Last week our blog previewed a few of the festivals that you could easily plan a trip to the West around.  Here are a few more for you to consider:


In its 26th year, more than 25,000 spectators will have the opportunity to experience up to 25 hot-air balloons at America’s Freedom Festival in Provo, Utah.  Balloons will be flying each morning from 6:30-8 a.m., July 2nd, 3rd, and 5th, 2011. The event offers families the opportunity to walk among the balloons as they inflate. It will make rising early well worth your while, and makes a great addition to your Utah’s Canyon Country vacation.  Once again, booking early is crucial for this trip due to the popular travel date – Independence Day – one of the most heavily traveled weeks of the year!


In early September, the award-winning Moab Music Festival takes place among the red rock venues around Moab.  Dubbed “music in concert with the landscape”, it is a unique experience with a wide variety of musical styles represented.  Audience members travel down the Colorado River in jet boats to an acoustically perfect red rock concert site. After the performance, share food and drink with the musicians before boating back to Moab.  Plan to attend this festival as part of your Canyonlands adventure next fall.


For 24 years now, the Yellowstone Jazz Festival has been presenting top jazz performers and musicians to the Yellowstone National Park area to participate in jazz concerts during the Festival.  It is held each July in Cody, Wyoming, and would be a great stop during your Beartooth Highway trip, which features Yellowstone and the Grand Tetons.   The Grand Targhee ski resort will host its 7th annual Targhee Music Festival in July of 2011.  Enjoy a variety of eclectic performers on stage tucked into the shadows of the magnificent Tetons.  I stumbled upon this festival on its final day in 2007, and though I had missed the Neville Brothers on the previous evening, I was able to hear David Wilcox perform.


The Monterey Jazz Festival will be held September 16-18, 2011The Festival features over 500 artists performing on eight stages spread over the 20-acre Monterey Fairgrounds in Monterey, California. There’s something for everyone here – the Taste Tent features wine and champagne, there is an auction of unique jazz items and memorabilia, jazz-related vendors, an exhibition on the history of the Festival complete with memorabilia, DJs, and jazz movies. Family Day  (Sunday the 18th) includes expanded activities and entertainment featuring Yamaha’s Instrument Petting Zoo, where kids can play  professional-level equipment. There is also an Arts and Crafts area.  This festival would fit in well with our Down the Big Sur Coast trip.


I’ve only mentioned a few of the festivals that are held throughout the West.  There are countless food, wine, beer, art, film, and music festivals throughout the year.  Our trip consultants would love to help you create a custom trip with your specific interests and activities in mind.