As the snow melts away and the mud begins to dry up, a variety of festivals are just around the corner. Food, music, beer, crafts, hot air balloons and a dose of good ole’ Vermont fun makes for memorable spring and summer festivals!
Flavors of the Valley
Sunday, April 9
Hartford High School
37 Highland Ave
White River Junction, Vt. 05001.
11 a.m. – 3 p.m. Tickets are purchased at the door.
Where can you taste basil-infused maple syrup, locally made hot sauce, award-winning cheeses, and lamb sausage, all in the same place? At the 16 annual Flavors of the Valley, the region’s premier local food expo hosted by the local nonprofit Vital Communities.
The family-friendly event offers a chance for consumers to taste a wide range of fresh, local foods, meet some of the Upper Valley’s farmers and food producers, and get inspired to incorporate local products into their regular shopping.
In addition to sampling foods from more than 45 unique local farms, restaurants, and food businesses, visitors can purchase cheese, vegetables, meats, baked goods, sauces, and more directly from vendors, and even sign up for Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) shares for the season. Kids can enjoy fun local-food activities with Upper Valley Farm to School.
Everyone is welcome at Flavors of the Valley. Admission is per person, with children 6 and under free, and there is a family maximum. Proceeds help support the Valley Food & Farm program at Vital Communities.
Vermont Restaurant Week
April 21 – 30
Participating restaurants acorss the state encourage you to explore new places and menus. Discover the Vermont we all love and enjoy great food along the way! More information can be found at www.vermontrestaurantweek.com
Herrick’s Cove Wildlife Festival
May 7 – 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m
Just off Route 5, less than three miles north of Bellows Falls.
If you’re a wildlife enthusiast itching for spring then be sure to check out the eighteenth annual Herrick’s Cove Wildlife Festival in Rockingham, Vt. Herrick’s Cove, on the Connecticut River, hosts one of the most popular festivals in the area. The festival includes nature walks and live animals such as hawks, owls, coyotes, wolves, fish, turtles, and snakes.
“Vermonters really enjoy the wild animals and wild places that make the state so special,” said Forrest Hammond, bear project leader with Vermont Fish & Wildlife. “This festival gives participants a chance to experience some of these animals firsthand and learn about the importance of conserving their habitats so future generations can appreciate them as well.”
The Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department will host several exhibits at the event, including animal mounts, interactive demonstrations, hands-on fishing activities hosted by the department’s Let’s Go Fishing program, information on bears and bats, a 4-H shooting event as well as fun games for kids. Other presenters include Jim Andrews on turtles, the Ascutney Mountain Audubon Society, The Nature Museum at Grafton, and TransCanada Corporation.
Hot Air Balloon, Craft and Music Festival
June 16- 18
91 Village Green
Quechee, Vt. 5059
Friday: 3 p.m.-dusk, Saturday: 10 a.m.-dusk, Sunday: 9:30 a.m.- 6 p.m.
What could be better than hot air balloons, crafts and music? A festival that includes all three! The festival will feature up to 20 hot air balloons that will fill the skies over the Upper Valley of Vermont. Five flights will be schedule, so you will have a chance to see and participate throughout the day, there will also be tethered flights.
Sixty craft artisans will also be available for you to pursue their wares while you enjoy the continuous music and entertainment for all ages. The festival is family friendly with children’s activities that include Euro Bungee, a Rock Climbing wall, bounce house and more. No festival is complete with out festival food and local healthy options and a beer and wine garden.
Springfield Strawberry Festival
529 Wellwood Orchards Rd.
Springfield, Vt. 05156
10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
It is more than a craft fair, it is an adventure at Wellwood Orchards filled with food vendors, PYO strawberries, petting zoo, wagon rides and live music.
Ludlow Arts and Crafts Festival
Fletcher Farm School
Ludlow, Vt. 05419
10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Ludlow’s Arts and Crafts Festival features over 90 artists and craftsmen exhibiting their top wares. You will be able to find pottery, paintings, syrup, honey, jewelry, wood turnings and more! Along with the artisans you get the opportunity to enjoy some fabulous food from a variety of vendors.
July 28 & 29
A 2-day Caribbean style food festival giving festival goers plenty of spice in the sun. The event begins at the Rum & Brew tasting Friday night 7 – 10 p.m. at the Robert H. Gibson River Garden located at 157 Main Street. The tasting features themed libations and plenty of rum to go around. Ther is also live Caribbean music that will keep you grooving.
Saturday, July 29 the festival continues from 11 a.m. – 7 p.m. where music artists bring reggae to the mountains. Also on Saturday is the Jerk Cook-off competition, street vendors and food trucks, chef demos, and a kids culture zone with plenty of interactive activities.
Hops on the Hills
August 4 – 6
Jackson Gore Inn
Ludlow, Vt. 05149
Friday 5 – 9 p.m., Saturday 12 – 8 p.m. and Sunday 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Vermont is has the highest breweries per capita (21 to be exact) and if you love beer and cider, this is a festival not to miss. More than 75 craft beers and ciders from area brewers are at the festival. The festival showcases a great lineup of live music, craft vendors, food trucks and the great outdoors. For more information call 802-228-1600 or visit okemo.com.
Art in the Park
August 11 & 12
Main Street Park
Junction of Route 4 & 7
Rutland, Vt. 05701
Saturday: 10 a.m. – 6 p.m., Sunday: 10 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
One of the highlights of August in the summer Art in the Park put on by the Chaffee Art Center. The festival will have all things art available from vendors such as pottery, paintings, fiber, metal, jewelry, wood. You will also have the pleasure of listening to great music and indulging in delicious food. Admission is by donation.