In the North-Western corner of the very North-Western state of the USA, the 27th Tulip Festival starts in the first weekend of April. It sounds like to get there, a trip to the edge of the world is necessary but the venture is very worthwhile to take.
This festival draws crowds of people to the fields of Skagit Valley from as far as Oregon and Vancouver in Canada. It's only an hour's drive north of Seattle. Traditional settlement of people from Holland who came here in the 2nd half of the 19th centurey, the area is famous for its farming and cattle and milk production. For the 27th time, local descendants of the settlers will celebrate the festival typical for their original country.
This spring's very favourable weather has made the flowers bloom earlier than normally happens in mid of April. The whole month of April will be showing off their natural colours of tulips, irises and daffodils blooming on over 1,000 acres of flat fields between La Conner and Mt. Vernon, along state Hwy 20, just east of Interstate Hwy 5. Each year, depending on the weather conditions, the largest bulb grower in North America, Washington Bulb Company, assigns different fields of flowers to be viewed by the visitors. But normally, when you get off the Hwy 20 at Best Road heading south, in the square of Best Road-Calhoun Road-Beaver Marsh Road and Memorial Hwy, you will get all the colours of the fresh flowers you need. The most spectacular display of progressing bloom is expected in RoozenGaarde Display Garden at Beaver Marsh Road between Jungquist Road and McLean Road.
People come here, leave their cars along the roadside (space permitted...) and start walking in between rows of flowers, enjoying fresh colours, rural environment and a real taste of Holland at this very end of the world. It's a great escape from busy city life. Because it's a definite temptation to get down on your knees to smell the flowers or take a low angle shot of a tulip, be prepared for wet conditions by having a pair of rubber boots if possible.
Lots of local events are scheduled to happen in Skagit Valley including US Bank Parade, marching bands parade, art shows, wine tasting, old automobiles display - to name a few - on the streets of funky and artsy La Conner that remains pretty sleepy all year round but wakes up to its tulip life in April.
All the local events are well updated on the website promoting the state of Washington.