(credit: Garden Grove Strawberry Festival)

(credit: Garden Grove Strawberry Festival)


Spring is the time when nature shakes off the cold blanket of winter to welcome warmer days in Southern California. Festivals also begin to “spring” up in outdoor venues. Music, food and cultures harmonize for a day or two to wake your body from winter hibernation. Here are the best spring festivals that should be on your calendar!
(credit: Kim T./yelp)

(credit: Kim T./yelp)


Cochon555
Viceroy Santa Monica
1819 Ocean Ave.
Santa Monica, CA 90401
www.cochon555.com

Date: March 12, 2017

This one-of-a-kind competition which features five chefs cooking five heritage breed pigs in a friendly competition for a cause. The attendees vote for the best bite, and the winner is crowned the “Princess” or “Prince of Porc.” The event promotes family farms, heritage breed pigs and raises money for Piggy Bank, a 501c3 charity. Los Angeles is part of a 10-city tour and unites consumers with local farmers, renowned chefs, prominent winemakers, restaurateurs, craft brewers and distillers. The all-inclusive event is packed with dedication to supporting family farms while cultivating a safer food system for our youth.

(credit: Joshua Resnick/Shutterstock)

(credit: Joshua Resnick/Shutterstock)


Latin Food Fest!
Grand Park
200 N. Grand Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90012
(858) 461-1970
latinfoodfest.com
Date: March 24 – 25, 2017

The 5th Annual Latin Food Fest! hits Los Angeles March 24 and 25 and hits Orange County in November. This annual food, wine and spirits celebration draws over 20,000 attendees each year. The signature event, “Gran Tasting,” features an impressive who’s who of Latin culinary personalities, including top chefs. 200 chefs, restaurants, wineries, distillers and food makers also make their Latin culinary creations, a feast for the eyes as well as the stomach.

(credit: J.S./yelp)

(credit: J.S./yelp)


The Santa Clarita Cowboy Festival
Old Town Newhall
24151 Newhall Ave.
Newhall, CA 91321
(661) 250-3735
www.cowboyfestival.org
Date: April 19, 2017 – April 23, 2017

William S. Hart Park will be the home of The Santa Clarita Cowboy Festival. It is a one-of-a-kind, multi-day lineup of music, food, entertainment and activities for Western enthusiasts of all ages. The Festival will showcase nearly 40 musical acts ranging from traditional cowboy music to alternative country, folk, bluegrass, Americana and spoken word. Attendees can also enjoy street performances like trick roping, gun spinning and magic, along with live historical exhibits, authentic Western gear, art and more. Join thousands of fans for the harmonies, high-energy and soulful sounds of the West.

(credit: California Strawberry Festival)

(credit: California Strawberry Festival)


California Strawberry Festival
Strawberry Meadows of College Park
3250 S. Rose Ave.
Oxnard, CA 93033
(888) 288-9242
www.strawberry-fest.org
Date: May 20 & 21, 2017 at 10am – 6:30pm

The 33rd Annual California Strawberry Festival is a jam-packed weekend of tasty tributes to the California strawberry. A huge food court with over 50 food booths to choose form include everything strawberry, including strawberry nachos, strawberry pizza, strawberry funnel cake, strawberry crepes, chocolate dipped strawberries, deep-fried strawberries, berry kabobs, strawberry parfaits, strawberry shortcake, strawberry beer, margaritas, smoothies, and even strawberry popcorn. Live concerts on two stages will keep your toes tapping while you eat, shop and rest. Strawberryland For Kids offers fun games, rides and entertainment and photo opportunities with the reigning princess of Strawberryland, Strawberry Shortcake. The Strawberry Promenade showcases cooking demonstrations, the Berry Blast Off Recipe Contest, the Strawberry Smackdown (local chef competition similar to “Chopped”), Strawberry Pie Eating Contest, tart tossing, Strawberry Shortcake Build Off, Berry Best Hat Contest and Berry Best Dressed Baby Contest.

(credit: Charles U./Yelp)

(credit: Charles U./Yelp)


Cajun & Blues Music Festival
Rancho Santa Susana Community Park
5005 E. Los Angeles Ave.
Simi Valley, CA 93063
(805) 517-9000
www.simicajun.org
Date: May 27 & 28, 2017

The 28th annual Simi Valley Cajun & Blues Festival will feature two stages of Cajun and blues music and a host of world-class performers. The festival is hosted by The Rotary Club of Simi Sunrise to benefit both Cajun heritage and the people of Simi Valley and surrounding areas. All proceeds from the event go to the charities. A huge food court with emphasis on Creole, Cajun and Southern fare is sure to be a foodie’s fantasy.

Chelsea Madren, also known as the OC Food Diva, is local food & travel critic in Orange County, CA. With a sense of adventurous, Chelsea scours the world for great food, breath-taking views, accommodations, and activities galore for the perfect getaway.

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