While summer may seem far away, festival season is not. In fact, it’s just over a week until the first festival of the season makes way to a month full of early festival fun. Here are more than a dozen early festivals to fill out your April and May calendars.
SUGAR MAPLE FESTIVAL: April 26-28, kickoff at 5 p.m. Friday; Saturday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Sunday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Bellbrock Park, 57 N. Main St., Bellbrook. Come join the Bellbrook and Sugarcreek Twp. community as it celebrates the 41st annual Sugar Maple Festival in downtown Bellbrook. This year's festival celebrates one of the most iconic decades in pop culture — Totally '80s! Entertainment includes live music, a beer garden, a parade, free children's activities, crafts and food vendors, a 5K run and a dog show. Free. For more information, visit www.sugarmaplefestival.com.
Credit: Tom Gilliam
Credit: Tom Gilliam
VINTAGE MARKET DAYS DAYTON CINCINNATI "MEMORIES": April 26-28, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and Saturday; 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday at Greene County Fairgrounds, 120 Fairground Road, Xenia. Vintage Market Days is an indoor/outdoor upscale event with vendors showcasing vintage, vintage-inspired, home decor, art, handmade treasures, seasonal plants, boutique clothing, jewelry, furniture and so much more. Live music and food trucks, too. Cost: $10 per day Friday and Saturday; $5 on Sunday. Tickets can be purchased online or at the gate; all tickets allow re-entry with a wristband. For more information, visit www.vintagemarketdays.com.
WRIGHT STATE INTERNATIONAL FESTIVAL: April 27, 1 to 4 p.m. at Wright State University, 3640 Colonel Glenn Hwy., Fairborn. Celebrate the beauty of WSU's international community through cultural performances, cultural cuisines, international beers, live music, flag parade, and so much more. Free.
TURKISH FOOD FESTIVAL: April 28, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Turkish American Society, 2601 E. 4th St., Dayton. Introducing Turkish culture and establishing bridges between different cultures. Prices vary. For more information, call 937-723-8845.
VINTAGE OHIO SOUTH WINE FESTIVAL: May 11, noon to 9 p.m. at Clark County Fairgrounds, 4401 S. Charleston Pike, Springfield. Guests can sample wines from all corners of the state, shop the local crafters and artisans and tantalize their taste buds with foods from local food trucks and restaurant vendors. Learn how to make appetizers that pair well with wines at the cooking demos offered throughout the day. The highlight of this festival is the opportunity to sample Ohio wines and to purchase bottles to enjoy at home. Cost: Session 1, noon to4 p.m. or Session 2, 5 to 9 p.m., pre-sale $25 or $30 at the door. Entrance fee includes a wine glass and 12 wine sampling tickets. Additional wine sampling tickets may be purchased at a cost of $5 for three tickets and $5 for a glass of wine. Designated driver tickets available for $10 and includes four complimentary sodas or waters. Free parking. For more information, call 440-466-4417.
HAMVENTION 2019: May 17-19, all day Friday, Saturday and Sunday at Greene County Fairgrounds, 120 Fairground Road, Xenia. Hamvention boasts over 500 indoor exhibits and over 2,500 outdoor exhibits, showcasing the latest in amateur radio equipment, technology, computer software and hardware, along with hard-to-find radio and computer accessories and equipment. Cost: Tickets for all three days are $22 in advance and $27 day of event. For more information, call 937-372-8621.
Credit: Tom Gilliam
Credit: Tom Gilliam
A WORLD A'FAIR DAYTON INTERNATIONAL FESTIVAL: May 17-19, Friday, 5 to 11 p.m., Saturday, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., Sunday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Dayton Convention Center, 22 E. Fifth St., Dayton. Featuring food, dancing, music, costumes, cultural exhibits showcasing the ethnic backgrounds and cultures of Dayton and the greater Miami Valley. Adults $8, senior citizens $5, youth (6-18) $4. Go to www.aworldafair.org for advance ticket discounts. For more information, call 937-333-4700.
ST. BRIGID PARISH FESTIVAL: May 17-19, Friday, 6 to 10 p.m., Saturday, 4 to 10 p.m., Sunday, noon to 6 p.m. at St. Brigid Parish, 312 Fairground Road, Xenia. Enjoy good food and family fun at this annual three-day community festival. Festival food, rides, kids games, adult games, bingo, live music Friday and Saturday night. Beer is served in a designated area. Free.
SPRING FEST IN THE BURG: May 17-19, Friday, 5 to 11 p.m., Saturday, 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. and Sunday, noon to 6 p.m. at Riverfront Park, 3 N. Miami Ave., Miamisburg. Featuring an arts and crafts show, Spring Fling parade and carnival. Free. For more information, call 937-866-4532.
FARM BABIES FEST: May 18-19, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday and Sunday at Aullwood Audubon Farm, 9101 Frederick Pike, Dayton. A day filled with baby animals, farm experiences, hands-on demonstrations and exhibits, homespun farm crafts, 50/50 raffle, food and good old fashioned fun. Cost: $10 per car; admission is cash only — Aullwood does not have an ATM on site. For more information, call 937-890-7360.
FLEURS DE FETE — WINE & GOURMET FOOD FESTIVAL: May 19, 1 to 4 p.m. at Carillon Park, 1000 Carillon Blvd., Dayton. Featuring more than 400 different wines and gourmet dishes from local restaurants at Dayton History's original "Party in the Park." Cost: $70 in advance; $75 at the door. For more information, visit www.fleursdefete.com.
FURRY SKURRY 5K & FURRY FEST: May 25, 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Eastwood MetroPark, 1385 Harshman Road, Dayton. Join in for one of the area's largest animal events. Cost: General admission $35; VIPP admission $75; youth admission (ages 13-28) $25; children younger than 12 are free; virtual walkers — adults $30 and youth $20. For more information, visit hsdayton.org/event/furry-skurry/.
PATRIOT FREEDOM FESTIVAL: May 25-26, Saturday and Sunday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Dayton VA Medical Center, 4100 W. Third St., Dayton. Join the 10,000 visitors who attend the festival annually and open your eyes to the service, sacrifices, and dedication of our military and their families. You can interact with the veterans living on campus and learn about the history of our American military. This is a fun learning opportunity, provided by the re-enactors from various military eras as well as a bus tour of the campus led by our docent/historian. Volunteers in the Grotto Gardens will provide a tour of the gardens. There will also be activities for children. Free.
DAYTON HERITAGE FESTIVAL: May 26, 11 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. at Carillon Park, 1000 Carillon Blvd., Dayton. Explore exhibits and buildings and celebrate Dayton's unparalleled history through special activities, costumed interpreters, and more. Draped in patriotic decorations, the park welcomes thousands of guests each year to this family-friendly event. After a full day of historical demonstrations, miniature train rides, and general merriment, the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra fills the air with beautiful music. Cost: Dayton History members are free; $10 per adult (ages 18-59); $9 per senior; $7 per child (3-17; $7 for all active military, retirees, veterans and reservists with valid I.D. For more information, call 937-293-2841.