It’s not just the flowers that are coming alive this spring – the cities are too. While St. Patrick’s Day usually gets March all to itself, Easter has forced its way into the last weekend to make this one jam-packed month. It’s not just busy, though, it’s a little manic! The events range from the most innocent and family-friendly (pictures with the Easter bunny and garden shows) to the do-not-tag-my-photo-on-Facebook and adults-only type (naughty face painting and drunken spelling bees). Whatever you’re in the mood for, check out your region below to start making those plans.
- The 134th St. Patrick’s Parade kicks off at Noon (rain or shine) at Peachtree Street in Midtown on Saturday, March 12, 2016. The event dates back to 1858, making it one of the oldest Irish parades in the U.S., and is truly a celebration of all backgrounds on a day when “everyone is Irish.”
- The International Cherry Blossom Festival is a month-long festival celebrating the color and beauty of over 300,000 Yoshino Cherry Trees blossoming in Macon, Georgia. The festival is made up of various events in multiple locations, but be sure to check out the “Pink is the New Green” kickoff party 7-10 PM on March 17, 2016 at Blacksmith Shop.
- A long time family favorite, the Eggstravaganza Easter Egg Hunt 2016 takes place 10 AM – noon on March 26, 2016 at Callanwolde Fine Arts Center. Children will be delighted to meet the Easter Bunny, hunt for thousands of candy-filled eggs (hunting is done by age group so your littlest ones have a fighting chance!), and have their faces painted.
- If you’re not looking for a family friendly event, check out the BaconFest on Saturday, March 26, 2016 (569 Ezzard Street in Old 4th Ward) hosted by Dad’s Garage Theatre Company. Overflowing with bacon and beer, this splendidly wicked event is sure to amuse with activities like hobo wine tasting, naughty face painting and a drunken spelling bee.
- Started in 1987, South by Southwest (SXSW) is a huge assortment of conferences and festivals taking place March 11-20, 2016, all celebrating the unique convergence of original music, independent films, and emerging technologies. The film and music venues are too many to name, but the home base for registration and the main expo is at Austin Convention Center.
- Rodeo Austin is “where weird meets western” and it’s back March 12-26, 2016 at 9100 Decker Lake Road. From what began as a 16-animal stock show in 1938 has grown into one of Austin’s premier events, featuring daily concerts, world class livestock shows, a top 10 ProRodeo, and more.
- For an authentic display of Irish culture and pride, there’s no place better to be on March 17, 2016 than Head on over to Pioneer Farms from 3 – 9 PM for traditional Irish music, dance, food and beverage.
- There’s no shortage of St. Patrick’s Day events in Chicago on March 12, 2016. Get your workout in early at the Get Lucky Half Marathon, 14k & 7K at Soldier Field’s South Parking Lot with starts at 9 AM (half marathon), 9:30 AM (7K), and TBA (14K). Or you could also skip the workout and head straight to the Chicago River at 9 AM to watch with a rowdy crowd of thousands as they dye the river green. The party continues at noon when the St. Patrick’s Day Parade steps off at Balbo and Columbus.
- Navy Pier’s historic Chicago Flower & Garden Show is back March 12-20, 2016. This nine-day event will feature 20+ life-sized gardens that you can walk through, daily seminars, DIY workshops and a bustling marketplace.
- The 17th Annual WhiskeyFest takes place March 18, 2016 6:30-9:30 PM at the Hyatt Regency Chicago. It’s the longest-running and best-attended whisky festival in the U.S. and offers you the opportunity to taste from a selection of more than 300 whiskies from around the world.
- Lincoln Park Zoo is hosting Easter-Egg-Stravaganza on March 26, 2016 from 8 AM-1 PM. While tickets can cost up to 2.44 per person (though one-year-old and under are free), the event is well worth the money when you consider all that it includes: buffet brunch, egg hunt (15 eggs per child), photos with the Easter Bunny, music, crafts, complimentary rides on the carousel and the Lionel Train Egg.
- Flea Style isn’t your grandmother’s flea market. This indoor marketplace features a collection of highly curated items (e.g., art, furniture, paper goods, clothing, jewelry, and dog gear), food trucks, bar and live music. There are 250+ carefully chosen vendors present, all of which hawk vintage, handmade or one-of-a-kind wares. It only pops up in Dallas twice a year, so don’t miss it on Saturday, March 12, 2016 at 9 AM. There is a entry fee (12 and under free).
- There’s no need to bring your iPod to The Music Run because the soundtrack’s been taken care of at this ultimate 5k running and music festival. With over 120 speaker lining the course, participants will run through themed music zones (rock, pop, old school, hip hop and dance), making this more like a party than a run. It all goes down on March 12, 2016 at South Dallas/Fair Parkthe from 4:30-9 PM (run starts 6:30 PM).
- Ladies, it’s time to channel your inner Christina Aguilera circa 2002 and roar: Wanna get dirrty! The Dirty Girl Mud Run is at Skyline Ranch on March 19, 2016 at 9 AM. This 3.1-mile(ish) race and obstacle course is for women only and proceeds benefit Bright pink, a charity focused on the prevention and early detection of breast and ovarian cancer.
- Boulder International Film Festival is back March 3-6, 2016 and features over 40 “new-but-unknown” film programs (shorts, comedies, docs and features), along with gala parties, filmmaker talkbacks, celebrity interviews, free programming for students, live music and much more! The full line-up has yet to be released, but screenings will be held at the Longmont Museum’s Stewart Auditorium and the Broomfield Auditorium.
- Head out to Denver’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade on March 12, 2016. The parade steps off at 19th and Wynkoop at 9:30 AM and usually lasts about four hours. If it’s important to you to watch the full performances of parade entries, the best spot is south of 20th Avenue on Blake Street (renamed Tooley Street for the Parade). (Bear in mind that people arrive as early as 6 AM to stake out this coveted spot.)
- The Denver March Powwow is taking place at the Denver Coliseum March 25-27, 2016. This modern powwow is a social gathering for American Indians to honor their heritage through traditional dance, tribal storytelling and craftsmanship. All are welcome to watch these intricate dances and peruse the arts and crafts show ( a day or 0 for all three days).
- The Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo has been doing its thing since 1932, so to say this event’s got roots is an understatement. From March 1-20, 2016, the grounds at NRG Park open at 8 AM and begin a tireless schedule of events that includes everything from livestock shows to rancher expos to bull riding. But if rodeo ain’t your thing, the live music lineup is just as impressive with big names like Kid Rock and Brad Paisley hitting the stage.
- Behold the magnificence of pink, purple, white and red flowering Azaleas called the Held over three days (March 11 -13, 2016, 11 AM – 5 PM) at seven Houston locations, tickets can be purchased for multiple sites or one. Check the website for a complete list of locations.
- On March 12, 2016, the 44th Annual Buffalo Bayou Parntership Regatta, Texas’ largest canoe and kayak race, is happening rain or shine. Head to Sesquicentennial Park at 7:30 AM to cheer from the sidelines or paddle (if you’re 12 and up) the 15-mile trip along the scenic Buffalo Bayou.
- One of the top 10 St. Patrick’s Day celebrations in America, Seattle’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade on March 14, 2016 at 12:20 PM boasts the most Irish groups in the Pacific Northwest. Starting at the King County Administration Building and marching a full mile through downtown to Westlake Park, the parade is attended by thousands of Irish loving, green wearing spectators.
- If you’ve been meaning to visit a Washington State Park but the 0 Discover Pass kept you away, then 2016 State Park free days are the way to go. There are 11 free days throughout year, two of which are in March, the 19th (State Park’s 103rd Birthday) and the 26th (Saturday Spring Day).
- Woodland Park Zoo wants you to “hop, skip and jump to the 15th annual” Bunny Bounce and Easter Baskets for the Animals on Saturday, March 26, 2016, 9:30 AM-3:30 PM. Activities include: an egg hunt for children ages 1-8 (first-come, first serve), crafts and bunny encounters. Even the animals are in the holiday spirit with their specially made Easter baskets lined with flowers, berries and other favorite treats to nibble on.
- Celebrate the coming of spring in the Hindu way at thean Indian tradition that can be traced back to the 16th century. The festival invites people to throw bright colored powders into the air every two hours as a symbolic gesture of casting “worries to the wind and embracing the new season through social harmony.” The two Southern California events are March 5 (11 AM – 2 PM, Martha Mclean Park in Riverside) and March 12, 2016 (11 AM-4 PM, Excelsior High School in Norwalk) and you buy the colors there in 100 gram bags at $ 2.00 per bag (violet, green, yellow, pink, & orange).
- California produces nearly 80 percent of the cut flowers in the U.S., so it’s no surprise that they’re hosting the 2016 World Floral Exposition on March 9-11, 2016 at the LA Convention Center. It’s all things flower at this massive event and it’s open from 10 AM – 4 PM each day, but check the schedule for presentation times by guest speakers.
- It’s the inaugural event for theso only time will tell if it lives up to the hype. Promoters promise 30+ vendors selling merchandise, 10 food trucks serving Irish cuisine, live Celtic music, a beer garden and whiskey bar. It’s all happening Saturday, March 12, 2016 from 11 AM to 10 PM 2016 in Downtown Upland.
- Miami Dade College’s Miami International Film Festival is on a mission to “bridge cultural understanding and encourage artistic development by provoking thought through film.” Each year, they bring some of the best in world cinema to Miami, and it’s happening March 4 – 13, 2016. A complete program is available online as well a list of venues where films will be screened or events hosted, like the series of Google seminars focusing on gender and color gaps in film and tech.
- It’s all about bag pipes and kilts at the S.E. Scottish Festival and Highland Games happening March 5, 2016 from 9 AM – 6 PM at Plantation Heritage Park. Hosted by the Scottish American Society of South Florida, guests will be delighted by the various forms of Scottish culture on display (piping, highland dancing, sheep dogs, folk singing, fiddling). There’s also Scottish shops stocked with items of Highland dress, jewelry, instruments, and more. Bands Off Kilter and the Brigadoons will also perform.
- I don’t think there could be anything more random than a which is why it’s on our list of must-dos. This three-day event is March 18-20, 2016 and kicks off at TWO& in Fort Lauderdale Friday night for a welcome party and jam session, continues at Art Serve on Saturday for a day full of workshops, concerts and open mic time, and then ends on Sunday with workshops and luau directly on the beach.
Have an event you’re attending this month? Share it in the comments.
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