Festivals

Top 5 Ways to Experience Harvest in SLO Cal this Fall

Did you know that our region harvests more than wine grapes each fall? From apple orchards and pumpkin patches to olive groves and tomato fields, SLO Cal is full of amazing produce and farm adventures to discover during the autumn months. Here are a few to check out this season:

1. Apples & Honey Festival

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Sample the best of the season at this festival held at Mitchell Park in San Luis Obispo on September 16th. There will be local artisans, apple games and crafts, a honeycomb hunt, horn blowing contest and more. Don’t miss the animal showcase from Zoo to You and storytelling by Bonnie Lee Books. More info: http://www.jccslo.com/apples--honey.html  

2. Olive Oil Tasting at Tiber Canyon Ranch

Tiber Canyon Ranch is situated on 50 acres of oak and manzanita woodland nestled in the hills between the Pacific Ocean and the Edna Valley wine growing region of San Luis Obispo. According to local legend, about 10 acres of the ranch were cleared during WWI and planted in apricots. When they came to the ranch, only five of the ancient, gnarled trees were still hanging on. Now, where their companions once stood, they grow ten different varietals of Northern Italian olive trees. The grove is maintained using sustainable farming practices and they welcome visitors for olive oil tasting by appointment daily. They will even take last minute visitors as long as you call ahead. More info: http://www.tibercanyon.com/index.htm

3. Heirloom Tomato Festival at Windrose Farm

Tucked in the rolling hills of Paso Robles is Windrose Farm. Owners Bill & Barbara Spencer have been organic and were certified with C.C.O.F. from August 1999 to 2009, but are currently transitioning to biodynamic! They are a fixture at local farmers’ markets and the farm is an inspiration for many. Celebrate their amazing heirloom tomato harvest on September 22nd. Come for the traditional heirloom tomato tasting of over 30 varieties, stay for the local chefs and purveyors that will be preparing bites of their favorite recipes using Windrose Farm’s tomatoes and farm fresh produce. The FARMstead ED Pop-up Marketplace and Windrose Farm Stand will be open & selling much of the flavorful fare & products you will be grazing on throughout the afternoon. Tickets are $30 per person. More info: https://farmsteaded.com/products/heirloom-tomato-festival-september-22

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4. Discover the Distilleries of the Central Coast with SLO Cocktail Month

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All September long you can try craft cocktails featuring locally distilled spirits at restaurants across SLO County. Local restaurants include Novo and Sidecar among others in Paso Robles. They will be teaming up with local distillers like Krobar and Re:Find to create unique and delicious cocktails. You can even vote for your favorites. Enjoy the “spirit” harvest of SLO County!  More info: http://slococktailmonth.com

5. Sip and Savor our Favorite Local Harvest with a Wine Month Hotel Package

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We couldn’t talk about harvest in SLO County without mentioning some wine! There is no better time to enjoy a wine getaway than the fall months. During September the Boutique Hotel Collection properties are offering wine-tastic room packages to help you experience our wonderful wine region and well, “wine” down. Visit our websites for more details. Cheers!

https://cliffshotelandspa.com/specials/

https://www.seaventure.com/offers/

https://www.sycamoresprings.com/avila-beach-resort/packages/

https://www.applefarm.com/specials

Top 5 Events to Explore at Cal Poly's Poly Royal!

California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo or Cal Poly is an amazing school, with the average incoming Freshman's GPA at 3.92, championship sports teams, and 82% of graduates going into a full time job or graduate school within the first year of graduation. While Cal Poly is a big part of our local community, many people haven't ever stepped foot on campus. Here is your chance!


Cal Poly Open House, also known as Poly Royal is a weekend long showcase of many assets of this wonderful campus and our community. These activities are open to all (prospective students, alumni or just curious visitors) and provide a weekend of fun, April 12 - 14, 2018!

1.Start Thursday Night with SLO's Famous Farmer's Market & Street Fair

Join the crowd downtown for fresh produce, local products, music, entertainment and fantastic food from many of our downtown restaurants. BBQ abounds as well as many cultural specialties, and the people watching is THE BEST!

2.Campus Showcase: Saturday, April 14th, 10:00-3:00 PM

Step on campus and explore! Cal Poly's motto is Learn By Doing, and you can do just that while visiting the over 200 clubs which have booths set up around campus (ax throwing, anyone?). Not only can you get a taste for the extracurricular activities available, but you can meet the members. Many booths also have food and games, so it is a great way to spend the day with your family (did you know there is a bowling alley on campus, open to the public).

3. Poly Royal Rodeo: Friday, April 13th, 7:00 PM & Saturday, April 14th, 5:30 PM

Poly Royal has been the premier rodeo in the West Coast region since the first Poly Royal Rodeo in 1940. It is the largest college rodeo west of the Mississippi, and last year was the largest in the nation. Celebrating the 78th year, this weekend will include barrel racing, team roping, breakaway roping, tie-down roping, saddle bronc riding, bareback riding, bull riding, and steer wrestling. Saturday's event will conclude with a live post-show concert featuring Aaron Watson! Buy tickets here !
 

4. Poly Royal Truck and Tractor Pull: Saturday, April 14th, 1:00-3:30 PM

The Poly  Royal Truck and Tractor Pull has been held at Cal Poly since 1972. With over 50 competitors, this is always a lively event, and if you've never been to a tractor pull, a must see! The event is run by Cal Poly Tractor Pull Club and the proceeds from the event fund a scholarship for students of the College of Agriculture, Food, and Environmental Sciences. In 2016, the scholarship fund gave out over $30,000 to students. Buy tickets here!

5.The best part of the weekend, taking time out to relax and enjoy your surroundings.

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Explore the campus and relive your college days without the dorm room experience. With four unique properties to choose from, Boutique Hotel Collection has you covered. Near campus, settle in to wine country elegance at the Apple Farm (applefarm.com), savor views of the Pacific and feel the ocean breezes at The Cliffs (cliffsresort.com) or Sea Venture Resorts (seaventure.com), or rejuvenate your spirit with the bucolic setting and healing waters at Sycamore Mineral Springs (sycamoresprings.com). We have the hotel for your vacation.

Five Best Events at the San Luis Obispo International Film Festival

Now in its 24th Season, the San Luis Obispo International Film Festival is recognized as one of the best in the country. For the last three years, it has been MovieMaker’s coveted list of the “Top 50 Festivals” for new and upcoming talent.

There are stellar films and movie stars and events and unique venues. In short, because there are so many fabulous things about the SLO Film Festival, it is difficult to choose just five.

But I’ll give it a go!

 

1. Independent Film & King Vidor Career Achievement Award

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A centerpiece of the SLO Film Festival is the Independent Film & King Vidor Career Achievement Award. Legendary actors, directors, film editors, film composers, and others in the Industry, such as Morgan Freeman, Josh Brolin, James Cromwell, Alan Arkin, Elmer Berstein, Ernest Borgnine, Neil Travis, Ann Margret, to name just a few, have been awarded this prestigious award.

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This takes place on Saturday night, March 17, at the historic Fremont Theater in downtown San Luis Obispo. The always informative and entertaining Ben Mankiewicz, the host of Turner Classic Movies, will be returning as the host for the evening.

2. Surf Nite

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Surf Nite is so fun, so entertaining. In fact, the Boutique Hotel Collection has been a long-time Major Sponsor of the Festival and its Surf Nite. Over the years, Surf Nite has honored legendary surfers and surf filmmakers, such as Bud Browne, Gerry Lopez, Greg Noll, Nat Young, Jeff Clark, Linda Benson, and many more. This year, on Friday, March 16, the North American premiere of The Big Wave Project will be shown at the Fremont Theater. Filmmaker Tim Bonython will be traveling straight from Australia to introduce this awesome movie.

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3. The Venues

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The venues are one of the best parts of the SLO Film Festival. Movies are shown at the intimate Palm Theatre, the stunning and historic Fremont Theater, and Downtown Theatres—all in San Luis Obispo, as well as at the Bay Theatre in Morro Bay and the Park Cinemas in Paso Robles. Over the years, movie screening and special events have been held at a Masonic Lodge, beautiful wineries, Old West ranches, Hearst Castle, and many other remarkable places.

4. The Parties

Of course, it wouldn’t be a real festival without the parties! And the SLO Film Festival has some of the very best. Great food and wine and lively and intelligent conversations! Party Central is the Festival Tent, located directly in front of the Old Mission in downtown San Luis Obispo. All the spectacular events—except one, at Tolosa Winery—are held in the Festival Tent.

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One of the many outstanding benefits for Movie Mogul pass holders is that the each day and night of the Festival they get unfettered access and all-day/night snacks, wine, beer, and other refreshments at the Festival Tent.

5. The Movies

The core of the Festival is, of course, movies. There are dozens of movies, ones you’ll never see at mainstream theaters or even on conventional streaming channels. The diversity of films is amazing. You’ll find full length movies, shorts, and documentaries on an extraordinary variety of topics. It is simply hard to convey how exciting and unique this is. So many of us are just exposed to huge Hollywood-style productions. But this is an opportunity to delve into a truly fascinating world of film that definitely expands one’s view of cinema. 

Check out the full schedule of movies and events at: slofilmfest.org. There are a variety of options for tickets and festival passes.

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Don’t miss the San Luis Obispo International Film Festival. It is treasured by locals and for film fans that travel to our area to this phenomenal event. Congratulations to Executive Director, Wendy Eidson, the SLO Film Festival Board of Director, the countless volunteers, and the SLO County businesses, media outlets, and individuals that sponsor and/or support it.

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