Eagles Island open for visitors - WECT TV6-WECT.com:News, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

Eagles Island open for visitors

Eagles Island Coalition member Jim Kapetsky explained that over a century ago, Eagles Island was used for rice fields and it was also the center of our area's shipbuilding industry. Eagles Island Coalition member Jim Kapetsky explained that over a century ago, Eagles Island was used for rice fields and it was also the center of our area's shipbuilding industry.
Efforts are underway to attract tourists. The coalition recently finished mapping trails for canoeing and kayaking. Efforts are underway to attract tourists. The coalition recently finished mapping trails for canoeing and kayaking.

EAGLES ISLAND, NC (WECT) - Eagles Island is open for visitors. That's the message one group wants to spread.

The island is located right between New Hanover and Brunswick Counties.

WECT's Ashlea Kosikowski toured the area with the Eagles Island Coalition, a group that is trying to both protect and promote the area. We kayaked through the vast water trails that weave through the 3,100 acres of land centered between the Brunswick and Cape Fear Rivers.

Eagles Island Coalition member Jim Kapetsky explained that over a century ago, Eagles Island was used for rice fields and it was also the center of our area's shipbuilding industry.

Now, most of the land is owned by the state and various government agencies.

The islands inhabitants are wildlife. Today, we spotted two ospreys.

"It has been visualized as the Central Park of the Cape Fear," said Phil Prete, Eagles Island Coalition Chair. "I think there is a potential there, just to have it be something special, a special place."

Coalition members want to share this special place with visitors.

"There are things that you don't normally see, things you just hear about," said Niel Brooks, Chair of the Eagles Island Coalition's Recreation and Cultural Resources Committee. "You can see river otters and alligators. They aren't just in zoos."

Efforts are underway to attract tourists. The coalition recently finished mapping trails for canoeing and kayaking.

They hope to put signs up marking the trails soon, a first step for marketing all you can see and do at Eagles Island. They must get permits from the state to install the signs. Coalition members envision eventually building a visitors center to help educate folks about the history, wildlife and waterways on Eagles Island. They're looking for grant money and donations to make that happen.

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