Hummingbird Festival in Santa Cruz

Avian awesomeness shall rule, at the UCSC Arboretum.

IF YOU WANT TO SEE EL CAPITAN, well, venture into Yosemite Valley and look up. If you want to see the sun sink into the Pacific Ocean, head to most any beach around twilight and enjoy the shimmery show. And if you want to see a hummingbird? That's a sight that's a bit harder to predict. You can plant yourself by a bank of showy flowers, or a couple of backyard feeders, and hope the tiny winged superstars pop up to savor some nectar. This isn't a sad thing, of course, for spying a hummingbird zoom by can feel like a small delight, a sudden surprise, and a gift from nature. If coming across these wee zoomers is a highlight of a sidewalk stroll for you, or a visit to a garden, consider attending a full-on festivity devoted to these flower-loving flyers. Saturday, March 4 is Hummingbird Day at the University of California, Santa Cruz Arboretum, and a host of lectures and walks will better illustrate the lives of these lively little beasties. A discussion about...

LANDSCAPING... is on the day's schedule, and what sort of plants and petals hummingbirds favor. Also? If you're a shutterbug, prepare to learn about "Photographing the Fastest Birds in the World." Birder tours for those just getting into the hobby will also be available, and a host of kid-ready to-dos, from face painting to the making of seed balls (just the sort of noshable that draws a hummingbird's attention). The "Day of Natural Wonders and Outdoor Fun for the Whole Family" is $10 per person for the general public. Are you flapping your own wings madly, in anticipation of knowing more? Here's the feeder that'll give you the sustenance you desire.

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