Congaree National Park 2024 Synchronous Fireflies Lottery

March 24, 2023

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Congaree National Park has announced the dates for the much anticipated 2024 Synchronous Fireflies Viewing Event, which will take place on May 16-25 and offer the public opportunities to observe the synchronous fireflies. Passes will be required to enter the park on event nights.

“This is seventh year for this iconic park event,” said Superintendent Greg Hauburger. “This
special natural light show continues to grow in popularity, drawing people from across the nation
to the park to witness firefly synchronization, demonstrating why places like Congaree are vital
for preserving such unique natural phenomenon for future generations to experience and enjoy.”

The Lottery

The lottery to apply for a vehicle pass to attend this year’s event will open at 10:00 AM EDT on Thursday, April 4, and will be open until 10:00 AM EDT on Wednesday, April 10, with results announced on Tuesday, April 16. Lottery entries are limited to one per household and may only be made through the lottery page. There will be 145 passes available for each event night. All applicants will be charged a $1 non-refundable service fee upon entering the lottery, and successful applicants will be required to pay a $24 non-refundable event fee to secure their pass (a total cost of $25). Passes will admit one passenger vehicle with up to 2 axles that can fit in a standard parking space

(i.e. no RVs, vehicles with trailers, large passenger vans, buses, or mini-buses). Vehicles may have a maximum of 8 passengers.

To best protect critical firefly habitat certain areas of the park will be closed to all visitors at 4:00 PM daily from Sunday, May 7 – Saturday, May 27.
During this period the following areas will be closed:

•      The Harry Hampton Visitor Center, boardwalk, and front country hiking trails.

•      Bannister Bridge Canoe Launch will close at 4:00 PM

•      Cedar Creek between Bannister Bridge and South Cedar Creek Canoe Launch will be closed as well.

•      Longleaf and Bluff Campgrounds will be closed and backcountry camping permits will also not be issued

Areas that will remain open after 4:00 PM will be Cedar Creek downstream from South Cedar Creek Canoe Launch, the Kingsnake Trail to Bridge I, and the Bates Ferry and Fork Swamp trails in the eastern end of the park along the US 601 corridor. More information

About Congaree National Park

Astonishing biodiversity exists in Congaree National Park, the largest intact expanse of old growth bottomland hardwood forest remaining in the southeastern United States. Waters from the Congaree and Wateree Rivers sweep through the floodplain, carrying nutrients and sediments that nourish and rejuvenate this ecosystem and support the growth of national and state champion trees. With over 25 miles of hiking trails and 2.4 miles of boardwalk, there are many ways to explore the Congaree Wilderness. The boardwalk loop trail provides access to Weston Lake and other trails that wind through the Congaree floodplain. Ranger and volunteer guided programs are led on Saturdays year-round.

Location: 100 National Park Road | Hopkins, SC 29061
Phone: 803-776-4396
Website: nps.gov/cong/index