SPYING A FROG AND BUTTERFLY... in the same sweep, or same camera frame, or in the very same garden? You'd either have to be A) quite lucky or B) watching an animated flick, the kind of adorable movie where an amphibian and insect band together to solve all sorts of mysteries involves, like, leaves and flowers and puddles. But if you're in Gold Country, and the month on the calendar is just three letters long, and the countryside is popping with floral color, you can bet that, thematically, it will be about butterflies and frogs. Of course, the frogs come up a bit later in May, at the Calaveras County Fair & Jumping Frog Jubilee, which'll hop, hop, hop into frog-loving hearts from May 17 through 20, 2018. But two weekends before that, over the very first weekend of the month, butterflies shall rule, and th name of the town where the flying superstars are royalty shouldn't surprise.
IT'S MARIPOSA, which, of course, means "butterfly" in Spanish, and the residents of the town take time each year to honor the sweet city's beautiful namesake. The 2018 dates are Saturday, May 5 and Sunday, May 6, and several homespun happenings are fluttering through, like a parade, a classic car show, and, you bet, a lot of butterflies (some 5,000 will be released). There are carnival rides, too, and the fact that you'll be in Mariposa is a lovely one: You're close to great wineries, road trip-amazing explorations, and, of course, Yosemite National Park. If you feel you didn't pay butterflies enough due over the last few months, there is time to make that spring-strong connection with the butterfly spirit, and a town that takes its name seriously (though, yes, felicitously, too), at this annual lighter-than-air festival.