In a few short weeks, billions of cicadas in Brood X will emerge from the earth; the din of their distinctive sound will be unmistakable and they will be everywhere. If there ever was a game that was a sure-fire bet, it’s “Spot-the-Cicada in NoVA in Spring 2021.”
To that end, to celebrate the impending emergence of these insects who make an appearance only once every 17 years and encourage people to embrace this natural event, Visit Fairfax, Fairfax County’s official tourism organization, has announced a Cicada Stroll Bingo card and giveaway. (It’s more fun to play than car bingo, by the way.)
Download the Cicada Stroll Bingo Card, which includes area locations where you may spot cicadas, like a waterfront park, hiking trail, or restaurant. Players who complete the bingo card and upload at least two photos to Visit Fairfax’s image library are eligible for a chance to win a Cicada Care Package filled with fun items, including a custom cicada facemask and Visit Fairfax swag. Winners will be randomly selected beginning in May.
“We know it’s been a challenging year for everyone, so we’ve been looking for ways to inject a little happiness into people’s days,” says Patrick Lennon, director of marketing for Visit Fairfax. “Since the cicadas were showing up this year whether people want them to or not, we thought we should just have a little fun with this quirky and natural phenomenon in a way that informs visitors and residents on what they can expect to experience in the coming weeks.”
Who knows where the cicadas may turn up? They may try to cool down at Burke Lake, Great Falls, or Pohick Bay; they may want to peruse the colorful murals at the Mosaic District or stroll amid the sculptures along Reston’s public art trail; they could want to take in some history at Mount Vernon or learn more about Sully Historic Site’s connection to the Underground Railroad; or they might want to see what’s on tap at Vanish Brewery or the latest vintage at Stone Tower Winery.
“Cicada bingo is a fun way to educate people about these amazing insects, and hopefully prompt new visits to the wonderful parks, attractions, breweries, wineries, and restaurants throughout Fairfax County,” says Lennon. “We would like nothing more than for everyone to go check out this once-in-a-17-year occurrence, take some cool pictures, and earn the chance to win some prizes at the same time!”
Brood X (that’s “Brood Ten”) is expected to begin emerging from the ground in early May, with
their numbers peaking late May into early June. The biggest concentrations will be in natural settings like parks and forests, but they will also make an appearance in large numbers at shopping centers, restaurant patios, and more; the D.C. region is the epicenter for this natural event. Read more about the cicadas here, and get ready for the invasion.
For more stories like this, subscribe to our weekly newsletters.