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Best Art Festivals On The Peninsula

These fall art festivals prove that summer doesn't get all the fun. As the weather cools, celebrate the harvest months by venturing to these art fairs. Some are large multimedia affairs meant to keep your whole family fully entertained and others are more serene strolls that encourage you to take your time browsing art. The Peninsula certainly has options when it comes to fall fun.

San Carlos Art and Wine Fair
600 Laurel St
San Carlos, CA 94070
(650) 591-9120

Dates: October 6-7, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

This annual event, sponsored by the San Carlos Chamber of Commerce, promises a wide range of over 275 art vendors offering ceramics, photography, wood working and more. Visitors can enjoy 10 varieties of wine, beer, international food booths and several entertainment stages. Child-friendly activities include face painting, a magician and a Family Fun Zone stage. The event drew around 70,000 visitors last year and can be conveniently reached via CalTrain and SamTrans. No pets allowed.

Arts and Olive Festival
Canada College
4200 Farm Hill Blvd
Redwood City, CA 94061
(650) 306-3428

Dates: October 7, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

This event will be a special treat for olive lovers. A hilltop campus featuring over 350 olive trees is the backdrop to this annual festival that raises scholarship funds for Canada College students. Over 80 vendors, as well as some of the olive industry's leaders, will provide guests with a deeper understanding of the fruit. Of course, guests can expect olive and olive-oil tastings, a variety of olive-related products and beautiful artwork.

Related: Gourmet Grocery Stores In The Peninsula

Half Moon Bay

Half Moon Bay Art and Pumpkin Festival
Historic Main St
Half Moon Bay, CA 94019
(650) 726-9652

Dates: October 13-14, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

This is a good old-fashioned family festival that celebrates all things pumpkin on a grand scale. From pumpkin-weighing contests with $25,000 in prize money to pie-eating contests to pumpkin-carving stations, and even a "pumpkin Picasso" sculpting incredible art from a 1,000-pound pumpkin, you will be able to celebrate the new harvest. There will be many activities just for kids including a family entertainment stage, costume contest and an adjacent haunted house (with paid admission). Adults can enjoy handcrafted beer with homestyle cuisine and two additional entertainment stages. Over 250 artists and vendors will be in attendance offering glass art (in the form of pumpkins of course), sculpture and mixed media, functional as well as fine art and wearable art. No pets allowed.

Sidewalk Fine Arts and Crafts Fall Festival

Downtown Menlo Park
Santa Cruz Ave at El Camino Real
Menlo Park, CA 94025
(209) 267-4394

Dates: October 20-21, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

This more leisurely, low-key sidewalk stroll takes advantage of scenic downtown Menlo Park. You can expect less spectacle but more interaction with vendors at this annual event featuring artisans who have been returning to the festival for over a decade. This festival is produced by the same company who organizes the San Carlos Art and Wine Faire and will feature 90 booths with jewelry, ceramics, photography and more.

Related: Best Art Galleries On The Peninsula

Harvest Festival Original Art and Craft Show
San Mateo Event Center
1346 Saratoga Drive
San Mateo, CA 94403
(415) 447-3205

Dates: November 9-11

This marks the 40th anniversary of this traveling production. The king of craft shows in terms of sheer size, you can expect 24,000 arts and crafts goods spread throughout hundreds of booths on the convention center floor. You will want to pace yourself over the three days and you can come and go as you please after purchasing your admission. Expect great food, drink, entertainment and child-friendly activities at the San Mateo stop on this tour.

Lollie Hopper loves to drink deeply from the well of culture. If it's beautiful, interesting or timely, this Bay Area native wants to cover it. Her work can be found on

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