It's tulip time! Fun is in full bloom at fest
Spring arrived on Tuesday, just in time for one of the highlights of the season in the Willamette Valley.
The 34th annual Wooden Shoe Tulip Festival opens Friday, with some 120 colorful varieties of tulips and daffodils ready to be viewed on 40 acres of the Wooden Shoe Tulip Farm.
"We are ready to see people fill the farm, rain or shine," Barb Iverson, farm owner, said. "New activities are lined up, along with some traditional favorites, so that everyone leaves the farm with some new cheerful memories."
The farm folks are playing up the Tulip Fest as a great place to get photos, with Mount Hood in the background, and the notable windmill and pink tractor, as well as great backdrops for social media. Their photo tips: Look for color combos, with Mount Hood or other things as backdrop; determine the right lighting; be unique; put your pets in front of the flowers.
Hashtags for the Tulip Fest are #woodenshoetulipfarm, #tulipfest2018 and #woodenshoefarm.
Daily activities include hay wagon rides, cow and tour train rides and sliding and swinging at a children's play area. There's also food, beverages and wine tasting.
Special events include local farm tastings, wooden shoe making demonstrations, photography and art classes, crafter tents, pony rides, jump tents, ziplines, paintball and musical guests. Each Saturday there'll be a Wooden Shoe Carver Class from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. (signup required), and the Tulip Trail 5K/10K Run starts at 8:30 a.m. March 24.
Also new this year will be lab tours of the farm's latest endeavor, Red Barn Hemp, where CBD, or cannabinoids, from the farm-grown hemp are extracted and transformed into oils, capsules and other healing products.
Don't miss out on Easter festivities, with an egg hunt Saturday, March 31 and an Easter sunrise service presented by the Woodburn Area Ministerial Association on April 1.
And other fun traditions have been added to the festival in recent years, including hot air balloon tethered rides (weather permitting) on weekends for those who would love the balloon experience for a cheaper rate, spark shows from the antique steam tractors providing a fireworks-like display on two Saturday evenings of the festival, and Wine Wagon Tours, where guests 21 and over can tour the farm while sampling Wooden Shoe Vineyards fare.
Wine pairing events will be set up on Fridays during the festival, with local farms and businesses providing food to sample with Wooden Shoe wine (note that the admission fee covers two samplings of the wine).
The Wooden Shoe Tulip Fest is open 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily through April 30. Admission is $5 (ages 13 and above) or a maximum car charge of $20.
The Iverson family farm began in 1950, and the family started growing tulips in 1974. It became the Wooden Shoe Tulip Farm in 2001.
For more information, visit www.woodenshoe.com.
— Lindsay Keefer contributed to this story.