Come to Newburyport to celebrate the return of migrating eagles back to the Merrimack River Estuary! The Mass Audubon's Joppa Flats Education Center and the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge have teamed up to bring an entire day of free events centered around the wonders of the Bald Eagles that have come to take seasonal advantage of the Merrimack River habitat.
Come to the Eagle Festival for a full day of fun indoor and outdoor activities, and learn more about these magnificent birds and the habitat they share with us. For Families with kids, Mass Audubon recommends the hour-long raptor shows at City Hall for children ages six and up. For families with younger children, we recommend the shorter, more intimate and flexible raptor demonstrations at the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge Visitor Center and at Mass Audubon’s Joppa Flats.
Festival features include:
- Eagle-spotting locations along the lower Merrimack with on-site interpreters
- Bus tours guided by expert birders starting in downtown Newburyport
- Live raptor demonstrations at Newburyport’s City Hall
- Children’s nature activities and live bird demonstrations at Mass Audubon’s Joppa Flats and the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge Headquarters
Merrimack River Eagle Festival Schedule
Visit Eagle Hotspots 9am-4pm
Maps will be available the day of the event at all festival headquarter sites, or go to our website to print a map. You’ll be able to drive yourself to each spot, where naturalist guides will be onsite all day. All ages welcome. FREE
Go on an Eagle Tour 9am–11:30am
Let us drive you! Tours start every half hour and take 90 minutes to complete. Departs from Newburyport Chamber of Commerce. Advance registration encouraged. For day-of availability, check at the Chamber of Commerce. Register online after January 1. Adults & children ages 6-17; $10 per adult, $5 per child (ages 6-17). Register Online
See a Raptor Demonstration 10-11am or 12:45-1:45pm
- Mary-Beth Kaeser of Horizon Wings presents two educational programs at Newburyport’s City Hall featuring raptors great and small. First come, first served. Recommended for ages 6+. FREE
Have Fun with Your Family! 10am– 3pm
- At the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge Headquarters
- Family activities, arts and crafts, and more! Special feature: Live owls from Mass Audubon’s Drumlin Farm Wildlife Sanctuary (11:00-3:00).
- At Mass Audubon’s Joppa Flats Education Center
- Family activities, arts and crafts, and more!
- Special Feature: Live hawks from Mass Audubon’s Drumlin Farm (11:00 am–3:00 pm). FREE.