Spokane has a great sense of community. And as with every community there are traditions and events.
There are actually a ton of annual events that cater to a range of different tastes and interests so it’s difficult to come up with a definitive list of top events. Here is my take on the top annual events in Spokane.
There’s so much going here that I can guarantee I will miss someones favorite event off this list so please don’t get mad, just take it for what it is. Alright, let’s get into it.
Spokane is home to some really active, outdoorsy people so it’s no surprise that some of the top annual events in Spokane are sports related.
The Lilac Bloomsday Run, also known as Bloomsday, is an annual timed 12K/7.5 mile road race in Spokane, Washington, held on the first Sunday in May since 1977.
There are 10,000s of people that take part in this every year and you are guaranteed to see some quirky costumes if you take part or just go down to watch. The route begins and ends in downtown Spokane. Much of the course offers views of the Spokane River with the finish line at the north end of the Monroe Street Bridge where the beautiful Spokane Falls serves as a backdrop.
The next sporting event I wanted everyone to know about, if you didn’t know about it already, is Hoopfest. Now Spokane is Basketball mad with the Gonzaga Bulldogs being the sporting pride of the city so it’s no surprise that this event is so popular here.
Hoopfest, is the largest 3-on-3 basketball tournament in the world and has become one of Spokane's biggest and most exciting summer events people look forward to every year.
Attracting more than 250,000 basketball players and fans from around the United States and across globe. The event takes place on the last weekend in June. Over 6,000 teams play 14,000 games across 42 blocks in downtown Spokane. Anyone, of any skill level can play. If you want to play basketball, there’s a place for you in Hoopfest.
Teams are made of four players, with three on the court at a time. Each team is guaranteed two games. This is a really good time so be sure to check it out.
Okay so you’ve burnt all the calories for the year with the sporting events we just covered; you’re going to need some great food. Spokane has a huge food and drinks scene so it’s no surprise there are great annual food events here.
Pig Out In the Park
This food and music festival is a six-day party. The event features concerts from national, regional, and local music artists, along with more than 40 venders. It takes place area labor day and is an excellent time.
Craft Beer Week
The next critical event in this category is the Annual Craft Beer Week. Spokane is home to doesn’t of brewers and the craft beer scene plays a major role in the culture of the city. This is relatively new event having only started in 2015. It happens in May, it starts on Monday and runs all week to Sunday. It’s not held in any central location instead there are over 50+ events throughout the city. So if you’re into good beer at great venues then this is one you’ll want to check out.
Okay so the next category of events I wanted to cover are some entertainment events. There are a ton of events in this category.
Inlander’s Volume Music Festival
This takes place in the first weekend in June and showcases bands from all over the Pacific Northwest. There are 100 bands playing at venues all over Downtown Spokane. One wristband gets you into every show. There’s also a Party Bus providing transport your next music destination. This event has something for everyone and covers every type of genre and venue you can think of.
TheaterFest is a one-day showcase of the performing arts, featuring short performances, activities and workshops for kids and adults. With the goal of ensuring everyone in the community has an opportunity to experience the performing arts, TheaterFest is free to attend and all ages are welcome.
This outdoor festival of art, music, and food and is held on the weekend after Memorial Day. It’s held in historic Browne’s Addition and has hundreds art vendors showcasing paintings, sculptures, photography, ceramics, jewelry and more. There are usually bands there from all over the Pacific Northwest playing a huge mix of music. The festival is also well catered for with some of the city’s favorite food trucks and vendors. There’s also a Beer Garden where you can relax with friends after.
Spokane has a ton of annual parades.
Spokane Lilac festival
This isn’t just one parade - it’s a week of festivities that takes place in May and coincides with the blooming of the lilac plant and has taken place since 1938. The event culminates in the nation's largest Armed Forces Torchlight Parade in downtown Spokane. On the third Saturday in May, the parade attracts well over 100,000 people.
St Patricks day
When you’re in a city with as much going on such as Spokane it’s hard to choose only a handful of events to highlight so here are some honorable mentions:
If you’re into cars like in am you’re going to want to check out the Inland Northwest Car Club Council Spokane car show in July, The SPOKANE LILAC FESTIVAL’S CRUZIN’ THE FALLS CAR SHOW in May, FESTIVAL OF SPEED DOWNTOWN CAR SHOW in June, there’s also a Cops and Kids car show in August.
If you’re into shopping or just window shopping then the summer farmers markets are for you as well and Bazaar and Small Business Saturday.
In terms of cultural events you and visit the annual Scottish Highlands Games or Unity in the Community.
If you’re looking for family event’s then there’s a family fun fair in May, Fall fest and great Christmas events too.