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  • Writer's pictureDiana Brandt

The 49th Annual Fall Tempe Festival

Thanks to Downtown Tempe for sponsoring this post, so that we can promote this awesome event to our followers!!

The revered seasonal staple event, the Fall Tempe Festival of the Arts returns to Downtown Tempe this December -- now in its 49th incarnation. The Tempe Festival of the Arts is ranked as a leading fine arts festival; one of the largest and oldest festivals of its kind, drawing as many as 225,000 attendees from across the nation. From Friday December 1st through Sunday December 3rd, 2017 the artist-driven event is open to the public from 10:00am to 5:30pm daily. Offering FREE admission for the entire family, the event is easily accessible via the Valley Metro Light Rail. The award-winning festival features holiday gift items including handmade art pieces, jewelry, home décor, snacks, food trucks, two local beer and wine gardens, plus live music and loads of entertainment.

Tempe Festival of the Arts boasts over 350 peer-juried, handpicked artists and artisans from around the country. Each festival features a singular, stand-out artist or artisan and for the 49th fall festival, local mixed media artist Erin Curry was selected by the jurying committee. Curry’s one-of-a-kind artwork incorporates Nanoliner ink pen drawings on watercolor paper and wood panels. While she is admittedly afraid of needles, they play an imperative role in creating her 3-D shadowbox artwork. Curry will be on hand all three days of the festival; showcasing and selling her wares, as well as available for meet & greets with the public and press.

The Crepe Club

As a family-friendly festival, kid-oriented programming and interactive exhibits punctuate the festival footprint, including Kids Block, a hands-on exhibit featuring artwork from over 400 students throughout the valley, Chalk-a-Lot Street where kids and professionals use chalk to create mind-blowing murals on the ground, as well as things to make and do with Boots in the House, Build-A-Racecar Party, Creative Reuse Arizona, Girls Rock! (a musical petting zoo), Phoenix Youth Circus, Practical Art and more.

Fans of snacking should head directly to the Cottage Edibles section which includes hand-made gourmet foods, seasonings, cottage crafts and remedies, and festival favorite food such as kettle corn, cotton candy, fudge, roasted nuts and more from vendors like Baja Smoothies, Corn Roasters, Eureka Old Fashioned Soda, Sweet Street Mini Donuts and others. And no Festival of the Arts would be complete without an assortment of fair food and street eats including Blue Banjo BBQ, The Crepe Club, Hot Bamboo, Island Noodles -- plus food trucks like Hibachibot, The Maine Lobster Lady, Rockabelly, Yellowman Fry Bread and more.

Photo Credit: Angel Fuchs aka @yaybabyblog of Hibatchibo

Visit the festival’s two beer and wine gardens to enjoy beverages on site. Visit the Arizona Wine Tasting in Centerpoint Plaza for sampling and purchase of featured Arizona wines, including local award-winning wineries like Burning Tree Cellars, Kief-Joshua Vineyards, Pillsbury Wine Company & Vineyard and others. Or raise a glass and toast with beers and brews from Tempe’s own Pedal Haus, and Four Peaks Brewing Company. Tickets are available on-site for the beer and wine gardens, as well as online in advance.

As always, the festival entertainment proves one of the most popular aspects of the event, and includes all manner of street and booth performers, buskers, face painters, henna artists, musicians, unicyclists, caricature artists and balloon twisters as well as three festival stages programmed with toe-tap-inducing entertainment and live music by bluegrass, blues, folk, jazz and rock artists like Bossa Brazil, The Blaise Lantana Band, Walt Richardson, The Hourglass Cats, Desert Dixie, The Brothers Too and other local and regional talent.

For full festival details, artist line up and entertainment schedules, please visit:

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