EcoTourism: LagoonFest 2021

By Capt. Chris Thalmann Contributing Writer

Welcome to November everyone! Just as the weather starts to cool down the outdoor activity scene in Palm Beach County starts to heat up. If you’re looking for some low-cost and even free outdoor fun, LagoonFest in downtown West Palm Beach is a great place to start! LagoonFest highlights the history, wildlife, and ecology of The Lake Worth Lagoon, an urban estuary located right in the heart of eastern Palm Beach County. Extending 20 miles from North Palm Beach to Boynton Beach, the lagoon is home to a startling variety of residential, recreational, commercial, and industrial uses along its shores. I often hear people use “the lagoon” and “the intracoastal” interchangeably and that’s very understandable. The Intracoastal Waterway (aka the ICW) has been part of Lake Worth Lagoon since before World War II. And for many people on their way to fish offshore – or to go to Peanut Island for the day – or just cruise around – the marked ICW is where they’ll stay. So, while the ICW has been part of Lake Worth Lagoon for quite a long time, it’s actually just a small sliver of the overall lagoon, averaging a couple hundred feet wide. Most of the lagoon falls outside of the marked ICW channel. LagoonFest is a great chance to learn a little about what’s out there beyond the channel markers! The festival is set for November 6th along Flagler Drive in downtown West Palm Beach. It’s a great chance to get outdoors for a few hours, learn about the history, ecology, and wildlife of the lagoon. Explore by paddle, sail, or powerboat. Browse arts and crafts, see wild bird releases, enjoy the beer garden, kid’s zone, and more! Aqua Adventure Tours will again be providing free boat tours to festival attendees. The tours will be narrated by ecology experts from Palm Beach County and are a fun way to discover the lagoon by water! Signups are first-come / first-served that day. No advance reservations will be taken. These tours are hugely popular, and seating is very limited. If you’d like to go, please plan to get to the festival when it opens. Go directly to the signup booth dockside, sign in, then enjoy the rest of the festival while you wait for your tour time. This is our third year at the festival helping people discover the many joys of The Lake Worth Lagoon and we’re excited to have been asked back! We hope you’ll enjoy everything the festival has to offer and walk away with a new appreciation of life along The Lake Worth Lagoon! If we don’t see you dockside, we’ll hope to see you out on the water. Happy exploring!

Captain Chris Thalmann

Owner | Aqua Adventure Tours, Inc. •