Arts Briefs 

Eagle festival soars into action

It’s that time of year again, when thousands of bald eagles flock to the shores of the Squamish River to feed on dead chum salmon.

Visitors from all over the world come to witness this spectacle in Brackendale during December and January. And the 21 st annual Brackendale Winter Eagle Festival and Count begins Sunday, Jan. 7 and runs through the end of the month.

The festival includes a myriad of activities such as presentations, art shows and live concerts.

The Brackendale Art Gallery (BAG) is headquarters for the Jan. 7 eagle count, where the public can sign up for walking tours starting at 10 a.m. and browse displays throughout the day at the local gallery and teahouse.

In addition to hosting the count, live shows, local art showings and the best salmon chowder north of Vancouver, gallery owner Thor Froslev also introduces a new eagle aid station to the building where injured or starving eagles can be cared for before being sent to more established rehabilitation centres in Nanaimo and the Lower Mainland.

The centre is run out of the goodness of Froslev’s heart, with veterinarians volunteering their time.

More than 8,000 visitors travel to Brackendale to witness the eagle count and festival. The world record in 1994 wielded a count of 3,769 eagles in one day.

Eagle viewing isn’t the only activity going on.

BAG also hosts a slide-show presentation by mountaineer Richard Berry, who will share photos of the Alberta Rocky Mountain landscape Saturday, Jan. 6 at 8 p.m.

Eagle walking tours are offered daily starting at noon for $35 (lunch included).

The gallery hosts an Eagle Art Show for January. The exhibit showcases the talents of west coast artists Roy Hamaguchi, Ken Lubas, Norman Rich and Floyd Joseph, just to name a few.

West Coast musicians also come together for Jam and Dance on Saturday, Jan. 27 at 8 p.m. with Shannon Saunders and the Splinters, Cam Salay, members of the Mountain Bluebirds, and Monte and Jen Thompson taking to the stage. Tickets are $15.

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