Lotus & Water Lily Festival

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2022 Festival: Harmony, Health, & Healing

There’s Harmony, Health, & Healing for all this year at the annual Lotus & Water Lily Festival- happening July 9 through July 31. 

Enjoy Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens for daily Ranger-led talks, viewing of the lotus and water lily blooms, crafting, and scavenger hunts. Further, to help visitors enjoy the park and still maintain social distancing, Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens is extending park hours to 8 a.m. to  8 p.m. every Saturday in July, beginning July 9th.

On Wednesdays, the park will feature children’s programs from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. including art, scavenger hunts, a drumming class, and other hands-on nature activities.

Plus, enjoy vendors and displays, live performances by local bands, and WELLderness programming throughout the month. 

  • The weekend of July 9, we are celebrating Art. Events will include art classes, photography classes, drop-in art classes, yoga classes and ranger-led tours.

  • The weekend of July 16, we are teaching Healthy Parks, Healthy People, events include a community 5k walk along the Anacostia River Trail, yoga classes, dance classes and ranger-led tours.

  • The weekend of July 23, we are exploring Nature & Environment, events include live animal shows, ranger talks and a dance performance.

  • The weekend of July 30, we are celebrating Community, with events that include a Spanish language tour, increased community organization tabling, a fashion show, cultural dance presentations and yoga classes.

WELLderness Classes Available All Month Long!

The outdoor wellness fun doesn’t stop during festival time. We’ve got a packed schedule of events going on in the month of July, including canoeing, smartphone photography, two yoga opportunities and Tai Chi, in addition to open drumming performances under WELLderness. Get more out of the festival by registering early on our Eventbrite

Transportation Note

Due to Metro Station Closures this summer, getting to the park may take longer. Please see the Alternative Travel Options here to make getting to the park a breeze. 

Annual Lotus & Water Lily Festival

Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens is a one-of-a-kind destination within Anacostia Park and it is a hidden gem in Washington, DC. The summer lotus and lily blossoms are a “must see” during their peak blooming period in July, not unlike viewing the cherry blossoms in the spring.

Every year, during peak season for the lotus blooms, the National Park Service puts on the Lotus & Water Lily Festival. Friends of Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens collaborates with NPS to create a celebration you won’t forget! Read below to check out this year’s schedule and previous year’s fun!

2021 Festival: Power of Plants and People: A Hybrid Annual Lotus and Water Lily Festival

In an effort to ensure nature lovers could safely experience and celebrate the blooming of the lotus and water lilies all that nation’s only National Park site devoted to aquatic plant life has to offer, Friends of Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens and National Park Service kicked of a Virtual Lotus and Water Lily Festival July 8, 2021, featuring on-demand videos, interactive activities, and events for the entire family through the end of the month. Themed, “Power of Plants and People,” visitors were welcomed to enjoy Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens for daily Ranger-led talks, viewing of the lotus and water lily blooms, crafting, and scavenger hunts, in addition to online events and activities including:

A note from our Executive Director:

“Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens – and all of our national parks – have become healing spaces for people during the pandemic, so we are looking forward to co-hosting this virtual festival with National Capital Parks-East which will now reach an even larger, local and international audience,” said Tina O’Connell, executive director of Friends of Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens. “We’re particularly pleased to be working with park neighbors to increase activities at Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens and to be working with Ward 7 Advisory Neighborhood Commissioner Siraaj Hasan who hosts this year’s opening ceremonies.”

Festival Sponsorship Opportunities

Sponsorships help make the Lotus & Water Lily Festival possible. 

The Lotus & Water Lily Festival is co-hosted by the National Park Service and Friends of Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens. 

With generous support provided by Infinite Possibilities, the DC Commission on the Arts & Humanities, and other foundations and individuals.

If you are interested in supporting the Annual Lotus & Water Lily Festival by sponsoring the event, please contact our Executive Director, Tina O’Connell at tina@fokag.org or at 202-494-0456.

We look forward to investing in the park and surrounding neighborhoods with you.