The Annual Tulip Festival is back at Thanksgiving Point Gardens, with almost a hundred different kinds of tulips as well as hyacinths and daffodils. Planted among them are colorful pansies and other cheerful annuals. The late winter caused some concern about the flowers blooming on time, and many of the tulips have yet to bloom- but there are plenty of tulips already in full bloom. The festival runs through May 2nd and it appears that most if not all the tulips will be blooming within that time. The flowering trees also appeared to be struggling at first, but the buds are beginning to show.

Vendors of jewelry and clothing, flowers, gifts, and food are found in their booths alongside activity booths for children. Painters and live music add festivity to the atmosphere. All these are generally found on the hill across the lake from the waterfalls. While they will be there throughout the festival, April 25th will be special- it’s Dutch day. There will be a Dutch costume contest, samples from a Dutch store, performances by The Idlewild Quartet and The Accords- an accordian trio- and children’s activities. So if you have any of those wooden shoes (the original clogs) at home, this would be the time to finally break them out.

Thanksgiving Point Gardens is a perfect romantic date, a peaceful mind- clearing walk (get there early), or a fantastic family outing. It takes hours to fully explore all 55 acres of the gardens, from the waterfall amphitheatre to the Italian garden to the Secret Garden and through 15 other gardens and sites- with bright tulips lining the paths. All 250,000 tulip bulbs will, at the end of the festival, be dug up and sold for three dollars per dozen- a fraction of their original price. This festival and its beautiful colors are sure to be remembered.