Traveling over 2,800 miles from Mexican forests to Canada every year, monarch butterflies’ annual migration has been called one of the greatest natural phenomena in the insect world. This long-distance, multigeneration migration—and the part area gardens and preserves play in reducing the threats to monarchs—is the focus of the 2018 Monarch Festival at Eagle Marsh.
Hosted by local conservation nonprofit Little River Wetlands Project, the Monarch Festival will be held Sunday, September 9, from 1-5 p.m. at Eagle Marsh Nature Preserve, 6801 Engle Road, Fort Wayne. This family-friendly event is free and open to the public. “Our goal for the Monarch Festival is to help people learn about these butterflies, have fun along the way, and understand how they can help in conserving their habitat,” said Amy Silva, LRWP Executive Director.
Highlighting monarchs’ lifecycle and their incredible transformation, the Monarch Festival includes a variety of programs and activities:
– Displays of live monarchs at different stages of their lifecycle, from caterpillars to adults
– Monarch butterfly tagging prior to release
– Educational presentations, outdoor learning stations and hands-on activities for all ages
– Local author Kylee Baumle will sign her award-winning book, The Monarch: Saving Our Most-Loved Butterfly
– Hikes on interpretive trails lined with tall native wildflowers to watch these iconic butterflies nectaring or roosting almost close enough to touch
– Plant giveaways – visitors will be offered varieties of milkweed, the only plant on which monarchs lay their eggs, to plant either at Eagle Marsh or take home
– Farmer’s market, offering pollinator-friendly products such as local honey and native plants
– Young Urban Homesteaders will offer locally grown, seasonal food for purchase