10 Popular Festivals In Fresno, California

festivals in fresno
John Cedrick
John Cedrick 
| 5 min read

Fresno, California, may seem like a place unheard of before, but that’s just because you’re missing out — a lot. Home to an array of traditional, hip and modern activities craved by all the age groups, there’s never a dull moment once you step foot in Fresno. This place is the perfect alternative to the more common itineraries of San Francisco and Los Angeles. What might seem like a pretty laid-back city, goes all out with its festivals. In fact, you’ll be surprised that a Fresno version of Coachella is hosted here and a number of renowned festivals call Fresno their home. More so, festivals here are always colorful, vibrant and fun — a testament to the hundreds of thousands of visitors of Fresno who come to experience their yearly festivities. Now that you’re hooked, consider adding these popular festivals in Fresno, California to your travel bucket list.

1. Rogue Festival

Rogue Festival is one of several “Fringe Festivals” worldwide, meaning that independent artists or performers are not invited to perform but are assigned via application lottery. This gives under the radar performers a chance to showcase their talents, which can result in not-so-common performances. In fact, the lineup of performers consists mostly of not the typical household names, adding a little spice to the festivities as a whole. It also features every kind of art and entertainment performance, such as music, dance, puppetry, theatrical plays and magic acts. So, if you’re an artsy person, Rogue Festival just might trigger your senses in a way so mesmerizing, you wouldn’t want it to end.

Rogue Festival

Address: Spectrum Gallery, 608 E Olive Ave, Fresno, CA 93728

Website: Rogue Festival

Takes Place: March

Price: 12 USD

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2. The Big Fresno Fair

Night Carnival
Source: Photo by user The Big Fresno Fair used under CC BY-SA 4.0

The Big Fresno Fair is indeed big. It’s the biggest annual event in Fresno and the whole Central Valley in terms of visitors and scope. The fair hosts numerous fun exhibits, music entertainment, educational programs, live horse racing, livestock shows, concerts, among many others. This humongous facility spans 165 acres (66 hectares) of high-quality real estate allotted for stalls, booths, carnival rides, stage platforms, programs and many more. Not to mention the emphasis on educational activities complemented by lively programs, a testament to their mission to educate, celebrate and have fun. Therefore, visitors flock the fair in the hundreds of thousands annually.

The Big Fresno Fair

Address: 1121 S Chance Ave, Fresno, CA 93702

Website: The Big Fresno Fair

Takes Place: October

Price: 12 USD

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3. Downtown Fresno Christmas Parade

Editor's Note: There's no photo available at the time of writing

As the cold season comes to fruition, it brings about the excitement and the very essence of what Christmas is all about; giving back, which is what Fresno Christmas parade is all about. Celebrated since the 1920s, this annual event features local dancers, caroling and Christmas-themed decorative floats on display for everyone to see. Plus, parade participants will be competing for the best performance so expect a mesmerizing and passionate masterpiece. This tradition represents the warmth of local residents in giving back to others and providing them with the taste of Christmas. This is a fun-filled experience that everyone of all ages can enjoy.

Downtown Fresno Christmas Parade

Address: 1000 Fulton Mall, Fresno, CA, USA

Takes Place: December

Price: 65 USD

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4. Fresno Film Festival [Last event in 2019]

IMG_0010 Fresno Reel Pride
Source: Photo by user David Prasad used under CC BY-SA 2.0

The Fresno Film Festival is a series of events organized annually. During its 15-year stint, the festival is organized with great pomp which has attracted film enthusiasts, artists and more audiences. It features seven exclusive programs and local award-winning short films during its three-day program. What makes the film festival exciting is it includes special filmmaker appearances where they engage in Q&A discussions. You can ask for tips in film-making, editing and many more. This film festival brings film-making right to the audience’s fingertips, which is perfect for aspiring filmmakers.

Fresno Film Festival

Address: The Tower Theatre, 815 E Olive Ave., Fresno, CA 93728

Website: Fresno Film Festival

Takes Place: November

Price: 45 USD

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5. Fresno Greek Fest

If you have a thing for Greek-inspired performances or someone who loves Greek culture as a whole, Fresno Greek Fest is your go-to type of festival, especially if you have Greek ancestry. It also features fun kids’ programs and an abundance of food and drinks. This festival brings Greece to Fresno in a way so captivating, your senses will be worked out to the extreme, whether in taste, sights or sounds. From the traditional and modern sounds, folk and hip dances, to the cultural activities of Greece, everyone will find themselves in a virtual visit of the Greek homeland.

Fresno Greek Fest

Address: 2219 N Orchard St, Fresno, CA 93703

Website: Fresno Greek Fest

Takes Place: September

Price: 20 USD

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6. Grizzly Fest [Last event in 2019]

Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account

Grizzly Fest is a multi-genre music festival wherein it features a little of everything from indie, hip hop, reggae and much more. Though the festival features music as its main event, it also features art exhibits, carnival rides and culinary bliss. There are three stage platforms for performers located at both corners of the festival grounds. The middle portion is the place for guests to be ecstatic about the event and rock to an array of music performances. In essence, Grizzly Fest is the Coachella of Fresno.

Grizzly Fest

Address: Woodward Park, Fresno, CA 93720

Website: Grizzly Fest

Takes Place: May

Price: 75 USD

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7. Fresno Spring Fair

festivals in fresno | fresno spring fair
Source: instagram

Fresno Spring Fair is a small festival event that leads to The Big Fresno Fair months before it’s due. During which, you can enjoy your favorite fair festivities such as carnival rides, music performances and delectable foods. In a nutshell, this festival is a downgrade of The Big Fresno Fair in terms of all aspects except the fun part. But don’t get discouraged, Fresno Spring Fair may be small as compared to the much-awaited Big Fresno Fair, but the enjoyment it exudes is on par with its big brother. Consider yourself entertained once you actually step foot in its premises.

Fresno Spring Fair

Address: 1121 S Chance Ave, Fresno, CA 93702

Takes Place: April

Price: 5 USD

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8. Pinata Fest [Last event in 2018]

Source: Pixabay

Pinata Fest is quite different from the normal festivals mentioned above. Though it features some common activities such as live music, food, games and dance performances, its Pinata decor is its spotlight. During this, great numbers of pinatas are displayed and paraded, resulting in a rainbow of color combinations that will surely invigorate the sights. Originally intended as a birthday party decor, today’s pinata is more than that. The goal of Pinata Fest is to mix tradition (pinata) with modernity (parades and festivities). In a nutshell, Pinata Fest hosts numerous activities such as pinata-making workshops, pinata competitions and the most-awaited pinata bashes, where you get to hit the pinata until it breaks. Also, you can jive to traditional music and enjoy salsa dancing.

Pinata Fest

Address: Arte Américas, 1630 Van Ness Ave, Fresno, CA 93721

Website: Pinata Fest

Takes Place: May

Price: 3 USD

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9. Christmas Tree Lane

festivals in fresno | christmas tree lane
Source: instagram

One of the most-awaited festivities of the year complemented by the breeze of cold winter nights is Christmas Tree Lane. It brings about the very essence of Christmas, which is all about giving back and family. As the festival nears its opening, North Van Ness Boulevard in Fig Garden is made a one-way street lined with hundreds of iconic trees and houses fully designed in a Christmas fashion. Indeed, a sight to behold and one shall not miss. You can enjoy the 2-mile (3.2km) stretched boulevard full of Christmas decor, thrift shops, live music, food and many more. It all started in 1920 with a single tree that was decorated in honor of a child who passed away, then locals adapted the tradition and improved upon it on a yearly basis.

Christmas Tree Lane

Address: N Van Ness Blvd, Fresno, CA 93704

Website: Christmas Tree Lane

Takes Place: December

Price: Free

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10. Ani-Me Con

Ani-me Con brings out the Otakus and pop fans alike, to converge in its yearly convention in what they consider as the best event that has ever happened. What makes this place exciting and unique is it features an abundance of vendors, anime artists and exhibitors, and fan clubs. It’s also home to prominent guest speakers, panel members, voice actors or actresses, cosplay contests, fashion show, anime events, comics, Sci-Fi and so much more. Ani-me Con attracts thousands of attendees to witness the two-day weekend convention, a testament to its wide-ranging reach in the anime world and pop culture as well. One of the perks of attending Ani-me Con is you can meet the voice actors or actresses of your favorite anime character, go out of your bubble and do cosplay fashion and many more. This convention is truly a haven for Otakus and pop fans alike.

Ani-Me Con

Address: Big Fresno Fairgrounds, Fresno, CA 93702

Website: Ani-Me Con

Takes Place: March

Price: 20 USD

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Enjoy the traditional and pop culture of Fresno

One of the most rewarding experiences that you can do is to immerse yourself in the local culture of a certain place. You can do so by attending their festivities and experience, firsthand, their distinct culture manifested in their festivals and events. What’s more rewarding than connecting with strangers and understanding the very soul of the place itself?

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Any must-sees we missed? Tell us about them in the comments section or write a post here to help out fellow travelers!
Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.


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Based in Manila, Philippines, and born and raised there, John Cedrick is a Civil Engineer by profession with a deep-seated passion for writing. He aspires to establish a renowned blog while...Read more

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