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  • Brian Nguyen / Sacramento Bee file

    Festivalgoers take a spin on one of the many rides at the State Fair last year. This year the fair opens on July 11 and runs through July 27.

  • Lezlie Sterling / Sacramento Bee file

    Christy Kim, 19, of Elk Grove, holds up a paper collage banana at the Sacramento Banana Festival at William Land Park in 2013.

  • Nate Chute / Appeal-Democrat

    Hayley Noriega, 10, sips on a peach Italian cream soda at the Marysville Peach Festival in 2013. “It’s the second best thing I’ve ever had,” she said.

Summer events calendar: Fun in the sun

Published: Monday, Jul. 7, 2014 - 12:00 am
Last Modified: Tuesday, Jul. 15, 2014 - 10:26 am

From claiming a spot along Lake Tahoe’s shoreline for the annual salute to a fireworks spectacular to discovering award-winning cheeses, here’s a list of area events and festivals to get you through the rest of the summer.


Street Fair

Escape to Tahoe City for its street fair, and watch the fireworks show from Commons Beach. It’s just one of many spots along the lake to view the fireworks display. Noon. 530-583-3348;

July 5


Independence Day Celebration

Ironstone Vineyards host its annual Fourth of July, family-friendly event, with live entertainment from Shane Dwight, beer/wine and food offerings, bounce house, climbing wall, jugglers, and a fireworks show. 4 p.m. 1894 Six Mile Road, Murphys. $10 general, $5 children ages 6-12, free for children ages 5 and younger. 209-728-1251;


July 10


The Loomis Thursday Night FamilyFest is a street fair market, with arts/crafts vendors, classic car show and entertainment, beer/wine/food court and kids fun zone. 6 p.m. Thursdays, through July 31. Loomis Train Depot Plaza, 3640 Taylor Road, Loomis. Free. 916-835-0989;

July 11

State Fair

It’s the 161st annual State Fair. 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Mondays-Thursdays, 10 a.m.-10 p.m. Fridays-Sundays, July 11-27. Cal Expo, 1600 Exposition Blvd., Sacramento. $5-$12. $10 parking. 916-263-3247;

July 12

Art, Wine and Music Festival

Squaw Valley may be known for its slopes during winter, but during the hot summer months, it’s Squaw Valley’s village drawing visitors, with wine tasting, two performance stages, and walkways lined with fine art booths and exhibits, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. July 12-13. Squaw Valley, 1960 Squaw Valley Road, Olympic Valley. $25 wine tasting. 530-584-6266;

Davis Ranch Corn Festival

Designed to celebrate the first corn harvest of the season, the sixth annual event will offer free samples of barbecue corn, arts and crafts fair, free tractor rides, pony rides, bounce house, and live music.9 a.m.-4 p.m. July 12-13. 13211 Jackson Road, Sloughhouse. Free. 530-503-9292;

July 18

Marysville Peach Festival

Eat and drink your way through the menu of peach related items, from stuffed peaches to peach smoothies. Along with entertainment, there will be vendors and activities. 4-11 p.m. July 18; 10 a.m.-11 p.m. July 19. D Street, Marysville. Free.

July 20

Cowboys and Cornbread

Hitch up your team and head to Placerville for a chili, cornbread and salsa showdown. Saddle up to Western-style festivities: gold panning, cowboy poetry, Chuck wagon barbecue, free stage coach rides, championship horse show. 11 a.m. El Dorado County Fairgrounds, 100 Placerville Drive, Placerville. $10 per carload (6 people per car), $2 walk-in per person. 800-457-6279;

July 24

Strauss Festival of Elk Grove

The Strauss Festival of Elk Grove is an outdoor, staged dance production. “An Artists Life” is set to the music by the family of Austrian composer Johann Strauss, and played by a live orchestra with costumed waltz and polka dancers. 7:30 p.m. July 24-27. Elk Grove Regional Park - Strauss Island Stage, 9950 Elk Grove Florin Road, Elk Grove. Free; $10 parking fee. 916-714-2527;

Amador County Fair

Delivers everything an old-fashioned county fair has to offer, including carnival rides and games, exhibits and open livestock, wine tasting, destruction derby, and truck and tractor pull. 9 a.m.-midnight July 24; 9 a.m.-1 a.m. July 25-26; 9 a.m.-midnight July 27. Amador County Fairgrounds, 18621 Sherwood St., Plymouth. $5-$10. 209-245-6921.


July 26

Sip & Snack

The Galt Area Historical Society presents its annual wine, beer and food event at the McFarland Living History Ranch. Live music and dancing, tours of historic McFarland home and hayrides will be part of the evening. 6 p.m. McFarland Living History Ranch, 8899 Orr Road, Galt. $25 advance, $35 at the door. 209-745-1477;

July 31

Yuba-Sutter Fair

For an entertainment schedule, visit

4:30-11 p.m. July 31; 1 p.m.-midnight Aug. 1-3.

Franklin Hall, 442 Franklin Ave., Yuba City. $8 general, $5 children ages 11 and younger. 530-674-1280


Aug. 1

The Festival of Cheese

The American Cheese Society (ACS) will host its annual Festival of Cheese, featuring more than 1,700 American artisan and specialty cheeses from the 2014 ACS Judging and Competition, highlighting the winners across a range of styles, in addition to an assortment of cheeses and accompaniments, ranging from crackers to charcuterie, from preserves to chocolate, plus wine and craft beer that guests can sample in their commemorative wine glass. 7 p.m. Sacramento Convention Center, 1400 J St., Sacramento. $60. 720-328-2788;

Aug. 6

Nevada County Fair

The entertainment lineup includes: Mogollon, Nathan Owens Sounds of Motown, Cover Me Badd, Big D & The Semi Tones, “Live from Vegas” (Rat Pack tribute), Element of Soul, The Jamal Walker Band, James Carlson and Steadyhand, Banner Mountain Boys, Mountain Shine, among others. 10 a.m.-11 p.m. Aug. 6-10. Nevada County Fairgrounds, 11228 McCourtney Road, Grass Valley. $4-$9. $6 for parking. 530-273-6217;

Banana Festival

Held on William Land Park’s Village Green, the annual event celebrates the many ways cultures use banana in their food. Expect to see entertainment on three stages, a chefs’ challenge, line dancing, youth art exhibit, arts and crafts activities, kiddie carnival rides, and banana cuisine. 10 a.m.-7 p.m. Aug. 9; 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Aug. 10. William Land Park, Freeport Boulevard and Sutterville Road, Sacramento. $5 general, free for children ages 5 and younger. (916) 320-9573;

Aug. 19

Midtown Cocktail Week

A spirited week from Aug. 19 to 24, cocktail competitions and performances will take place at various Sacramento venues.

Aug. 29

Gold Rush Days

The 14th annual Labor Day weekend event heads back to the Old West. More than 200 tons of dirt will pave the streets. Enjoy live music and dancing; Old West theatrics; history re-enactments; horse-drawn carriages and train rides; gold panning; hands-on children’s games; and a Tent City that depicts daily life during the Gold Rush. Aug. 29-Sept. 1. Old Sacramento. 916-442-8575 .

Greek Festival

Celebrating its 51st year, festival favorites include a menu of homemade Greek specialties, wine, live music and dancing, cooking demos, and desserts. 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Aug. 29; noon-11 p.m. Aug. 30; noon-9 p.m. Sept. 31. Convention Center, 1400 J St., Sacramento. $5 general; free for children ages 12 and younger; free admission from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Aug. 30. 916-443-2033.

Aug. 30

Arts & Crafts Festival

Arnold’s end-of-summer celebration features more than 60 booths of handmade crafts, art, gourmet foods to sample, face painting, swing music by Homegrown, juggling, local beers, along with a variety of homemade food and kettlecorn. The Lion’s Club serves a $6 all-you-can-eat pancake breakfast 7:30-11a.m. daily. 10 a.m. Aug. 30-31. Cedar Center, Arnold, 1225 Oak Circle, Arnold. Free. 925-372-8961.

California Capital Airshow

Festivalgoers are treated to military and civilian jet performances, parachute demonstrations, and more. 9 a.m. Sept. 6-7. Mather Airport, 3745 Whitehead St., Mather. $7.50-$30. 916-876-7568;

Yolo Microbrew Festival

Offering a respite to summer temperatures, Luna Vista Rotary of Woodland hosts the Yolo Microbrew Festival to benefit the Woodland Schools Foundation. Brew tasting will be held from 3 to 6 p.m. 2:30 p.m. Yolo County Fairgrounds,Rotary Park, 1125 East St., Woodland. $15-$35. 530-845-1973;

Compiled by Genny Howe

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