It’s no secret that Southern California is a festive place to visit, and thanks to a year-long calendar of warm weather it’s the perfect venue for hosting many annual outdoor festivals. Culinary events, family activities, and cultural exchanges enhance any trip to the SoCal region. The next time you plan to visit the greater Los Angeles or San Diego areas, keep an eye out for some of the fun family festivals taking place around the state. Here are just a few events you can look forward to.

Annual Festival of the Kite – Redondo Beach is probably the only place in America where you can tell somebody to “go fly a kite” and they won’t be insulted! For over three decades, kite enthusiasts have flocked to this southern California beach town to let the most colorful and beautiful kites float along the spring breeze. You can see the spectacle for yourself on the Redondo Beach pier every March and enter the many kite and yo-yo competitions on hand.

Cherry Blossom Festival – Once a popular festival in Pasadena, this celebration of cherry blossoms and Japanese culture now amazes enthusiasts in the Little Tokyo district of downtown Los Angeles. Sample authentic Oriental cuisine and take in the elegant and mysterious artwork of this ancient culture. Of course, the district is alive with beautiful, fragrant cherry blossoms that symbolize the grace and hope for understanding between our cultures.

Long Beach Crawfish Festival – Break out the big pots and get ready to chow down on the juiciest, most succulent crawfish on the west coast! This popular seafood festival adds a dash of Cajun flavor to Southern California. Enjoy live zydeco music, games, and of course a variety of great food. The annual crawfish festival is held in the late summer, usually around August.

Southern California Wine Festival – When you think of California wine, you may be inclined to crave a glass from the Napa Valley or regions north. Yet the lower half of the state yields quite a number of good vintages as well. Come down to Van Nuys in September and sample the fruits of SoCal’s harvest as well as wines from around the world.

From wine to seafood, kites in the fresh air to aromatic foliage, there is always something in Southern California to celebrate.

Kathryn Lively writes freelance travel articles for Southern California destinations and Virginia Beach web design companies.