One thing wonderful about the US is the fact that whether one is referring to geography, ethnicity, foods, languages, or traditions, this country is overflowing with a dynamically-eclectic blend of everything that is diverse. The same holds true when it comes to amazing outdoor events that are held in America each year – events that are proudly stamped, “Made in America”, with each one totally different and unique.
Here are five outdoor events that you should put on your bucket list:
In 1978, the Utah/US Film Festival founded the Sundance Film Festival; and Robert Redford became the Sundance FilmFestival's first Chairman. The goal was to attract an increased number of filmmakers to Utah, and that dream came to fruition. To date, the Sundance Film Festival is America's version of the Cannes Film Festival in France, and every bit as recognized. Countless actors, directors, producers, screenwriters and celebrities make the anticipated trek to Park City, Utah where the city's downtown Mainstreet becomes completely transformed by an additional 50,000 people to celebrate the largest independent film festival in the US. People from every state, as well as from foreign countries, can't resist the call to attend the activities that span 10 days of screenings, concerts and parties.
The Run Disney Races, held in Orlando Florida, are themed races and you can participate! With the Disney Studios being insanely creative, it shouldn't come as a surprise that some of the Run Disney Races for 2017 included the following: 1) Star Wars Half Marathon 2) Super Hero Half Marathon and 3) the Disney Princess Half Marathon. The fun part begins when runners let their creativity flow by dawning themselves with hand-made or purchased costumes to fit the particular theme. Every year, an exciting menu of races unfolds as like-minded participants meet exciting, new people with the same interests and talents. Though prizes and awards are offered, the most fun is just being an active part of the excitement.
At the Key West Food & Wine Festival, flip-flops are required as well as attitudes without a care in the world! On the island of Key West, you will experience an idyllic feeling of paradise for 4 days where more than 20 wine and food-themed events will fill your senses – all five of them. Thousands of culinary experts converge with thousands more sun, sand and surf-lovers who can't wait to experience waterfront tasting, winemaker/chef collaborations, and local events that are fun, funky and forever memorable. The wines are diverse and distinct; and the food is put together in stunningly creative style and could be regarded as edible works of art.
If ever there was an amazing outdoor event, New Orleans' Mardi Gras could be considered the epitome of wild, whacky, unabated party-type fun! Mardi Gras celebrates 'Fat Tuesday' which is initiated with participants wearing beads and becoming dolled-up with any costume, of choice. The French Quarter of New Orleans hosts the colorful and energized Mardi Gras parades as well as other festive celebrations throughout the entire city, including outdoor concerts performed by local artists as well as national-league talents.
Interestingly, the Mardi Gras is, always, the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday, marking the onset of Lent, a 40-day period of fasting before Easter. Mardi Gras, for many, commemorates the 'last hurrah' before the fasting begins.
Who doesn't love to eat? And who doesn't love variety? At the Great American Foodie Festival held in Las Vegas every year, an astounding 50+ food trucks and other food vendors converge on the scene and create an expansive outdoor eatery that fills eyes with color and teases taste-buds with the smells of foods from from one end of the country, to the next. Some of the most-unparalleled special-food vendors, restaurants and gourmet food trucks are so distinctive, they have been featured on the Food Network, The Cooking channel, and The Travel Channel. More than 50,000 participants attend a single Great American Foodies Festival, each year. Other cities relish and duplicate the Las Vegas version of this much-anticipated event which has set itself down in San Diego and Phoenix, as well.
Additionally, carnival rides, a beer garden, live street music, and eating competitions make it extremely difficult for participants to mentally and physically return to the real world, once it's all over. That would be, especially true, due to the incomparable Tequila Party Tent!
Oh, let the good times roll!