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Military & National
Actually more like ‘Fleet Month...
Sports & Outdoor
Held in mid-March, this marathon is a 26.2-mile party through the city from Dodger Stadium to the Santa Monica Pier. Rally the 25,000 runners and wheelchair racers...
Local Festivals & Culture
In early or mid-November, Furnace Creek hosts this historical encampment, featuring cowboy poetry, campfire sing-alongs, a gold-panning contest and a Western art show...
Markets & Fairs
Since its inception in 1854, the state fair has had horse racing and blue-ribbon lifestock and agricultural exhibits showcasing California's bounty. The fried Snickers and 5-D movie experience are newer additions.
In mid-July, this old-fashioned county fair combines agriculture exhibits, carnival rides, and lots of food and wine. The fairgrounds are in Santa Maria, over an hour's drive northwest of Santa Barbara via Hwy 101.
Two days, 80,000 people, five stages. It’s one giant party in the Coliseum and Exposition Park, with carnival rides, and performances by 150-plus artists and performers, including many of the best DJs in the world.
More than 17 produce farmers and wineries dotting the delta open their doors for tastings and demonstrations for Passport Weekend every August...
Film & Cinema
Roll out the red carpet for screenings of over 350 mostly new independent and foreign films, along with occasional major-studio premieres such as Crash and anniversary showings of classics like Sunset Boulevard .
Festivals & Parades
This cavalcade of flower-festooned floats snakes through Pasadena on New Year’s Day. Get close-ups during postparade viewing at Victory Park. Avoid traffic and take the Metro Rail Gold Line to Memorial Park.
A day isn't enough to do SF proud: June begins with International LGBT Film Festival , and goes out in style the last weekend with Pink Saturday's Dyke March and the frisky, million-strong Pride Parade .
Carnivals & Fairs
Take a seat for official Fourth of July fireworks extravaganzas held at the Rose Bowl, the Hollywood Bowl or in Marina del Rey. Alternatively, drive up to any hilltop and watch the skies explode.
A three-day festival where you can browse for arts and crafts, groove to surf music and tribute bands, and graze through an international food court. It’s held every Memorial Day and Labor Day weekend.
The Ocean Institute hosts the West Coast’s largest gathering of tall ships, with living-history encampments, scrimshaw carving demonstrations and lots more family-friendly marine-themed activities.
Food & Drink
Oenophiles come for Paso's premier Wine Festival in mid-May, but the Vintage Paso weekend, focusing on Zinfandel wines, in mid-March and the Harvest Wine Weekend in mid-October are just as much fun.
All of the Central Valley descends on Modesto's streets in June for this celebration of 1950s Americana from huge classic car shows to concerts by the crooners who shaped rock 'n roll.
For two weekends, a parade, street fair, nature walks and talks, canoe races, surfing clinics, art exhibitions, live music, and surf ‘woody’ wagon and hot-rod show make up the merriment.
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