Subscribe for 33¢ / day

Houses now stand where groves of lemon trees used to grow, but Goleta hasn’t forgotten its agricultural past. The Lemon Festival is this weekend, along with several other tangy events held “south on 101.”

Goleta festival

One of the region’s most popular events, the Lemon Festival is especially sweet for families with kids. Admission is free, but there are plenty of temptations at the food stalls and vendor booths.

The Kids Zone has bounce houses, miniature golf, rock wall and many more activities (an all-inclusive wristband is $30). Safety Street is huge with the little tykes. Police and emergency service providers bring vehicles and displays to allow kids to explore and ask questions.

Grownups head to the Lemon Lounge, where they can sip lemon ale by Hollister Brewing Company, watch college football and chill out. The Classic Car Show (Saturday only) features classic cars, both oldies and goodies.

Live music, dance, martial arts and more happen nonstop on both days, and the noontime pie-eating contest is always entertaining (and messy).

The Lemon Festival is held in Goleta’s Girsh Park in Goleta, behind the Camino Real Marketplace, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday, and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday. (

Edible artwork

An unusual art event will held Sunday at 1 p.m. outside the Santa Barbara Museum of Art, as part of the opening of Valeska Soares’ “Any Moment Now” exhibit. The Brazilian-born artist will hang a huge mass of taffy from a metal hook, allowing it to become warmed by the sun. Attendants will manipulate it into amorphous shapes, as the “Push Pull” title suggests. Visitors are invited to eat bits of the taffy, literally consuming the artwork itself. It’s free and far-out.

Then, at 2:30 p.m., the artist takes part in a free live discussion with museum curators in the Mary Craig Audition. They’ll surely ask about the taffy. (963-4364,

Get tips on free stuff and fun ideas delivered weekly to your inbox

Back to Memphis

The Jazz at the Lobero series bring Memphis native Dee Dee Bridgewater to the stage Friday at 8 p.m. This NEA Jazz Master and three-time Grammy winner has a new CD celebrating the music on the radio that she listened to while growing up, including Elvis’ “Don’t Be Cruel,” Otis Redding’s “Try a Little Tenderness,” B.B. King’s “The Thrill is Gone” and other soul and R&B classics. She’ll most likely dip into past work as well, such as her tributes to Ella Fitzgerald and Billie Holiday. She’s exuberant and enchanting. Tickets start at $42. (963-0761,

Fingerpicking good

The fingers will fly and tall tales will be told night as famed acoustic guitarist Leo Kottke makes a solo appearance at the Lobero Theatre at 7 p.m. Kottke is one of a kind: a master of both six- and 12-string guitars, who has overcome partial hearing loss and a nearly career-ending bout with tendon damage. His skill is undiminished and his offbeat sense of humor intact. Tickets start at $39.

Julia McHugh can be reached at