Escondido, CA

Grand Avenue Festival happens on an ideal fall day

A bird’s eye view of the Grand Avenue Festival. Photo by Escondido Chamber

Another iteration of the Grand Avenue Festival has come and gone, and it was held on an ideal fall day in historic downtown Escondido. 

Unlike the weather for the May version, this past Sunday was near perfect with classic blue skies and warm temperatures—very much akin to what you’d call Chamber of Commerce weather. Which makes sense since the semi-annual event is produced by the Escondido Chamber of Commerce, and takes place each May and October. 

According to James Rowten, CEO, “It was a perfect Escondido winter day; 83 degrees, clear skies with a slight breeze!” He added, “Escondido has much to be proud of and the 31st Annual Fall Grand Avenue Festival provided the perfect platform Escondido has much to stand up for and the Grand Avenue Festival this past Sunday is one of them.”

With the Chamber’s new layout design that places all the vendors along the medians of Grand Avenue, it allowed attendees to easily stroll up and down the historic street without it feeling overcrowded. This format also allows all the brick and mortar stores to actively engage attendees with special offers, encouraging them to come in and see what each business is all about—which many, many did.

When people weren’t shopping from vendors and local businesses, odds are they were at one of the community stages watching a variety of acts and entertainment. Down at the Chase lawn there was The Super Dentists stage that featured several dog contests in the morning, along with traditional singing and dancing acts, and a very informative and well-attended demonstration by the Escondido Police K9 unit! 

At the Maple Street Plaza was the SDG&E stage where students from several Escondido schools performed, along with the always-fun-to-watch YMCA Twirlers. Further east was “Art in the Garden” at Heritage Garden, that featured over 20 local and regional artists, and under the gazebo numerous musicians performed  including the ever-popular and talented Cali Smith!

Oh, and the food – you can’t forget the food. Whether it was Dippin’ dots, lemonade, Thai skewers, bratwursts, kettle corn, or plain ol’ chips and salsa – the eclectic food choices of the Grand Avenue Festival seem to rival the choices found in Del Mar each summer. 

All these things; the weather, the vendors, the performers, the stages, the food, and of course the people make the Grand Avenue Festival what it is: a celebration of the Hidden Valley—a true Escondido tradition!

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