Posts Tagged ‘Big Bite Events’

Following up on the ravishing success of their Bacon Festival this past August, Big Bite Events returned this past weekend with a brand new event, the 1st Annual Big Bite Sugar Rush. Although not as large as the aforementioned festival, this dessert festival still managed to draw enough attention that all the attendees and vendors consistently had something to do. Taking place in one of the hangars at the OC Fair & Event Center in Costa Mesa, this festival pulled together dozens of some of Southern California’s top dessert businesses ranging from pastry chefs to caterers to retailers and more. About half of the vendors delivered copious amounts of sweet samples for visitors to munch on as the visitors strolled up and down the aisles gazing upon all the sugary goodness. To keep the attendees occupied throughout the day, some demos and seminars took place for those who desire to learn about creating desserts at home. To spread out the amount of attendees, Big Bite Events held this dessert festival across two days.

Anyone who did research on this event may discover an angry mob of reviews of this organization’s historical events. Excluding the last bacon festival, at least for the past three years’ worth of Big Bite Events’ festivals, too many things went wrong that no one thought that Big Bite Events could rectify their flagship event. Without going into too much detail, major issues involved the steep admission price, parking fees, long lines, low food quality, lack of food, food not fully cooked or heated, meager sample portions, too few vendors, lack of accessible water, and no crowd control. All of these factors over the past few years contributed to bad press for Big Bite Events. This past year, they flipped it around with the Bacon Festival (linked above) that actually managed to operate well, and that organization has carried over to Sugar Rush.

Much like the improvements of their bacon festival, Big Bite Events delivered a dessert festival that surely would please anyone attending. The amount of attendees compared to vendors matched perfectly, as no vendor ever had a long line, and no one had any trouble navigating through the event space. Fortunately, none of the vendors ever ran out of samples either, even with the vendors encouraging attendees to sample as much as they would like. Sugar Rush had a reasonable admission fee too: $10 for general admission, or $20 for VIP that included early admission, a goodie bag, access to a VIP area, and a complimentary alcohol & chocolate pairing. I believe that if Big Bite Events wanted to truly put a “cherry on top” they should have included a free pair of tickets to next year’s OC Fair.

While the Big Bite Events suffered from bad press in the past few years, I believe this year’s two festivals may help to bring them back into good standing. We all hope that they learned from their past mistakes and use this year’s festivals’ overall success to deliver quality events in the future. If you seek out more food & drink goodness, make sure you check out Big Bite Events on Facebook and Twitter for updates regarding future events.

Ska Parade Lounge
8:00 pm – 12:00 am, December 1
Slide Bar, Fullerton

Enjoy a free local ska-punk show in Fullerton this Tuesday night. No one under 21 may enter.

Magic In The Garden
6:30 pm – 9:30 pm, December 2
Restauration, Long Beach

Enjoy a four-course dinner with magic show this Wednesday night in Long Beach. Reservations for this dinner cost $50.

Dirty Little Secrets Rock Burlesque – First Wednesdays @ The Copper Door
9:30 pm – 12:00 am, December 2
The Copper Door, Downtown Santa Ana

Get your fill of burlesque every first Wednesday of the month at The Copper Door in Downtown Santa Ana, for free! Guests can park on the street for free after 8pm. No one under 21 may enter.

Riviera Village Holiday Stroll
5:00 pm – 9:00 pm, December 3
Riviera Village, Redondo Beach

Explore Riviera Village in Redondo Beach this Thursday evening and enjoy holiday-themed festivities such as horse-drawn carriage rides, holiday music, a parade at 6pm, local shopping sales, food & drink specials, and more.

The Briggs @ Slide Bar
8:00 pm – 12:00 am, December 3
Slide Bar, Fullerton

Punk rock band The Briggs will headline a free show at the Slide Bar in Fullerton this Thursday night. No one under 21 may enter.

Pomona Harvest Festival
10:00 am – 6:00 pm, December 4-6
Fairplex, Pomona

Shop thousands of handmade American arts & crafts in hundreds of booths over the weekend. Find beautiful jewelry, clothing, specialty foods, photography, hand-turned wood, ceramics, and more. Admission costs $9 for Adults, $7 for Seniors, $4 for Youth, and 12 & under get in free.

19th Annual Pizza Port Carlsbad Strong Ale Festival
2:00 pm – 10:00 pm, December 4-5
Pizza Port Bottle Shop, Carlsbad

Submerge yourself in strong beers this weekend at Pizza Port in Carlsbad. General admission costs $45, starts at 5pm, and includes a souvenir glass and eight beer tasters. VIP sessions cost $70, start at 2pm, and also include complimentary food and access to purchase rare bottles.

37th Annual Balboa Park December Nights
3:00 pm – 11:00 pm, December 4
12:00 pm – 11:00 pm, December 5
Balboa Park, San Diego

This free and all-ages event allows visitors to check out the museums of Balboa Park free of charge, and enjoy the live holiday-themed entertainment.

First Fridays
5:00 pm – 10:00 pm, December 4
Various locations
Long Beach:

This monthly artwalk occurs on the first Friday of every month. Each location offers different activities, but most will contain food & drink specials, art exhibits & displays, street performers, and more. Venice and Long Beach have the two largest gatherings of all First Fridays. Other locations include Westchester, Fullerton, and City of Industry. Most First Fridays locations cost nothing to attend, while the local businesses uphold their standard rules (e.g. bars 21+ only).

Uptown Village Market
5:00 pm – 10:00 pm, December 4
11:00 am – 5:00 pm, December 5
Expo Arts Center, Bixby Knolls, Long Beach

Local artists and vendors will display and sell their wares at this FREE art fest. Guests can look at some interesting works of art, while browsing through all the merchandise available to purchase. The organizers will provide free refreshments, while live bands and singers will keep guests entertained.

Beyond The Lines – Pop-Up Group Art Show
7:00 pm – 12:00 am, December 4
3:00 pm – 12:00 am, December 5
Solar Studios, Glendale

Find paintings, sculptures, photography, furniture, jewelry, and other handmade crafts from emerging local artists as well as live music, comedy show, face painting, photo booth, games, cold pressed juice, coffee, tea, and more at this pop-up art show. Admission costs $5 presale or $10 at the door.

4th Annual Alpine Kraft Bierfest
7:00 pm – 11:00 pm, December 4
11:00 am – 3:30 pm, December 5
Alpine Village, Torrance

More than 40 microbreweries will serve over 100 different beers this weekend at Alpine Village in Torrance. General admission to this beer festival costs $45. No one under 21 may attend.

The Secret Affair – 60’s Night
9:00 pm – 1:00 am, December 4
Alex’s Bar, Long Beach

Occurring on every month’s first Friday, this 60’s night at Alex’s Bar will play all vinyl music of motown, northern soul, boogaloo, 60’s pop, and more. Feel free to dress up too, as the bar staff will hold costume contests and dance contests.

Grand Central Market Holiday Marketplace
9:00 am – 6:00 pm, December 5-6
Grand Central Market, Downtown Los Angeles

This weekend at Grand Central Market in Downtown LA, retail popups will offer special holiday products, while market vendors will have holiday deals on their goods. Visitors will also find cookbook signings, live music, and arts & crafts for the little ones.

2015 Holiday Craft Faire
10:00 am – 6:00 pm, December 5-6
Whimsic Alley, Los Angeles

Check out this FREE and all-ages event going on this weekend in Los Angeles. Visitors will find plenty of arts & crafts from local designers with a passion for pop culture and the holidays.

21st Annual Nutcracker Christmas Tree Lighting & Holiday Village
10:00 am – 7:00 pm, December 5
Center Street Promenade, Downtown Anaheim

Completely FREE to attend for all ages, this Christmas tree-lighting celebration lasts all day. During the day, guests can partake in breakfast with Santa, kids’ crafts & activities, a food fair, live entertainment, train rides, snow play, and more. The actual tree lighting begins at 6pm. If you need something to do with family, bring them to Downtown Anaheim this Saturday night.

4th Annual Orange County Brew Ho Ho
11:00 am – 5:00 pm, December 5
Phoenix Club, Anaheim

From the creators of OC Brew Ha Ha comes the OC Brew Ho Ho Holiday Ale Festival! Join me this Saturday for an afternoon of UNLIMITED beer tastings, food, music, holiday shopping, music by Richard Blade, and more. As one of the year’s final beer fests, expect to ring in 2015 with some rare and unreleased beers, including this year’s collaboration beer, Chernyy Medved. In addition to the beer and food, OC Brew Ho Ho will also feature a merchandise expo, allowing attendees to do some holiday shopping while drinking beer. Tickets cost $55 and comes with free parking, a souvenir glass, and all access to all areas of the fest. As with any beer fest, all attendees must show ID, and nobody under 21 may enter.

5th Annual Los Angeles International Tea Festival
11:00 am – 5:00 pm, December 5-6
Japanese American National Museum, Downtown Los Angeles

Sample teas from around the world, and sample Japanese cuisine at this tea festival. General admission to this all-ages festival costs $20. Guests can park for free on the street on Sunday. On Saturday, all lots and meters will operate normally.

Big Bite Sugar Rush
11:00 am – 5:00 pm, December 5-6
OC Fair & Event Center, Costa Mesa

Big Bite Events returns with a sweeter spin on their food fest events. This dessert showcase brings dessert competitions, demos, dessert decorating activities, and dozens of sweets to sample. General admission costs $20, starts at 12pm, and allows unlimited dessert samples while supplies last. VIP admission costs $50, starts at 11am, and also includes a goodie bag, alcohol pairing, and access to a VIP lounge.

8th Annual Unique LA Holiday Show
11:00 am – 6:00 pm, December 5-6
The California Market Center, Downtown Los Angeles

Their website describes this event best: “The largest independent design show in the country, attendees get the rare chance to meet and shop directly from over 350 hand-selected designers and artists. The exciting two-day shopping event makes it easy for you to buy local and support LA’s economy, discover great design and deals, join in community, and have a blast.” The $10 admission allows for unlimited reentry for both days, and anyone buying presale online will receive a free tote bag. Guests over 21 can receive free cocktails, while all guests may receive other free drinks, like teas and waters. The show will also feature some of LA’s most popular restaurants and food trucks serving their delicious food. Parking directly at the venue costs $6, while nearby parking lots will range from $3-5.

Artisanal LA Holiday City Market
11:00 am – 8:00 pm, December 5
E Holly St, Old Pasadena

Artisanal LA teams up with Old Pasadena to bring you this one-of-a-kind street fair this Saturday. At this free and all-ages event, visitors to this European market inspired local shopping experience will find food, drinks, treats, art, apparel, accessories, live entertainment, arts & crafts, and more. Have some cash available for parking, as free parking does not exist anywhere near this area.

Holidayfest on South Lake Avenue
12:00 pm – 5:00 pm, December 5
Corporate Center Pasadena, Pasadena

Free to attend for all ages, this holiday festival will surely keep you and your family entertained. Visitors will find holiday activities, in-store specials & deals, Santa Claus, horse-carriage rides, live music, arts & crafts, games, food, drinks, and more.

Stateside Crafts 1st Anniversary Celebration
1:00 pm – 4:00 pm, December 5
Stateside Crafts, Long Beach

Long Beach’s Stateside Crafts turns a year old this week, and to celebrate, they will a variety of vendors on hand to serve visitors this Saturday afternoon. Free to attend, Stateside Crafts will offer discounted beer flights, product samples from the vendors, and raffle prizes for visitors.

4th Annual Pugafest
2:00 pm – 5:00 pm, December 5
Hangar 24 Brewery, Redlands

Like Santa Claus, Hangar 24’s bourbon barrel-aged Russian Imperial Stout, Pugachev’s Cobra, makes its annual return this month. Starting this Saturday at their tasting room at the brewery in Redlands, beer lovers can obtain Pugachev’s Cobra on draft and/or in bottles to take home. In addition, Hangar 24 will serve plenty of other barrel-aged beers on this day to commemorate the release of this year’s Pugachev’s Cobra.

23rd Annual Holiday Sonata in Uptown Whittier
4:00 pm – 9:00 pm, December 5
Streets of Uptown Whittier

Bring out the family to this free and all-ages event on the streets of Uptown Whittier. Visitors will experience Christmas Village, Santa Claus, horse-drawn carriage rides, live music, carolers, live entertainment, local shopping sales, food & drink specials, and lots more.

36th Annual Ocean Beach Holiday Parade
5:00 pm – 8:00 pm, December 5
Newport Avenue, Ocean Beach, San Diego

Bring the family out to this local holiday parade this Saturday evening in Ocean Beach. Arrive early to find parking and secure a spot to watch along the parade route.

33rd Annual Belmont Shore Christmas Parade
6:00 pm – 9:00 pm, December 5
2nd Street, Belmont Shore, Long Beach

Police will close 2nd Street beginning at 5pm from Livingston through Bay Shore. As one of Belmont Shore’s most popular annual events, parking fills up intensely within a mile radius. I recommend parking way away and either bike or walk to Belmont Shore.

The Adolescents @ The Observatory
7:00 pm – 1:00 am, December 5
The Observatory, Santa Ana

Legendary punk rock band The Adolescents will headline a show at The Observatory in Santa Ana this Saturday night. Tickets to this all-ages show cost $10.

Ska-Punk Night @ Soda Bar
9:00 pm – 2:00 am, December 5
Soda Bar, Normal Heights, San Diego

Enjoy some local ska-punk music this Saturday night in Normal Heights in San Diego. Tickets to this show cost $10. No one under 21 may enter.

6th Annual SoNo Fest & Chili Cookoff
11:00 am – 5:00 pm, December 6
32nd & Thorn, North Park, San Diego

Check out this free and all-ages event this Sunday afternoon in North Park that will have chili, a beer garden, a kids’ zone, vendors, live music, and more. Although free to attend, visitors can pay $20 to receive a handcrafted ceramic bowl and five restaurant chili tastings.

Mac & Cheese Smackdown
12:00 pm – 4:30 pm, December 6
LA River Studios, Glassell Park

Gorge yourself out on mac & cheese from seven of Los Angeles’ top chefs this Sunday afternoon in Glassell Park. $30 admission gets you access to all-you-can-eat mac & cheese while supplies last.

64th Annual Downey Christmas Parade
1:00 pm – 4:00 pm, December 6
Downey & Florence, Downey

Enjoy a free all-ages holiday parade in Downey this Sunday afternoon.

The Generators: Live in Ventura
2:00 pm – 6:00 pm, December 6
The Garage, Ventura

Enjoy a local punk rock show in Ventura this Sunday afternoon. The cover for this show costs $5. No one under 21 may enter.

Winter’s Tiki Wonderland X
2:00 pm – 7:00 pm, December 6
Don The Beachcomber, Sunset Beach

For $10 admission gain access to a plethora of tiki-themed vendors in Sunset Beach this Sunday afternoon. Admission comes with a $10 voucher for food & drink, so technically you get in for free!

21st Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony & Candlelight Choir Procession
3:30 pm – 7:30 pm, December 6
Old Towne Plaza Area, Orange

Come to Orange this Sunday evening for holiday cheer and family fun with traditional carols and a tree lighting ceremony at 5:15pm.

Twisted Christmas with the Dirty Little Secrets Burlesque
4:00 pm – 7:00 pm, December 6
Harvelle’s, Downtown Long Beach

Witness a sultry holiday-themed burlesque show at Harvelle’s in Downtown Long Beach this Sunday evening. The cover for this show costs $10. No one under 21 may enter.

City of Irvine’s Winter Wonderland
5:00 pm – 8:00 pm, December 6
Irvine Civic Center, Irvine

Irvine will have a free and all-ages holiday-themed event this Sunday evening. Visitors will find Christmas lights, a Christmas tree, arts & crafts, games, train rides, food & drinks, Santa Claus, and more.

Viernes 13 Presents: Skanukkah
7:00 pm – 12:00 am, December 6
Whisky A Go Go, West Hollywood

Get your skanking on at this skacore show this Sunday night in West Hollywood. Tickets to this all-ages show cost $15.