Anticipation Builds for Upcoming Annual Winter Eagle Festival
January 6, 2012
A South Jersey winter tradition continues on February 11th when hundreds of visitors converge in the fields, forests and marshes along the Maurice River to watch and celebrate the eagles.
This is the eleventh anniversary of the Cumberland County Winter Eagle Festival – a daylong event that attracts participants from across the Delaware Valley to experience the incredible concentration of birds of prey, including hawks, owls, falcons, vultures and, of course, eagles.
And what a comeback story for the bald eagle. According to the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, in the early 1970s, there was just one nesting pair of bald eagles in the entire state of New Jersey – in a remote Cumberland County forest. The latest census estimates some 80 pair, mostly in the Cumberland and Salem County region.
This year’s Eagle Festival will give visitors fantastic opportunities to see these magnificent species including guided and unguided trail walks, four staffed viewing sites, a sunrise walk and a dusk owl walk. The day also features indoor activities at the Mauricetown Fire Hall, including speaker presentations and vendors.
The day ends with the ultimate warm-up -- the annual Chili Bowl fundraiser hosted by Citizens United to Protect the Maurice River and its Tributaries. The popular event features 25 different chili recipes, ranging from traditional to exotic.
A new Facebook site (www.facebook.com/WinterEagleFest) will connect festival-goers with the latest information, photos and interactive maps, speakers schedule and even a recipe or two from the Chili Bowl. Facebook fans who click “Like” on the site will be kept up to date on all things “Eagle” leading up to festival day.
Free transportation to and from the event is available for Cumberland County seniors and disabled by calling 856-691-7799.
The Winter Eagle Festival is sponsored by the Cumberland County Board of Chosen Freeholders with support from Citizens United to Protect the Maurice River and its Tributaries, New Jersey Audubon, the Cape May Bird Observatory, National Park Service, Natural Lands Trust and the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation.
What: Winter Eagle Festival
Where: Mauricetown, Fire Hall
When: Saturday, February 11th
8:00 am – 4:00 pm
Admission: $10 Adults, $5 Children (12 and under)
Chili Bowl: $25 pp
856-453-2177 or 866-866-MORE