Annual LEAF Festival Celebrates Flora and Fauna
Event celebrates its 20th year
Saturday, Sept. 8
The drive along West Sixth Street eastward from the Peninsula can be quite picturesque, but as you pass beautiful home after beautiful home, they gradually give way to an astoundingly scenic view: Frontier Park. It's a veritable oasis, filled with green space, trees, critters, trails, creek life, tennis courts, a playground — and, of course, LEAF's (that's Lake Erie Arboretum at Frontier Park) home base, the education center.
For years, the Erie community has gathered at Frontier to learn about the abundant natural world around us, and 2018 marks the 20th anniversary of the Annual Leaf Festival, dedicated to just that. This free, all-ages event will be chock full of activities for the little ones — and the young-at-heart — with a live animal display from the Erie Zoo, craft table, reel casting with SONS of Lake Erie, Maria Blakeslee and a monarch butterfly exhibit, tree ring education with the Bureau of Forestry, rocks and fossils with Penn State Behrend professor Michael Naber, plus a scavenger hunt and an auction.
The auction's drawings will be held at 1:45 p.m., so if you are interested in any of the baskets you had best arrive and purchase your tickets in advance. Retailers like Peek'n Peak Resort, the Erie Otters Hockey Club, Glass Growers Gallery, and Potratz Floral Shop and Greenhouses have generously donated baskets, and of course all the proceeds from the auction ticket sales will go right back into LEAF and supporting their mission.
It is incredibly rare to have such a diverse and thorough collection of natural specimens — and the experts and educators who know them best — all in one place, but then, that is typically true of Frontier Park and the LEAF organization, day in and day out. — Cara Suppa
10 a.m. to 2 p.m. // 1501 W. 6th Street // Free and open to the public // leaferie.org/leaf-festival