Carpinteria’s Avocado Festival
One of Carpinteria’s biggest events of the year—the Avocado Festival—is a favorite weekend for both locals and visitors alike. This October will mark the 33rd year of the festival, which is the largest music festival in the entire state of California and one of the biggest free festivals in the United States. The festival will be held October 4–6 in downtown Carpinteria, one of the most charming small towns in the country.
Whether you can’t get enough of California’s favorite fruit (why yes, an avocado is, in fact, a fruit) or you just can’t resist a good festival, the Avocado Festival should definitely be on your list of festivals to hit up this year.
Want to know more about what to expect at the Avocado Festival? Here’s your ultimate guide to this beloved annual festival.
What Kinds of Activities Are At the Avocado Festival?
There’s more to the avocado festival than just avocados (okay, there’s a lot of those there).
One of the main features of the Avocado Festival is the abundant entertainment. This year, there will be over 75 acts, which will take place on four different stages.
The stages are in different locations around the festival. The “Main” stage is located on 9th street, the “Seal” stage is located right by the Smart & Final store, the “Guac & Gratto” stage will be located on 8th street, and the “Kids” stage will be on 7th street. On these stages you can expect to find musical acts of every kind—from classic rock to indie to Tejano—so you’ll be likely to hear something you like during the weekend.
In addition to the live entertainment, there are also rows of booths with vendors. Pick up locally made crafts, clothing items, and keepsakes and more at the festival to commemorate your experience!
The big draw to the avocado festival (and really, any big festival) is the food. And there’s no shortage of that at the avocado festival. There’s obviously plenty of avocado-themed foods—from the classic guacamole to desserts made with creamy avocado. You can also ingest your avocado in brew form—and you definitely don’t want to miss Rincon Brewery’s avocado beer.
If you’re tired of avocados, there are plenty of other festival foods on Linden Avenue like tri-tip sandwiches, funnel cakes, sausages, corn dogs, lemonade, and all of the other festival staples that you normally find. In other words, it’ll be hard to go home hungry from the Avocado Festival.
And for those festival goers who are the competitive type, there are a few competitions around the Avocado Festival that you may be interested in entering, such as the Strong Man & Strong Woman Competition.
Lastly, you don’t want to miss the ferris wheel, which can give you a great vantage point for the whole festival as well as the entire downtown area and the ocean, none of which are bad views.
Educational Opportunities at the Avocado Festival
The Avocado Festival is a celebration of the avocado and its impact on the Carpinteria Valley. For those festival goers who are interested in learning more about the history of farming in the Carpinteria Valley and about the avocado orchards that are ever-present all around the area, they can visit the AvoEXPO tent, which has photos, lessons on avocado farming, and is also the space where they crown the Avocado Festival’s largest avocado—a coveted prize to be sure.
Dog Daycare at the Avocado Festival
Everything is more fun when you can bring Fido along, but the Avocado Festival is a pet-free festival. Not to worry, however. The Avocado Festival has made a partnership with Sandy Paws, Carpinteria Canine Care, who run a free dog daycare right near the festival.
Your pet can stay at the doggy daycare for two hours, but there are some rules that you must adhere to beforehand. Your dog must be spayed or neutered, up-to-date on their vaccinations, have no bite history, and must be good with other dogs and people. You cannot bring toys with you to the dog daycare and you must leave a designated contact number so Sandy Paws can reach you for any reason.
Although the service is free for up to two hours, donations are always encouraged and appreciated.
What the Avocado Festival Benefits
Although avocados are worth celebrating on their own, the mission of the Avocado Festival is to raise funds to promote the avocado industry, tourism in Carpinteria, and fund education initiatives for education in the arts and agriculture.
Additionally, the Avocado Festival also donates funds from the weekend to various local charities—all in the name of strengthening the Carpinteria and surrounding communities.
So, don’t be afraid to chow down on that extra hot dog or get yourself a commemorative Avocado Festival t-shirt. It’s all for a good cause!
If you’re visiting Carpinteria for the first time during the Avocado Festival, you’re sure to be in for a treat as it’s one of the best weekends of the year. But there’s certainly more to the city than just one weekend festival.
Carpinteria is a small, quiet Central Coast town with plenty of beach activities, restaurants, and even a couple of breweries to try while you’re visiting.
Whether you’re into surfing, stand up paddle boarding or just lying casually on the sand, Carpinteria’s beaches are clean, safe, and have beautiful views of the ocean. In addition to being home to some great beaches, Carpinteria is home to a seal sanctuary, which is just a quick hike in the Carpinteria Bluffs Nature Preseve. From a safe spot above, you can observe seals in their natural habitat (which is mostly just lying out on the beach in the sun).
When you’re not at the beach, Carpinteria has plenty to offer in the way of great food. The city has have everything from seafood at Zookers to sandwiches at Jack’s Bistro that will guarantee you won’t want to leave the city anytime soon.
Jack’s Bistro & Famous Bagels
5050 Carpinteria Ave
Carpinteria, CA 93101
Jack’s Bistro & Famous Bagels
53 S Milpas St
Santa Barbara, CA 93101
header photo credit: avofest.com