Wings Over Water Wildlife Festival is an annual six-day celebration that is devoted to celebrating the wild side of the Outer Banks and the surrounding region. Held in October, the festival offers almost 100 programs in themes ranging from birding and wildlife photography to paddling, natural history and more. It’s a fun and educational event for the whole family, and since it takes place in the shoulder season, it’s a very affordable time to come and enjoy the beauty of the Outer Banks. A sister event is the December Wings Over Water, a two-day festival with a focus on birding and photography. Visit www.wingsoverwater.org for more information or to register. Plan your trip ahead of time because tour groups are kept small so that everyone can hear well and ask questions. Programs are held in locations from Corolla to Ocracoke, allowing participants to explore the diverse natural environment of these amazing islands.