The weekly Thursday night Villagefest is one of my favorite events in Palm Springs. The event was originated by former mayor Sonny Bono, and for over 16 years has been the home for local vendors of food, fresh produce (straight from the farms), music, art, handicrafts, and entertainment.
Villagefest operates year round, from 6 – 10 pm, October – May, and 7 – 10 pm, June – September, along Palm Canyon Drive between Baristo and Amado. This weekly event has become as popular with local area residents as it is with tourists and visitors. Many of the shops and galleries along Palm Canyon Drive stay open late on Thursday nights, and the Palm Springs Art Museum offers free admission.
Over the many years that I’ve been going to Villagefest, I’ve purchased tasty local produce, a couple of pieces of art (including one large, stunning, original oil), an assortments of gifts. All items must be handmade, so I’ve found some very unique items. I also enjoy the dates, never failing to pick up a package or two.
Part of the fun of strolling Villagefest is people watching. You’ll see blue-haired dowagers, families, flamboyantly attired drag queens, couples, singles — everyone mingling and having a great time. Music usually plays in the background. Villagefest is dog friendly, so whether you have a Great Dane or a little Chihuahua, your pooch will have company, too.
Villagefest is so enjoyable that it’s worth arranging your schedule to be in Palm Springs on a Thursday night!