It’s Greek to Me: Festivals & Fairs

Over the weekend I walked to San Diego’s Greek Festival.

These were some of the flowers I passed on my walk over.

It was a gorgeous weekend for an outdoor festival!

Ok, it’s actually a smidge too chilly for me with no humidity and “only” 69F temps but I know most people think that’s perfect.   Add 20 degrees and I’ll be happier.

The festival was held a local Greek Orthodox Church.

I run or walk by this Church almost daily and finally had my camera with and could make some photos.

It’s an annual event and ironically, this was the weekend, last year, that we moved back to San Diego after our brief, 9-month stint in Phoenix.   This weekend, last year, we moved back to San Diego; just one, singular day after my fitness show and competition <–link with photos.

I look back at Phoenix, the show, packing and the move, and the timing of it all and think boy, that was a lot of work and I am glad that was then, and this is now!

In typical festival nature there was plenty of food!

And it was all homemade or handmade, fresh and made on the spot.

These iced frappes looked so good…

But I had just drank a vanilla iced coffee at the house..

…and didn’t want to be too wired up!

There was also Greek music playing, a beer garden, and some artwork showcasing, you guessed it, Greece and the Greek Isles.

There were some Greek-themed cookbooks and kitchen items for sale.

A wooden spoon handmade in Greece from olive wood.  Gorgeous!  I’d be scared to even use it for fear of ruining it.

It was a fun event where old and young, people from all walks of life and diverse ethnic backgrounds all seemed to be having a fabulous time!

And the best part was that I walked there.  No car required.

It made me want to rush home and make some Hummus

vegan, 4 ingredients, 5 minutes

Or roast some chickpeas for Carmelized Cinnamon Sugar Roasted Chickpea “Peanuts”

I’m glad the No Bake Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Bites were a hit from my last post!  Foodgawker and Tasteologie liked them too, which made me happy.

Most of you said you enjoy coconut and coconut-containing recipesThat’s awesome!   Let me know if you happen to try this recipe.

 

Questions:

1. Best thing you ate or did over the weekend?

Between the Greek Festival and the coconut chocolate chip cookie dough bites , and one other thing (next post!) I had a great weekend!

2. Have you ever been to a Greek food festival or a food festival featuring a particular type of food?  Or any street fairs or local fairs?

I have been to so many types of food festivals and outdoor street fairs with food from the Taste of Chicago (a massively huge event in Chicago, hundreds of thousands of people attend, spanning miles of city blocks, and it lasts many days, and you can get just about every kind of ethnic food from Vietnamese to Moroccan to giant turkey legs and there’s music, too.)

I’ve also been to “Oktoberfests” (in the US, not in Germany) and German festivals because growing up in MN with a heavy German population, they was common.

I also love Renaissance Fairs (even though they can be a little over the top sometimes) but they’re fun for an afternoon.

Last weekend in San Diego was Taste of Little Italy and although we were in Aruba this year, I’ve been to it in past years.

And I’ve been to tons more food festivals, too!

When I was growing up, the state fair and local county fairs were The Thing To Do in the summer.   I have such great memories of them!

3. Do you like outdoor festivals or fairs?

Blends my other question, but yes, I love them!

Something about walking around outside, people watching, hearing the sounds of the crowd and smelling the food that’s being made, I just love taking it all in!

Not having to struggle with parking and having a great sunny weather and not sweltering temps are added bonuses.

P.S. If you’re just catching up on posts, here are mine since Friday:

 

The song, “I’m so excited.  I just can’t hide it…” is playing in my head right now.  It has something to do with this.  Next post, an update.

Have a great week!

   

67 Responses to “It’s Greek to Me: Festivals & Fairs”

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    Kate (What Kate is Cooking) — June 5, 2011 at 5:57 pm

    I’m so excited- my town’s Greek festival is in two weeks!

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    Evan Thomas — June 5, 2011 at 5:58 pm

    I used to LOVE Greek food. We would go out to a Greek restaurant to eat all the time. I miss the spinokopita, baklava, and moussaka.

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    cathy — June 5, 2011 at 6:06 pm

    i’ve been reading your blog almost a year – i missed this weekend LAST year, so thanks for sharing how CRAZY it was. yup, good to have a more “festive” weekend this year!
    there is a greek festival in my ‘hood next weekend; it’s annual, but i’ve never been. really should – it’d be a great New Experience!
    Love your photos and the glorious sunshine. but i’m with you: 89 degrees is just getting comfortable! so glad you could get out and enjoy the fun atmosphere. have a great eve!

    Reply

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    Jess — June 5, 2011 at 6:08 pm

    SO jealous of your Greek food BANANZA!! Is bananza a word? hmmph.

    Anywayssss, best thing is about to be a fresh, ripe MANGO in about 10 minutes.

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    VeggieGirl — June 5, 2011 at 6:14 pm

    I always attend our local Greek festival – so much fun!!

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    Diana — June 5, 2011 at 6:15 pm

    I love how the sky and church are so pretty together! :)

    Best thing I ate this weekend – Dim Sum! I love the assortment of authentic Chinese dishes. The bok choy was especially good.

    And I love Greek festivals! Festivals in general are so fun. I just love checking them out. The Greek one always has some of the best food, though! And that frappe IS good. Very strong, but very good. ;)

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    Holly @ The Runny Egg — June 5, 2011 at 6:21 pm

    What a fun time! That church is just gorgeous! And I love gyros + baklava. I need to find something like that going on around here!

    Best thing I ate over the weekend: banana cream cheesecake at the wedding yesterday — it was so smooth and creamy!

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    Kristina @ spabettie — June 5, 2011 at 6:23 pm

    your photo galleries are expanding! congrats on all the accepted photos, that doesn’t get old, does it? :D

    I love outdoor festivals… I love greek food… I love your beautiful weather… I love that bright white church that looks like it’s straight out of Greece!

    Reply

    • Averie (Love Veggies and Yoga) replied: — June 5th, 2011 at 7:08 pm

      No never gets old. I think I am a slave to them. I shoot based on what I think they want, too. I admit it. TS doesnt accept me as much as FG and TO do b/c my style is not really their style. Then again, I dont know anyone who regularly gets TS accepts. They are sooo elusive. And hard to read! :)

      Reply

      • Kristina @ spabettie replied: — June 5th, 2011 at 7:12 pm

        I completely agree! I could drive myself crazy trying to figure out why one of my photos gets rejected and another one is accepted? ;)

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    Sabina — June 5, 2011 at 6:24 pm

    Hey Averie!

    Nice pics of the festival! If you ever have a chance to go to Greece, go! I went last year for the first time (took a cruise, so we could easily hit up a few Greek isles – not aisles ;-) ). With the blue sky, the blue water and every building painted white, wow-oh-wow, what beauty!

    There’s a huge Greek Festival in my city each summer, which I’ve been to a handful of times.

    Best thing I ate over the weekend? Frozen yogurt (first one of the season!)

    xo

    Sabina

    Reply

    • Averie (Love Veggies and Yoga) replied: — June 5th, 2011 at 7:07 pm

      I fixed the typo. I’ve slept about 8 hours total..in the past 3 days. About 3 hrs a night :) And back to working FT so the typos have been happening a lil more than I’d like.

      Reply

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    Nicole @ Fresh n Fit — June 5, 2011 at 6:26 pm

    That festival looks fun. We have something like that in Boston but it’s an Italian fest. During Saint Antony’s fest Boston’s north end is packed with street venders, music and anything and everything Italian.

    (I’m with you on the temperature thing, I like the heat, 80’s is perfect for me!)

    Reply

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    kris (everyday oats) — June 5, 2011 at 6:29 pm

    Outdoor festivals are so much fun! I wish there were more near me and/or at least one that was walking distance from my place. I’ve never been to a greek festival, but I love greek food and their culture. Looks like a fun time!

    So jealous of your weather! i think the high 60’s-low70’s is my ideal temp. We reached 99 or 100 hundred today. It’s so strange to see that other places are still in the 40’s or 50’s.

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    Gina @ Running to the Kitchen — June 5, 2011 at 6:30 pm

    Looks like fun! My in-laws are straight off the boat Greek so I’ve been to my fair share of Greek festivals. I actually love them, especially the Loukamades (fried dough balls with honey and walnuts on top) omg, to die for!

    Reply

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    Colleen — June 5, 2011 at 6:40 pm

    That Greek festival looks like so much fun! and I’m sure the food is terrific. Best thing I ate hands down was a blackberry-custard tart my sister made. She had a big college grad party and made even more desserts than there were food! She also made a chocolate chip cheesecake with dark chocolate ganache topped with chocolate covered strawberries… INSANE :)

    Reply

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    Brooke — June 5, 2011 at 7:13 pm

    I love anything outside! We have a local Taiwanese culture night that I am so excited to go to! We are adopting from Taiwan and I am enjoying learning about our future daughters culture!

    Brooke Annessa
    http://www.theannessafamily.blogspot.com

    Reply

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    WIERDGREENMAN — June 5, 2011 at 7:37 pm

    We just held the first ever Wokai Iron Chef Cookoff! Best thing so far this weekend. Street festivals and fairs are awesome!

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    J3nn (Jenn's Menu and Lifestyle Blog) — June 5, 2011 at 7:41 pm

    OMG, girl! The Greek festival pics are SO gorgeous! You totally own outdoor photography. Seriously. The pictures are so crisp and clear, I love them! I love the frappe pics, the one with someone holding it. Submit that one. The blues and whites… just stunning. Your work gets better and better with each set. Yay! :D

    Never been to a Greek festival but want to! We have signs for them all over the place, one BIG one takes place every year in Middletown. I might just check it out this time. The food looks so tempting.

    69F… YES, please! It’s cool here now but just heard another heat wave is coming. Sigh.

    I had to scroll up again to look at the pretty blue and white photos. Just beautiful. :)

    Reply

    • Averie (Love Veggies and Yoga) replied: — June 5th, 2011 at 8:31 pm

      thank you jenn!

      i was taking those pics on the fly…like, totally…some of them turned out so well and i agree the man holding that frappe…I was kinda proud of that one :)

      I am practicing for Mex City :) Glad I make a good outdoor photographer since that’s what im gonna be doing there!

      thank you so.much. for the kind words!

      Reply

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    Lisa is Raw on $10 a Day (or Less) — June 5, 2011 at 7:47 pm

    Looks like fun! You always seem to have the bluest sky there, too!

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    Marcia @Frugal Healthy Simple — June 5, 2011 at 7:50 pm

    I’ve been to many local fairs, and the Greek festival is my favorite one. I *love* the food.

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    Emily @ Comfortable Home Life — June 5, 2011 at 8:00 pm

    Ohh that Greek festival looks so cool! I just vacationed in San Diego (I absolutely fell in love.. I completely understand why you live there) and my friend and I were able to go to the Little Italy Farmer’s Market, the Sicilian Festival and a Taste of Little Italy. Taste of Little Italy left me SO FULL. We hit up 21 out of the 23 vendors over the course of four hours. So.much.food. But it was all so good! The Sicilian festival was also packed full of food.. so yummy. I really wish we had more food festivals over here on the east coast!

    Reply

    • Averie (Love Veggies and Yoga) replied: — June 5th, 2011 at 8:31 pm

      oh that’s so cool you were just here! i love the Taste of L. Italy..and yes….super filling but fun :)

      Reply

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    Kate — June 5, 2011 at 8:16 pm

    I love Greek festivals…just because that is probably the best Greek food I’ll ever have in Dallas :) We have a Romanian festival here too that is awesome. I never thought Romanian food of all things would be good!

    I made your chocolate coconut dough balls – they are great! It is so nice not to turn on the oven for a lovely treat :) It is so hot here.

    Reply

    • Averie (Love Veggies and Yoga) replied: — June 5th, 2011 at 8:32 pm

      thanks for telling me you made them and yes in TX in the summer…you dont need to turn on the oven, that’s for sure!

      Reply

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    kate — June 5, 2011 at 9:18 pm

    wow this food looks amazing I love greek food, what a fun day outdoor festivals are the best!

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    Michele Sparrow — June 5, 2011 at 9:41 pm

    Glad you made it safely home, Averie! Enjoyed all of your Aruba pics a ton! :-)

    Been to lots of Greek festivals cause I am Orthodox! I am not Greek, but anyone can convert to Orthodoxy and I did and I love attending the local Greek festival here in Santa Cruz every year. The church is really old and they actually block off one whole street and just set up shop there. They have all the goodies and they also have Greek dancers, all dressed in their authentic Greek dancing costumes and you can hear the music playing blocks away. It’s a crowded and fun-filled event and people in Santa Cruz really dig it. I love their culture and their food! I am sensitive to all of it, however, so I just smell it and watch my kiddos enjoy all those treats!

    Your pics, btw, are looking more amazing every day! Nice work!! ;-)

    Reply

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    Jen — June 5, 2011 at 10:19 pm

    We have a few Italian festivals in my area of mass, and I’m half so I love to go. I have to get rice balls and wish I could learn to make them some day I will. chocolate coconut dough balls made with dark choc would be in love. I love coconut its soo good!

    Reply

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    Maria Pavel — June 5, 2011 at 10:28 pm

    You get a chance to do so many things much more interesting than our lame lives that it lets us feel awkwardly jealous. Now about the topic, Its good that you get a chance to attend various ethnic events exhibiting so much about a particular culture, thus enhancing your knowledge about that. And, regarding that temperature comment, looks you like sun a bit!:)

    Reply

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    Emily — June 5, 2011 at 10:28 pm

    Man, those bites look fabulous. I might have to make those soon. I need to pick up some coconut oil and cashews though.

    The Greek festival sounds like fun, and it looked like it was a beautiful day! I’ve never been to a festival like that. I’m with you on them temperature. I have to have about eighty degree temperature to be comfortable. Haha.

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    SassyAgapi — June 5, 2011 at 10:43 pm

    Love Greek fests!! But i am Greek so that is no surprise :)

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    Sue @ Sue In Training — June 5, 2011 at 11:25 pm

    Fun fact: My BF and I had our first date at an African festival! They offered some food there, too, but we didn’t eat anything. But when we went again the following year, we tried some of their food – I had vegetables in a rich peanut sauce with couscous – and really liked it. This fair has become an annual tradition for us. Ah, memories.
    I love fairs an festivals in general, but I’ve been to the local ones so many times, it’s getting old.

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    Katie — June 6, 2011 at 12:59 am

    I love festivals, but havne’t been to one in a while. Ironically, my favorite annual festival was this weekend in flagstaff. after I moved. Oh well,I hear there’s a circus in Ashland.

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    Amanda Jewell — June 6, 2011 at 1:50 am

    I totally forgot about the festival today! What a bad Greek I am! It excited me that they have Nescafe there. I don’t drink coffee at all, but every time I visit my family (twice a yr), I drink that stuff by the gallon. To me, making it is the most fun part because you get to use this little electric mixer… I’m easily entertained… Glad you had fun! We’re so lucky to live in SD where there are festivals like every other weekend. I definitely went to the recent Art Walk and Sicilian Festival. But I’m spoiled because I live in Little Italy so I too can just walk to them (they’re usually right outside my building so I get to people watch too… creeper)! FYI, hummus isn’t Greek, it’s actually Middle Eastern :-)
    I really want those roasted chickpeas! I bet they smell good when they’re baking!

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    Ragnhild — June 6, 2011 at 1:58 am

    Oh, I love Greece! And everything greek- their culture and food is great! Mmm, Baklava Sundea- that MUST be good! I love Baklava, used to eat it all the time when I was in callage:)

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    Dolly — June 6, 2011 at 2:41 am

    GOD.. the food and scenery looks amazing.. esp. COFFEEE… i love iced coffreee

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    allison — June 6, 2011 at 2:47 am

    I cant believe that you did your show and moved in the same weekend!!!!!!!!! I would have been a stressed out big cry baby!!

    I love going to outside fairs and festivals!! Here in St. Augustine they have a TON of things like that but there are also a ton of tourists so sometimes its not worth the fight to get downtown and find parking!! I could rise my bike but with all of the tourists its not too smart since they pay attention to everything but the road!!

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    Madeline - Greens and Jeans — June 6, 2011 at 4:40 am

    I LOVE Greek food. It’s definitely one of my favorites! We have a lot of foodie festivals here in Philadelphia, and I’m glad I’ve snagged me a boy who likes food as much as I do who I can drag to all of them!

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    dragonmamma/naomi — June 6, 2011 at 4:59 am

    Ooh, spanakopita! I abandon my wheat-free ways when fresh spanakopita is involved.
    What are those things that look like giant cut-off forks with pieces of cardboard on them? I can’t figure it out.
    I love outdoor festivals, and two of them have been rained-out this week. It’s been raining every freaking day for over a week now!

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    Alissa @ Not Just Apples — June 6, 2011 at 5:01 am

    Greek food is the best! I’ve been to Greece, and I can happily say that it was the healthiest and most delicious place to go on vacation – so much fresh fish and salad…and it’s all pretty easy to make as well, which is an extra bonus :)

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    Heather @ Health, Happiness, and Hope — June 6, 2011 at 5:14 am

    That festival looks like SO much fun! And that church is gorgeous. Love the photos Averie!

    I’m definitely the type that loves to browse through events like that. Farmer’s Markets, festivals, events… I love seeing culture and people. Even malls are fun just to walk around, browse, and people watch!

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    megan @ the oatmeal diaries — June 6, 2011 at 5:23 am

    I absolutely love outdoor festivals! Especially Greek ones, because that means BAKLAVA :)

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    Elizabeth@The Sweet Life — June 6, 2011 at 5:33 am

    Gorgeous contrast between the white of the church and the bright blue sky–beautiful!

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    kristina@beancakes — June 6, 2011 at 5:42 am

    beautiful photos! i feel like i’m in greece just by looking at them!
    xo~ kristina
    http://beancakes.wordpress.com/

    Reply

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    tasha — June 6, 2011 at 6:55 am

    What a neat festival! This past weekend, I attended Taste of Music City — a vendor “fair” featuring 50 local restaurants that present a menu sampling at each of their respective booths. There was a LOT of food there – my only lament was there was very little whole food options and too many chains eateries.
    I with you on the chilly 69degrees — however, my outdoor foodie event was in the TN humidity and a balmy 95degrees, boo!
    Lovely pictures, Averie! Thanks for sharing.

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    Chumpon @ Thailand Reisen — June 6, 2011 at 7:12 am

    Wow – awesome pics. The Greek definitely have great food. Love the iced frappes and Greek salad. But I’m not a fan of baklava – to me, it’s just an insane (and not insane in a delicious way) concoction of fat, flour and sugar.

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    O.C. — June 6, 2011 at 8:15 am

    That song has been running through my head since yesterday! The best thing I did this weekend was get my tickets to go to India in October and do some summer planning and gardening and of course yoga :)
    My town has a Greek Festival every year, too and we also have a Seafood Festival because where I’m from in Florida is famous for fresh seafood.
    Can’t wait for your next post noww!

    Reply

    • Averie (Love Veggies and Yoga) replied: — June 6th, 2011 at 11:26 am

      you went to india? that’s my dream destination one day…I want to go so badly!

      Reply

      • O.C. replied: — June 6th, 2011 at 11:42 am

        I haven’t gone yet but I bought my tickets to go this October! It’s like my dream come true :)

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    Beth — June 6, 2011 at 8:44 am

    Greek food is so tasty and always hits the spot. Working weekends at the paintball field we are too busy to hit the local Greek Festival when it comes around. But we love doing Greek take-out on Saturday after being at the paintball field all day. Yum!

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    McKella — June 6, 2011 at 9:14 am

    My hometown puts on a Greek festival every year and I LOVE it! My favorite are the gyros and those grape leaf things, dolmathes I think. I always feel like a slug after I eat all that, but it’s one of those special occasions where I usually feel it’s worth it. I love all outdoor festivals. Something about tents and music and delicious smells just makes my heart pitter patter.

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    Amber K — June 6, 2011 at 9:19 am

    I have never really been to any festivals like that! It sounds fun. I do enjoy going to the Portland VegFest, but that won’t be until September and it’s indoors. The rose festival is technically going on right now, but you have to pay to get in and it’s really just not worth it. The rides, games and food are all way overpriced and I can’t eat pretty much anything anyway!

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    Sarah @ Run Sqrl, Run — June 6, 2011 at 9:22 am

    So jealous! I’m a quarter Greek and I love everything Greek. :) Sounds like a lot of fun! Great pictures.

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    charlotte — June 6, 2011 at 10:12 am

    That looks like so much fun! We just don’t really have stuff like that here. We did in Seattle though – I miss that. I think the more temperate weather gets people out and together more;) Now, important things: I am going to try your coconut cookie balls, um, NOW.

    Reply

    • Averie (Love Veggies and Yoga) replied: — June 6th, 2011 at 11:27 am

      ok well you HAVE to go to the MN state fair…it’s not exactly high class but it IS fun and I loved going when I was growing up! Street food, people watching, I loved it!

      Reply

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    Erica — June 6, 2011 at 10:51 am

    Gorgeous pictures and lovely festival! The paintings are amazing. I’m so with you on the weather, I need the heat :) I really enjoy going to festivals like this- its fun to sample different kinds of food, shop & just be outside!

    Reply

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    Christine (The Raw Project) — June 6, 2011 at 10:51 am

    Lucky, you had much better festival weather than me! :-) Great pics, looks like a fun event.

    1. Went to Sunset’s Celebration Weekend and saw Ani Phyo.
    2. Yes, the most recent was the Asparagus festival.
    3. Yes, especially when the weather is perfect for them.

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    Antonia — June 6, 2011 at 4:02 pm

    You took some really beautiful pictures, it makes me want to go there.
    And it makes me hungry, which is not a good thing, becuase it’s 2AM here and eating at this hour will kill my metabolism :))

    Reply

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