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Washington State International Kite Festival paints rainbows by day, lights up the sky at night

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Long Beach tradition takes flight with pro fliers, kite arches, live music, and more, Aug. 21-27, 2023

The ever-popular Washington State International Kite Festival (WSIKF), in its 42nd year, offers a week's extravaganza of kite-flying fun in Long Beach from August 21 through 27. The festival is free to the public and includes exciting kite competitions, hands-on experiences, live entertainment, and other ways to celebrate the simple delight, sport and art of kite flying on a wide swath of beach.

"Kite Festival week is the highlight of summer on the Washington Coast," said Jocelyn Darland, festival organizer and Director of Events for WSIKF. "It's become a Long Beach summer tradition for many Northwest families and a favored U.S. kite event for flyers across the globe."

New this year is an Instagram-worthy kite train and arch path, live musical entertainment expanded to three stages, and a mini mass kite ascension for children.

Other highlights include the following:

  • International featured flyer, Carl Robertshaw, five-time World Sport Kite Champion, artist, designer, and engineer, notable for the Hatchling flying puppet
  • Domestic featured flyer, Scott Hamilton, master designer and painter, displaying a ground garden of staked kites that dance along the sand
  • Four, planned mass ascensions with potential for more than 100 kites in the sky at one time
  • Magical lighted night kite flying expanding to both Friday and Saturday evening

A Kite Museum mega-fly tribute to Randy Tom, a world-class kitemaker and beloved member of the international kite community, is planned for Wednesday, Aug. 23, from 11AM to 1PM. Randy, who frequented the WSIKF, passed away on Feb. 11, 2023.

Ongoing events include fighter, sport, and Rokkaku competitions, mystery kite ballet, dog-stake short-line demos, lessons, workshops, "Kids Kamps", games for kids, and fun flies.

The festival takes place along the Bolstad beach approach and the swath of beach that runs parallel to the Long Beach boardwalk, which is an excellent viewing platform for any of the kite competitions and the lighted kite flying exhibitions.

A favorite coastal destination since the late 1800s for Seattleites and Portlanders alike, Long Beach Peninsula offers a full array of lodging, food (and seafood) options, pubs, breweries, lighthouses, trails, parks, art galleries, museums, unique shops, markets, festivals, and more. For visitor information and inspiration, go to

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