NAVARRE — The Panhandle Butterfly House’s 11th Annual Monarch Madness Butterfly Festival is 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Oct. 20 at 8581 Navarre Parkway in Navarre.

Visitors can tour the vivarium — a screened structure housing hundreds of butterflies and butterfly-attracting plants — and learn about the life of the monarch butterfly and the mystery of monarch migration.

The Panhandle Butterfly House is a certified monarch way station with Monarch Watch, an educational, conservation and research organization at the University of Kansas. Children will receive a "Monarch Madness" passport and travel through the way stations to solve the monarch mystery.

Children, ages 5 and up, and adults will be able to tag and release a monarch butterfly for a $5 donation.

"Tagging of monarch butterflies at this event benefits research at the University of Kansas that investigates the geographic origins of monarchs that reach Mexico, the timing and pace of the migration, the mortality during migration, and changes in geographic distribution," Santa Rosa County Extension Agent Mary Salinas said.

 Other features include:


Butterfly-related educational crafts
Interactive games
Self-guided monarch migration tours through the outdoor butterfly garden
Butterfly-themed items for sale at the Monarch Market and Butterfly Bazaar
Dynamic educational displays
Advice on lawns, landscapes and gardens from the Santa Rosa County Master Gardeners
Grilled hamburgers, hot dogs, and other food and drink items, sold by Holley-Navarre Elks Lodge 2787, benefiting local charities

Admission to the Panhandle Butterfly House is free and donations are accepted. The butterfly house and its outdoor science lab are supported by visitor donations.

Monarch Madness is sponsored by the Panhandle Butterfly House with help from the Santa Rosa County Tourist Development Office, as part of the 14th Annual Beaches to Woodlands Tour.

Visit www.panhandlebutterflyhouse.org or contact Mary Salinas at 623-3868 or maryd@santarosa.fl.gov for more information.