Every winter the Squamish Valley hosts one of the largest gatherings of bald eagles in North America. Thousands of these great birds, perched a dozen to a single tree, converge at the Squamish River to feast on the strong run of chum salmon.
The Brackendale Eagle Festival hosts a variety of activities and events to celebrate the eagle viewing which reaches its peak from mid-December to mid-January.
The Brackendale Art Gallery serves as headquarters for the events and eagle count. The gallery is dressed in eagle images by various West Coast artists. Thor Froslev offers two-hour guided walking tours starting at noon at BAG. Small tours are $35 per person with lunch included. Reservations required.
The gallery also hosts an Eagle photo contest. Submissions must be 8X10 images in colour or black and white. Contest deadline is Jan. 29.
Learn about the biology of bald eagles at a presentation and slide show presented by biologist David Hancock. He has reared thousands of birds, including some of the rarest birds in captivity. He has published hundreds of articles, several books and produced many films on his studies. Currently he is researching bald eagles in the Lower Fraser Valley, focusing on the seasonal changes and breeding successes.
The gallery is also a great place to check out live music. This week the Hungry Hill with Jenny Lester, Bob Hamilton, Mark Thibault, Nadine Laundry and Perry Beckham strum up bluegrass Sunday, Jan. 8 at 8 p.m. Tickets are $15/$12.
Honouring artful business
Only two more days to vote for a business that you thought significantly contributed to arts and culture in Whistler. The deadline for nominations is Friday, Jan. 6.
The Whistler Arts Council and Whistler Chamber of Commerce will recognize one local business or individual business leader at the third annual Whistler Business and the Arts Award.
Eligible recipients include businesses that have sponsored local arts and/or heritage events in the last calendar year, volunteerism, donation of services or products and businesses demonstrating exceptional leadership.
Nominations will be reviewed by a five-member jury with one winner selected. The award will be presented at the January 2006 chamber luncheon.
Previous year's recipients include Whiski Jack Resorts and Rocky Mountain Production Services.
Nomination forms are available from the Whistler Arts Council office, 4334 Main Street (behind Canada Post in Marketplace) or by e-mail at email@example.com. For more information, call 604-938-9221.