When one thinks of mystical creatures of the Pacific Northwest, the obvious choice is Bigfoot. But there are many other legends that encompass this area. Native Americans, like nearly every other culture on Earth, have their own beliefs about “small folk” — diminutive humanoid creatures with their own ways, special powers, and a predilection for mischief—that sound very familiar to anyone who has heard the stories of various sprites, elves and similar creatures from European folklore.
The name for the sightings of these beings that folks on Vashon Island in Washington have landed on is the Irish formulation of “leprechaun” (likely because the woods around there are as green and lush as Ireland), and in this video, you not only hear about what they are up to, but about how best to interact with them.
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In this video, some visitors to Burton Woods are taken aback by a sign at the trailhead asking visitors to please not leave “glitter” for the resident fair folk, as the sparkling pieces of plastic are actually an environmental hazard. Instead, if they wish to leave these creatures an offering, make sure it is natural and biodegradable. Thus warned, they ask a volunteer if this whole leprechaun stuff is for real.
“I’ve spent a lot of time walking in this park and I’ve seen lots of evidence of unusual things around trees that people call ‘fairy trees,’ and it’s possible it’s leprechauns…”
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When they find one of those fairy trees, they leave a nice rock as a gift, and then, for good measure, a splash of LaCroix in a shell.
Because, obviously, even the leprechauns in Washington are hipsters.