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Orange County's Best May Festivals

Jay Blakesberg Doheny header
(credit: Jay Blakesberg)

Spring has sprung and it's time to get out and enjoy the beautiful weather. Orange County has several outdoor events that will engage lovers of art, music, diversity, film and even strawberry shortcake. Whether you are interested in a family outing at the park or a music festival on the beach, these events have spring written all over them.

Newport Beach Film Festival
(credit: Newport Beach Film Festival/Facebook)

Newport Beach Film Festival
4540 Campus Drive
Newport Beach, CA 92660
(949) 253-2880
April 25 through May 2

Showcasing 300 films from all over the world, the Newport Beach Film Festival is an ideal destination for film enthusiasts. There will be more than six theaters showing films during the event. Learn more about the venues here. Additionally, there will be a red carpet, gala, sports, fashion and several social engagements. Click here to take a peek at some of the fun had at Newport Beach Film Festivals in the past.

Related: Best Movie Theaters In Orange County

Soka University
(credit: Soka University)

Soka University's 12th Annual International Festival
Soka University
1 University Drive
Aliso Viejo, CA 92656
(949) 480-4081
May 4

Celebrate diversity at Soka University's Annual International Festival. This free event will showcase 900 artists dancing, singing and playing music. Who knows, you might be on stage this year. For more information regarding performing at the event, contact Lisa Lu at There will also be more than 200 exhibits featuring business and non-profit organizations, as well as crafts.

city of mission viejo
(credit: City of Mission Viejo)

Arts Alive Festival
Oso Viejo Community Park
24932 Veterans Way
Mission Viejo, CA 92692
(949) 470-8440
May 4 and 5

Nothing says spring like a beautiful day at the park. Bring your creativity and participate in some of the activities offered at Oso Viejo Park during the Arts Alive Festival. There will be painting, ceramics, sculpture and drawing opportunities, as well as skilled street painters displaying large chalk drawings. You can also enjoy listening to the sounds of the Surf City Allstars while letting your imagination flow.

Jay Blakesberg
(credit: Jay Blakesberg)

Doheny Blues Festival
Doheny State Beach
25300 Dana Point Harbor Drive
Dana Point, CA 92629
(949) 360-7800
May 18 and 19

It doesn't get much better than live music on a beautiful beach. With a talented lineup of musicians and picturesque views, Doheny Blues Festival is sure to be a one-of-a-kind experience. The festival will showcase several artists such as Ben Harper and Charlie Musselwhite, Tedeschi Trucks Band, Joe Bonamassa, George Thorogood and The Destroyers, Jimmie Vaughan and Lou Ann Barton, Shemekia Copeland and Robert Randolph and the Family Band. In addition to food vendors, there will also be a micro-brew and wine selection to accompany the event.

Garden Grove Strawberry Festival
(credit: Strawberry Festival)

Strawberry Festival
Village Green
Euclid St. and Main St.
Garden Grove, CA 92840
(714) 638-0981
May 24 through 27

Join the fun at this year's Strawberry Festival and eat strawberry shortcake until your heart's content. Not only will there be a cake cutting hosted by celebrities, but rides for all ages, contests, live music, performing arts and a parade will be part of the festivities. Some of the celebrities that have graced the event in the past include Hilary Duff, Shirley Jones, Zsa Zsa Gabor and Rico Rodriguez. Maybe one of your favorite entertainers will be at the festival this year

Related: Best Upcoming Food Events In OC

Stacy Brecht is a professional writer, dancer, marketer and model in the Los Angeles area. Brecht also enjoys traveling, wine, fitness training, volunteering, movies and trying new restaurants. Her work can be found at

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