Looking Back

Two young ladies in the 1939 Daffodil Parade were dressed from head to toe in dazzling dresses and hats emblazoned in blooms. Apparently, all the best-dressed parade participants were decked out in daffodils. Courtesy of the Tacoma Public Library, No. 31517. Image by Richards Studio D807

It was the 1920s, and the Puyallup Valley’s hops industry was flatlining when the U.S. Department of Agriculture suggested a sunnier sort of crop to grow. Farmers nestled King Alfred and more than 200 more varieties of daffodil bulbs into rich blankets of soil, and every year since, we celebrate fields of gold in spring.

Who would have thought an entire Daffodil Festival would sprout from a single garden party hosted in Sumner in 1926? A couple opened their estate to 125 civic leaders from around the state so people could see the varieties of daffodils in bloom. The grand affair became an annual event that continued to flourish. The first parade celebrating daffodils was in 1934 in Tacoma, and today is the Grand Floral Street Parade that winds through Tacoma, Puyallup, Sumner, and finishes in Orting.

Visit here for the latest festival information.

Decked Out in Daffodils