It's almost time for one of my favorite springtime SLC events - the Tulip Festival at Thanksgiving Point Gardens. Thanksgiving Point's 55-acre gardens are spectacular, and the Tulip Festival is one of the best times to visit. The ninth annual festival runs April 12-27, 2013, Monday through Saturday. The gardens will bloom with more than 250,000 tulips of 70 colors and 100 varieties, so you're almost guaranteed to see something new and surprising. Just looking at the tulips is amazing in itself, but there are plenty of other activities planned to go with the festival:
Demonstrations and Garden Tours - Daily
Gardening demonstrations by Thanksgiving Point experts are available daily. Topics range from growing and cooking vegetables to weed control and perennial planning. Guests may also tour the gardens with a guided expert at noon each day during the Festival, and at 3 p.m. on Saturdays.
Dutch Day - April 20
In honor of the tulip's Dutch heritage, the Tulip Festival will feature a cultural celebration on April 20. Guests can participate in a traditional costume contest, try on wooden shoes, make Dutch children's crafts, sample Dutch treats and watch live entertainment.
Special Guest: Henk Stuifbergen - April 20
Tulip expert Henk Stufibergen, a distributor of tulip bulbs for Thanksgiving Point, is making a special visit from Holland to answer guests' questions on tulips at the Tulip Festival on April 20 from 10 a.m.-noon. Stuifbergen is involved with tulip research at Cornell University and is on the board of the Tulip Museum in Holland.
Tulip Princess Pageant - May 4
Girls ages 1-11 are invited to participate in Thanksgiving Point Tulip Festival's 3rd annual Tulip Princess Pageant on May 4. Grand prizes are awarded in each age category, but every contestant will walk away a winner.
Professional and amateur photographers are invited to submit their favorite shots from the Tulip Festival into the photo contest for a chance to win prizes. There is a fee of $5 to enter the contest.
Musicians, dance groups, harpists and bagpipers will be available to entertain festival goers Friday and Saturday evenings.
Thanksgiving Point Tulip Festival hours are 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., Monday-Saturday. Admission to the festival includes general garden admission. Pricing Monday-Thursday is $10 for adults, $8 for seniors and children aged 3-12. For Friday and Saturday, admission is $12 for adults and $10 for seniors and children age 3-12. Entrance is free to Thanksgiving Point members and children under 2 years.
Photo courtesy Thanksgiving Point. Read more from Marsha Maxwell at saltlakecity.about.com.