Bay Area Festivals and Fairs
Almaden Valley Art & Wine Festival – Live music, kids’ zone, carnival games, rides and gourmet food trucks are among the offerings at this 42nd annual festival that raises money for local schools and nonprofits, and merit-based scholarships for local students.ﾠ Sat., Sept. 15. 10am-6pm. FREE. Almaden Lake Park, 6099 Winfield Blvd., San Jose.
Antique Autos – This event fills History Park with stock antique autos, trucks, fire equipment, bicycles and motorcycles of all makes from 1900 to 1945. Sun., Sept. 23. 11am-4pm. $5. History Park, 1650 Senter Road, San Jose.
Bark in the Park – Billed as the largest dog festival in the United States with more than 15,000 dog lovers and 3,900 dogs. Enjoy contests, including the popular Dog Costume Contest, Dog/Owner Look-Alike Contest and Tail Wagging Contest. Meet more than 75 vendors with dog-specific goods and services. Money raised benefits local community and pet-focused organizations. Sat., Sept. 15.10am-5pm. FREE. William Street Park, S. 16th Street at E. William Street, San Jose.
Bay Area Pet Con – Bring your (well-behaved) pet to this annual festival where you can play, shop, learn and adopt. Features nearly 100 exhibitors, including low-cost vaccinations and free nail trims. Sat., Sept. 8. 10am-6pm. $5. Santa Clara County Fairgrounds, 344 Tully Road, San Jose.
Capitola Art & Wine Festival – A kids’ art andﾠ music area will provide ﾠongoing craft projects for the younger set, as well as musical play featuring MusicalMe, at this annual festival. ﾠEnjoy local dance and performing arts groups, street performers and live music, in addition to art and food. Sat., Sept. 8. 10am-6pm. Sun., Sept. 9. 10am-5pm. FREE. Capitola.
Capitola Beach Festival – Begonia-laden floats parading down sunny Soquel Creek with a Saturday night nautical parade illuminated with LED lights are among the highlights of this festival that resurrects some key components of its predecessor, the Begonia Festival. Enjoy sandcastle building and rowboat contests, a horseshoe tournament, fishing derby and children’s art events. Sat.-Sun., Sept. 29-30. Check website for schedule. FREE. Esplanade Park, Capitola.
Chalk Art Festival – Artists, students and chalk enthusiasts create more than 250 pieces of art, including original works, classical reﾭcreations, traditional Italian madonnari street painting, 3D realistic works and more. The festival also features a main stage of local musicians, dancers and performers, as well as local food trucks and vendor booths. Sat., Sept. 15. 10am-5pm. FREE. Backesto Park, 551 N. 13th St., San Jose.
CrunchyRoll Expo – Crunchyroll, the largest anime streaming company in the world, brings ﾠfans together for three days of exhibits, screenings, panels and appearances by some of the biggest anime personalities across the U.S. and Japan. Sat. Sept. 1. 10am-7pm; Sun., Sept. 2. 10am-7pm; Mon., Sept. 3ﾠ. ﾠ10am-4pm. $20-360. San Jose Convention Center, 150 W. San Carlos St.
Little Italy San Jose Street Festival – Celebrate all things Italian with live music, food and craft vendors and children’s activities. Sun., Sept. 30. 11am-7pm. FREE. 323 W. St. John St.
Hammer Plaza Celebration – Celebrating art, innovation and community, the entertainment lineup includes aerial dance performed by Oakland-based vertical dance troupe BANDALOOP. Bridgman Packer Dance also joins the festivities with “Truck,” its innovative performance piece designed to take place inside of a 17-foot U-Haul. Local food trucks and a beer garden provide refreshments. Sat.-Sun., Sept. 28-29. 7-10pm. FREE. 101 Paseo De San Antonio, San Jose.
Mini Maker Faire – A family-friendly showcase of invention, creativity and resourcefulness and a celebration of the Maker Movement. It’s a place where people show what they are making and share what they are learning. Sun., Sept. 9. 11am-4pm. FREE. History Park, 1650 Senter Road, San Jose.
Mole & Mariachi Festival – Competing chefs prepare mole, a traditional Mexican sauce, for festival-goers to sample amid live music, dancing, vendors and children’s activities. Benefitting the nonprofit Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks in support of Santa Cruz Mission State Historic Park. Sat.-Sun., Sept. 8-9. 11am-5pm. Santa Cruz Mission Adobe State Historic Park, 144 School St.
Mountain View Art & Wine Festival – A kids’ park full of activities, plus live entertainment and hundreds of arts and crafts and food vendors are the highlights of this popular festival. Sat., Sept. 8. 11am-7pm; Sun., Sept. 9. 10am-6pm. FREE. Castro Street between El Camino Real and Evelyn Ave.
Northern California Renaissance Faire – Travel back to a time of knights, feasts and festivities. Spend the day shopping in the authentic marketplace. Enjoy dance performances, concerts, jousting tournaments and more. Celtic Rock Concert series every Sat. Weekends Sept. 15-Oct. 21. 10am-6pm. $28 general, kids 12 and under FREE. Casa de Fruta, 10031 Pacheco Pass Highway 152, Hollister. .
Santa Clara Art & Wine Festival – Talents of local and regional artists shine at this fair featuring nearly 175 booths, 25 community groups serving international foods, four vintners pouring fine wines, micro-brewed beer, live entertainment on three stages and the popular Kids Kingdom. Sat., Sept. 15. 10am-6pm; Sun., Sept. 16. 10am-5pm. FREE. Central Park, 969 Kiely Blvd.
Santa Cruz County Fair – Carnival rides, midway games, livestock, a horse show, live entertainment and more. Wed.-Sun., Sept. 12-16. Check website for prices. Santa Cruz County Fairgrounds, 2601 E. Lake Ave., Watsonville.
Santa Cruz Greek Festival – Authentic Greek food, pastries, spirits, live music, folk dancing and more. Fri., Sept. 7. 5-10pm; Sat., Sept. 8. 11am-10pm; Sun., Sept. 9. 12-7pm. FREE. Church and Center streets..
Silicon Valley Fall Festival – A family-orientated multicultural community festival full of games, education, music, entertainment and food. Sat., Sept. 15. 10am-5pm. FREE. Cupertino Memorial Park, 10185 N. Stelling Road.
Blackie’s Hay Day – This old-fashioned country fair, designed for all ages, has attracted 2,500 visitors in the past. Sat., Sept. 29. 10am-4pm. Call for prices. Blackie’s Pasture, Tiburon Boulevard, Tiburon. 415-789-2651.
Mill Valley Fall Arts Festival – This event supports established, independent artists and emerging student artists. There is live entertainment on the main and children’s stages (including marionettes, a magician and drumming) and children’s craft activities. Sept. 15-16. 10am-5pm. $12 general, $8 students, under 13 FREE. Old Mill Park, 352 Throckmorton Ave., Mill Valley.
San Anselmo Country Fair Day and Parade – This event features a pancake breakfast, country fair, parade, music and food festival. Sun., Sept. 30. 7am-3pm. FREE. Multiple locations. 415-258-4670.
Sausalito Art Festival – Fine art, music, food and wine come together at this Labor Day weekend waterfront event. More than 250 artists will show their works. Entertainers include George Clinton & Parliament Funkadelic and Eric Burdon and the Animals. Sept. 1-2, 10am-7pm; Mon., Sept. 3, 10am-5pm. $30 general, under 13 FREE. Marinship Park, 2200 Marinship Way. 415-332-3555. .
Festa Colionale Italiana – Enjoy continuous live music, authentic Italian cuisine, the Ricco Italian Dancers and an expert pizza toss. Sat., Sept. 15. 10am-6pm. FREE. San Francisco Italian Athletic Club, 1630 Stockton St.
Ghiradelli Chocolate Festival – Experience a chocolate school, live culinary demonstrations, chocolate tastings and a chocolate lounge featuring gourmet treats and premium wine, beer and spirits. Sept. 8-9. 12-5pm. $26.55-55. Ghiradelli Square, 900 North Point. 415-775-5500.
Greek Food Festival – This event features Greek dishes, live music, dancing and more. Sept. 21-22, 12-10pm; Sun., Sept. 23, 12-8pm. FREE. Annunciation Greek Orthodox Cathedral, 245 Valencia St. 415-864-8000. .
Oktoberfest by the Bay – Celebrate Munich’s famed festival with nonstop music, singing and dancing and German food and drink. Headline entertainer is the 21-piece Chico Bavarian Band. Sat., Sept. 22, 11am-5pm; Sun., Sept. 23, 11am-6pm. Children are encouraged to attend Sun. $25 general, ages 13-18 $5, under 13 FREE. Pier 48.
Belmont Greek Festival – Eat Greek food, enjoy folk dancing to live music, watch a mythology play, attend cooking demonstrations, enjoy children’s entertainer Andy Z, jump in the bounce house and play games. Sept. 1-2, 12-10pm; Mon., Sept. 3, 12-8pm. Call for prices. Church of the Holy Cross, 900 Alameda de las Pulgas at Ralston. 650-591-4447.
Fiestas Patrias – Celebrate Mexican culture with a hands-on kids craft area, authentic Mexican food, mariachi music and colorful ballet folklorico dancers. Sun., Sept. 16. 3-8pm. FREE. Courthouse Square, 2200 Broadway, Redwood City. 650-780-7000.
Kings Mountain Art Fair – Known for its stunning location among the redwoods, this fair features unique and varied artists selected by jury. Breakfast, lunch and drinks are also available. Sept. 1-3. 10am-5pm. FREE. 13889 Skyline Blvd., Woodside. 650-851-2710. .
Millbrae Art and Wine Festival – This Mardi Gras-style celebration features live music, handcrafted work by 250 artists, food and drink, premium wine, craft beer and cocktails, a car show, home and garden exhibits and a kids’ playland with carnival rides, face painting, a zip line and more. Sept. 1-2. 10am-5pm. FREE. Broadway between Victoria and Meadow Glen. 650-697-7324.
Oktoberfest – This event features a traditional German Oktoberfest setting with more than 1,100 feet of bench seating, music, dancing, cold beer and food. Guest entertainers include the Alpiners and the Golden Gate Bavarian Club. Sept. 19-23. Check website for times. $10-23. Courthouse Square, 2200 Broadway, Redwood City. 650-780-7000.
Pacific Coast Fog Fest – This event features a parade, marching band contest, arts and crafts booths, food and beverages, entertainment and more. Sept. 29-30. 10am-6pm. Parade is at 10am Sat. FREE. Palmetto Avenue, Pacifica. 650-355-8200.
Palestinian Cultural Day – There will be cultural entertainment and workshops, live music, dabkeh, comedy, kids’ entertainment, a bazaar and traditional foods like falafel and shawarma. Sat., Sept. 15. 11am-9pm. FREE. Park and Recreation Center, Central Park (on the lake), 650 Shell Blvd., Foster City.
Redwood City Salsa Festival – Salsa music, salsa dancing and salsa tasting are at the forefront along with live Latin jazz music and reggae. There will also be hands-on art projects and a children’s play area with bounce houses. Sat., Sept. 29. 12-8pm (salsa tasting until 5pm). FREE. Broadway between Middlefield and Hamilton. 650-780-7000.
Castro Valley Fall Festival – This annual festival features more than 150 arts and crafts, community and non-profit booths, along with food vendors, wine and beer, live music and other entertainment. Sept. 8-9. 10am-6pm. FREE. Castro Valley Boulevard at Redwood Road. 510-537-5300.
International Dragon Boat Festival – See and hear the vibrant 40-foot dragon boats racing to the beat of Chinese drums at this festival that also entertains with Asian arts performances and a Dragon Land for kids. Sept. 15-16. 10am-5pm. FREE. Lake Merritt Boating Center, 568 Bellevue Ave., Oakland.
Contra Costa County
Point Richmond Music – Enjoy rock and bluegrass with Achilles Wheel and Latin/Reggae/Caribbean music from Ruckatan Latin Tribe at the conclusion of this summer music festival featuring art and crafts booths, face painting for children and dancing in the streets. Fri., Sept. 14. 5:30-7:45pm. FREE. Downtown Point Richmond, Park Place and Washington Avenue, Richmond.
Lafayette Art Festival – The 23rd year of this annual event will offer art, crafts, food and drink, as well as music, entertainment and an area just for kids. Sept. 15-16. 10am-7pm Sat., 10am-6pm Sun. FREE admission, $1-5 kids zone, $7 drink ticket. Downtown Lafayette, 3535 Mt. Diablo Blvd.
Walnut Festival – Celebrate Walnut Creek’s 82nd annual Walnut Festival with arts and crafts, music and food, entertainment and a carnival. Thu., Sept. 20: 5-10pm; Fri., Sept. 21: 5-11pm; Sat., Sept. 22: 11am-11pm and Sun., Sept. 23: 11am-8pm. $10. Heather Farm Park, 301 N. San Carlos Drive, Walnut Creek. 925-935-6766.
Fine Arts & Craft Fair – Artisans and crafters will have booths on First Street in downtown Benicia offering an extensive selection of decor, toys, paintings, photography, food, jewelry and more. Sat., Sept. 15. 10am-4pm. FREE. Downtown Benicia, First Street, from G Street to the waterfront. 707-745-2120.