As the summer season gets underway, the Golden State is hopping with a variety of art and music festivals. Here are just a few of the many events on tap later this month and throughout the summer in Northern and Southern California.
- Tahoe City opens the summer season with the 12th Annual Tahoe City Solstice Festival, June 15-18. The event features four days of events and activities, including a farmers’ market, a classic car show, concerts and the Tahoe City Wine Walk on June 17, from noon-4 pm. The Wine Walk is a fantastic opportunity to explore and shop along scenic North Lake Tahoe Boulevard, taking in stunning lake views while tasting wines, enjoying live music and sampling gourmet bites from acclaimed area restaurants. Wine Walk tickets are $40 in advance and $50 at the event (cash only).
- The summer-long Valhalla Art, Music and Theatre Festival opens its 38th season with Dirty Cello, a blues and bluegrass band, Wednesday, June 21, at 7:30 pm at the Boathouse Theatre, #1 Valhalla Road, Emerald Bay Road, South Lake Tahoe. The festival’s lineup of world-class music, theater, visual and cultural arts events continues through August at the Boathouse Theatre, The Valhalla Grand Hall and the Grand Lawn, all set against the spectacular backdrop of Lake Tahoe and the Tallac Historic Site.
- Celebrating the artistic, cultural, social and historical values of films through the universal language of art, the Sacramento French Film Festival runs from June 16-25. The festival features screenings of French classics, Q&A sessions with directors and world premieres. And there’s no need to speak French to enjoy the films, as they all have English and French subtitles. The festival takes place downtown at Crest Theatre, 1013 K Street, and Esquire IMAX Theatre, 1211 K Street.
- Take the whole family to the 25th Annual Pasadena Chalk Festival on Father’s Day weekend to watch hundreds of professional artists and enthusiasts transform the streets of Pasadena with mesmerizing artwork, including movie posters and iconic film scenes. The free festival, which also includes a fun area for kids, takes place from 10 am-7 pm Saturday, June 17, and Sunday, June 18, at the Paseo Colorado shopping center, 300 E. Colorado Blvd., Pasadena.
- Enjoy a day of fun in picturesque Santa Monica on Sunday, June 25, at the 17th Annual Summer Soulstice, featuring live music by 18 bands on six stages, over 50 local vendors, a beer and wine garden, Kids Korner, pet parade, sidewalk sales and more. The event runs from 11 am-7 pm on Main Street.
- If you’re looking for fun by the sea, head out to the Long Beach Bayou Festival on Saturday, June 24, and Sunday, June 25, to experience cultural music, including Cajun, Zydecko and Blues artists, along with Cajun and Creole cuisine and dance from New Orleans and the Louisiana Bayou country. The festival takes place from 11 am-9 pm Saturday and 11 am-7:30 pm Sunday at Rainbow Lagoon Park on East Shoreline Drive in Long Beach.