Olympia has several events throughout the year, but these festivals are a sign that summer is around the corner. From March through May you are bound to find something suited for you – and if you don’t make it to Olympia in 2007, do not despair. These spring events happen every year in Thurston County.
March brings us the Old Time Music Festival, a reason to head just south of Olympia to the small town of Tenino. Enjoy a variety of bands playing bluegrass and the like – bring your friends along and be swept back to a time when life just seemed simpler.
The last week-end of March brings the Capital Food and Wine Festival, which ironically does not take place in the capital but in Lacey just east of Olympia. Bring your ID because the cost of admission includes a glass of wine for anyone over 21 years old, and you need to prove your age even if you do not plan on sipping that glass. This festival is for everyone who enjoys food and wine, whether a long-time connoisseur or a novice. Many Washington wineries will attend, a great opportunity to explore the wines of the second largest wine producing state in the US.
Aside from Olympia’s Farmers Market opening in April, you will also find Lacey’s Annual Egg Hunt. Sorry adults, the egg hunt is for kids only. Bring the family and enjoy a variety of other activities.
Everyone loves one of Olympia’s most defining festivals – the Spring Arts Walk with the Procession of the Species. The Arts Walk brings everyone to downtown Olympia in order to enjoy this wonderful festival to celebrate art in every form. Not just galleries take part in this. You will find art displays in businesses from restaurants to banks, street vendors, musical performances, and so much more.
Not to be missed is the Procession of the Species, a parade that takes place on the second day of the festival. No real animals take part in this festival, instead members of the community create an array of incredible costumes and floats accompanied by dancing and music. This is a true spring celebration filled with color and festivity.
Not to miss in April is the Junior League Gift and Garden Show and the Earth Day celebration, both at the right time to truly begin spending spring outside in the garden. May kicks off with the Lacey Grand Prix and Alternative Fuel Fair, a festival centered around a race of home-made motorized vehicles that do not run on petroleum.
Two waterfront festivals in April begin a season of events at Olympia’s beautiful boardwalk. The Wooden Boat Fair and the annual Swantown Boatswap and Chowder Challenge coincide on the same week-end. Boat lovers and the curious will find a variety of wooden boats from all vintages, an international food court, arts and crafts, and informational booths. Then head to Olympia’s Swantown Marina to sample all the chowder you can eat and root for your favorite. Both spring festivals are great for kids too.
For those who enjoy running, the weather at the end of May is fantastically suited for the Capital City Marathon, also in downtown Olympia. And lastly, families will love the Lacey Spring Fun Fair where so many things can happen that I will let you visit to see for yourselves. So come to Olympia, Lacey and the rest of Thurston County to immerse yourself in your favorite spring festival.
For further information:
16th – 17th Tenino Old Time Music Festival 360-264-2386
31st Capital Food & Wine Festival 360-438-4366
5th April Olympia Farmers Market opens (Thurs – Sun, 10AM – 3PM) 360-352-9096
7th Lacey’s Annual Easter Egg Hunt 360-491-0857
27th – 28th Spring Arts Walk/ Procession of the Species (28th) 360-753-8380
27th – 29th Junior League Gift & Garden Show 360-357-6024
5th Lacey Grand Prix & Alternative Fuel Fair 360-491-0857
12th – 13th Wooden Boat Fair 360- 866-1315
12h Annual Swantown Boatswap & Chowder Challenge 360-528-8000
20th Capital City Marathon 360-786-1786
19th – 20th Lacey Spring Fun Fair