What do we know about Texas besides its famous cowboy culture, rodeos, the southern accent, and the tex-mex food? Well, it also has some of the top-notch festivals because the folks here sure know how to throw a wonderful festive party.
Every festival in Texas contains famous festivals in Texas the main ingredients of a perfect party include live music, amazing concerts, special events, abundant food vendors serving great food, various performances, grand parades, barbecue cookoffs, family-friendly fun, and many more!
Famous Festivals in Texas
The types of festivals we are going to see are food festivals, music Festivals, artistic festivals, and annual festivals. Without further ado, let’s explore some famous festivals in Texas.
1. Artistic, Sporty, and Cultural Festivals
The art and cultural festivals in Texas are a sight for sore eyes. With vibrant colors and excitement, they are a must-have experience. The sporty festivals include various games and challenges which are exciting to participate in.
1.1 Dripping Springs – the Night Sky festival
Like other festivals in Texas, this happens to be one of the most exquisite celebrations ever. Dripping springs cherishes the glorious night sky filled with delightful stars.
This, too like every other festival, includes plenty of activities such as arts and poetry contests, silent auction, yoga, and storytellers narrating the story of the mysterious night sky with delicious food and Texas music.
Find out more at https://txnsf.org/.
1.2 Mardi Gras! Galveston
In 1867, started the traditional festival of feasting and celebrating the close of the pre-lenten season. The word Mardi Gras means fat Tuesday, which comes before ash Wednesday.
Mardi Gras in Galveston, Texas is the 3rd largest celebration of Mardi Gras in the whole country with lots of parades, food vendors, music, carnival rides, and various live entertainment.
Mardi Gras in Galveston takes place for a whole two weeks and ends on the official date of Mardi Gras. The carnival is located at Galveston’s historic downtown in the Mardi Gras entertainment district. Visit https://www.mardigrasgalveston.com/ and book your tickets for the upcoming carnival now.
1.3 Hidalgo Borderfest
The Borderfest that began in 1976 is now a global event that celebrates and cherishes a different country and culture each year. A great time is guaranteed as it includes extravagant carnivals with several parades, local food trucks, talented artists, industry professionals, and of course, great music.
1.4 Canal Fest, Irving
The Canal fest is a multicultural festival with many new and past performers coming together to make an unforgettable day. Irving celebrates this day with many cuisines, music, art, and activities.
This free-of-cost event features a variety of dancers, singers, food vendors, food trucks, art spaces, gift shops, and many more.
1.5 The Texas Pinball Festival
This festival takes place for a whole weekend in Frisco city. There are more than 300 pinballs and video games to play for free, along with numerous local vendors showing off their special new products.
This Texas festival especially celebrates the art and beauty of video games with, yes, you guessed it, food and music.
1.6 The Austin Jugglefest
A three-day event filled with juggling and fun, who is gonna say no to that? The Austin Jugglefest has numerous games, shows, and workshops. A perfect fest to chill with your entire family and friends.
Visit the Texas Juggling Society website to book your tickets in advance.
1.7 Port Aransas Sand Fest
The Texas Sand Festival comprises the largest sand sculpting competition in the USA, with live music, incredible sculptures, great shopping venues, and amazing cuisine.
Book your tickets at https://www.texassandfest.org/
1.8 San Marcos Mermaid Festival
Experience the most colorful and vibrant floats of all time at San Marcos Mermaid fest. The festival highlights the San Marcos river and inspires the spirit of friendship, community, and river stewardship and also contains numerous events and entertainments. The mythical creature, Mermaid, is now designated as the icon of San Marcos, and the city is now known as the Mermaid Capital of Texas.
The fest consists of over a hundred parades and more than 140 unique vendors. All of the parade registration fees go towards supporting Youth Eco-Guardianship Programming.
Celebrate the Guardians of San Marcos river by booking your tickets at https://splash.mermaidsocietysmtx.com/
2. Food Festivals
There are no festivals in Texas without food, but there sure are festivals solely dedicated to food. Here are some food festivals that are celebrated in Texas.
2.1 San Antonio Coffee Festival
The city’s love for coffee made them create this particular festival as this celebrates coffee by bringing all the locally roasted coffees together in one place. It includes lectures and tastings with an awesome entertainment schedule where the live artists perform while you sip your favorite coffee.
San Antonio coffee festival celebrated its 10th anniversary of 2023 on the 11th of February. Visit https://sacoffeefest.com/ to book a ticket now.
2.2 Irving Zest Fest
One of the most significant culinary events in the country happens to take place in Texas. This festival celebrates spicy foods with music. Numerous food brands come together to celebrate the zestiest zest fest ever.
There are tons of challenges with various prizes. There is the hot sauce challenge, the chilli eating championship, the jalapeno eating contest with the ZestFest music stage, and the ZestFest chef stage.
It takes place for one sizzling weekend. For bookings and more information, visit https://zestfest.net/.
2.3 Parker County Peach Festival
The County Peach Festival aims to promote the agricultural heritage of Parker County by providing an awesome family-friendly event. The Peach Fest mainly focuses to celebrate the delicious taste of the Parker County Peaches.
The peach fest too, like every other fest, has numerous food vendors, activities, and entertaining performances. Learn more about the fest by visiting https://www.parkercountypeachfestival.org/.
2.4 Poteet Strawberry Festival
This delicious festival takes place in Poteet, Texas. The strawberry fest features lots of entertainment activities like live concerts, rodeo performances, gunslingers, carnivals, and strawberries!
The Poteet strawberry festival is a scholarship program that raises funds for the local young generation to attain higher education. Each year, the Poteet Strawberry festival association (PSFA) collects enough funds for thirty scholarships to Poteet graduates.
All the very reasons to attend this food festival. You can book your tickets by visiting https://strawberryfestival.com/.
2.5 Galveston Island Wine Festival
This luscious wine fest in Texas showcases hundreds of varieties of wine from all around the world, including great food with late-night dining, various steakhouses, coffee shops, candy stores, ice cream parlors, and exquisite wine-tasting rooms.
The Galveston Island wine fest is an ideal fest for the most romantic date nights.
2.6 Austin Crawfish Fest
Texas’s largest seafood festival with Cajun cuisine, carnival rides, and live music is now celebrated at the Carson Creek Ranch. Over 10,000 lbs of fresh Louisiana crawfish with live music and non-stop family fun is all that is needed.
Book your tickets now at the Carson creek ranch website, https://carsoncreekranch.om/
2.7 Fredericksburg Food and Wine Fest
A full-on fun celebration with the grape event is located at the Texas hill country in downtown Fredericksburg. The grape event includes a full course of Texas food, wine, live music, beer, specialty booths, food vendors, and complete family fun.
The Go Texan! Dinner on Thursday, the celebration of food and wine on Friday, and a patron party at Marktplatz, the cultural center of Fredericksburg on Saturday are all the special events lined up and waiting for you.
For tickets, visit https://www.fbgfoodandwinefest.com/
3. Film and Music Festivals
Music is another important part of the festivals in Texas with innumerate music styles performed by live artists which makes them great in the music festival category.
3.1 Viva! El Paso Music Festival
The musical extravaganza celebrates El Paso’s history through narration, art, drama, dance, and songs. Viva! El Paso is an outdoor drama with outdoor musical performances. The auditions for this music festival take place in south Texas which is a great opportunity for local young talents.
Viva! El Paso is for the entire family, and as they describe it, “there is nothing else around like Viva! El Paso”.
3.2 Prison City Film Festival
This Prison City film festival is 4 days’ worth of continuous fun with lots of live concerts, special presentations, open discussions, and entertainment. The fest is specially crafted for film enthusiasts as it features innumerate movie trailers, documentaries, shorts, and music videos.
The film fest is based at the Old Town Theatre in Huntsville, TX. Get your tickets at http://prisoncityfilmfestival.com/wp/.
3.3 Dripping Springs Songwriter’s Festival
The three-day music festival is no less than heaven to us music lovers as it showcases a vast variety of awesome songs with engaging stories behind those intricate tunes.
Located at the heart of Texas hill country at unique venues in the historic downtown, Dripping springs features 70 plus shows with more than 45 songwriters. And the best is that the shows are all free of cost.
3.4 Denton Black Film Festival
This film festival represents the African-American community by showcasing Black cinema, music, art, inspirational words, soul talk, comedy, great food, and fashion. It truly is a unique experience with a lot to learn.
The funds gained from this event go to the scholarship of the African-American students in Denton. You are guaranteed to be entertained and inspired. Visit https://dentonbff.com/ and learn more.
3.5 Old Settler’s Music Festival
The Settler’s music festival aims to preserve the legacy of American Music roots in such a way that the young generation enjoys it. The festival features local artists along with award-winning artists. The settler’s music festival is one of Texas’ signature music festivals.
One can enjoy folk, acoustic, jazz, gospel, hip-hop, blues, and many more Americana music. A short, soothing southeast drive from Austin city leads to the old settler’s homestead in Tilmon, TX. Get your tickets at https://oldsettlersmusicfest.org/
3.6 The International Comedy Festival
The Out of Bounds comedy festival takes place in the month of July with the globe’s best comedians and some of the new performers. The Out of Bounds comedy festival is Austin’s largest and longest-running non-profit independent comedy festival as it is a 7-day live performance of non-stop humor.
With standup, improv, sketch, and many more genres, the Out of Bounds festival is full-on hysterical entertainment. See more at https://outofboundscomedy.com/.
3.7 Kerrville Folk Festival
Feel the intimate music experience at the Texas hill country for 18 days straight. This second-largest community in Kerr county has an attendance of thirty thousand music enthusiasts with more than 1000 special guests each evening. This Texas festival is specially celebrated to appreciate the art of songwriting.
The Campground of the Kerrville folk festival is meant to be the heart of this annual event, with folks having impromptu sessions and live music. It’s a nonstop treat for music lovers.
It does have various other daytime activities like hill country bike rides, canoe trips on the Guadalupe River, children’s concerts, songwriting competitions, workshops in guitar, ukulele, and harmonica, and Texas beer seminars.
3.8 Ysleta Mission Festival
The Mission festival is one of the oldest-running music festivals in the country. The Ysleta music fest is a three-day event in El Paso put together with a dynamic mix of culture, music, southwest cuisine, and various games.
It’s held on the second week of July and celebrates the historic Mission Valley of El Paso. The fest attracts more than 25,000 individuals and features some of the best talents of El Paso and South Texas.
The family-friendly event includes old-fashioned cake walks, Mexican Loteria, native American cultural dancing and much more.
3.9 Billy The Kid Film Festival
The Billy film fest is a non-profit organization in Hico, Texas as pays tribute to “Brushy Bill”, also knowns as “Billy the kid”. The Outlaw film fest challenges writers and directors to create less-told movies about the outcast, disenfranchised and broken heroes.
Every entry is highly entertaining, educational, thought-provoking, and fun. Various awards and prizes are given to selected winners chosen by the executive committee of film critics, local business owners, and filmmakers.
Many known actors and actresses are invited for Q&A sessions and workshops.
To know more about Billy the kid fest, visit https://www.billythekidfestival.com/
4. Grand Annual Festivals
The annual festivals in Texas are just incredible, with several fun activities and grand performances. These grand festivals help boost the local economy while having the best entertainment.
4.1 San Antonio Fiesta
The city’s largest annual festival, with beyond 100 events simultaneously taking place all over the state, has a participation of more than 3 million people lasting for over 17 days.
The list of events is a great many in numbers but some of the great attracts are the three grand parades, sporting events such as soccer, rugby, lacrosse, and races, wine fest, community event, great food, and local bands and local artists with their musical performances including jazz, Tejano, rock, classical, hip hop and many more.
The San Antonio fiesta is known as the Battle of Flowers, so a special parade also called the Battle of Flowers parade, is celebrated. The interesting fact about the parade is that it is completely organized by women.
To know more about the fiesta, visit https://fiestasanantonio.org/about-fiesta-san-antonio/.
4.2 The Texas Renaissance Festival
The nation’s largest renaissance theme park covers 55 acres of land with over 200 acres of camping facilities for the campers. This annual festival features over 500 costumed actors with amazing performances.
The Texas Renaissance Festival is based on nine weekends with each weekend being a different theme. The theme influences the food, music, art, performances, gift shops, games, and contests.
The theme includes Oktoberfest – German theme, 1001 Dreams – Fantasy theme, All Hallows Eve – Medieval Halloween theme, Pirate Adventure – Pirate theme, Roman Bacchanal – Roman theme, Barbarian Invasion – Medieval Barbarian theme, Heroes and Villains – Heroic theme. Highland Fling – Scottish theme, Celtic Christmas – Christmas theme.
Various other special events take place such as family circuses, the joust, fire-whip shows, the annual rodeo, community-focused events, rose parade, and awesome fireworks providing family-friendly fun.
4.3 Main Street Fest, Grand Prairie
A three-day event, free of admission and parking cost with a multiplicity of carnival rides, live music, an event park, a family-friendly event, and delicious food is just the place to be.
The 10th annual Grand Prairie main street fest is celebrated from Friday through Sunday on the 200th block of W. Main St. and its surrounding areas. Know more at https://www.gptx.org/
4.4 St. Patrick’s Day Celebrations
St. Patrick’s is grandly celebrated at both Shamrock, Texas, and Dublin, Texas.
Paddy’s day in Dublin is celebrated with a jam-packed line-up from traditional Irish music to the best bands in Ireland. The finest line-ups would probably be at the Old Town Whiskey Bar at Bodega. St. Patrick’s day here in Dublin follows a Mexican theme and a lot of alcohol to provide the best party of St. Patrick’s.
Shamrock’s St. Paddy’s is very much similar to the St. Patrick’s of Dublin as Shamrock too has a fun lineup of events, including the nation’s top Irish and Celtic rock bands.
Put on your greens and enjoy one of the best St. Patrick’s at Dublin and Shamrock.
4.5 Dogwood Trails Festival
The Dogwood trails annual spring festival turns 85 this year with more amusements and enjoyments added. Celebrate the beauty of the Dogwood trees in the Davey Dogwood tree taking place for two continuous weekends.
The Annual festival kickstarts its weekend with many amazing entertainment programs like Art galas, Dogwood lunch train, musicals, historic Redland tours, Old Time Music & Dulcimer Festival, special dining events, pet parade, and memorial day rodeos.
4.6 Charro Days
Charro Days fiesta is one of the oldest celebrated festivals in Texas. It commemorates the friendship between the folks of Texas. It started as a cause to boost the local economy and spirits of the citizens during the great depression and the catastrophic Category 5 hurricane.
A charro is a kind of dress that represents honor, heritage, national pride, and family values. Citizens put on charros and enjoy the fiesta by singing and dancing in the streets of Texas.
The event cherishes traditions and has delicious food, live music, bullfights, grand ball, rodeos, and fireworks.
4.7 Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo
The livestock show and rodeo is a 24-day event with an attendance of 2.5 million people, including the welcomed visitors from 75 countries with 35000 local volunteers as of the 2019th fest.
The fest garners a collection of 27 million dollars as donations which were solely dedicated to the educational growth programs, and the fest has collected a total of 500 million dollars since 1932.
The main mission of the show is to promote the agricultural history of Texas, provide education and entertainment, showcase the western heritage, and help support the youth of Texas.
4.8 San Antonio’s Day of the Dead Festival
This Texas festival is named the 7th best fall festival in the United States. Also called Día de los Muertos, the Day of the Dead Festival commemorates the lives of family and friends who are no more and is a celebratory gesture to believing that our loved ones are still with us.
San Antonio’s Day of the Dead Festival includes plenty of entertainment. It’s filled with Latin cultural heritage and traditions. The fest has countless events, with various parades and a grand ball. Experience the San Antonio river walk at the Spiritlandia river parade. The parade is also telecasted live on Peacock tv.
One of the most colorful, the most vibrant, and historic fest, it is an experience like no other. The fest includes live music, free face painting, a free salsa lesson, a float fest, drum dance, art installations, and folklore traditions.
The Day of the Dead Festival is usually celebrated from October through November. Disney’s famous animated movie “Coco” is also based on the Día de los Muertos’ Day of the Dead Festival.
Considering the festivals seen above, there is no doubt that Texas has some of the most unique fests, and some of these festivals in Texas have probably been added to your bucket list. Be sure to attend these wonderful festivals with your friends and family in your upcoming holidays.