History of Bama Bug Fest

2016 – MothFest at Moundville Archaeological Park

The foundation of our annual event began in 2016 when the Alabama Museum of Natural History held a small gathering at Moundville Archaeological Park entitled MothFest for National Moth Week, an international campaign to encourage the public to document moth species globally

2017 – MothFest at Moundville Archaeological Park

For the first two years, fewer than 100 participants joined us in observing the moths that came to lights and baited trees setup by museum staff. While the bugs were great in Moundville, we wanted to tweak things and try to grow the event.

2018 – MothFest at M.W.W. Transportation Museum

In 2018, we experimented with moving the location of MothFest! to the Mildred Westervelt Warner Transportation Museum in Tuscaloosa and also partnered with the Tuscaloosa Public Library. With these changes, our attendance jumped to over 300 and confirmed the potential of this event.

2019 – Bama Bug Fest at M.W.W. Transportation Museum

To continue to build upon our success, we decided the next step should be to expand the theme of event beyond just moths and include all “bugs.” Thus, Bama Bug Fest was born.

2020 – Bama Bug Fest on the Web (First Virtual Event)

Our first virtual Bama Bug Fest was called Bama Bug Fest: On the Web and was a virtual, all-things-bug event. The event had a little something for all ages and took place every Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday from July 7 to July 25, 2020. Content included actor Justice Leak (Hellgrammite from The CW’s Supergirl, a Build a Bug Workshop, School Yard Roots, family-friendly bug-related stand-up comedy, DC Comics artist Sarah Leuver, Spider-Man (Andrew McLean) and Black Widow cosplayers (Andrea Towers), insect-dyeing with The Fashion Archive, baking Chocolate Chirp Cookies with Arthropod Apothecary, and world-renowned Science Educator Sebastian A. Echeverri.