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Learn all about your favorite winged creatures, from ruby-throated hummingbirds and other backyard birds to butterflies, bees, and more at the 2023 Ijams Hummingbird Festival: A Celebration of Wings!

Events and Activities

Bird Nerd Speaker Series
Aug. 2, 4, 5, 9, 10, & 11

(Links & Details Below)
Ijams Hummingbird Festival
Aug. 12  6:30 am-1 pm

(NOTE: Bird banding slots are booked for specific times)

Where: Ijams Homesite Lawn and surrounding areas

General Admission: $15

Members: $10 (Use Code: MEMBERHummingFest)

Children (2-12): $8 (Use Code: CHILDHummingFest)

Children under 2: FREE

Hummingbird Festival

There's a ton of fun going on during the festival from 6:30 am-1 pm! Festival tickets include:

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Bird Banding Station - Get a behind-the scenes look at how scientists capture birds, how they are banded, and why banding is important with certified master bander Mark Armstrong! This year, the bird banding station will capture ALL birds, including hummingbirds! Remember: Like most birds, hummingbirds are MOST ACTIVE early in the morning, so your best chance of seeing a ruby-throated hummingbird is at the beginning of the event! 

NOTE: Bird banding demonstrations are scheduled in 30-minute sessions. Attendance is limited in each group to ensure an excellent, safe, and intimate experience. PLEASE note which time slot you sign up for!​

Ijams Animal Ambassadors – Get personal with some of the animals who call Ijams home. Learn more about and experience close encounters with birds of prey, including owls, a hawk, and a falcon.

Guided Nature Nerd Hikes – Join Ijams teacher naturalists on guided walks that focus on a variety of bird-related topics and nerd out on nature. Explore Ijams' trails to witness the natural wonders that are available year-round.

Educational Booths and Activities – Have fun under the big tent with engaging activities allowing all ages to explore and celebrate the wonders of birds and all things with wings.

Community Science Opportunities – Learn how to do real research NOW; it's easier than you think! 

Dipnetting – Explore Ijams ponds to look for life with Ijams educators! You’ll find salamanders, frogs, turtles, butterflies, dragonflies, beetles, and other winged creatures during their aquatic stages of life.

Partner Booths – Enjoy visiting festival sponsors, environmental organizations, and others doing amazing things in the local community that help protect all things winged.

Educational Materials for Parents and Families – Get fun, educational materials to work on with your kids at home.

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Bird Nerd Speaker Series

Ages: 6+ | Aug. 2 | 6-8 pm

Join Clare Dattilo, park ranger at Seven Islands State Birding Park, scientist, and bird expert, for a presentation on the birds of Seven Islands and guided walk that showcases the variety of bird species that live in Knoxville. Learn more about how to identify local birds more easily, and discover what makes them natural wonders year-round!

Ages: 10+ | Aug. 4 | 6-8 pm

Chickadees have great memories, nuthatches have big feet, woodpeckers have exceptionally long tongues, blue jays are female led, and goldfinches love fluffy seeds. These are just a few of the adaptations birds have adopted to better survive in their worlds. Join senior naturalist, author, and bird expert Stephen Lyn Bales for a look at these and other bird secrets. But ssssssh! They are secrets.

Ages: 10+ | Aug. 5 | 10 am-12 pm

Weighing less than two dimes, ruby-throated hummingbirds are a wonder. They spend their summers with us, but migrate to Central America in the fall. With such high-energy lives, how do you study their life habits? Join senior naturalist Stephen Lyn Bales as he shares what we know through a series of photographs. We’ll then walk outside in search of these tiny dynamos!

Ages: 14+ | Aug. 9 | 7-8:30 pm

Join Naturalist Nick to get the inside scoop on something he’s been working on: researching songbirds and the fruits they use in the fall to fuel their migration southward. You'll get insight into the wonders of bird migration, discover what makes fall migration unique, and learn all about frugivory (a fancy word for "fruit eating") and the intricacies of seed-dispersal in a family of birds called thrushes.


Ages: 10+ | Aug. 10 | 6-8 pm

Whooooo is that hooting in the night? You often see a bird of prey at a distance or you get only a fleeting glimpse. Join senior naturalist Stephen Lyn Bales to learn some quick tips on identifying the owls that live in our neighborhood and meet some birds!

Ages: 12+ | Aug. 11 | 9-11 am

Join Clare Dattilo, park ranger at Seven Islands State Birding Park, scientist, and bird expert, as she guides you step-by-step in how to use a nature journal to capture even the quickest of birds in flight. 

Contact Education Director Jennie McGuigan at
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