Hard to believe this wonderful
event has been arpound this many years, we hope to continue the annual event and
look forward to seeing you in the future!
Take a typical southern California spring weekend in May, add tall trees, snow-streaked mountain peaks, blue sky and pine-scented air, and you have the beginnings of a recipe for Family Fun.
Over 100 Arts & Crafts booths are open all day, along with food vendors, restaurants, unique shops, & live music throughout the Festival. There is also a kiddie amusement area for the little ones! Enjoy lots of places to sit, relax, and enjoy the beautiful surroundings Pine Mountain Club has to offer!
The most unique items at the festivals are all the handmade
crafts, clothing, sundries, food and much more. Many of the
vendors at the Festival are local mountain residents
showing off their talents, adding a local flavor to the
wide variety of artisans who travel here from not only
southern and central California, but from throughout the
Southwest, and even further.
There is something for everyone at the festivals, Weather in May is usually the first signs of warming from our cold mountain winters and flora and fauna are abundant. This includes, of course, all the lilac bushes and trees that have been planted in Pine Mountain Club. Although the actual blooming lilacs that are so popular in our culture are not a native plant, they thrive in the climate up here.
The Festival has grown in popularity so much over the years that vendors (as well as visitors) venture here from as far away as Nevada and Arizona each year. Thousands of people can be seen in and around Pine Mountain Club during a Lilac Festival weekend—hiking, biking, playing golf and tennis, fishing, sitting or strolling in the clear, crisp alpine air.
In 1982 the festival was started by Judy Watkins, then the owner of "The Pine Cone Parlor", the original restaurant where today the "La Lena"
Mexican restaurant operates. The festival is a way to forget winter and welcome the
approaching spring & summer. The Lilac Festival started as little
more than a bake sale and a Maypole Dance, and has grown
into a full-fledged Mountain tradition. The Lilac was chosen
as a centerpiece for the Festival because it thrives in our
mountain climate, and its short flowering season falls
'roughly' the same time as the Festival.
As the years progressed, so did the events size growing rapidly. The Festival was made a permanent, annual event
sponsored by the Pine Mountain Club Commercial Property Owners
Association (PMCCPOA). Rosetta Burgelin took over as Event Chair and
successfully put on the event (with a lot of help, of course)
for the next 25 or so.
After Rosetta's retirement another longtime member of the community, Mark Bailey, who then owned "Madd Bailey’s Pub", took the reigns for this annual event. Mark has done this event along with help from various very dedicated volunteers since.
The original festivals also incorporated a small car show for locals and visitors to show off their “hot rods” and “classic” cars. The car show (now ("Run to the Pines Auto Show") grew in popularity so it is now a separate event typically held on the second Saturday of August each summer. The Lilac Festival has always had a parade to kick things off. The parade was originally directed through the village center in Pine Mountain Club, but because of the size of the event growing it soon was held on Mil Potrero Hwy (the only main road that runs through Pine Mountain Club).
*** A little "unknown plant fact" - Few people know that there is an actual native bush in the California Mountain areas referred to as the "White Bark California Lilac". The ones that grow in this area are a shrub that has blue flower shoots and very sticky, fragrant leaves. More about these lilacs can be found here:
there are many varieties of wild California Lilacs so don’t be surprised if you’ve seen others up here as well as these!