Where is the PAFF?

The Annual PA Firefly Festival takes place on the grounds of the Black Caddis Ranch B & B in Kellettville, just 15 miles east of Tionesta on Route 666. The address is 13558 Route 666, Tionesta, Pa 16353.

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Updates

The 5th Annual Pa Firefly Festival at the Black Caddis Ranch in Kellettville, PA is less than two months away and we're excited to show you how much we've grown! If you haven't already, now is the time to get your travel plans set so you can join us this year.
   Although we're no longer offering camping on the festival site, there are plenty of camps, hotels and other lodgings nearby from which to choose.  Book now to avoid being disappointed!  Find a list of nearby lodging HERE!!
   New this year, we're asking attendees to REGISTER if they want a spot in our Creek and/or Forest Walks during the festival.  It's still free, but registering will help us to organize the crowds and give you the best firefly experience possible.  Register beginning May 1 HERE.
   Also new this year, we're offering a VIP Synchronous Firefly Experience!  For a $10 (per person) donation, you'll get access to the exclusive VIP firefly viewing area, your own dedicated firefly interpretive guide and up to an hour of uninterrupted viewing.  Secure your VIP Experience HERE.
   Don't want to fight the crowds on June 24th?  Black Caddis Ranch is offering nightly guided walks for a $5 donation (per person) to PAFF.  Walks can be scheduled on evenings from June 16 through July 1. Schedule a seasonal walk HERE.

Monday, March 13, 2017

March updates

The Annual Pennsylvania Firefly Festival (PAFF) is announcing some exciting new opportunities for this year’s firefly season in Forest County.  Once again, the 5th Annual PAFF is on June 24 from noon to midnight.  Last year, we had 1100 enthusiastic visitors in one night.  This year, we hope to spread this enthusiasm over multiple nights to provide more opportunities to firefly enthusiasts. 

PAFF's primary mission is to educate the public about diverse species of fireflies in our area through providing opportunities to witness the “natural light show”.  To that end, we will be requiring reservations for the firefly walks at the festival, and offering up to 14 additional nights of guided firefly walks. By providing extra nights of viewing and limiting the crowd size on June 24, we hope to optimize the viewers’ experience while we protect the firefly habitats from overuse.  

Here are some of the planned events and changes that you will want to mark on your calendars:       
  •  Locals’ Night, Wednesday, June 14 (rain date June 16), 9pm-11pm
  •  Nightly guided firefly walks to benefit PAFF starting June 16 – July 1, 9pm-11pm (some exclusions apply)
  •   “Silent Sparks” PAFF benefit, Wednesday, June 21, at West Forest High School, 6:15-              8:30pm, firefly expert and author, Dr. Sara Lewis will make a presentation.
  •  5th Annual PA Firefly Festival, Saturday, June 24, noon – midnight, free firefly walks, and the new VIP Synchronous Firefly Experience.


This year the firefly walks at the festival will require reservationsDetails for making your reservations and for all the events can be found on the website, pafireflyfestival.org or call 814-230-2035 for more information.  

The most exciting addition this year is a special presentation by Dr. Sara Lewis author of Silent Sparks: The Wondrous World of Fireflies.  Dr. Lewis will be at West Forest High School on June 21.  This will be a benefit for the PA Firefly Festival, and donations will be accepted at the door.  Dr. Lewis will present a multi-media inspirational message about her firefly experience.  She will take questions from the audience and be on-hand to sign books. 

We hope you will find an evening to come watch the fireflies in the forest this June.

Monday, February 13, 2017

PAFF is providing an opportunity for lodging and campground owners or any Forest County business who have a special interest in learning more about the fireflies.  We are expecting a big increase in eco-tourism this June to the Forest county area due to the attraction of the humble little "lightning bug".  These tourists will be looking for everything from overnight accommodations and meals to fuel and flashlights.  If you are a business owner and want to learn how you can attract more of these visitors to your business, you are welcome to join us on March 8 at the Mt. Zion Lutheran Church on German Hill in Tionesta for a Potluck and educational program.  Bring a dish or dessert to share and call 814-230-2035 for more information and to RSVP.  

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Six months and counting!

The Holidays are over and the countdown begins for the 5th Annual PAFF.  We have already started planning and a lot of changes are in store.

  • Parking area has been expanded and a $5 per car donation will be collected
  • Pre-registration for the free ticketed firefly walks will be required
  • VIP packages for guided interpretive walks will be available the night of the festival for a donation to PAFF
  • Due to the festival's popularity, we have discontinued on-site camping. We are working on a local alternative
  • Nightly guided walks will be available starting June 16 - July 1 for a donation to PAFF
Our goal this year is to preserve both the firefly habitat and the observer's experience.  We hope that through enacting some limits, we will help to control the crowds while protecting the firefly habitats in our area.  We appreciate your enthusiasm and hope you will cooperate with us in following the new procedures.

We will keep you informed of all the details and the firefly activity as we get closer to June.  Check the website pafireflyfestival.org or the Facebook page.  You can also register to receive the PAFF newsletter by subscribing on the website.







Wednesday, June 29, 2016

4th Annual PA Firefly Festival HUGE Success!!!

Thanks to great weather, a dedicated group of volunteers, and visitors from all over the globe, the 4th annual PA Firefly Festival on June 25th was a record-breaking event! Over 1,100 firefly enthusiasts showed up in Kellettville, enjoying lively local music and food truck fare by day, and taking adventuresome night walks to observe fireflies after dusk, along Tionesta Creek and into the nearby  Allegheny National Forest by special permit. Some visitors at this year's festival came from as far away as Brazil, Spain, Australia, China, Puerto Rico, South Africa and the UK to see the synchronous fireflies (Photinus carolinus). The US were well represented by 11 different states.

Local interest is running high, too, and the PA Firefly Festival board is considering having a "locals only" night for residents next year, on a midweek night, weather permitting.  Residents may not want to compete with big tourist crowds on a busy summer weekend. If you think this is a good idea, let PAFF know you want to join the local Friends of Fireflies group for special access programming.

The PA Firefly Festival group is a local nonprofit with an educational and scientific mission, but they know how to have a good time, too! The free family festival is a fun way to celebrate the short 2-week season in June  and help people appreciate the amazing diversity of firefly species in and around the Allegheny National Forest and the surrounding region.

"What's not to like about fireflies?" is a commonly expressed feeling about these intriguing beetles that evoke fond childhood memories of warm summer nights and backyard fun.  At the firefly Nature Center, set up for the day of the festival only, people can learn about fireflies and their habitat, and about the local public lands, forests and parks represented among exhibitors.  Also featured in the fun annual celebration are local vendors who sell their wares,  and hands-on science and craft activities for kids of all ages.

Synchronous fireflies are a big attraction! They come out very late - between 10:30pm until after midnight - and prefer forested areas with nearby water, and border areas between meadow and woods. Their peak season only lasts a couple of weeks so don't delay if you want to see them. This year they started to emerge around June 20th.
Many other brilliant and beautiful fireflies can be found along much of the length of Tionesta Creek, and at ANF recreation areas such as Hearts Content, Beaver Meadows, Loleta and Buzzard Swamp.  There are dazzling shows in many locations in our area! 

For more info about fireflies, visit pafirefestival.org or look around in your local area for firefly populations near home.
And if you missed the festival this year, it's always held on the 4th Saturday in June.