It’s the Godzilla of festival weekends: The Seafair Torchlight Parade and FanFest; Capitol Hill Block Party; and three major Bellevue arts fairs — and that’s just the top of the list. If you love music, art, street food, and guys in breeches who say “Arrr,” this is the weekend for you.
1 Bellevue arts fairs
Not one, not two, but three arts festivals sprawl across downtown Bellevue this weekend. It’s wall-to-wall arts and crafts, vendors, music, kids’ activities, street food and more. If you need to know the details, follow links to the BAM Arts Fair; Bellevue Festival of the Arts; and the Sixth Street Fair. Or read Madeline McKenzie’s helpful rundown. But really: Just head to downtown Bellevue Friday through Sunday and have fun.
2 Seafair Torchlight Parade
For some (OK, lots) of Northwesterners, Seafair week is the highlight of the summer. It gets going in earnest on Saturday night with the twinkling Torchlight Parade. Start time is 7:30 p.m., and it runs from Fourth Avenue from Seattle Center to South Washington Street downtown. But some parade-goers will have their spots staked out as early at sunrise on Saturday. Read more from our in-house Seafair expert, Madeline McKenzie.
3 Capitol Hill Block Party
Considered one of the most happening urban music festivals in the country, Capitol Hill Block Party gets underway Friday and continues through Sunday in the heart of Seattle’s nightclubbiest neighborhood. More than 100 bands, national and local (including headliners Chromeo, A$AP Rocky, Matt & Kim, Spoon, War on Drugs, Odesza), will appear on five stages, and the beer gardens will be jammed from start to finish. Before you go, make an itinerary using writer Mike Ramos’ picks as a guide.
4 Community Festivals
You’ll find me at Renton River Days this weekend, but there’s a ridiculous number of festivals and parades to choose from this weekend in towns and neighborhoods from Anacortes to Enumclaw. Some highlights: Tacoma’s Ethnic Fest; Pista sa Nayon; Bite of Skagit and the Pacific Northwest Scottish Highland Games and Clan Gathering. For a big, big list, see our community datebook calendar.
5 Plus: 'Boyhood'
OK, this is not a festival, but I can’t leave the movie “Boyhood” off this list of weekend highlights. It’s a unique piece of work, filmed by Richard Linklater over the course of 12 years. The film won all kinds of awards at SIFF this year. Read an interview with the director and a four-star review of his masterpiece, written by John Hartl.