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The Fremont Fair: Seattle’s fabulous welcome-to-summer weekend!

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There’s color and then there’s character. On the third weekend of June, one of Seattle’s most beloved traditions comes to life: The Fremont Fair. Located just a few miles north of Downtown in the Fremont neighborhood, art, music, food, quirky shopping culture, and a people-powered parade bring out revelers ready to kick-off summer.

Timed conveniently for Summer Solstice, the Fremont Fair is spread over two days, Saturday, June 22 and Sunday, June 23, with the headliner parade on Saturday at 1 p.m. More than 300 craft and food vendors, two large beer gardens (bring valid ID), live music all weekend long on two stages, a kid-friendly play zone, art cars (the blinged-out likes of which are rarely seen on the road!), buskers, the famous Saturday parade and a fun dog parade on Sunday afternoon make this a not-to-be-missed affair! Best of all, attending won’t cost a dime and all ages are welcome (even leashed, crowd-tolerant dogs are permitted).

Feel like busting out a frilly tutu and a teal wig for the celebration? Do it! Some attend in full body paint with little else but sunglasses and visors (bring a towel if you plan to sit in a Fremont establishment in body paint). Whether you go crazy or come casually, you’re in good company at the Fremont Fair. Saturday is typically the more eclectic and free-spirited day.

The main parade will take place on Saturday, June 22 at 1 p.m., starting at Leary Way NW near 2nd Ave NW and ending at Gas Works Park. Witness 60 dazzling community-based ensembles parading through Fremont’s main thoroughfares including giant puppets, stilt walkers, floats, dancers (Samba OlyWa is a perennial favorite) and musicians. Self-expression and art shine through in this parade that bans motorized floats and corporate logos in its procession. The much-anticipated painted and nude cyclists are slated to ride the same route after the parade, starting at 2:30 p.m., which is a change from prior years. A map of the parade can be found here: https://fremontartscouncil.org/parade/parade-map/

Attending the parade is completely free, but there are ways to support the Fremont Arts Council, which makes the parade possible. Visit the Fremont Arts Council website and purchase swag, reserve front-row VIP seating or even sponsor costumes or a float.

Escape the fanfare and beat the crowds and heat by enjoying a lunch or dinner just east of the Saturday parade endpoint at Ivar’s Salmon House or Ivar’s Seafood Bar located at 410 NE Northlake Way.

If you go:

Fremont Fair, Fremont Neighborhood, Seattle (Fremont Ave N on N 35th St.), June 22 - 23, 2019

All ages, FREE!

Music: Saturday, June 22, 11 a.m. - 8 p.m.; Sunday, June 23, 11 a.m .- 5:30 p.m.

Vendors: Saturday, June 22, 10 a.m. - 8 p.m.; Sunday, June 23, 11 a.m. - 6 p.m.

Saturday Parade: Saturday, June 22 at 1 p.m. (N. 36th St. and Leary Way down to Gasworks Park)

Sunday Dog Parade: Sunday, June 23 at 2:30 p.m. – Fremont fairgrounds. Register Sunday on 34th Avenue at the COLA tent from 11 a.m. - \1:30 pm. The $20 registration fee for the parading pooch benefits COLA, Citizens for Off Leash Areas, and is required. Spectate for free.

Parking will be very limited and highly enforced, so bus, bike (Fremont is on the Burke-Gilman Trail) and car share services will ease the commute.

Details found at www.fremont.com.