Strawberry nachos. Strawberry pizza. Strawberry kabobs. Strawberry beer and margaritas (but only if you’re over 21).
Along with traditional chocolate-dipped strawberries and county-fair-style favorites like strawberry funnel cake and deep-fried strawberries, there will be many ways to get your fill of one of California’s favorite fruits at the 29th annual California Strawberry Festival, taking place on Saturday and Sunday, May 19th and 20th, in Oxnard.
The California Strawberry Festival celebrates Southern California’s agricultural heritage, which continues strong in Ventura County. It’s a nonprofit event primarily run and staffed by volunteers, and serves as a major fundraiser for the nearly two dozen regional charities that operate its food booths and attractions.
The strawberries are the chief attraction of the Festival, of course, but they’re far from the only one, particularly for families. Stawberryland for Kids is where you’ll find rides, a bungee bounce, a climbing wall, day-long live entertainment, and Strawberry Shortcake herself. Kids age 10 and under are invited to hit the ball around at the USTA Smash Zone, which is making its first appearance at the Festival with an “interactive experience” and two special kid-scaled traveling tennis courts. Attendees who are the wrong age for Strawberryland can check out 250-plus Arts and Crafts exhibitors, listen to live music on two stages, or enter a strawberry-tart-tossing contest.
The California Strawberry Festival is located at Strawberry Meadows of College Park (3250 S. Rose Avenue) in Oxnard. On-site parking ($10 per car) is limited, and visitors are encouraged to use the free Park & Ride “Strawberry Express” shuttles to and from several convenient locations along the 101 Freeway.
Saturday & Sunday, May 19-20
10 AM-6:30 PM both days
Tickets prices are as follows:
$12–general admission (ages 13-62)
$8–seniors age 62+, active military and dependents (with ID)
$5–youth (ages 5-12)
free–ages 4 and under
Tickets are available for advance purchase online through the Festival website and at certain Valu Plus Food Warehouse, Top Valu Market, and Amar Ranch Market locations.
Florinda Pendley Vasquez blogs primarily but not exclusively about books at The 3 R’s Blog: Reading, ‘Riting, and Randomness, and has been known to eat strawberries while reading.
Photos provided by California Strawberry Festival.