Festival celebrates 25 years


October 31, 2019

Larissa Barrett

The American Bald Eagle Foundation is celebrating its 25th Annual American Bald Eagle Festival next week. With reduced ferry service and less regional participation, the American Bald Eagle Foundation is encouraging more Haines residents to join in the festivities.

"We tried to keep a local focus with hopes of seeing a lot of the Haines community come out," said festival organizer Katelyn Dickerson.

The festival kicks off Wednesday Nov. 6 with a meet and greet at the foundation. At 7 p.m., scientist Rachael Derbyshire of Haines Junction will provide an update to her lynx research in the Yukon. Alaska Department of Fish and Game biologist Anthony Crupi will discuss area brown bear research.

On Thursday, Nov. 7, the foundation will host a local artist bazaar at 6 p.m. Bird Talk, a riff on River Talk where participants tell stories for seven minutes related to a theme, will follow the bazaar at 7 p.m.

On Friday, The Jilkaat Kwaan Heritage Center will host a spaghetti lunch at 11 a.m. and at 6 p.m. the Chilkat Center for the Arts will host the Takshanuk Film Festival at the Chilkat Center for the Arts where they will screen the local film "Toxic Treasure" directed by Mario Benassi.

On Saturday, the Jilkaat Kwaan heritage center will host a chili lunch at 11 a.m. The Chilkat Dancers will perform at 1 p.m. Typically, the festival releases a rehabilitated eagle at this time, however due to a lack of funding for travel, no eagle was able to be transported to Haines this year, according to Bird TLC executive director Guy Runco.

The festival will conclude Saturday with a banquet at Harriet Hall at 6 p.m. Tickets are $50. Chef Travis Kukull will offer a choice of roasted pork loin or mushroom risotto for the main course. "We're going to have Extended Play play with Gene Kennedy calling a square dance," Dickerson said.

A silent auction will also occur.

"The communities' continued support is super appreciated," Dickerson said. "We'd love to see locals at the banquet to enjoy an evening of fun and food and dance."

Larissa Barrett


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