Austin’s festival season takes off on Sunday, March 1st with the 87th annual Zilker Kite Festival in Austin’s Zilker Park. This year’s gathering of kites and fliers includes kite flying demonstrations and contests for the most unusual, the steadiest, the highest angle, the strongest pulling and the largest and smallest kites, a kids’ 50 yard dash with a flying kite, and a prize for the oldest and youngest contestants. The Festival ends with a spectacular mass ascent of kites filling the sky above the Great Lawn. Registration is from 11am to 2 pm with the contests beginning at 1 pm.
All kites in the contests are handmade. In Austin, Kite making Workshops are being held on Saturday, February 14th at the South Austin Recreation Center from 1 to 3 pm (contact Devon Farber or Sean Hill at 512-444-6601 for more information) and on Saturday, February 21st at the Northwest Recreation Center from 1 to 3 pm (contact Christa McCarthy or Vangie Martinez at 512-974-6972).
Whole Earth Provision Co. is joining in the fun with a Day in the Park Raffle. The package, valued at over $450, includes a Yeti Tundra 45 Cooler, a Sport Brella, and a NewTech 3-D Red Baron Kite. Tickets can be purchased through February 28th at the three Austin Whole Earth stores and at the Kite Festival on March 1st. You do not have to be present to win. Tickets are $5 each or five for $20. Proceeds from the raffle will benefit Communities in Schools.
Communities in Schools is a Central Texas non-profit that offers help to children facing crises and significant barriers to education such as hunger, poverty, unattended health needs and domestic violence. Created in 1985, Communities in Schools places professional full-time staff on campuses to work closely with school personnel to provide and coordinate an array of social services. These include individual and group counseling, crisis intervention, mentoring, tutoring, school readiness initiatives, child abuse protection, leadership development and enrichment activities. In 2014, Communities in Schools could be found in 60 schools in seven districts in Travis, Hays, Caldwell and Bastrop counties.
The Zilker Kite Festival was launched by the Exchange Club of Austin back in 1929 as an opportunity for children and the community to come together for some shared fun and creativity. Now in its 87th year, the Festival is the oldest continuously run kite festival in the country.
If you’re in need of a kite, stop by your favorite Whole Earth store. We have kites for beginners as well as sport and stunt kites. And don’t forget to download a copy of our Kite Flyer’s Field Guide for Judging Wind Speed.
We’ll see you soon at Zilker!