The National Eagle Center is ready to gradually reopen its doors to the public. On Thursday, June 25, the center will welcome back visitors for the first time since temporarily closing in mid-March by order of the governor in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We are excited to welcome visitors back to see the eagles,” said Ed Hahn, marketing manager at the center. “However, due to the ongoing pandemic and state health guidelines, there are some important changes people need to be aware of as they plan their next visit.”
Per state requirements, the center has a COVID-19 preparedness plan in place and will only be allowed to operate at 25-percent visitor capacity.
Beginning on June 25, the center will be open weekly from Thursday through Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Each day will be divided into four 90-minutes sessions at 10 a.m., noon, 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. Visitors will be required to purchase timed admission tickets online prior to their arrival and only 50 visitors will be allowed during each session. Staff will effectively clean the facility between each group.
Admission prices to the center remain unchanged. Members will need to present their member cards when they arrive.
“The National Eagle Center is committed to providing a secure and healthy facility for all our visitors and staff,” said CEO Meg Gammage-Tucker. “We are serious about safety and health, and only through a cooperative effort between visitors and staff can we establish and maintain a safe National Eagle Center experience.”
In addition to ticketed admission, visitors will be required to wear masks while inside the center and daily classroom programs are unavailable due to social distancing requirements. Guests will be allowed to go into the eagle ambassadors’ display area and are encouraged to bring their own binoculars and scopes for wild eagle viewing during their visit.
“We know that people are eager to get out of the house and back to visit the eagles in particular,” said Hahn. “We’ve missed our visitors immensely, and we ask for their understanding and patience during this unprecedented time as we work to facilitate the wonderful National Eagle Center experience people have come to know and love.”
Additional visitor information and tickets are available online at nationaleaglecenter.org/reopen. Admission tickets will be available for purchase starting at midnight on Sunday, June 21.
The National Eagle Center is a landmark interpretive center on the banks of the Mississippi River in Wabasha. Offering wild eagle viewing and live eagle programs daily, the National Eagle Center connects people with eagles in nature, history, and culture. For more information about the National Eagle Center, visit nationaleaglecenter.org.