah Bay this spring, she said.
Golden eagle plumage is dark brown with a golden sheen on the back of the head and neck, while the American bald eagle sports its signature white head and tail feathers.
Bald eagles, which average 9 to 14 pounds, are built more lightly than their golden cousins, which weigh between 10 and 15 pounds.
In both species, the females are larger than the males, have wing spans of up to 8 feet in the largest birds and can measure 40 inches from beak to tail feathers.
Reporter Arwyn Rice can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 5070, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.