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After a long winter it’s finally time to come out of hibernation, and there’s no better way to celebrate the season and warmer weather than with a little food and a little wine. April is packed with food festivals for the next few weekends, so now’s the time to cancel those plans with the family and head out on your own getaway. Here’s three spots worth checking out.
Pebble Beach Food & Wine – April 10 – 13
If you’re not already in California you have until tomorrow to get there, as the events surrounding Pebble Beach Food & Wine kick off tomorrow and run throughout the weekend. Expect celebrity chefs, cooking demonstrations, plenty of sips and samples, and of course event after event tailored to your food favorites. Most of the cooking demonstrations start at around $100, and things go up from there.
Plenty of tickets are still available on what they call an “a la carte”—ha—basis, but you can also go all in an order a package of events. Things start off at around $1,000 for their magnum set of events, and things get pricier as you select from the jeroboam or imperial options.
Austin Travel / South By Southwest / Texas Travel / Festival Travel / Food Travel / Lists / Music Travel / → All Tags
In case you've been living in a cave (without WiFi, naturally), the South By Southwest festival is in full swing right now, with networking, screenings and, of course, partying. Austin, Texas is abuzz with people from all over the planet and, even though SXSW has plenty of things to keep visitors occupied for 10 days, not everyone is interested in visiting the city during this time of the year.
Thus, we've come up with a hearty list of things to do if you're headed to Austin when the city isn't packed with conference attendees.
Spring Travel / Japan Travel / Spring Festivals / Nature Travel / Events / Festival Travel / Tokyo Travel / → All Tags
The other day, we were going on and on about the lovely cherry blossoms set to show up very soon in Washington, DC, and today we still have the blooms of spring on our minds. However, this time we’re going across the globe to check out on the cherry trees that call Japan home.
Plenty of the trees that now dot Uncle Sam’s backyard originally came from Japan, so it’s not surprising that the country really knows how to do the spring thing. There’s even a word for checking out the blooms and the blossoms; Hanami is the Japanese word to specifically describe this act.
Spring Travel / Spring Festivals / Nature Travel / Washington DC Travel / Events / Festival Travel / → All Tags
We already let you know about the goings on at this year’s National Cherry Blossom Festival, and now we know all about the most important part of the festival. That’s because the National Park Service has run the data and reviewed the numbers, and they’re ready to make the prediction regarding the timing for this year’s peak bloom period.
Obviously there’s a little luck behind things in addition to the science and the skill, but for 2014 it sounds like they’re thinking that peak bloom will be between April 8 and April 12. That’s a little later than usual—blame it on the harsh winter?—as things usually reach their full flowering potential around April 8.
One of the best food festivals of the season has to be the South Beach Wine and Food Festival, as the offerings here—and the weather—can’t be beat. Unfortunately the festival did its thing last weekend, so it’s time to look forward to the next big event. We’re thinking Charleston is also a great weather destination, and they have their own wine and food festival ready to do its thing between March 6 and 9.
Plenty of authors, chefs, and other culinary celebrities will be on hand at this year’s BB&T Charleston Wine + Food Festival. Folks like Nancy Silverton, Andy Ricker, and Michael Toscano will all be around to discuss their books, restaurants, and their approaches when it comes to making really tasty things.
Spring Travel / Spring Festivals / Nature Travel / Washington DC Travel / Events / Festival Travel / → All Tags
Despite the look of things outdoors we really are going to see the sun sooner than later, as spring is just about 30 days away. That means it is time to start planning for all things warm weather, and that includes looking forward to some seasonal festivals. We’re not saying that the National Cherry Blossom Festival is the best way to welcome the spring, but the festival certainly isn’t a bad idea.
It’s still a little too soon for the National Park Service to forecast their prediction for when things will begin to bloom, but we do know that this year’s festival will do its thing between March 20 and April 13. Obviously the blooms in and around the nation’s capital and along the Potomac will be the stars of the show, but there are also plenty of other events worth checking out.
Events / Live Music Travel / Festival Travel / Palm Springs Travel / California Travel / Coachella 2014 / → All Tags
If case you haven't noticed, we've made no bones about our love for Palm Springs. In fact, we've even shared our 27 reasons why we think it's the bomb dignity. Naturally we aren't the only ones enamored with this oasis of retro style in the Californian desert, and it's becoming increasingly obvious that Palm Springs is becoming the place for festivals both new and old, for people of all persuasions.
In fact, spring 2014 will be the hottest season for happenings in the city, and the Palm Springs Board of Tourism shares the six most sizzling events, all in April:
Beer Travel / Drinking Travel / Beer Festivals / Festival Travel / Events / Boston Travel / Ohio Travel / Denver Travel / → All Tags
The weather outside is certainly frightful, but drinking a beer or three is certainly going to make things a little more delightful. The winter beer festivals are now arriving in a city near you, as brewers work to get lagers, ales, and all things spiced and seasonal ready to sip and sample. We can’t mention all the events around the world, but here are three winter beer festivals where you can warm up this month.
Columbus Winter Beerfest – Columbus, Ohio
They’re promising over 225,000 square feet of craft beer awesomeness right in the Greater Columbus Convention Center, as the Columbus Winter Beerfest is set to do thing across two days on January 17 and January 18. Over 300 different beers will be in attendance from breweries around the region and the world. Brew Kettle, Cellar Rats, and Columbus Brewing Company are just a few of the local options, but they have the full list on their website. It’s even available as a spreadsheet—so you can disguise at as work in your office—where you can filter and search things to your heart’s content. Tickets are $50 during the day of the event, but only $40 if you order in advance. Things start on each day beginning at 7:30pm, and your admission includes up to 25 samples in a five ounce souvenir mug. The last pour finishes up at just before 11pm—cheers.
So much of what you are able to experience of a destination comes down to the timing of your visit, and we picked the perfect week to be in Mexico as cities across the country celebrate the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe. The festival is in remembrance of when the Virgin Mary left her image imprinted upon a cloth as a way of revealing herself and her identity to a Mexican peasant back in 1531 (the cloth in question is currently housed at the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe in México City, where one of the larger fiestas takes place).
Across the country, Mexican Catholics participate in parades that symbolize pilgrimages, making the journey from their homes to the church on foot as an offering to the Virgin Mary. Although religious tourism isn't exactly our thing, we are very pleased to be in town during this time because of all the other things that come along with it.
Live Music Travel / Festival Travel / Music Festivals / Austin Travel / Texas Travel / Music Travel / Events / → All Tags
It might have one of the worst names in festival history, but it sure has caught on and gathered attention as a pretty big deal in Austin, a city that doesn't take its music lightly. The Fun Fun Fun Fest returns for its 8th year on November 8-10 with a lineup that goes well beyond music to showcase stand-up comedy, alternative sports, and the local food scene.
In addition to big acts like Snoop Dog (Lion), M.I.A., and Slayer, the FFF Fest will feature dozens of musicians as well as comedians, led by Sarah Silverman and Tenacious D. You can see the full lineup here. There will also be some extreme sports on site, including vert ramp skating and biking, wrestling (there's apparently a ring), and the good ole' fashioned Texas favorite, the mechanical bull.
Festival Travel / Events / Fall Travel / Festivals / California Travel / Florida Travel / New Hampshire Travel / New York Travel / Ohio Travel / Halloween Travel / → All Tags
Autumn is finally here, so grab one of those pumpkin spice latte beverages and make your way to one of the many fall festivals. This month we’re focusing on those events dedicated to all things pumpkin, so here are five picks for pumpkin festivals doing their thing this month:
Circleville Pumpkin Show – Circleville, Ohio
Between October 16 and October 19th, one Ohio town turns into all things pumpkin. There’s a Miss Pumpkin Show that crowns a new gourd-geous—couldn’t resist, sorry—to reign over the annual festival. Farmers from around the state and region roll their pumpkins to the festival, as past winners have weighed in at well over 1,300 pounds. There’s a parade, live music, arts and crafts, and creatively arranged pumpkins and gourds all over downtown. Admission is free, but we’d bring spending cash for some of the attractions or for pumpkin this or that when you’re hungry.
Keene Pumpkin Festival – Keene, New Hampshire
We try to be fair and balanced in our assessment of this year’s pumpkin festivals, but the one in Keene, New Hampshire might just be the best thing going on this fall. They’ve got a food and craft court and a pumpkin road race, but what sets this festival apart are all the jack-o-lanterns. The town carved and brought in nearly 30,000 jack-o-lanterns last year, and they illuminate each and every one right around the town’s center. As you can imagine things look pretty darn awesome once the sun goes down, so bring your own pumpkin and head to New Hampshire on October 19th—just bring cash for parking.
Things got a little messy this last week in the Spanish town of Buñol. The locals are used to it, however, as this was the celebration called La Tomatina, a fruit-hurling party that takes place on the last Wednesday of August. La Tomatina has gone on now for the past 68 years, attracting tourists from all corners of the globe, and only one thing has changed: there's now a fee to join the revelry.
There's no question that Spain is struggling a bit financially; even festival's host city is in debt over 4 million euros. Thus, organizers of the event looking to make a few extra coins. The cheapest way to experience the festival will not necessarily break the bank. The fee is 10 Euros just to be in the midst of the tomato-throwing but, if you do want to drop some cash, you can do it in style on the back of a tomato truck carrying 130 tons of the red fruit for 750 Euros.