Grass Valley Festivals

From award winning and ‘wild’ film festivals, to one of the largest world music celebrations on the planet: Grass Valley and the surrounding areas of historic Nevada County are brimming with festive activity.

Rich in natural beauty, steeped in local traditions, and reflective of momentous history, the festivals of Grass Valley are conveniently within walking distance or a short drive from the Grass Valley Courtyard Suites.

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Wild and Scenic Film Festival

Considered one of the nation’s premiere environmental and adventure film festivals, SYRCL’s (South Yuba River Citizens League) Wild & Scenic® Film Festival draws top filmmakers, celebrities, leading activists, social innovators and well-known world adventurers to the historic downtown of Nevada City, California.

Festivalgoers can expect to see award-winning films about nature, community activism, adventure, conservation, water, energy and climate change, wildlife, environmental justice, agriculture, Native American and indigenous cultures.

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St. Piran’s Day Celebration

This event pays tribute to St. Piran, patron saint of Cornwall and of hardrock miners. The festivities begin with a traditional pub night sing-a-long on Friday night at Gold Rush Burgers across from the Grass Valley City Hall. The competition begins 10am Saturday morning at the corner of Main and Auburn Streets, know as the “most Cornish spot in America”. Referred to as the “Pasty Olympics”, participants then compete in a series of games involving this staple of the Cornish diet.

Foothills Celebration

Sample chef specialties and delectable sweets from some of the areas finest restaurants and confectioners while you sip fine wine from over 50 foothill wineries. Also enjoy fine art, and listen to great music as you shop and stroll through the streets of historic downtown Grass Valley.

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Downtown Grass Valley Car Show

The streets of historic downtown Grass Valley, California are lined with approximately 300 of the finest Custom, vintage and antique cars and trucks in Northern California. Come join us for a nostalgic trip down memory lane, or in this case, Mill and Main Streets. Cars, food and great rock ‘n roll music make the day a fun event for everyone.

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Sierra Festival of the Arts

Enjoy the ambience of beautiful historic downtown Grass Valley California at this annual street faire featuring fine art and crafts by California artists whose diverse talents make this occasion a cultural destination. Enjoy the artistic wealth of Nevada County, along with great food and entertainment by local musicians.

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Bluegrass Festival – Fathers Day Weekend

Enjoy the best in Bluegrass and Old Time Music under the halo of beautiful Gold Country pines. The California Bluegrass Association Father’s Day Bluegrass Festival is held at the Nevada County Fairgrounds. The four-day festival begins Thursday morning and runs through late afternoon Sunday (Father’s Day), with a full slate of main-stage concerts, workshops and round- the-clock jamming. The festival is preceded by a three-day bluegrass music camp offering music students of all ages an opportunity to learn from some of the country’s best bluegrass musicians and teachers.

Gold Rush Days

Travel back in time to a different era. A time when the whole world was captivated by the prospect of gold, and Grass Valley, Nevada City and Nevada County were at the forefront. With the help of local downtown Grass Valley merchants, Grass Valley Gold Rush Days celebrates this unique point in history with costumed merchants and vendors, gold rush displays and more. Watch an authentic gold rush era blacksmith ply his craft, or pan for gold with the famous Empire Mine. Take a old-time period photo at True Grit Studios or sip a Sarsaparilla and grab an authentic Cornish pasty, just as the miners did.

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Fourth of July Celebration

Main Street America is very much in evidence during this charming “small town celebration” attended by thousands of residents from Nevada County and beyond. Rotated yearly between the cities of Grass Valley & Nevada City, this year’s festivities kick-off with a wonderful parade down the historic streets of downtown Grass Valley, California. This wonderful event includes a daylong celebration at the Nevada County Fairgrounds with food, musical entertainment and a fantastic fireworks display

California World Fest

A world of music under the cool tall pines of the Sierra Foothills. From Afro/Pop to Bulgarian Harmonies, Latin to Bluegrass, Scottish fiddle tunes to Rock & Roll, Jumpin’ Jazz to Gypsy, Folk to New Acoustic, Mariachi to Russian Folk, Swing Jazz to Gospel, Bollywood to the newest Celtic incarnations, the California WorldFest is the home of our globes finest music and dance. The California WorldFest includes eight performance stages, a complete children’s program, a community outreach history and a pledge to present the finest artists and performers from throughout our world.

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Cornish Christmas – November

Recapture the spirit of Christmas past amid the charming surroundings of historic downtown Grass Valley, California during the 46th annual Cornish Christmas Celebration. Mill and W. Main Streets are closed to motorized traffic and filled with the sights and sounds of an old fashioned Christmas; carolers, jugglers, musicians, the Grass Valley Cornish Carol Choir, Tommyknocker Cloggers and, of course, Santa Claus.

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