For the past 10 years, Teatown Lake Reservation has celebrated the return of the eagle to the lower Hudson Valley with a festival known as Teatown’s Hudson River EagleFest. The event began as a small, but enthusiastic gathering of approximately 300 attendees in 2005 when it was first held on Teatown’s property. Teatown’s 10th Annual Hudson River EagleFest℠, a favorite winter event in the region, will be held on Saturday, February 8, 2014 at Croton Point Park, (Eagle Headquarters), which can accommodate the 5,000 attendees for a full day of activities to celebrate our national symbol.
Ten additional eagle viewing sites will be hosted by collaborating environmental organizations all along the Hudson River. The newest location is at Rockwood Hall in Sleepy Hollow.
Amazing live raptor shows are always a fan favorite and will be held throughout the day. Additional activities range from guided and independent eagle viewing, bus tours, storytelling, a tent brimming with children’s programs and activities, bird walks and displays from 30 area organizations. Entertaining and educational shows take place all day long in The Eagle Theatre and Eaglet Stage under much-appreciated heated tents. Food for purchase will be provided by the Wobble Café.
EAGLE THEATRE SCHEDULE:
All shows feature live birds of prey
10:00 am and 11:00 am – Skyhunters in Flight – Brian Bradley
12:00 pm and 1:00 pm – Close Encounters with Wintering Eagles and Owls – Bill Streeter/Delaware Valley Raptor Center
2:00 pm – Threatened and Endangered – Mary Beth Kaeser/Horizon Wings
3:00 pm – Flight of the Raptor – Jennifer Pena
EAGLET STAGE SCHEDULE:
9:15 am – Raptors for Rookies – Saw Mill River Audubon Society
10:00 am – Birds of Prey – Teatown Lake Reservation
11:00 am – Travis Brady – Greenburgh Nature Center
12:00 pm – Using Technology in Outdoor Adventures – L.L. Bean
1:00 pm – Eagle Tales – the Lore of Roar and Soar – Jonathan Kruk, Master Storyteller
2:00 pm – Bird Medicine – Native American stories of eagles and other birds – Evan Pritchard
2:45 pm – Hudson Valley Wildlife – Teatown Lake Reservation
TICKETS AND INFORMATION: This year, Teatown will sell General Admission tickets which will allow you to enter all of the tents and to take advantage of all of the day’s activities for one price (bus tours are an additional fee). Pre-sale tickets will be $10/adults (14+), $8/children (5-13) and free for children 4 and under. Tickets sold at the venue on the day of will be $15/adults (14+), $10/children (5-13) and free for children 4 and under. We encourage everyone to arrive early to the bird shows in the Eagle Theatre as seating will be on a first come, first served basis. To purchase Pre-Sale General Admission tickets, visit www.teatown.org. A general admission ticket allows you to attend as many shows in the Eagle Theatre/Eaglet Stage as you want (as long as there are available seats). Purchase bus tour tickets by calling the Teatown office at 914-762-2912, ext. 110. Tickets for the bus tours (for age 14 and up) are $25 each and often sell out. For additional questions, please call 914-762-2912 x110. Visit www.teatown.org for up-to-date scheduling information.
BUS TOURS: Guests can travel by charter bus with a Teatown educator at 9:30am or 2:00pm for an in-depth two-hour view of eagles in their natural habitat. Tours begin at Croton Point Park and stop at three locations along the river which can include the Croton Boat Ramp at Croton-Harmon Train Station, George’s Island Park in Montrose, Riverfront Green in Peekskill, Steamboat Dock Park in Verplanck and the Croton Dam in Cortlandt. Bus tours are intended for guests ages 14 and over. Participants must be able to walk up to ¼ mile to view birds at some of the stops. Be prepared for walking on snow, ice, etc. Tickets are $25 per person (limit of 25 seats per bus). Purchase bus tour tickets by calling the Teatown office at 914-762-2912, ext. 110.
ALL ABOARD THE METRO NORTH EAGLE TRAIN!: Ride the train like never before! Attendees coming from Manhattan can take the 9:53am Metro-North Eagle Train car from Grand Central Station to Croton-Harmon Train Station. Along the way, they can view Hudson Valley birds with guest naturalists sponsored by Wave Hill. Free shuttle buses will bring attendees to/from the Croton-Harmon Train Station to Croton Point Park.
To participate in this event, guests must purchase a regular train ticket from Metro North. Metro North personnel will direct guests to the correct train car to hear the wildlife presentation.
EAGLE VIEWING SITES: Guests can enjoy eagle viewing locations and activities along the Hudson River at no additional charge. Each is staffed by eagle experts with spotting scopes. When it’s time to warm up, attendees can take a break in the heated tents/buildings and enjoy a hot cocoa at the following sites:
• Trailside Museum and Zoo, Bear Mountain State Park
• Bear Mountain State Park, Bear Mountain
• Boscobel House and Gardens, Garrison
• Croton Boat Ramp at Croton-Harmon Train Station
• New Croton Dam, Cortlandt
• George’s Island Park, Montrose
• Kathryn W. Davis RiverWalk Center, Sleepy Hollow
• Riverfront Green Park, Peekskill
• Rockwood Hall, Sleepy Hollow
• Steamboat Dock Park, Verplanck
Detailed keepsake maps will be available at Croton Point Park and at Teatown prior to the event to guide visitors to each unique viewing destination.
BIRD WALKS: Spot eagles and other native birds around Croton Point Park with an expert guide. Walks are given every hour from 9am-3pm. The duration of the walk is 30-45 minutes and proper footwear for the weather conditions is advised.
TRANSPORTATION AND PARKING: Parking is free and available in the park. Overflow parking is available in the Village of Croton, lot A. Shuttle buses will bring guests from the outlying lots and the Croton Harmon Train Station to Eagle Headquarters throughout the day.
SNOW DATE: In the event of severe weather, the alternate date for EagleFest℠ will be Sunday, February 9, 2014. Please check Teatown’s website, www.teatown.org, for program details and weather updates, or call Teatown at 914-762-2912 x110.
SPONSORS: Teatown’s Hudson River EagleFest℠ 2014 is generously sponsored by First Niagara Bank Foundation, Club Fit, L.L. Bean, Westchester County, Westchester County Parks Department, WHUD, Wheelabrator, Saw Mill River Audubon and Continental Buchanan.
BALD EAGLES IN THE HUDSON VALLEY: Each winter, between December and March, bald eagles from Canada and northern New York and New England fly south to the lower Hudson Valley to feed on fish and waterfowl found in unfrozen waters. The bald eagle, which was considered an endangered species prior to 1995, shed its federal threatened status in 2007. Today, biologists estimate that about 150 bald eagles overwinter in the lower Hudson Valley. Every year the bald eagles’ return affirms the continued health of the Hudson River and nearby habitats for wildlife and people.
Teatown Lake Reservation, an environmental education organization on a 1,000-acre private, not-for-profit nature preserve in Westchester County, is one of the largest and most active environmental education and nature centers in the region. Teatown impacts more than 20,000 adults and children every year. In addition to its full schedule of year-round programs and nature-focused summer camp, Teatown maintains more than 15 miles of hiking trails. It has grown continuously since it was established on 194 acres in 1963, 50 years ago. Teatown today offers what some call one of the region’s natural gems, providing beauty and peace with educational and recreational programming for people of all ages, as well as educational programs and scientific research for community leaders, organizations and local governments. More information about Teatown is at www.teatown.org.