March kicks off the beginning of the spring break season in the Phoenix area, which is one of the most happening times of the year. Whether you are a local looking to make the most of a staycation spring break, or you are visiting from out of town, fun in the sun awaits you in Scottsdale!
Chandler Chamber Ostrich Festival
Did you know that Arizona has an official ostrich festival!? It’s true! Chandler, Arizona has a history of being an ostrich ranching town, so the Ostrich Festival has been developed in recent years as a way to pay homage to the city’s history. While you can plan to see plenty of live ostriches, the festival also includes carnival style rides, such as a Ferris wheel, spinning coaster, and plenty of other attractions similar to what you would find at a state fair.
The Chandler Chamber Ostrich Festival also hosts live music performances over the course of the two weekends, and there are some big name performers attending. You can see: The Band Perry, Walker Hayes, The Beach Boys, and Flo Rida. There will also be vendors located around the festival site serving delicious festival foods from local food trucks.
The Ostrich Festival takes place at Tumbleweed Park in Chandler during the weekend of March 11th-13th and March 17th-20th. Admission costs $20 for adults, and $15 for children ages 4-12. The festival is free for kids who are four and under. You can purchase your $10 parking ticket in advance to avoid the hassle on the day you attend the festival. Between the games, amusement park rides, live ostrich exhibit, and amazing musical performances, this is a festival your entire family is bound to enjoy!
Go Kayaking or Paddleboarding
What’s better than spending spring break out on the water? Phoenix might be in the desert, but you can still get outside and enjoy kayaking at several locations around town. Tempe Town Lake is one of the closest urban lakes that was created by damming the Salt River. No motorized boats are allowed out on the lake, which makes it a safe and quiet spot to try out kayaking or paddle boarding.
Lake Pleasant is another great water sports option if you want to enjoy kayaking or paddle boarding in a bigger body of water. Lake Pleasant is only about fifty miles away from Phoenix, making it an easy forty minute drive if you are looking for a lake destination that you can access for a quick day trip.
Go Paddle AZ is located on Lake Pleasant and makes it easy to enjoy kayaking or paddle boarding by renting equipment at the lake. With everything from single kayaks, to stand up paddle boards, you have options on how you want to spend your day out on the water! Bring your swimsuit, your sunscreen, and a picnic lunch and you’ve got yourself a fabulous spring break day!
The Tempe Festival of the Arts
The Tempe Festival of the Arts is another local festival taking place in the Valley in March. This art festival has a rich fifty year history, making it one of the longest running festivals in the Southwest.
It’s an opportunity to gather with artists from around the country on the historic Mill Avenue to see 350 artists and urban fine art displays. In the past, this three day event has drawn huge crowds thanks to the free admission, incredible artist booths, and an opportunity to enjoy local food trucks in the area. The Tempe Festival of the Arts takes place from March 25th through March 27th this year, running each day from 10 am to 5:30 pm daily. It’s a great opportunity to be out in the sunshine, try local vendor’s food, and meet up and coming urban artists.
Scottsdale St. Patrick’s Day Bar Crawl
Whether you are Irish or not, March is the official month to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day! There are several events to celebrate the luck of the Irish in Scottsdale this year. Clancy’s Pub is opening at 6 am on St. Patrick’s Day to serve Irish coffee and breakfast to kick off the morning in a festive way. For the rest of the day Clancy’s will be serving green beer and traditional Irish food like shepherd’s pie and fish and chips. They will have live music all day, starting at 10 am and going until the evening, with a great lineup of authentic Irish performers.
If you won’t be able to celebrate on the official day, you can still join in the fun by participating in the St. Patrick’s Day pub crawl hosted by Nasstive the weekend before! Tickets are now available for this block party and pub crawl on Saturday, March 12th, which includes a pub crawl map and drink coupons to stop at ten different bars along the way.
This is one of the biggest parties of the year, and you won’t want to miss the celebration. The pub crawl will be taking place between 1 pm and 5 pm on Saturday, and tickets cost $15. To see all the participating bars and drinks, visit the website for all the details. They are all located in the Old Town Scottsdale area, which makes it easy to quickly pub hop so that you can try all the drink specials!
Nature Kids Event
If you have kids who are on spring break, it is always a good idea to have some activities planned to ensure they don’t get bored during their time away from school! One activity they can participate in this year is the Nature Kids class at Riparian Preserve at Water Ranch in Gilbert.
This class was organized by the Mindful Child Project, a mobile enrichment program that was developed to help kids improve their physical, mental, and emotional health.
During the Nature Kids event, kids will be introduced to the world of nature and how they can use it as their outdoor classroom. The class is a blend of science and play time, and kids will come home with a take home craft. This class costs $12 per participating child, and your kids will love the opportunity to play outside and connect with nature.
If you can’t make this event, keep an eye out on the Mindful Child Project website, as they offer different events around the Valley throughout the year.
Spring Break season is all about celebrating the nice weather and embracing spending time outdoors with family and friends. March is a fantastic month to be in the Valley between St. Patrick’s Day, cultural celebrations, fun outdoor festivals, baseball spring training games, and so much more. Spice up your spring break plans this year with one of these local activities!