Phoenix Events and Festivals

(Phoenix, Arizona - AZ, USA)

Phoenix offers a number of exciting and entertaining festivals throughout the year, although the hot summers are light on festivities due to the searing heat. Events are especially concentrated between the months of October and May, when the weather is noticeably cooler and at its most pleasant, providing the perfect atmosphere for outdoor festivals.

At this time of the year, the main things to see and do in Phoenix come in the form of the Arizona State Fair at the end of October, followed by the Fairgrounds Antique Market at the Arizona State Fairgrounds in November. Each December, the Las Noches de las Luminarias sees the Desert Botanical Gardens transformed with evening illuminations, harpists and cozy fire-pits.

Located within the downtown district and on North 2nd Street, the Phoenix Symphony Hall is a reliable bet if you are looking for evening entertainment and has staged all manner of events since opening in 1972. Just a short distance away, the Phoenix Convention Center on North 3rd Street is a significant performing arts complex, being recently expanded as part of a $600 million phased program and now ranking amongst North America's leading convention venues. Nearby Scottsdale and Tempe also offer a comprehensive choice of seasonal activities and so that may prove to be well worth bearing in mind.

National Public Holidays

  • 1st January - New Year's Day
  • Third Monday in January - Martin Luther King Day
  • 12th February - Lincoln's Birthday
  • Third Monday in February - Washington's Birthday
  • Last Monday in May - Memorial Day
  • 4th July - Independence Day
  • First Monday in September - Labor Day
  • Second Monday in October - Columbus Day
  • 11th November - Veterans Day
  • 4th Thursday in November - Thanksgiving
  • 25th December - Christmas Day

Calendar of Festivals and Events 2014 / 2015


  • Fiesta Bowl - New Year's Day, a huge parade and annual college football game held at the ASU Sun Devil Stadium
  • Craft and Sewing Festival - held at the Veteran's Memorial Coliseum, this event will appeal to all those who enjoy getting creative with a needle and thread
  • Home and Garden Show - tips on landscaping, garden design and a range of exhibits offering creative ideas, this exhibition at the Arizona State Fairgrounds will please those with an interest in interior and exterior design
  • Martin Luther King Day Celebrations - commemorating the life and ideals of the famous civil rights activist, Phoenix celebrates his contributions with a range of festivities and events


  • Scottsdale Arabian Horse Show - late February, the largest show of its kind in the world showcasing over 2,000 Arabian and half-Arabian horses along with over 300 commercial exhibits and vendors
  • The Arizona Black Film Festival - mid-February, dedicated to supporting black filmmakers, this competitive three-day event showcases films by black American filmmakers who vie for the cinematic award
  • ArtsFest of 5th Avenue - held in Scottsdale, visitors can enjoy this lively celebrations of the arts with artwork, food and music from around the country combining to make this a family-friendly event


  • Guild Indian Fair and Market - early March, an extensive display of Native American arts and crafts and food tasting
  • Rodeo of Rodeos - mid-March, held at the Veterans Memorial Coliseum, one of the largest rodeos of the year
  • Gardeners Garden Tour - to inspire and encourage those with green fingers, the month of March sees private homes in the Phoenix area open their gardens for both residents and visitors to share the pleasure of spring in bloom


  • Arizona International Film Festival - showcasing films made by independent filmmakers ranging from experimental to documentaries
  • Great Arizona Annual Beer Festival - early April, held at the Arizona Center, this event will delight beer lovers and allows for the chance to sample both local and imported beers
  • Arizona Book Festival - early April, held at Margaret T. Hance Park, this free festival attracts bookworms and collectors from around the region


  • Jazz in the Garden - May to July, held at the Desert Botanical Gardens, this event offers jazz lovers the chance to enjoy some smooth tunes amid a backdrop of stunning flora and fauna


  • There are no significant festivals in Phoenix during the month of June


  • Independence Day - July 4, celebrations and loads of entertainment
  • The Amoretti National Pastry Team Championship - early July, a 13-hour competition involving 12 teams competing for a cash prize and a chance to represent the US in the world championships


  • There are no significant festivals in Phoenix during the month of August


  • Way Out West Oktoberfest - late September, held at Tempe, this is Oktoberfest with a Western twist. Featuring country music, non-stop polka, German food and beer, as well as plenty of family entertainment
  • National Public Lands Day Outdoor Recreation Fair - late September, activities include meeting wild animals, ranger-led hikes, workshops and children's activities


  • Arizona State Fair - late October, a huge event with all sorts of stalls, entertainments, rides and more
  • Cowboy Artists of America Exhibition and Sale - late October to late November, an annual exhibition held at Phoenix Art Museum


  • Thieves Market - early November, a long-running event held in downtown Scottsdale and featuring sidewalk sales, local artists' displays, gourmet food and musicians
  • ArtFest of Scottsdale - mid-November, one of the most popular art festivals in the state featuring hundreds of artists as well as fashion, gourmet food and live music
  • Phoenix Fairgrounds Antique Market - held at the Arizona State Fairgrounds, this is the state's largest show for antique collectors and sellers and will delight anyone with an interest in the old and beautiful


  • Christmas Mariachi Festival - mid-December, Christmas celebrations with a Southwestern twist including rhythmic mariachi groups and dance performances by Ballet Folklorico
  • Las Noches de las Luminarias - held at the Desert Botanical Gardens, with volunteers lining pathways with over 7,000 luminaries; there are also musical performances