FALLBROOK — The 23rd Annual Fallbrook Avocado Festival on Sunday, April 19, means that this town, normally removed from the crowded hustle and bustle of larger cities, will be filled to the brim with folks anxious to visit the popular festival and participate in the fun.
It may take a little patience on the part of Fallbrook residents to move about on this day, but by using some ‘insider tips’ it’s possible for locals to enjoy the annual festival as much as the visitors.
Tip: Arrive early
Festival opening time is 9 a.m., so locals are best advised to arrive between 8 and 9 and park close to the main festivities. Many vendors are not quite ready for business, but local eateries serving morning coffee and goodies are.
Good advice is to skip breakfast at home; dine in town; and stroll along Main as the festival is beginning.
One can actually keep a brisk pace that early and scout the entire festival area rather quickly, returning later to visit favorite spots.
Those who arrive early will have their choice of the best produce and plants at the Farmer’s Market, the most unique crafts and clothing items at the booths and their pick of items from the Avo Emporium.
Tip: Show off cooking skills
For amateur chefs there will be culinary contests at the festival. Judging is at 9 a.m. at 330 South Main (new location of North County Fire administrative offices).
Entering is easy and judging is early, which leaves the entire day to enjoy the rest of the festival.
The professional culinary contests will be judged at noon in the same location. Professional chefs traveling from Japan will once again provide for excitement and entertainment in this centrally located venue.
Tip: Enjoy “special” food for a day
For some, the wonderful food booths are the main reason to attend the festival. Those whose breakfast is long gone (or who never had any) should start here, before the lines begin later in the morning.
Everyone knows that festival/fair food is tantalizing, flavorful and fun – and can be walked off, too!
Of course, Fallbrook’s signature Holy Guaca-Moly will be on hand, dishing up that favorite dip and chips. For something different, try an avocado tamale, Hawaiian nachos with wasabi guacamole, a bacon-wrapped hot dog with avocado or a guacamole burger.
Stationed at each end of the festival, near the food booths, are refreshment “gardens” with seats for eating those goodies. Stay until 11 a.m. to listen to the live band and/or purchase adult refreshments before resuming exploration of Main.
Tip: Take advantage of free entertainment
The Community Stage, located in the CAST/Mission Theatre parking lot, will feature a variety of performances, contests and winners throughout the day.
There will be a Best Dressed Avocado contest at 11 a.m. and the Toyota of Temecula Valley Avo 500 Race follows at 11:30.
New this year will be a revival of the old “pit spitting” contest, with some surprise match-ups not to miss.
Why not take the day and enjoy the hometown festival with family, friends and neighbors? For information, visit http://www.fallbrookchamber.org or call (760) 728-5845.