This is a sponsored post, but we were so excited to tell you about the Tempe Art Festival, we would have written it, anyway.
With over 350+ vendors and a beer and wine garden to boot, The Bitches had our work cut out for us trying to see everything at the 50th annual Tempe Festival of the Arts this weekend. You may have seen us roaming around on Instagram, but we figured we’d give you a quick recap.
We spent the day exploring local Arizona art, eating way too much Arizona food (of course.), and partaking in an adult beverage or two or three.
You guys, if you’re worried about parking (and we were) take the light rail. We started in midtown and grabbed a coffee at Lux before we made our journey south. It didn’t take long and if you have a buddy, it’s actually kind of nice to just hang out for thirty minutes and chat. We also caught a (probably illegal?) soccer game on our light rail car. So just a heads up that you’ll probably come home with a story.
Am I selling you on the light rail yet?
You’ll know when you get to the festival from the light rail because it’s right on Mill Avenue and you can see it from the train. You’ll hop off right into the thick of it.
Caffeinated, we weaved our way in and out of local artist booths, even really truly contemplating whether or not we needed a locally made stone fountain in our backyard (it just wasn’t in the budget but it’s definitely one of those “put it on my vision board for later” moments). We did happen to snag a few bottles of olive oil from Olive Avenue (much smaller/cheaper than a fountain and goes better with bread).
But our favorite part of the festival? Food Truck Alley and the beer and wine gardens.
Here’s the thing. Arizona has some amazing weather and some amazing food. Combine that with a day full of local art and live music and you really have something there.
Food Truck Alley had plenty to choose from, but we were drawn to the smells of Hot Bamboo, the bao stand.
If you haven’t had bao, it’s so delicious and adorable that Pixar made a short about it. Yes, really. The warm buns are steamed in bamboo and filled typically with pork, but you can get them with teriyaki chicken or vegetables, too. And you should. Get one of each. You’ll be glad you did.
Before we left, we grabbed Four Peaks beers (the peach IPA, of course), found two chairs, and cozied up for a concert in the street. The crowd was dancing, the dogs were watching their owners dancing, and we were watching the dogs watching their owners dancing. Honestly, it was the best way to spend a Saturday afternoon.
If you missed this weekend’s events, never fear. The art festival is back this spring and of course, we’ll have all the details.