Festivals for All
A Favorite Pastime
There are a wealth of county-wide festivals that are favorites among local residents and vacationers. Each year, a diverse calendar of events includes the Manatee County Fair, the Cortez Seafood Festival, Anna Maria Island Art League's Winterfest, Palmetto Winter Craft Fair, Art at the Ranch, the Kayak and Outdoor Festival, and the Antiques and Collectibles show.
Manatee Heritage Days kick off springtime with a month-long celebration featuring historic walking tours, entertainment, arts and crafts, and a grand parade. SpringFest is also a top event on Anna Maria Island, as are the annual Florida Heritage Festival and Riverfest in Bradenton, which highlights the greater area's cultural diversity and European traditions.
Summertime draws in people from all over to enjoy such celebrations as the Independence Day event in Palmetto and the Wildlife Awareness Festival in observance of the birthday of the county's manatee mascot, Snooty. The fall season brings Get Down Downtown on Old Main Street in Bradenton. Lakewood Ranch's Music on Main and Village of the Arts ArtWalk ensure that there is always something going on. And finishing up the year are the Pumpkin Festival, the Manatee Festival of the Arts, Taste of Manatee, and Art at the Ranch.