Latino Food Festival Menudo & Pozole Cook Off (May 24)
For over two decades, the Kern County’s Hispanic Chamber of Commerce has hosted the annual Latino Food Festival Menudo and Pozole Cook Off every May. The event showcases some of the best menudo and pozole dishes in Bakersfield. This event is an annual community tradition and cultural festival that blends a family fun affair with Hispanic culture, food and live entertainment.
Greek Food Festival (October)
The Greek Food Festival is one of the longest-running festivals in Bakersfield. Last year, St. George Greek Orthodox Church celebrated its 45th annual Bakersfield Greek Food Festival. The festival highlights Greek food favorites, like gyro sandwiches, feta fries, lamb shank, falafels, a loukoumades booth, baklava ice cream and more. Along with a series of popular Greek food, the festival also features Greek performances by the St. George Dance Group and live music. The St. George Dance Group is made up of multiethnic performers who share a common love for Greek dance. There are also various vendors for everyone’s shopping pleasure, activities and a tour of St. George’s Greek Orthodox Church.
Philippine Weekend (July 24–26)
Every summer in July, Delano celebrates its annual Philippine Weekend, one of the largest Filipino festivals in the country, to commemorate Filipino heritage, all while eating and enjoying live entertainment. The event kicks off with a grand parade, which begins on Main Street, and the festivities continue at Cecil Park in Delano with various Filipino vendors selling food, like lumpia, pork adobo, pancit, chicken teriyaki and halo-halo. Events included in this celebration include a Barrio Fiesta, basketball and tennis tournaments, dancing and singing competitions, Tiny Tots pageant winners, Mr. and Miss Philippine Weekend winners, and the Santa Cruzan Presentation Ball.
Bakersfield Celtic Music Festival (October) / Scottish Games and Gathering (April)
The Kern County Scottish Society hosts both the Bakersfield Celtic Music Festival and the Kern County Scottish Games and Gathering events every year to immerse the community in the Celtic culture. Guests can expect music, kilts, beer and activities.
Jewish Food Festival (October)
Temple Beth El and Congregation B’nai Jacob present the annual Jewish Food Festival where participants are able to enjoy food such as kosher brisket, sandwiches, falafel and rugelach. There are also vendors and Judaica items, entertainment featuring Eastern European jazz, Israeli dancing, a kugel-tasting contest and various kid-friendly activities.
Basque Festival (May 23–25)
Kern County Basque Club hosted its 47th annual Basque Festival last year. People in the community came together to dance, participate in handball, a card tournament and eat well-known Basque foods. The event is a fun-filled weekend that begins with a lunch and a tournament and ends with dances and more food.
Whiskey Flat Days (February)
Kernville hosts Whiskey Flat Days every Presidents Day weekend. The event celebrates its history from the Wild West days when the area was settled by gold miners, cattle ranchers and trappers. Whiskey Flat Days is a family friendly event. Guests can enjoy the Whiskey Flats parade, Wild West Daze Rodeo, Wild West encampment, carnival rides, frog jumping contests, Whiskey Flat mayor contest, food and craft booths, epitaph, costume and whiskerino contests, line dancing, a pet parade, bluegrass and country western music, an art show, gunfighter skits and more.
The annual Pyrenees-Fiesta celebrates two local cultures all while raising money to benefit families with children who are dealing with life-threatening illnesses. The event features food from both Basque and Hispanic cultures, entertainment and an auction to raise money to support the mission of helping families.
Sister City Gardens Festival (November)
Last year, the Bakersfield Sister City Project Corporation and the city of Bakersfield hosted the second annual Sister City Gardens Festival, where the community gathered and celebrated Bakersfield’s sister cities’ cultural diversity and spirit. Throughout the festival, guests are entertained with cultural dances, food, exhibits and activities inspired from Bakersfield’s sister cities — Wakayama, Japan; Partisan District of Minsk, Belarus; Cixi, China; Santiago de Queretaro, Mexico; Bucheon, Republic of Korea; and Amritsar, India.
Tejon Tribe Pow Wow (September)
The Tejon Tribe Pow Wow gives attendees an opportunity to learn about the Tejon Tribe. A powwow is a Native American gathering that celebrates the culture and history with dancing, singing and a competition aspect. The powwow is a way for the community and the Tejon Tribe to come together and be involved. Other tribes outside of the Tejon Tribe join the powwow, as well. The event includes activities, Native American food, a drumming competition, crafts and vendor booths.
Kwanzaa Celebration (December)
Bakersfield’s Kwanzaa Celebration is all about family, community and culture. The event features exhibition artifacts showcased in the Harambee African Art Community Gallery and also features an Oblinyanko drum and dance ensemble, African folktale storytelling, vendors and more. African heritage attire is encouraged among guests attending to portray, honor and embody the imagery of the Kwanzaa cultural tradition.
Gurpurab / Sikh Peace Parade (November & April)
The Sikh community in Bakersfield celebrates Gurpurab, the birthday of their religion’s founder. The event brings the community together for a day of food, performances, sword fighting and a parade, referred to as Nagakirtan. The Sikh Peace Parade boasts colorful saris and Indian food, bringing together Sikh and non-Sikhs to celebrate the birth of Sikhism. The event also marks the day the Sikhs’ 10th guru made the Khalsa Panth, or the community of initiated Sikhs. Sikhs donate food to the community and come together to celebrate, like they do daily at each of their temples throughout the city.