Summer heats up with bevy of festivals and fairs

pclark@modbee.comJune 27, 2014 

Sure, Graffiti Summer events wind down this weekend, but there are two more months of fun in the sun to be had across the region.

Festivals and fairs abound across the Valley and Mother Lode in July and August, with a handful taking place this weekend, before June bids adieu.

The Stanislaus County Fair in Turlock, the Mother Lode Fair in Sonora and X-Fest in Modesto are the biggest of events. But there are plenty of other celebrations planned – from street fairs to finger-licking-good barbecue festivals to music events and more; here’s a look at the larger events scheduled:

Celebrating the Arts on 10th Street – Today: Music, art and food vendors. The project is a fundraiser for the 10th Art Block project, a collaboration with the Modesto Chamber of Commerce, Downtown Improvement District, Stanislaus Alliance, city of Modesto and Modesto Convention and Visitors Bureau to bring a dedicated art space to the downtown area. Free. 3 to 8 p.m., Downtown Modesto, 10th Street between I and J streets. www.facebook.com/pages/10th-Street-Art-Block/1420427004911096.

Hilmar Dairy Festival – Today: The annual bovine fest features entertainment, art, activities, Little Milkman and Milkmaid contest, a car show, exhibits, vendors and fireworks. Free. 5 to 10 p.m. Hilmar High football field, 7807 N. Lander Ave. www.hilmarchamber.com

Tuolumne Lumber Jubilee – Today-Sunday: The 65th annual event celebrates the logging industry with a parade, carnival rides, games, music, arm wrestling, a hot dog-eating contest and tug of war. The logging exhibition will include ax throwing, cross cutting and more. Free. 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. today, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday. Downtown Tuolumne City. (209) 352-4698

Sierra Nevada Arts & Crafts Festival – July 5-6: The 42nd annual event features more than 60 booths of fine crafts, art and gourmet foods to sample. 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. both days. Grounds of Bristols Ranch House Café, 961 Highway 4 in downtown Arnold. Free. (925) 372-8961

Cortez Obon Festival – July 5: Japanese-American festival featuring Obon dancing, cultural presentations, music and more. The program will start with a performance by Ballico Taiko, a drum group from Ballico-Cressey Elementary School District, followed by dancing. 7 p.m. Cortez Buddhist Church, Cortez Avenue between Linwood and Santa Fe, Turlock. (209) 632-7942.

Mother Lode Fair – July 10-13: This year’s expo includes a demolition derby, truck and tractor pulls and motocross. Among the concert performers will be Doobie Brothers tribute act Doobie Rock, Flying Blind, Tom Drinnon and Chains Required. July 10-11, 4 p.m. to midnight; July 12, 1 p.m. to midnight; July 13, 1 to 11 p.m. 220 Southgate Drive, Sonora. $10 admission, free age 5 and under; $20 for carnival wristband. www.motherlodefair.org or (209) 532-7428

Stanislaus County Fair – July 11-20: Annual county fair featuring agriculture exhibits, midway, entertainment, motor sports, rodeo and more. Entertainment includes Wynonna and the Big Noise, Kansas, Banda Macho, Rodney Atkins, Kool and the Gang, Loverboy, Three Dog Night, Joan Jett and the Blackhearts and more. Weekdays, 5 p.m. to midnight; Saturdays and Sundays, noon to midnight. Stanislaus County Fairground, 900 N. Broadway, Turlock. $5-$12 gate admission; some events have an additional cost. (209) 668-1333.

Bear Valley Music Festival – July 25-Aug. 10: 46th event features Tommy Castro and the Painkillers, The Brothers Comatose, The Delphi Trio, Richard Glazier and more, presenting a variety of music styles from classical to jazz to bluegrass. $15-$55. Bear Valley Village. www.bearvalleymusicfestival.org.

Blues and Bones Festival – July 26: Music festival and barbecue competition. Festivalgoers can purchase food tickets to sample food and vote for their favorite barbecue team. Event features live music by Shane Dwight, Maxx Cabello Jr. and the Breakdown, Jeramy Norris and the Dangerous Mood, Wingnut Adams and more. Noon to 10 p.m. $19.99, $29.99 for VIP and afterparty. Calaveras County Fairgrounds, 101 Frogtown Road, Angels Camp. www.bluesandbones.com.

Twain Harte Summer Art & Wine Festival – July 26-27: The 37th annual street festival features more than 100 craft and graphic artists, wine, food and live entertainment from the BluesBox Bayou Band, Captain Jack Spareribs, Little Fuller Band and more. Car show and more. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. both days. Downtown Twain Harte. Free. (209) 533-3473 or www.fireonthemountain.com.

Modstock Music Festival – Aug. 10: Valley Music Institute event features 26 local bands, food, drink, arts and crafts, demonstrations, bounce house and family activities. 10 a.m. Graceada Park, Sycamore Avenue and Needham Street, Modesto. (209) 543-2066.

X-Fest 2014 – Aug. 23: Huge downtown outdoor music event. Annual event shuts down the streets of downtown for several stages of music. Performers to be announced. Age 21-and-older event. 5 p.m. Downtown Modesto. $20 advance. www.xfestmodesto.com.

Salida Town and Country Festival – Aug. 23: A day filled with food, crafts, information booths, kids activities, live entertainment and a parade at 10 a.m., festival to follow until 2 p.m.. Downtown Salida. Free.

Newman Fall Festival Aug. 24-Sept. 1: This annual festival celebrates Newman heritage. The event features kids’ games, live entertainment, food and craft vendors, Soroptimist Fall Fashion Show, An Evening Under the Stars wine and cheese event, a community parade through downtown Newman, horseshoe tournament, volleyball tournament, BMX bike races, softball tournament and more. Pioneer Park, 1250 Tulare St., Newman. (209) 451-2815.

Cedar Center Arts & Crafts Festival – Aug. 30-31: Annual end-of-summer celebration features fine arts and crafts, gourmet foods, local beers, continuous live music and jugglers. Pancake breakfast daily from 7:30-11 Festival 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Cedar Center, downtown Arnold. Free. (925) 372-8961.

Modesto Grand Prix – Aug. 1-3: 350 SuperKart USA racers are expected in Modesto for the Summer Nationals event. Plans include big TV screens around the track for spectators, spectator bridges to open viewing areas around the route and a festival built around the race route with live bands and other entertainment, and vendors. Presale tickets are $10 per day; $15 walk-up; free for ages 10 and under. Downtown Modesto. See more at http://modestogp.com.

Modesto Fiji Festival – Aug. 9: A taste of the tropics with carnival games, Ferris wheel, stage shows, food booths, retail booth and dancing under the stars. 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. Modesto Christian High School, 5901 Sisk Road. (209) 495-7031.

Sierra View Music Festival – Aug. 23: Sixth annual fest will feature music by John Waite, the Marshall Tucker Band and April Wine. Food and drink vendors. Held in remembrance of musician Heidi Brunk to raise funds for the Heidi Brunk Foundation and Music Scholarship. Gates open at 1 p.m., music starts at 1:30 p.m. $40, with VIP options available. JH Ranch, 12713 Sierra View Road, Oakdale. (209) 247-6069.

Smoke on the River – Aug. 23: A barbecue competition combines with a music festival for this event from the Ceres Chamber of Commerce. Live music from Remedy, Black Rose Band and Big Earl & the Crying Shame. $10 advance, $15 at the gate. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Tuolumne River Lodge, 2429 River Road, Modesto. (209) 537-6651.

Film Fest Twain Harte – Aug. 29-Sept. 1: Films from all over the world will include shorts, full-length, documentaries and student films. Filmmakers, actors, celebrity guests planned. Special events include a Friday VIP reception and a Sunday awards dinner. Ticket packages will be available. (209) 586-6301

Muddy With a Mission – Aug. 30: Family-friendly event features a mud volleyball tournament for 64 teams to benefit nonprofits the Turlock Gospel Mission, Prodigal Sons and Daughters, and Turlock Pregnancy Center. A kids’ area will feature activities, crafts, and a kid-only mud pit. An artisan fair and food vendors will be on site. 7 a.m.-6 p.m. 1901 Auto Mall Drive, Turlock. (209) 656-9898

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