9th Annual Blackbird Creek Fall Festival to celebrate Delaware’s natural treasures Saturday, Oct. 15

Date Posted: Tuesday, October 11th, 2016
Categories:  Delaware Coastal Programs DNREC New Castle County

TOWNSEND – The Delaware National Estuarine Research Reserve (DNERR) and DNREC will showcase one of the most natural areas in Delaware – which includes autumn’s vibrant foliage within the lush landscape and pristine waters of the Blackbird Creek Reserve – with the 9th Annual Blackbird Creek Fall Festival to be held Saturday, Oct. 15 on the Delaware Bayshore Byway. The festival will take place rain or shine, from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. at the Blackbird Creek Reserve, at 801 Blackbird Landing Road near Townsend.

Blackbird Creek Fall Festival Montage

The festival along the banks of beautiful Blackbird Creek will feature traditional crafts and demonstrations by a blacksmith, hands-on learning including canoeing, lively music and kids’ activities including crafts, free face painting and colonial-era activities. Visitors may also browse the works of artisans and exhibitors, enjoy hay rides, go on a guided hike of the reserve led by a Delaware State Forester, and check out Native American demonstrations.

“The Blackbird Creek Fall Festival is free and offers something for the entire family, and that’s a winning combination for the festival having become a fall tradition over the last decade,” said Maggie Pletta, DNERR education coordinator. “We encourage people to come and explore this scenic area – by foot, hayride or canoe – and enjoy the musical talents of Crabmeat Thompson, East of the Mason-Dixon Line, Mark Degz and Co., and the Smyrna High School drumline. New this year we will have opportunities for people to try out recreational canoeing. Bring a blanket or some chairs and join us for the day.”

Families also can participate in the “Thank You, Delaware Bay Adventure” and earn a prize by visiting all the participating stations throughout the festival, learning about the natural resources and heritage of the Delaware Bay through games, demonstrations, and challenges. Local food vendors will also be onsite to provide a variety of food and snacks for purchase.

For more information on the Blackbird Creek Fall Festival, please contact Maggie Pletta, Delaware National Estuarine Research Reserve, 302-739-6377 or visit

The Delaware National Estuarine Research Reserve is part of a national system of reserves that protects more than 1.3 million acres of coastal land and water. Each of the 28 sites receives support from NOAA and local partners. The research and environmental monitoring performed at each reserve plays an important role in protecting environmental health, both locally and nationally.

The Blackbird Creek Fall Festival is part of DNREC’s Bayshore Initiative, a landscape approach to restore and protect fish and wildlife habitat, increase volunteer participation in habitat stewardship projects, enhance low-impact outdoor recreation and ecotourism opportunities, and promote associated environmentally compatible economic development. For more information, please click Delaware Bayshore.

This event also is part of Delaware’s Children in Nature Initiative, a statewide effort to improve environmental literacy in Delaware, create opportunities for children to participate in enriching outdoor experiences, combat childhood obesity and promote healthy lifestyles. Delaware’s multi-agency initiative, which partners state and federal agencies with community organizations, is part of the national No Child Left Inside program.

Media Contacts: Margaret Pletta, DNREC Delaware Coastal Programs, 302-739-6377, or Melanie Rapp, DNREC Public Affairs, 302-739-9902

Vol. 46, No. 344

DNREC Logo The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC). Want your news hot off the press? Join the DNREC press release email list. Send a blank email to
For more information, contact the DNREC Public Affairs Office, at 302.739.9902

Delaware Coastal Programs manages, protects and monitors the state's coastal resources through the administration of the Delaware Coastal Management Program, the Delaware National Estuarine Re Reserve (DNERR) and the Coastal and Estuarine Land Conservation Program.

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