That’s right, friends. Spring is in the air! The most important implication of that statement is that it’s finally starting to feel like pre-festy season. For the month of March, we’ve got a slew of St. Patty’s Day hoopla and other celebratory shindigs emanating that springtime vibe. Check out the Everfest community’s top festival picks for March 2016 – and as always, fest on!
Winter Jam (Wichita, Kansas)
March 11, 2016
Photo: Estill Robinson
Known as the biggest Christian Music Tour in the world, Winter Jam brings together some of the most celebrated artists in the Christian Gospel genre. The fest travels to major cities all over the United States and incorporates an additional focus on ministry and worship.
Northwest Side Irish Parade (Chicago, Illinois)
March 13, 2016
Thousands will gather on Chicago’s Northwest side to celebrate Irish heritage and the local community with a vibrant St. Patrick’s Day parade. Extend your fun at the after party, which includes traditional Irish food, beer, games and live music for the whole family.
Chicago Beer Festival (Chicago, Illinois)
March 26, 2016
The Windy City’s world-famous Field Museum is home to the Chicago Beer Festival, where over 70 local and national breweries sample their A-game spring seasonals alongside delicious eats. The museum keeps select exhibits open to attendees, making for a unique festival-going experience.
Good Food Festival & Conference (Chicago, Illinois)
March 24-26, 2016
Held at the UIC Forum, this innovative three-day event is the Midwest’s premier showcase for local and sustainable food. Farmers, food producers, investors, trade buyers, policy makers, activists and Good Food lovers gather to celebrate the Good Food community and participate in various educational workshops.
Winter Warmer Fest (Cleveland, Ohio)
March 5, 2016
Now in its 10th year, this community extravaganza brings together fifty fabulous Ohio breweries to showcase some of their top limited edition beers. Delicious local food trucks will be on site to provide sustenance for revelers. Don’t miss the sweet live blues band!
NYC Saint Patrick’s Day Parade (New York, New York)
March 17, 2016
Photo: NY Daily News
Fun little trivia fact for you guys: this is the oldest and largest parade to take place in the Western Hemisphere. By old, I’m talking 250+ years of tradition. By large, I’m talking literally millions of people. The NYC Saint Patrick’s Day Parade is a truly authentic celebration of all things green and Irish – no automobiles or floats allowed!
Banff Mountain Film Festival World Tour US (New Haven, Connecticut)
March 5, 2016
Each year, Canada’s reputable Banff Centre brings their traveling film festival to the States. Back again by popular demand after earning a spot on our February list, the Banff Mountain Film Festival brings action-packed sports films to adrenaline-loving cinephiliacs all over world. These unique films depict tales of adventure and life on the edge through the lens of intense activities like base jumping and arctic climbing.
Philly Craft Beer Festival (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania)
March 5, 2016
What makes the Philly Craft Beer Festival one of the top beer fests in the nation? Maybe it’s the sheer awesomeness of the 75+ craft breweries that come to showcase their favorites. Maybe it’s the epic food truck lineup. Maybe it’s that all the proceeds go towards a great cause. Whichever way you spin it, the Navy Yard is the place to be this March!
Sugarloaf Craft Festival (Oaks, Pennsylvania)
March 18-20, 2016
Stopping in major cities across the United States, this traveling art fest showcases a blend of both established and emerging artists. At the Oaks location in particular, guests can peruse unique, hand-crafted creations in jewelry, photography, furniture, pottery, sculpture, glass, fashion and more. Specialty gourmet foods like English toffee and fresh bread are sold throughout the festival grounds.
Coffee & Tea Festival NYC (Brooklyn, New York)
March 19-20, 2016
It’s tea time, y’all. In late March, 8,000 people will gather at the Brooklyn Expo Center to sip on some of the finest coffees and teas from over 60 international exhibitors. Learn about the industry from pioneers and pros, and enjoy some delectable treats to go along with your cup of jo!
Beyond Wonderland Southern California (San Bernardino, California)
March 18-19, 2016
Photo: Global Dance Electronic
Out in Southern California, there exists a mystical, Alice In Wonderland-inspired world where the creatures of your imagination roam wild. Beyond Wonderland is an LED-infused playground of marvel and magic, where some of the biggest names in electronic music throw down on four themed stages. Abandon normalcy, and engage your inner freak at this enchanting two-day festival.
Bacon and Beer Festival (Oakland, California)
March 13, 2016
The Oakland Bacon and Beer Festival returns to Jack London Square for its third year of porky, frothy deliciousness – and this round is set to be better than ever. Sample some of the best of bacon and beer from participating vendors to support Oakland Grown.
WonderCon (Anaheim, California)
March 25-27, 2016
Wave your nerd flag with pride at this massive pop culture and comic book expo. Over the course of three days, attendees will have the chance to meet and greet with celebrity guests, participate in panel discussions, check out elaborate exhibits and attend the masquerade ball. Cosplay is encouraged!
Dana Point Festival of Whales (Dana Point, California)
March 5-6 + 12-13, 2016
During the height of the Gray Whale watching season, 100,000 visitors from around the globe travel to Dana Point Harbor to celebrate the return of the once-endangered California Gray Whale. Make sure to check out the awesome free events offered throughout both weekends, like the Whale of a BBQ and the Rubber Ducky Derby.
San Francisco Salsa Festival (San Francisco, California)
March 24-26, 2016
Enter the sexy world of salsa in the heart of downtown San Francisco. For three nights, festival-goers can watch world-class performances and participate in workshops led by top salsa instructors.
Frozen Dead Guy Days (Nederland, Colorado)
March 11-13, 2016
Photo: 23rd Studios
When the name of a festival gives you absolutely no insight into what the event could possibly entail – well, that’s how you know you’ve got a winner. Frozen Dead Guy Days is one of those special festivals that begs you to abandon convention and embrace your inner weirdo. In addition to awesome live music, don’t miss out on less-than-normal events like costume polar plunging, brain freeze contests, frozen t-shirt contests and ice turkey bowling. New to the fest this year is a Bacon Bourbon & Brews tent. Sign. Me. Up.
Treefort Music Fest (Boise, Idaho)
March 23-27, 2016
As the Cultural Ambassador of the beautiful Boise community, Treefort Music Fest aims to highlight all the bustle and brilliance that makes the town unique. Over the course of a week, musicians, outdoor enthusiasts, creatives, foodies and friends come from near and far to connect with Boise’s cultural community via its various breweries, skate parks, music venues and lively downtown area.
Bourbon & Bacon Fest (Denver, Colorado)
March 5, 2016
Over in Hog Heaven – aka Bourbon & Bacon Fest – the following mouthwatering treats actually exist: bacon and bourbon milkshakes, bacon bourbon blondies, bacon cupcakes – ok, you get the idea. The fact of the matter is I had you at bacon. So get out to the Fillmore Auditorium this March and treat your taste buds to one of the most delectable festivals around!
Rock Star Beer Festival (Las Vegas, Nevada)
March 18, 2016
Craft beer and live music are abundant at this crowd-pleaser of a festival. A very reasonably priced ticket gets you unlimited samples of over 50 delicious craft beers at the SLS Vegas Hotel & Casino. Participating breweries come from around the block and around the country, and a live DJ keeps the party going through the night. Don’t miss the after party at Foxtail!
World of Outlaw Sprint Car Series (Las Vegas, Nevada)
March 3-4, 2016
Billed as “The Greatest Show On Dirt”, this massive dirt race attracts thousands of sprint racing fans every year. With multiple races in cities around the US, the event closes out with the big FVP Outlaw Showdown in Vegas. Don’t miss the pre-race tailgating party and other festive activities surrounding the competition.
Ultra Music Festival (Miami, Florida)
March 18-20, 2016
Photo: Pura Vida Bracelets
No doubt one of the most sought-after events in electronic music, Ultra’s explosive popularity gave reason for the fest to expand overseas the past couple of years. With a consistently star-studded lineup including the biggest names in EDM, the festival and the massive parties surrounding it bring in hundreds of thousands of revelers to Miami for two weekends in March.
National Cherry Blossom Festival (Washington, District of Columbia)
March 20 – April 17, 2016
In 1912, Mayor Yukio Ozaki of Tokyo gifted 3,000 cherry trees to the city of Washington, DC. To commemorate the lasting friendship between the US and Japan over the years, the annual National Cherry Blossom Festival coordinates daily springtime events focused around arts, culture, nature and community. With a slew of colorful parades, decadent parties, various races and other shindigs, this month-long extravaganza will forever be one of DC’s most treasured festivals.
Florida Strawberry Festival (Plant City, Florida)
March 3-13, 2016
Head to Plant City, Florida for this unique celebration of all things strawberry. Hungry? You better be! Choose from irresistible strawberry food combinations like strawberry milkshakes, strawberry peanut brittle and even strawberry hamburgers! There will be all sorts of strawberry-related gifts available for purchase as well as plenty of games and rides for the whole family to enjoy.
Louisiana Crawfish Festival (Chalmette, Louisiana)
March 31 – April 3, 2016
This cherished Louisiana tradition recurs annually in the fisherman’s haven of St. Bernard Parish. Cajun food lovers travel from near and far to get their hands on some of the freshest crawfish dishes around and enjoy the equally-as-authentic Cajun entertainment.
Jazz in the Gardens (Miami Gardens, Florida)
March 18-20, 2016
Now in its 11th year, this spectacular musical event draws in thousands of people from all over the globe to the beautiful city of Miami Gardens. The 2016 lineup includes timeless supestars like Aretha Franklin, Usher and Janelle Monae. A delicious array of ethnic foods and refreshing drinks will be available to guests all throughout the weekend.
Zilker Kite Festival (Austin, Texas)
March 6, 2016
Photo: Aquila Commercial
Kick off springtime in Austin with the annual Zilker Kite Festival. Grab a blanket, some friends and a picnic and watch as hundreds of colorful kites fill the sky over Zilker Park. Better yet, bring your homemade kite and compete in one of the many contests! This fest is free to attend, and the proceeds benefit Communities in Schools of Central Texas.
South by Southwest (Austin, Texas)
March 11-20, 2016
Since its inception in 1987, SXSW has maintained an unshakeable position at the forefront of innovation and technology. With a focus on the music, film, and interactive industries, this gargantuan, multi-faceted event transforms the city of Austin into a global stage for influential thought leaders and creative masterminds. At any given moment throughout the week, there’s some sort of workshop, panel, cocktail hour, concert, mentor session or massive party happening in multiple venues around the city. This is the festival of all festivals.
RedGorilla Music Fest (Austin, Texas)
March 14-19, 2016
It might seem crazy that there would be another music festival happening in Austin during SXSW, but this weekend event continues to receive international recognition for being the go-to showcase for discovering new music. One of the only “No Badge Required” events of the week, Red Gorilla Music Fest hosts an eclectic lineup of bands, solo artists and DJs at various venues on 6th Street.
Pot of Gold Music Festival (Chandler, Arizona)
March 17 & 19, 2016
Pot of Gold is a two day music festival in Arizona that showcases a diverse lineup of musical talent. This year, the lineup features big names like Atmosphere, Slightly Stoopid, Rebelution and Dirty Heads. Local food vendors and beer tents will provide necessary sustenance!
Tejano Music Awards Fan Fair (San Antonio, Texas)
March 17-20, 2016
After 25+ years of existence, the Tejano Music Awards Fan Fair continues to be the most prominent celebration of Tejano music and culture. The free four-day event showcases 125+ local and international bands and draws thousands of fans each year.
MUTEK.ES (Barcelona, Spain)
March 2-5, 2016
Photo: The Sound Clique
MUTEK.ES is the Spanish reincarnation of the decade-old flagship festival in Montreal. For four days in March, Barcelona becomes an international breeding ground for digital innovation and creative brilliance, with electronic music performances by local and global luminaries. Now in its 7th year, MUTEK.ES is once again set to raise the bar for musical and digital artistry.
Autorama / World of Wheels / Cavalcade of Customs (Winnipeg, Manitoba)
As far as custom car shows go, Autorama is one of the big kids on the block. With events in nearly 20 cities across the United States and Canada, this show displays some of the most sought-after hot rods and speciality vehicles around. Car enthusiasts gather from all corners of the globe to compete for the coveted Ridler Award, which emphasizes creativity, engineering and quality workmanship.
Northern Lights Music Festival (Edmonton, Alberta)
March 25-26, 2016
Northern Lights is a two-day electronic music festival held in Edmonton’s Shaw Conference Center. The festival boasts a small but tastefully eclectic lineup for 2016, with massive headlining acts like Odesza, Porter Robinson and Duke Dumont.
Holi Cow! Festival (New Dehli, India)
March 24, 2016
Each year, locals and tourists alike gather in New Delhi for Holi Cow Festival, a melting pot of culture, art, color, music and food. This outdoor celebration brings the traditional, color-infused festivities of Holi together with a stacked lineup of live musical performances that everyone can enjoy.
C2C Country to Country (London, England)
March 11-13, 2016
For one weekend every March, country lovers gather at the O2 in London for Europe’s largest country music festival. This year’s lineup features big names like Carrie Underwood, Miranda Lambert and Eric Church, and the fest itself is adding an additional location in Glasgow.