28th annual Avocado Festival takes place Sunday, April 13

On Sunday, April 13, Main Avenue will undergo a transformation that happens only once each year, with an expected 70,000 plus visitors streaming up and down the thoroughfare to experience the 28th annual Avocado Festival, sponsored each year by the Fallbrook Chamber of Commerce. The event will take place from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

This year’s event looks to be as popular as ever. “Over 450 vendors are signed up and we have a great cross-selection of crafts and more,” said chamber CEO Lila MacDonald.

There are some local organizations and businesses amongst the vendors. “Our Avenue of the Arts features the work by many local artists,” said MacDonald. “The Fallbrook Football Boosters sell avocado packs every year; our Fallbrook Vintage Car Club has a mini car show at the festival; packing houses like Del Rey and McDaniel’s are involved, as well as many others.

For those who enjoy the festival each year, new “avocado” items always catch the eye.

“There will be avocado oil soaps, body oil, and lotions; avocado artwork, avocado honey, and avocado beer,” explained MacDonald. “Of course, there will also be guacamole and I believe avocado gelato. Each of these vendors will be identified with a banner that says “Stop for Avocado Products.”

Live music is also on tap. “There will be four live bands,” said MacDonald, adding they would be located in these spots: Avenue of the Arts, the beer garden (at Scrappy’s Tire, 346 S. Main Ave.), and two at the community stage, which this year will be at Main and Elder (the Elder House property).

Contests are always part of the fun at the Avocado Festival. While in recent years contest locations have been at the “community stage” across from Mission Theater, the stage will now be located at the Elder House, corner of Main and Elder.

Guacamole contest

Guacamole-bragging rights will again be up for grabs this year. Sue Shimer, chair of the event confirmed, “we will have both amateur and professional categories in the contest again this year.” Those wishing to enter the contest need to deliver one pint of their special recipe at 12:45 p.m. the day of the festival (no earlier as there is no refrigeration available). Chips will be provided.

“The judging will begin at 1 p.m. and the winners will be announced at 1:30,” said Shimer. “The entry form can be downloaded from the chamber website or picked up at the chamber office in advance.”

First and second-place prizes are awarded for both best tasting and best presentation.

Avo 500

Making race cars out of avocados and competing to see which one is fastest, is all part of the (free) fun at the Avo 500, coordinated by volunteer Gordon Stone. This event will take place at the community stage area at the Elder House, corner of Main and Elder.

Check-in time to make an avocado race car (free) is 11 a.m., with the race time at noon. Children can also bring their own “avocado race car.” Prizes will be awarded to the winners.

Best Dressed Avocado

Elementary school age children can deliver their “best dressed avocado” in whatever theme they would like for this year’s contest, also held at the Elder House. Chamber volunteer Helen Archibald coordinates the event. Check-in time is between 10 and 10:50 a.m. and judging is at 11.

Judging is based on originality, creativity, and use of materials. Prizes are awarded to the winners.

Little Miss & Mister Avocado

Boys and girls ages 6 to 10 who would like a chance to be Fallbrook royalty can enter the Miss & Mister Avocado contest, which will also be held at the community stage at the Elder House. Registration for the competition will be held from 10 to 10:50 a.m. with the event at 11. This year’s contest is being organized by Christiana Monarez (a former Miss Fallbrook) and the newly-crowned 2014 Miss Fallbrook court will be assisting.

This year, the Fallbrook Airpark has elected not to hold its annual Open House on the day of the Avocado Festival, due to parking problems, however other off-site attractions are still on the schedule.

The Fallbrook Historical Society will have its compound of museums open for visitors at the corner of Rocky Crest Drive and Hill Street (Rocky Crest is accessible off South Mission Road).

The Fallbrook Gem & Mineral Society will also have its museum open for visitors at 123 W. Alvarado Street (one block off where it intersects with Main Ave.)

A kid’s carnival operation will be set up in the parking lot of Joe’s Hardware, 640 S. Main Ave. (corner of Fallbrook Street).

This year’s festival looks to be as promising as ever, with a wide variety of goods and entertainment.

“I was 16 when George (Archibald), Carol (Eastman) and my mom (Dianna Branche Hallock) put on the first Avocado Festival, and George still jokes that there wasn’t an avocado in sight (it was in October). They moved it to April, and over the years more avocado products have been added as well as local food vendors, talent, and artists.”

And it’s tradition that keeps the chamber producing one of Southern California’s most popular agricultural-themed events.

“I am so excited to see the community collaboration that goes into this; it is such a huge event, it really takes a village to accomplish it,” said MacDonald.

For more information on the Avocado Festival, visit www.fallbrookchamberofcommerce.org.

18 Responses to "28th annual Avocado Festival takes place Sunday, April 13"

  1. The Dude   April 10, 2014 at 6:13 am

    Looking forward to it!! Please please please please please leave your dog at home!!!! It’s too hot and too crowded for them!!!!

  2. Former Fallbrookian   April 10, 2014 at 6:58 am

    Look forward to this event every year. Love it!!

  3. Lee   April 10, 2014 at 7:48 am

    Folks, can you PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE not drink and drive?! PLEASE! We all want to have a good time and enjoy the festival. Of course, we do; we all know that. But can you PLEASE not drink and drive?! If you plan on drinking at the festival, can you PLEASE come along with a designated driver? PLEASE?!

    If you see an intoxicated person, PLEASE do your part and notify the authorities — period! Don’t just stand idly by, turn a blind eye and deaf ear and don’t get involved. PLEASE stop being afraid and DO take the initiative in stopping a potential wrong! PLEASE! Call the police; that’s what they tell us. Heck, there will be plenty of police officers at the festival; contact them.

    Do something!

    Don’t let a drunk person get behind the wheel. PLEASE! Rather be safe than sorry, that being a fatality that we will read about the next day. Do YOUR part in ensuring a safe society!

    Suggestion to the Avocado Festival. (And pardon my ignorance if the following isn’t already in place.) Why not organize a volunteer designated driver team/crew? Why not? Let’s look into that, please. Welcome . . . C.H.I.P.s: Caring Helpers for Intoxicated Persons. Something like that.

    Finally, PLEASE do NOT bring your dogs to the festival. Undoubtedly, every year there are a few Einsteins who bring along their . . . chick magnet. Yikes! It’s hot. The asphalt is hot. Thousands of people. And a few folks bring along their . . . dog. C’mon man! Please keep it simple, sexy, and keep your dogs at home. Thank you.

    Let us have an enjoyable and SAFE Fallbrook Avocado Festival!!!

  4. newtotown   April 10, 2014 at 9:40 am

    what is the hours for the festival?

    ANSWER: 9 to 5

  5. @#Lee   April 10, 2014 at 11:23 am

    I have gone to the Festival for years and years and never with a thought like yours- what do you mean by, "keep it simple and sexy?" I have chills with that comment.

  6. Brookie   April 10, 2014 at 3:28 pm

    Weather forecast says it will hit a high of 67!!!!!! I just may go this year. Haven’t been in a while…not a fan of heat mixed with 70,000 people and a bunch of pit bulls! Hope it is enjoyable this year 🙂

  7. grunt   April 10, 2014 at 6:54 pm

    @lee – you make a couple of good suggestions, long winded, but still good. Maybe CERT or some like organization could marry up their "get the information" out about them with the DD.

    Second thought – Lee, you seem to often ask others to organize things – why not YOU take on this task (for next year)? Meet with the Chamber, go to meetings, find drivers? What an impact you would make — or are you only about finding fault?

  8. What?   April 11, 2014 at 6:06 am

    Looking forward to watching Lee trying to "identify an intoxicated person, then call the authorities"….

    Someone might be getting an ambulance ride instead.

  9. Seriously??   April 11, 2014 at 9:39 am

    I’ll make this easy for you Lee. Go to the Beer Garden.

  10. DR DR   April 11, 2014 at 10:30 am

    It appears to me, Lee’s activity will be following ladies around looking for “simple and sexy” … creepy…

  11. Wally   April 11, 2014 at 12:11 pm

    I’m a responsible dog owner and I wouldn’t think for a second of ever bringing my dog to this event. Nevertheless, we will again see dozens of dogs being dragged through the masses. Until the event organizers finally decide to put a crack down on this activity, this will be the case each year. Perhaps having county animal control officers roaming the crowd, handing out $50 fines, will finally put an end to this.

  12. jas   April 11, 2014 at 5:47 pm

    I believe the animal sanctuary will have a pet babysitting service at the Moose Lodge.

  13. Vee   April 11, 2014 at 10:10 pm

    Sadly some dogs and dog owners ruined it for me and my family a few years back. We will never go again. Went for many years, loved it. At our last visit, we had two pit bulls get into a fight right next to us, one family member was knocked to the ground. The dog owners looked like they came out of a Compton or East L.A. gang, a lot of swearing and very scary bad behavior, and not even an apology. Nice to hear people are posting that they would never take their dog there and they are responsible dog owners. But the swarm of pit bulls and some seedy looking types keep us away now.

  14. The Dude   April 12, 2014 at 10:11 am

    The problem with the dogs is two-fold; the owners that insist on bringing them, and the sheriff’s dept. that doesn’t cite anyone for bringing their dog.

  15. Seriously??   April 12, 2014 at 10:15 am

    The problem is that the sheriff’s that are working the festival refuse to make them leave with their dangerous animals. It is against the rules of the festival to bring a dog, but since no one enforces it, the dogs show up anyway. Sadly the only way it will ever stop is when someone gets bitten oor attacked and a law suit is filed against the Chamber.

  16. Lee   April 12, 2014 at 10:32 am

    @ #13 Vee

    Vee, I hope that you don’t let a few "bad apples" spoil this wonderful event for you and be the reason why you and your fam won’t attend it in the future. Come on, give it another try, please! Thank you.

  17. Fallbook Animal Sanctuary   April 12, 2014 at 5:00 pm

    Great comments re dogs at the Avo Festival. The Fallbrook Moose Lodge and the Fallbrook Animal Sanctuary are sponsoring a Avocado Festival Dog Sitting facility at the Moose Lodge at 842 S. Main from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. tomorrow (Sunday). If you see someone with a dog at the fair send them to the Moose Lodge and we’ll watch their animal until they get ready to leave. FAS Board of Directors

  18. Fallbrook Blues   April 13, 2014 at 5:58 am

    I wont be going. Too many people and stupid people with their dogs. One thing that really gets me is how people just stop right in everyone’s way to eat, talk to someone or whatever. Go up on the sidewalk, please? I used to live a block away from Main and go every year but the last time I attended it took over an hour to get from one end to the other because of all the idiots that stop in the middle of the path not to mention bikes and strollers clogging up the paths too. Also dont know why they wont extend the hours for example 7am to 7pm.


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