North Okanagan tulip festival blooming for first time this spring | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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North Okanagan tulip festival blooming for first time this spring

Image Credit: Pixabay

An Okanagan tulip festival will soon be in bloom.

Alexis Szarek started the Abbotsford Bloom Tulip Festival in the Lower Mainland in 2016 before her family decided to move to the North Okanagan. Now the Bloom Flower Festivals tulip festival is set to take place this spring in Armstrong. The bulbs are just poking out of the ground now, she said.

“We could still get a hard frost that could slow everything down but if the weather kind of continues on this path we’re looking good,” she said.

Szarek said it’s their first year growing tulips in the Okanagan so “I am extremely hesitant to give any tentative dates."

Tulips can be fickle.

Last year, the owners held a sunflower festival as they’re easier to grow and will bloom within a given timeframe. With tulips, it all depends on the weather and temperature.

They’re hoping to open early May but it’s up in the air. The level of interest this year about the festival has been more than they expected.

“It surprises me, how many people are really, really excited about this,” Szarek said, adding that tickets are also purchased for a specific time slot and date so they don’t want to start selling them too early.

Last year, there was excitement with the sunflowers festival but they were also on evacuation alert when they opened due to the White Rock Lake wildfire.

“It was muted by what was going on in the world,” she said.

This year pandemic restrictions have eased, so she thinks there’s more excitement now. “People are just as excited to get out and we’ve had a surprising amount of interest so we’re excited.”

For those who want to stay updated with dates, Bloom has a VIP mailing list that will keep customers updated on when ticket sales are announced ahead of their regular announcement.

The festival will feature three acres with more than 20 varieties of tulips. Food trucks will also be on-site and customers can take a ride in a horse-drawn carriage rides.

For more information, visit Bloom's website here.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Carli Berry or call 250-864-7494 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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