Nearly 500 adults and children attend
Bug Bizarre on Oct. 9 at Deep Run Park

Nearly 500 people — 202 of whom were children — attended the Bug Bizarre on Saturday, Oct. 9, at Deep Run Park Recreation Center. Sponsored by the Henrico County Virginia Cooperative Extension Office and Henrico County Master Gardeners, the Bug Bizarre provided a great opportunity for kids and adults to learn about insects and their relatives through a variety of outreach and engagement booths.

“Our second Henrico Bug Bizarre was a wonderful event,” said Ed Olsen, Henrico County Extension Agent. “It was great hearing and seeing the kids as they learned about and interacted with all sorts of ‘bugs.’ Many kids overcame some fears and touched and even held bugs.”

Youths and adults were able to learn about and discover insects and their relatives through 29 different outreach and engagement booths, including information tables on a variety of subjects, including pollinators, garden insects, forest pests, public health and live insect displays along with children’s activities. More than 64 exhibitors and Henrico County Master Gardeners staffed the event and answered questions from the 476 attendees.

Returning this year was a fan favorite from our 2019 Bug Bizarre: Cockroach Races featuring Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches (pictured at right).

New in 2021: In cooperation with the Henricopolis Soil & Water Conservation District, Girl Scouts were able to complete the requirements of and receive their bug badge at the Bug Bizarre this year. Contact Lindy Durham with the Henricopolis Soil & Water Conservation District via email at with your questions or for more information about the badge.

“It is a fun event,” said Linda McBride (pictured at left and at top of page), Henrico County Master Gardener who studies and raises butterflies and moths and brought some of her butterflies and caterpillars to the Bug Bizarre. “The children really, really enjoy seeing all the critters,” McBride said. “The parents? Well, not always. Here I am with my butterflies and moths. The question I get the most is, ‘Is that real?’ Yes, sweetie, it is!”

In accordance with COVID-19 guidance and restrictions, all participants wore masks throughout the event. Masks were provided at the door for those who did not have their own.

Next year’s Bug Bizarre is scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 8, 2022.

Scroll through the gallery below to view photos of the 2021 Bug Bizarre: