After the wettest winter on record in the Pacific Northwest, these little beauties are a very welcome sight! What does it mean? Spring is on its way! Warmer temperatures and less rain…Actually, I welcome all of that rain. It makes this area into the beauty that it really is. If you have never visited Western Washington, you have to put it on the bucket list. It really is one of the most beautiful places in this country.
So, a little bit about the tulips…
From the Skagit valley chamber of commerce website: “The Skagit Valley Tulip Festival was officially inaugurated in 1984 by the Mount Vernon Chamber of Commerce. Chamber directors Jerry Diggerness and Joan Houchen saw that people were coming by the thousands to view the tulips and, through a retreat, decided to add events and festivities to enhance the visitors’ trip to the Skagit Valley. In 1994 the Tulip Festival broke off from the Chamber of Commerce and became an entity of its own.
From humble beginnings, the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival grew. It moved from 3 days to 10, then 17 and now, for the past 5+ years, to 30 days. The expansion to 30 days was to ensure that the huge fields of tulips grown in Skagit Valley would actually bloom sometime during the festival, since a shorter festival sometime missed the blooming of the fields.
Today the festival boasts an amazing assortment of events — art shows, gala celebrations, concerts, tours of local shellfish and cheese operations and an open house at PACCAR. Two signature events have grown along with the festival –the Downtown Mount Vernon Street Fair and the Kiwanis Salmon Barbecue – fundraisers for both organizations that have proven highly successful. There are lots of physical activities associated with the festival as well – a run, 20- 40- and 60-mile bike rides, and a youth basketball tournament.” http://www.tulipfestival.org/history
This festival is one of Washington’s largest with over one million visitors annually!
If you would like to attend here are some links for your research:
wiki Skagit Valley
Mt Vernon Chamber / bloom map
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