NORFOLK -- All things Eagle will be the focus of the first Eagle Festival at Norfolk Botanical Garden on Saturday, May 5.

The festival showcases America's national symbol with the help of local, regional and national wildlife and eagle experts. The star attraction will be 'Buddy,' the eagle born at the Garden four years ago but removed from his nest because he contracted Avian pox. It will be his first public appearance since training to become an education eagle.

There also will be a moderated panel discussion about the critical issues regarding conservation, policy and the future of eagles with Jim Martin, director of Berkley Conservation Institute, Portland, Oregon, Libby Mojica, research biologist and Reese Lukei, research associate from the Center for Conservation Biology at the College of William and Mary.

There will be wildlife demonstrations with live animals and birds by the Virginia Zoo and the Wildlife Center of Virginia. Special presenters at the Eagle Festival will include Greg Bockheim, executive director of the Virginia Zoo and Edward E. Clark, president of the Wildlife Center of Virginia.

Guests are encouraged to bring their cameras, ask questions and enjoy an up-close and personal experience with the eagles.

If you need your Eagle fix now, watch the nest live on the EagleCam.

Running simultaneously is the Eagle Symposium. The national eagle specialists are also speaking during the Eagle Symposium Friday, May 4 through Sunday, May 6.

Mark your calendar to return to Norfolk Botanical Garden the following weekend for the annual Spring Plant Sale. It's May 11 through May 13 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

For information about EagleFest, the Spring Plant sale or other events, call 757-441-5830 or check out the NBG Website.

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