0

Annual 'Wild Azalea Festival' Saturday in Morrow

Special photo
Face painting is one of several activities offered at Saturday's Wild Azalea Festival at Reynolds Preserve in Morrow. Admission is free.

Special photo Face painting is one of several activities offered at Saturday's Wild Azalea Festival at Reynolds Preserve in Morrow. Admission is free.

The second annual Wild Azalea Festival at the Reynolds Nature Preserve in Morrow is expected to draw hundreds, who want to get away from the hustle and bustle for a moment, and enjoy the beauty of a relaxed, natural setting.

The event will begin Saturday morning with a talk about the various plants and flowers that grow there, much of it in the water. Activities will continue through the afternoon with guided hikes and other nature programs.

A shuttle service will be provided between Babb Middle School and the preserve throughout the festival to ease parking issues.

And it's all free.

Preserve Manager Stephanie Berens said about 300 people attended last year's festival, which highlights greenspace opportunities in Clayton and metro Atlanta. The event starts at 10 a.m., and ends at 3 p.m.

Exhibitors include the Atlanta Audubon Society, Clayton County Master Gardeners, the Georgia Conservancy, the Georgia Forestry Commission, Tara Beekeepers Association, and the Georgia Aquarium.

Festival patrons can meet in front of the nature center at 11:15 a.m., for a guided hike, and learn about the preserve's flora and fauna.

At 12:30 p.m., the Blue Heron Lake Nature Conservancy will present a telling of the "Legend of the Rainbow Warrior" in the outdoor classroom.

Shortly after that ends at 1 p.m., experienced falconers will come to the outdoor classroom to share their knowledge about the medieval sport. The last outdoor lesson starts at 2 p.m., with a live snake presentation.

In addition to the educational programs, children can enjoy face-painting, live animals, and a T-shirt challenge. Grilled food will be available for purchase.

The W.H. Reynolds Memorial Nature Preserve is a 150-acre park at 5665 Reynolds Road in Morrow. There are more than 3 miles of hiking trails, old farm equipment on display, spring houses, and a barn dating to 1867.