Tulip fields ready for drive-by, walking tours

Overheard recently: “Exactly how does somebody ‘do’ the Skagit Tulip Festival, anyway?”
   Veterans say it’s great on foot, and often just as rewarding by car. The trick is to avoid the rain and the crowds.
   The Skagit Valley Tulip Festival celebrates an explosion of color that brightens the Skagit flatlands each April. Daffodils precede the tulips, which bloom not according to schedule but when Mother Nature is in the mood. Visitors can tramp through the tulip fields – often muddy from spring showers – that are open daily, or gaze at acres of flowers from the comfort of their car.
   First-timers should note that the venue isn’t a solitary location; rather, the fields comprise several privately owned flower farms west of Mt. Vernon, between the Skagit River and LaConner. Easiest access is via Interstate 5 and exit 221 (Conway) or exit 230 (Highway 20). Parking is included with $5 admission (kids are free) at the two largest growers, Roozengaarde and Tulip Town. Learn more on the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival website.

by  Jon Osterberg

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