Fall SoCal Festivals

Adrey Rieckhoff looks at her drawing she is making of a dragon in a bath during the Youth Arts Showcase at the Santa Clarita Sports Complex on Sunday. Nikolas Samuels/The Signal

From Santa Clarita to Goleta, from Tehachapi to San Diego, there’s a festival waiting for you. Apples, lemons, avocados, art and music are all waiting for their day in the sun this fall season of festivals.

There are family-friendly festivals and adults-only events.

Grab the family and take the Amtrak Surfliner or head off by car to destinations that include fun, games, contests, food, live music and a variety of vendors. Festival fun awaits!


Santa Clarita Chalk Festival

Sept. 23 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday

Info: https://otna.org.

Old Town Newhall on Main Street, between 6th and the Roundabout.

The Santa Clarita Chalk Festival is presented by the Old Town Newhall Association. Over the course of three days, artists from throughout Southern California, professional, amateur, students and the public will take to the pavement armed with pastel chalks to create masterpieces. The theme is “Wit, Wonder and Whimsy.” This is a family-friendly event and all levels of artists are welcome.


Ohana Music Festival

Sept. 28-30. Friday, Saturday, Sunday noon to 10 p.m.

Doheny State Beach, 25300 Dana Point Harbor Drive, Dana Point, CA 92629

Info: www.ohanafest.com

In addition to offering a full day in the sun with a diverse music lineup, Ohana will donate a portion of proceeds to the San Onofre Parks Foundation, a California non-profit that cooperatively works with the California State Parks to develop, preserve and enhance the recreation and experience of California’s unique and beautiful coastal parks. Festival general admission allows roaming throughout the lush grass areas of Doheny State Beach, right off the shore of the Pacific Ocean, touching the sand. A limited number of VIP passes will also be available. Craft beer, wine, signature cocktails, as well as artisan food options from local restaurants and food trucks will be available. Friday performances feature Eric Church, Norah Jones, Amos Lee, Saturday performances feature Eddie Vedder, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Liz Phair, Sunday performances feature Mumford & Sons, Beck, Young the Giant. Daily tickets: $99.75, VIP $499.


Oxnard Banana Festival

Saturday, Sept. 29 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Port of Hueneme, 105 E Port Hueneme Road, Port Hueneme, CA 93041

Info: https://bananaportfest.com

Family-friendly festival with free admission and parking. Go bananas at the Port with tasty banana treats, live bands, and the cool ocean breezes. Learn about the inner-workings of the port! Tours by land and sea scheduled hourly. Kids can enjoy bounce houses, bungee, games, reptile exhibits and do banana crafts. The event also features live bands, sandwiches, sushi wraps, banana splits and shakes, funnel cakes, vendors, boutique clothing, hand crafted jewelry, garden art and more.

The Port of Hueneme is a working deep-water port. The Banana Festival is a way to bring people out to learn about the port.


The 27th Annual California Lemon Festival

Sept. 29-30 Saturday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Sunday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

7050 Phelps Road, Goleta, CA 93117, 1-805-967-2500

Info: https://lemonfestival.com

A weekend of family fun, food, entertainment and activities includes the Goleta Fall Classic Car and Street Rod Show, pie-eating contests and arts and crafts vendors. Admission is free to the festival, activity wristband for purchase for children’s fun zone area.

Getting there: From the Santa Clarita Valley: Head west on Hwy 126 take northbound 101 freeway and exit at Storke Road. Turn left onto Storke Road. Follow Festival Parking signs to parking lots off on Santa Felicia and Phelps Road.


Ventura Harvest Festival Original Art & Craft Show

Oct, 5-7, Friday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Sunday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Ventura County Fairgrounds, 10 W. Harbor Blvd., Ventura, CA 93001  

General admission $9, parking $5.

Info: www.harvestfestival.com

Features thousands of handmade American arts & crafts including jewelry, clothing, specialty foods, photography, hand-turned wood, ceramics and unique home décor.


The 32nd annual Avocado Festival

Oct. 5-7 Friday, Saturday, Sunday

800 Linden Ave., Carpinteria, CA 93013

Info: www.avofest.com

The California Avocado Festival is Carpinteria’s largest family-friendly community celebration and one of the largest free festivals in the country. Avocado inspired food (try the avocado ice cream), a wide variety of live music, arts & crafts, vendors and the world’s largest vat of guacamole.

The event features 75 musical acts on four stages, the Avocado Expo Tent home to avocado agricultural photos, historical photos, lessons in avocado grafting, FFA restored antique tractors, and the Largest Avocado Contest.

The food venue features creative avocado dishes, the kids’ venue is the home to the Best Dressed Avocado Contest, fun games, face painting and family fun. The World-Famous Guacamole contest and Avocado Auction will be held Sunday at the Guac and Grotto Stage on 8th Street!

Getting there:  From the Santa Clarita Valley: Head west on Hwy 126 take northbound 101 freeway and exit at Casitas Pass Road. Turn right onto Casitas Pass Road Follow Park N Ride signs to Foothill Road turn left on Foothill. Follow signs to parking lot (900 Linden Ave.) and jump on the school bus pick up to the Festival.

The Amtrak Pacific Surfliner offers train service from a number of stations convenient to the SCV including Van Nuys, Chatsworth, Simi Valley, Oxnard or Ventura, with a stop in Carpinteria. Take in the magnificent Southern California coastline with free wi-ri, Cafe Car (including guacamole) and beautiful views. The Carpinteria Station is located off Linden Avenue, just a short walk from the festival. Info/tickets: www.pacificsurfliner.com.


Santa Barbara Harbor & Seafood Festival

Oct. 13 Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Santa Barbara Harbor, Harbor Way, Santa Barbara, CA 93109

Info: www.HarborFestival.org

The annual Harbor and Seafood Festival is Santa Barbara’s signature autumn event. Timed with the opening of lobster season, the festival is presented by the city, Commercial Fishermen of Santa Barbara, Inc., Santa Barbara Harbor Merchants’ Association, and the Santa Barbara Maritime Museum. Festival-goers will meet local fishermen and enjoy fresh lobster, crab, prawns, and other local-caught seafood. Live entertainment and other family-oriented activities. Event admission is free.


Tehachapi Apple Festival

Oct. 13-14 Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Sunday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Downtown Tehachapi: Green Street and Tehachapi Blvd.

Centennial Plaza, 115 S. Robinson St., Tehachapi CA 93581

Info: www.tehachapiapplefestival.com

Free admission, family friendly fun event with Kids Zone, local apples, pie eating and baking contest, carnival, face painting, petting zoo, modern day apple bobbing, live music, beer garden for adults, apple related items and food, hand crafted local artisan gifts, vendors, car show on Sunday 10 a.m.-4 p.m.


The 28th Annual Sherman Oaks Street Fair

Sunday, Oct. 21 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

On Ventura Boulevard between Van Nuys and Kester

Info: https://shermanoaksstreetfair.org

Presented by the Sherman Oaks Chamber of Commerce the Sherman Oaks Street Fair is the largest event of its kind in the San Fernando Valley. The event features more than 250 vendors, main stage entertainment, community stage, on-site animal adoptions, carnival, car show, food trucks, bar and more. The carnival will feature a 45′ Ferris Wheel, a rock-climbing wall, bull riding and a human gyroscope. New this year is a 30-foot high zip line at the corner of Van Nuys and Ventura.

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