Butterfly Festival

Butterfly Festival
Saturday, August 3, 11 am-3 pm | Lake Charleston
Celebrating our Natural Resources
Kids Activities, Expert Advice, Nature Walks, Kite-Flying Performances,
Food Trucks, Kayak Demos, and more!

Come and learn about all the natural resources Charleston has to offer for leisure, mental and physical health, and best practices for conservation. Celebrate the efforts of the Urban Butterfly Initiative to increase biodiversity. Get advice for your own gardens, lawns, and pollinator plots. Bring the kids to see native creatures up close and participate in fun activities! All at beautiful Lake Charleston!

Kite-Flying Performances at Linder Sports Complex- 11:30 to 2:30 pm

David Zavell is a kite enthusiast and owner of Chicago Kite/Kite Harbor. He will be bringing a team of experienced kite fliers to Linder Sports Complex for the kite demonstrations at the Butterfly Festival. He has been flying kites for 30+ years and has brought show kites to events across the globe.

Parking: Due to limited parking at Lake Charleston, a free shuttle (handicap and stroller accessible) will run continuously between Linder Sports Complex and the Lake.  Please park at Linder Sports Complex to take the shuttle and watch the kite-flying performance while there. If you are interested in taking a walking trail to the Lake, parking is also available at Sister City Park and Woodyard Conservation Area. 

Exhibitors and Participants include: Urban Butterfly Initiative, Grand Prairie Friends, Douglas Hart Nature Center, Fox Ridge Foundation, Charleston Birders, IDNR Fisheries, Charleston Tree Commission, Master Naturalists, Master Gardeners, Coles County Soil and Water, Pheasants Forever, Charleston Parks and Rec, Coles County Arts Council/Arts CAN, Hour House, Community Kayaking, Charleston Carnegie Library,  University of Illinois Coles County Extension . 

August 3 is the second to last day of the Urban Butterfly Initiative's Butterfly Blitz. Participants in the Blitz can stop by the UBI's table at the Festival and receive a special patch! Click here for information on the iNaturalist app and how to participate in the Blitz.

butterfly graphicAdditional Events in Celebration of the Festival!butterfly graphic

Monday, July 29, 10:30 am - Butterfly Pop-Up Program at the Charleston Carnegie Public Library
This program is presented by UBI and is part of the festivities leading up the Butterfly Festival!
 UBI interns Mikhayla and Colby will read a fun butterfly book and guide kids through a seed planting craft, and then take a walk through the Library's butterfly hotspot site. 

Thursday, August 1, 5:30 pm- "Plight of the Monarch" viewing at the Charleston Carnegie Public Library 
Join us for a showing of the documentary film "Plight of the Monarch" with filmmakers Cindy and Kirby Pringle. 
The film explores the lifecycle of the monarch butterfly and the crucial role milkweed plays in its survival. Because milkweed is disappearing — it is being mowed and sprayed by herbicides — so is the monarch butterfly. Climate change and agricultural insecticides also play a role in the declining population of monarchs and other butterflies and pollinators like bees. The monarch butterfly needs milkweed to survive and when milkweed disappears — so will the monarch. The Pringles, Tuscola residents, have completed five documentary films, all of which are available on YouTube. They are professional photographers whose work is for sale at the Vault Art Gallery in downtown Tuscola and also online at their Etsy store. The couple have worked together as professional photographers since 1998 and are best known for their “dog people” photographs, whimsical images of dogs that have humanlike characteristics. They are also noted nature photographers. In addition, the Pringles are the authors of four books.

Friday, August 2, 7:30 pm- The Night Shift: Bats of Warbler Ridge

At Warbler Ridge Conservation Area, we work to rebuild habitat for several bat species, including the endangered Indiana bat. Come learn about our efforts and how you can help. The talk will be followed by viewing of the bats leaving their pods at night. Bring a lawn chair and a flashlight and wear your bug spray! This is an EXCLUSIVE, one-time guided opportunity! Warbler RCA is NOT open for visitors after sunset. Registration is limited to the first 20 to register, please register here.
Due to very limited parking at Warbler Ridge, please park at Linder Sports Complex and Charleston Parks and Recreation Staff will provide a shuttle to Warbler Ridge. If you are interested in becoming a volunteer bat-monitor, please email zoppa@grandprairiefriends.org.


If you are interested in becoming a sponsor for this event please call 217-348-0430 or email tourism@co.coles.il.us

Thank you to our Premier Sponsors!

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