THE SEASON OF CRAFTS: Is there a specific time of year for specific homemade goods and treats and fundraisers? Bake sales seem to reign in various school districts when a specific sport is kicking off its yearly run and the team needs uniforms. Breezy outdoor painting-focused fairs rule the summer. And craft happenings? They belong to autumn, when people are thinking more to the holidays and one-of-a-kind gifts and cozier pursuits. And while you're likely to see a number of craft-oriented fairs at schools and museums and parks from September to December, none can top the sheer big-a-tude of the Harvest Festival Original Art & Craft Show.
FOR ONE... this mondo fest has two qualities that convey its impressive size. One? It has been around for over four decades, meaning a lot of artists return, year after year, to sell their wares (as new ones join). And two? It travels. It visits nine cities in Nevada and California over a three-month run. And within that run? Hundreds of artists and craftspeople and bakers and entertainers line up the pots and vases and earrings and Christmas ornaments and retro aprons and watercolors and fancy brownies and the dozens upon dozens of edible, wearable, and lookable items the show is known for.
THE CALIFORNIA STOPS: Las Vegas wrapped at the start of September, so now it is all Golden State for the festival, which promises 24,000+ "handmade American arts & crafts in hundreds of booths." Pleasanton is the first California stop, then it is Ventura's turn over the first weekend in October. Other cities include Anaheim, Del Mar, and Pomona. More than finding an interesting seasonal gift for a loved one, though, you'll feel a bit of fall spirit, if that's what you so desire. Sometimes that can be a little long in coming if the warm Santa Ana winds blow and the autumn temps stay up. Call the Harvest Festival Original Art & Craft Show concentrated autumn, with a few snacky, musical pleasures to boot.