Arts, Dining & Entertainment, Featured

VINS presents its third annual Insect Festival

By Sam Jaffe

Insects are cool, and VINS will explore their amazing world during a two-day festival.

July 23-24 at 10 a.m.—QUECHEE—Join the Vermont Institute of Natural Science (VINS) for adventures in the amazing world of insects on Saturday, July 23, and Sunday, July 24, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. In the Caterpillar Lab, renowned expert Sam Jaffe will introduce visitors to a multitude of live caterpillars—more than 50 species from New England—throughout the day, exploring caterpillar defense, camouflage, mimicry, and metamorphosis among other behaxviors. Visitors may use digital microscopes and screens to observe caterpillars hatching from eggs, eating, and shedding.

Each day will feature uniquely exciting events and activities. Exercise creativity with ArtisTree/Purple Crayon’s Art Activity, discover the fascinating process of making mead with Artesano Meadery, and test your skill at photographing insects by participating in hands-on workshops with professional photographers from World Story Exchange.

In addition, discover how humans use insects to catch fish as Brian Burkholder demonstrates fly-tying and casting. Explore Vermont’s aquatic world by creating ann Aqua Scope that will allow participants to peer into hidden underwater lives. For lively entertainment, enjoy featured musicians, The Swing Peepers, who will engage audiences of all ages with Vermont-made music and storytelling.

In the solar-powered bounce house from SunCommon, children can hop like a grasshopper or spring like a springtail, and can take part in bug safaris in VINS’ meadows, face painting, and birds-on-glove. The Griddle & Groovy food truck will be at VINS on Saturday, and Ana’s Empanada’s food truck will be available on Sunday.

All events and activities are included with the price of admission to the Nature Center, which is $14.50 for adults; $13.50 for seniors, 62 and over; $12.50 for youth, ages 4 to 17; and free for members and for children 3 and under. For more info, visit or call 802-359-5000.

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