Sunday, May 20, 2012

Castroville Artichoke Festival

Living a mere 15 minutes from the artichoke center of the world, the Castroville Artichoke Festival has been on my calendar since the first week we moved out here.

Castroville Artichoke FestivalCastroville Artichoke Festival

This festival had a bit of everything.  Walking through the gate put us smack dab in the middle of a classic car show. 
We also got to watch artists put together their entries for the Agro Art competition.

Castroville Artichoke Festival 

From the Agro Art exhibit, Trenton spotted the inflatables in the kids area.  We were all getting hungry though, so we decided to save that for later, and grab some lunch instead. 

The concessions offered artichokes in almost every way imaginable.  We went with artichoke taquitos, artichoke topped nachos, fried artichokes, and artichoke cupcakes (sounds healthy, don’t ya think?).
Yes, I said artichoke cupcakes.  And they happened to be quite tasty.  They reminded me of carrot cake or zucchini bread. 

We ran into the Zaker crew while getting our food, so we all sat down to eat together in front of the main stage.  There was a band playing on stage and a stilt walker visiting all of the families.  None of our kids wanted anything to do with the “tall lady”.

Castroville Artichoke Festival

We also tried for a family photo, but we had one family member that did not want to be in the photo.  So, we made do with what we had.

Castroville Artichoke Festival

After our artichoke meal, we took two very excited kids over to the kiddie area where we rode the race cars and the kids played on the inflatables.

Castroville Artichoke FestivalCastroville Artichoke Festival

We had a great time at the Artichoke festival, even though we weren’t able to see everything that it had to offer.  There was a hall with wine and beer tasting, but it was far too crowded when we went in to do a tasting and keep the kids happy.  There were also cooking demonstrations (I sat down to watch one while Jarrod watched the kids on the inflatables, but a artichoke eating contest was scheduled for that time), farm tours (right up my alley, but Jarrod wasn’t interested), and the crowning of the Artichoke Festival King and Queen. 

*Factoid: The first Artichoke Queen was crowned in 1948.  Her name was Norma Jean…later known as Marilyn Monroe.

I came to the Artichoke Festival with a goal in mind.  I’m proud to say that I no longer have to buy canned artichokes because I now know what to do with the fresh ones!

Castroville Artichoke Festival

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