Monday, April 12, 2021

Want to See the Fireflies This Year at Congaree Park? You'll Need to Win their Lottery

Congaree National Park is offering several opportunities to see the park’s fireflies May 20 through 22, and May 27 through 29. 

To keep COVID restrictions, the viewings will be limited to 25 vehicles each night of the event. Tickets will be available through a lottery system posted on this website at You will only be allowed to enter on the date and time of your specific ticket. Full lottery details may be viewed online at

The lottery begins at 11 a.m. on Thursday, April 15th and stays open until 11:59 p.m. on Monday, April 19th. The winners will be announced on Friday, April 23rd. Participants who are chosen will be required to pay a non-refundable $19 event fee plus a one dollar service charge to secure tickets ($20 total).

Tickets will only be issued for passenger vehicles up to two axles that can fit into standard parking spaces (i.e. no motor homes, vehicles with trailers, buses or mini-buses). 

“At our most recent fireflies event, over 12,000 visitors came to the park to view the fireflies and on some nights we welcomed over 2,000 visitors,” said Superintendent K. Lynn Berry. “After consulting with public health officials, we determined that a smaller-scale event would be a wise decision. The lottery system, which is based on the one that has been used for a similar fireflies event at Great Smoky Mountains National Park for years, seemed to be the fairest way of determining who will have access each night.”

There are three species of synchronous flashing fireflies, out of more than two thousand species in total. The mating season lasts approximately two weeks and the synchronized flashing is a part of the mating ritual. 

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