Saturday, May 16, 2009

Festival Fun!

In small towns across America the late spring and summer months are marked by festivals and farmers markets. I like these small town festivals because I think they give us a small chance to, as Peggy would remind us, "stop and smell the roses" or as Katie posted the other day "live for the moment". Without having to venture too far from home we can be transported into another place with carnival games, rides, street vendors and food on a stick.
This weekend is "Main Street Days" here in Grapevine, Texas. It is raining again here today so Bal and I made it our goal to get to the festival last night. I checked with my boss and he let me leave work at 4 so that I could get Lily and get to the festival. Bal and I met and parked at a local children's park and walked into the festival
(rather than paying the ten dollars to park close by).
Then we spent the next few hours roaming Main Street and taking in the sights, sounds and smells. Around every corner were amazing street vendors many of whom would fit right into our creative community. At major intersections there were opportunities to try your hand at riding a bucking bronco, scuba
diving, kayaking and more. We stopped to let Lily explore the petting zoo (she clung tightly to me the entire time) and bounce in the bounce house for a few minutes before we continued on our tour. As we reached the one end of the festival we came across two vendors one with soft serve ice cream and one with chocolate covered frozen bananas. Since it was 88 degrees in Grapevine yesterday these vendors were doing bang up business and the Snow clan contributed. $10 later and Bal was enjoying his ice cream treat while Lily munched happily on a frozen banana.
By the time we left the festival I was feeling like we had gotten a taste of summer, had enjoyed a nice slow evening as a family and had let Lily truly be a kid. It was a ton of fun and I've got pictures to prove it:

But this isn't all about the festival in my town. No, I've taken some time this morning to research some fun festivals coming to YOUR town. So hang tight.

Peggy and Cristine and any other Northern Illinois/Southern Wisconsin readers:
How about hitting the Naperville Ribfest over the 4th of July? Boasting the "best barbeque you'll ever taste" and "fun for every age" it might just be the way to spend your holiday.

Maureen and other New York, New Jersey readers:
It looked like a great option for you is action in early September for the National Estuaries Day "Little Neck Bay Festival". Join the community at Alley Pond Park for games, crafts, canoe rides and more.

Kat and other Arkansas readers:
Seems like you have a fun festival happening this week as well with Crawdad Days in Harrison, AR. Held the third weekend of May on the banks of Lake Harrison and in historic downtown and boasts, "hot music, hot cars, hot food, hot fun!" Sounds like it!

Chaotic and other South Texas readers:
How about checking out the Kyle, Texas "Fair on the Square" in early September?
Held at Gregg-Clarke park it has a BBQ cook-off, parade, arts, crafts, food and a WHOLE LOT MORE!

Cassie, Robin, Stacie, Melanie and other Louisville readers:
You all, I'm sure know the fun of the St. James Art Fair but we are talking summer fun. So, how about checking out the Locust Grove Family Picnic? This fun event is June 14th and costs only $5 for a carload of people and you can enjoy all of great food along with bluegrass music, and watching "slow" crafters spinning, weaving, making pottery, soap, rughooking and so much more!

Brian and the Pennsylvania crowd:
It seems like your best bet for festival fun is to scoot on over to West Virginia to Fairview for "Mayhem on the Mountain" a fun music festival located in Indian Meadows Campground. It's an overnight event so gather up your friends and camp out while enjoying the summer music fun the last weekend of May.

Tera, Treye and all the Cleveland/Erie folks:
Evidently the Great Lakes is the place to be for summer festival fun. The website I found says nearly every weekend there is a festival to attend. The one that looked the most exciting to me was the "Hessler Street Festival" held in late May. With the normal festival activities they say that patrons literally are dancing in the street. But you can also check out Great American Ribfest, Twin Fest (a festival of twins), 185th Slavic Street Festival and a whole slew of others.

Alright, so now you have NO excuses not to have some summer festival fun. I've given you the scoop in your area but...I'm sure that you living there no so much more. So chime in today and give the scoop on what festival folks in your area should be attending and why.

Have a happy Saturday.

Signing off until Monday...


Robin said...

Thanks, that sounds fun and I hadn't hear about it. I'll make K take the kids.

Cheryl said...

Ooh! Todays topic is one of my favorite things ever!!! Growing up in a small town that boasted around 2500 residents, I loved when our County Fair, Arts Festival or 4th of July Celebrations rolled around. My friends and I would run around the area and it was such a great time. sigh. I have to prepare for the soccer team to come over today... for a swim party! And as Heather has said... it's supposed to rain today. JOY! Oh well, I'm off!

Kat said...

Yes! This weekend is Crawdad Days! It is going to be a beautiful day and we are really looking forward to going. I love summer festivals!

Peggy said...

You guys crack me up.... talkin' summer festivals and swim parties... it was a high of 53 here in Northern Illinois.... I'm still thinking I can't wait for spring to arrive!!!

Summerfest in Milwaukee is the greatest festival... if you saw American Idol, that's where Danny Gokey went to sing for the Wisconsin fans!

Katie K said...

I love summer festivals! In the part of Kentucky where I grew up, every summer, all of the Catholic churches have festivals, we have Maifest downtown, we have the Florence Y'all festival, and many more! I'm sad that I won't be here to go to any of them, but look forward to attending some festivals in DFW this summer!

Hitting the road in about 30 minutes!

See ya in a few days Cheryl and Heather!

Tera said...

Like most of you, I enjoy festivals as well. Gotta get that funnel cake :)

Once upon a time, Treye and I said it was our goal to make it to every state fair in the country. So far, we can check Kentucky off our list. We've got a lot of work today!

When we watch the food network, they are forever talking about various food festivals across the country. If they are the same time as state fairs, we're in business!

Have a great weekend, everyone. Katie, travel safely and give big hugs to Claudia, Heather & Cheryl for me!

b.k.root said...

i haven't reached my "festival fun" period yet... i've just begun on my "yard sale fever" fun!

Haha... I love yard sales and flea markets.

b.k.root said...

speaking of...

anyone in or near ohio must make an attempt to get to Rogers, Ohio - It's the greatest flea market you'll ever visit!

Heather said...

Oooh Peggy...I've done the northern Illinois/Southern Wisconsin circuit of festivals.

You've got the Harvard, IL Milk Days over Memorial Day. You've got Burlington, WI 4th of July festival. Dixon, IL has a two day festival at some point in late June, Milwaukee has a festival up by the State Fair grounds that I think was called Western Days and was in June.
Hmmm...then there is a whole circuit of 4th of July festivals from Appleton to Racine.

It gets hot there in the next few weeks, though then you get the rain storms until the third week of June or so.

Chaotic said...

NICE weather here, and have just gotten in from doing a photo shoot (I shoot, they pose) for a senior here... good stuff, lots of outfit changes, and I got an early dinner!
And I saw (I kid you not) a Chiggerfest being held in Driftwood TX 78619. WOW... I did not know chiggers had their OWN festival!

Anonymous said...

Great Post and very creative. Festivals ROCK!