October 23-24 bring several fabulous festivals combining the best of California culture and food. If you’re game to drive or fly Saturday night, you can make it to most of these!
Bay Area People: Be in Oakland on Sunday October 24th
It’s a major culture fest across Oakland, and I’m sure this just scratches the surface. The itinerary:
1) Dia de los Muertos Festival (10-5pm, FREE)
This long time BART-accessible street festival in the Fruitvale district of Oakland celebrates the Day of the Dead (November 1st). With a huge variety of street foods, dancing, music and crafts it’s a great festival for families and anyone who appreciates rich cultural heritage. (more info)
2) Oakland Museum
Whether you’re in a car or on BART, hop over to the wonderful Oakland Museum near Lake Merritt. Recently remodeled, the museum reliably has interesting and poignant (not often I can use that word) Day of the Dead exhibits with “altars” by artists celebrating loved ones who have passed on.
Plus the Pixar exhibit is still going on!
3) East Bay Mini Maker Faire – Over 100 Makers & Crafters (10-5pm)
While the “maxi” Maker Faire fills a fair ground, the mini faire is a celebration of the Do-It-Yourself spirit. Bring the whole family for a day of cool projects, urban homesteading workshops, beautiful crafts, great food, music and more. All on the beautiful 4-acre Park Day School campus – accessible from Macarthur BART – in Oakland.” (tickets and more info)
Then get your Temescal food fix: The school is just a few blocks from Pizzaiolo, Dona Tomas, Lanesplitter Pizza and lots of other great, family friendly restaurants near Telegraph and 51st St (aka the “trendy Temescal district.”)
Alternative Itinerary: If you’re new to Oakland and love scones: I can highly recommend flipping the itinerary to exit 51st St from Highway 24 and land at Bakesale Betty (the place with the line down the street) at 51st and Telegraph for some baked goods, before heading to the Maker Faire.
Los Angeles – October 23 & 24
Artisanal LA (Sat & Sun, $10 advance) – Whether you’re visiting Los Angeles or if you made it to every other food fest in LA, Artisanal LA – “LA’s finest local handmade artisanal edibles” – is a must-go for anyone who likes eating well or is seeking unique holiday foods gifts…or better yet, personal pre-Halloween indulgence.
You’ll meet a great group of hard-working food entrepreneurs whose foods you’ll be dreaming of for days. (I know about half the people there, so these aren’t empty words. Or empty calories!) Make sure to check out Homegirl Cafe.
LA Magazine’s The Food Event: From the Vine ’10 (1-4pm, $95 unlimited)
At the “upper end” of the food spectrum both in location (Malibu) and price, Los Angeles Magazine celebrates its 50th anniversary at Saddlerock Ranch. LAist recommends this afternoon of “great chefs, culinary experts, sommeliers, and more, up close and personal, plus lots of food, wine, and other treats.” ($95 is the advance price, and LA people may care: parking is included 🙂 (tickets and more info)