Flower festivals are popular throughout the world, with many places taking particular pride in the floral events that they put on. Most floral festivals are comprised of similar traits: food, arts and crafts, live music, a parade, and of course, lots and lots of flowers. Each floral event puts it’s own spin on things, often incorporating regional elements and crowning a hometown queen. While flower festivals seem to peak in the early summer and fall, flower events can be found year-round. We’ve compiled a list of some of our favorite floral events across the country.
- Portland Rose Festival: Known as “The City of Roses”, and home to the International Rose Test Garden, Portland has been putting on their rose festival for almost a hundred years. Complete with the Grand Floral parade, Waterfront Village, performances, fireworks, and crowning of the Rose Festival Court, this is one floral festival you do not want to miss! Romantics take note: the Friday before the Grand Floral Parade in June has become traditionally known as the night that people propose marriage in Pioneer Courthouse Square. People gather to watch the proposals take place in “Portland’s Living Room”.
- Lompoc Valley Flower Festival: Once slated to host the West Coast Space Shuttle Program, Lompok is now known as “The Valley of the Flowers”. The Lompoc Valley Flower Festival has grown from an annual rodeo and parade event, begun in the 1950s. The flower festival changed when resident George Miller convinced the Chamber of Commerce to focus on Lompoc’s unique and world famous flower fields. Now, every June, the people of Lompoc gather at Ryon Park for five days of fun. The floral event includes a parade, carnival, arts and crafts, and a commercial center where patrons can find the perfect gift.
- Saugerties Mum Festival: The quaint village of Saugerties, located in New York’s beautiful Hudson Valley, comes alive every fall with it’s annual Mum Festival. The kickoff to the festival is the Mum Bowl, a high school football game, which culminates with the coronation of the Mum Queen and her Court. The next afternoon, the festival presents live music, information booths staffed by master gardeners, face painting, arts and crafts, and wildlife shows. The Mum Queen and her court present flowers to festival attendees. Seamon Park, where the festival takes place, is literally decked out with thousands of colorful mums. Pay the Mum Festival a visit, and take in some of the world-famous Hudson Valley foliage too!
- Crystal Springs Fall Flower & Garden Fest: Sponsored by the Mississippi State University Extension Service, this floral festival is the largest home gardening show in the southeastern United States. The Fall Flower & Garden Fest is held at the Truck Crops Experiment Station, and has a focus on gardening flowers and vegetables. Visit the hummingbird garden and shade garden, or attend one of the 22 garden seminars held each day. We suggest checking out the beekeeping and compost demonstrations!
Flower festivals are a fantastic way to spend some time getting to know an area. If you’re looking for something fun to do, check out some of your local flower events and let us know what your favorite flower festival is.