Food, Wine, Culture in Washington State’s Capital City

Food, Wine, Culture in Washington State’s Capital City

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Visit Olympia Photo
Visit Olympia Photo

Whether you’re planning for spring break or the summer sun, Washington’s Capital City announces a variety of happenings to fit the bill through June 2016. Sample up to 100 Washington wines at the Capital City Food and Wine Festival (March) or plan a spring getaway around the Spring Arts Walk and Procession of Species (April), Dixieland Jazz Festival (June) or Boat Swap and Chowder Challenge (June).

Capital Food & Wine Festival, Saturday, March 19, 2016

Sample more than 100 selections from 40 Washington state wineries and 40 beers on tap at this festive annual event. Local restaurants provide tasty bites to accompany the libations. Presented by the St. Martin’s Alumni Association, the fun takes place at the Saint Martin’s University Marcus Pavilion and Worthington Conference Center at 5300 Pacific Avenue in Lacey. For more information visit capitalfoodandwinefestival.com.

Spring Arts Walk and Procession of Species, April 22-23, 2016

Find visual and performing arts in over 100 businesses by hundreds of artists. Special features include hands-on family activities, demonstrations and impromptu street performances. The Spring Arts Walk includes the incredible Procession of the Species, a colorful celebration of costumed characters marching to create cultural connections between communities and the natural world. This event is for artists, art lovers and the art curious, this event is a wonderful opportunity to embrace the arts in all forms. Find more information on the events page at olympiawa.gov and link to a mobile guide at olympiawa.gov/artswalkmobile.

Dragon Boat Festival, April 30, 2016

Thousands of spectators converge at the Olympia waterfront to watch Dragon Boats race along Budd Inlet while enjoying cultural performances, food and fun. Now in its 10th year, the festival draws teams from community groups, high schools, colleges and government agencies for a celebration of spirited races and traditional Chinese visual and performing arts. The event takes place along Port Plaza on Budd Inlet, immediately north of Percival Landing at 701 Columbia Street NW. For more information, including ways to support the festival or organize a team, visit stmartin.edu/dragonboat.

Capital City Marathon, May 16, 2016

Now in its 35th year, The Capital City Marathon Association is thrilled to host Olympian Jeff Galloway this spring. Known as “America’s coach,” Galloway has trained more than 1 million runners and made distance running accessible to virtually anyone through his run/walk Galloway Method. He ran with Steve Prefontaine, Bill Rodgers, Frank Shorter and Amby Burfoot when the United States was a leading power in distance running. At the age of 70, Galloway continues to run six days per week and 12 marathons a year. Details of his visit will be announced as they become available, but a free running clinic with him will be included in registration for the 2016 race.  For course information and registration visit capitalcitymarathon.org.

Capital City Pride Festival, June 17-19, 2016

Since 1991, Capital City Pride has hosted this annual event in Washington State’s capital which draws nearly 15,000 people for a parade and festival in downtown Olympia. Pride serves as the annual watershed event for the LGBTQ and allied communities, offering a Pride Beer Garden, food, vendors, and activities for families and kids. The Capital City Pride Parade takes place on Sunday, June 20, at noon, beginning on the steps of the Washington State Capitol. Visit capitalcitypride.net for event details.

Boat Swap & Chowder Challenge, Saturday, June 25, 2016

The Boat Swap & Chowder Challenge is a special community festival that features a clam chowder cook-off among local area restaurants and caterers, a boat and gear swap for boaters, plus music and family entertainment all day. Admission to the event is free, but there is a cost of $5.00 per person to participate in the chowder tasting. Swantown Marina is located on the East Bay of Budd Inlet at 1022 Marine Drive NE, Olympia, 98501. Visit facebook.com/BoatswapChowder for full details.

26th Annual Dixieland Jazz Festival, June 23-26, 2016

The annual festival brings a lineup of national jazz and blues stars to Saint Martin’s University with much of the proceeds benefitting student scholarships to national jazz camps. Plenty of dance lessons, great bands, and four large dance floors provide a wonderful time for all ages. Visit olyjazz.com for more information.

Olympia Lacey Tumwater Visitor & Convention Bureau

Olympia Lacey Tumwater Visitor & Convention Bureau is the official destination marketing organization of Thurston County. One part charming college town, one part Washington state capital and two parts untouched natural terrain, Thurston County – including the cities of Tumwater, Olympia and Lacey – is nestled at the foot of Puget Sound one hour south of Seattle and two hours north of Portland by car. With 2,400 hotel rooms throughout Thurston County there are several options ranging from downtown digs to remote rooms. Visitors enjoy the range of offerings – from the culture of the state capital to countless miles of beachfront and mountain trails to a creative culinary crowd offering top notch food, wine, coffee and craft beer. For more information visit visitolympia.com.

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