If you're looking to get the most bites possible out of the quickly-slipping-away Summer, don't fret. There are plenty of upcoming food-centric festivals, crawls and "days" in the upcoming weeks to satisfy your appetite this August.
Old Brooklyn PierogiFest - Aug 10th
Is there any food that says “Cleveland” more than the pierogi? (Answer: no.) Celebrate the local favorite at the Old Brooklyn PierogiFest.
Held at Mary Queen of Peace (4423 Pearl Rd), you can eat the little Polish dumplings to your hearts content, Sip brews in the beergarden, and listen to live polka music.
Don’t forget to check out the the main event: the pierogi eating contest, where contestants will try to be the first to down 20 pierogis. The winner will receive an engraved trophy, and a hundred dollar Giant Eagle gift card, that they will doubtless use to purchase more pierogi. You can enter the contest yourself, just fill out the waiver that leaves the event blameless in case you overdo it. (You can find the entry in the comments of the events Facebook page.)
Saturday, August 10th from 3-10pm. Mary, Queen of Peace – 4423 Pearl Rd, Cleveland. Admission is free.
Margarita Bar Crawl - Aug 17th
If you’ve looking for an evening where the most stressful choice you’ll make is “salted rim or unsalted rim”, then sign up for the Margarita Bar Crawl.
This crawl, held by the aptly named “We Love Pub Crawls” group, will be hitting five different locations in one evening, with discounted margaritas, food and beer at each stop. Unique margarita flavors exclusive to the group will be available. The site also promises: “80’s party/90’s party/2000’s party”, whatever that means. Plus, you get a t-shirt!
Saturday, August 17th from 4-10pm. The group check-in starts at Dive Bar – 1214 West 6th, Cleveland. Tickets: Early Bird: $19.99pp or $16.99 each for groups of 4 or more / Standard: $24.99pp / Last Minute: $29.99pp
Cleveland Ice Cream Crawl - Aug 18th
This event invites you to get “ice cream wasted” during the Cleveland Ice Cream Crawl, where ticket holders can enjoy unlimited samples of cool treats.
You’ll get to sample from no less than ten different locations, including CP’s Cooler Homemade Ice cream & Treats, Graeter’s Ice Cream, Honey Hut, Just Glaze Ice Cream, Mitchell’s Ice Cream, Mootown Creamery, Sandy’s Frozen Whip, Sweet Moses, Tremont Scoops and Weber’s Premium Ice Cream.
You can buy a basic ticket that gives you samples from all the shops, or splurge on the “VIP Banana Split”, where a chauffeured party bus will carry you from stop to stop, along with more complimentary treats and raffles. Just don’t eat too fast, ice cream headaches are no joke.
Sunday, August 18th from 2-5:30pm. Tickets: VIP: $50 with groups from 2-3:30pm & 4-5:30pm / Group (up to 4pp) $20 / Single $10
Cleveland Garlic Festival - Aug 24th & 25th
All you need to make someone say “Whatever you’re cooking smells GREAT” is saute some garlic in butter. You can get the same sensation times one hundred at the Cleveland Garlic Festival.
Now in it’s tenth year, the two-day festival in Shaker Square features delicious garlic-laden food, “Grill Offs” in multiple categories, the crowning of “Miss Garlic 2019”, Garlic Fries, Mitchell’s Garlic Ice Cream, Ohio craft beers and a spread from the Ohio Cheese Guild.
Rounding out the event will be family games, balloon animals, live music and your ticket will score you free samplings of grass-fed beef with garlic and free range chicken with garlic (Saturday), pasture-raised pork with garlic and vegetarian with garlic (Sunday) at the chef grill-offs.
Saturday, August 24th from Noon-8pm, & Sunday August 25th from Noon-6pm. Located in Shaker Square, Cleveland. Tickets: Adults (age 13+) $9.00 / Seniors (65+) $5.00 / Children (4-12) $5.00
Cleveland Pickle Fest - Aug 24th
They’re green, they’re snappy, and now they have a festival of their very own. Cleveland Pickle Fest is coming to the North Coast Harbor.
Expect plenty of brine-y offering from Cleveland’s leading restaurants, a pickle-eating contest, children’s games, and yes, pickle beer.
Saturday, August 24th from Noon-5pm. North Coast Harbor – 800 E 9th Street Pier, Cleveland. Admission to the festival is free of charge.
Cleveland Oktoberfest - Aug 31st - Sept 2nd
Not quite a food-specific festival, but come on – when you think Oktoberfest, you think pretzels, sausage and beer, right?
The 15th annual Cleveland Oktoberfest will be held at the Berea Fairgrounds over the Labor Day weekend, with plenty of German food and drink staples for everyone. There will even be a “Sausage Autobahn” that will combine two wonderful things: sausage and air-conditioning.
Live music covering a wide variety is on tap all weekend, including polka, disco, do-wop, rock, and tributes to Elvis, Journey and The Beatles. Finally, for sporting enthusiasts, the sport of kings will be on display: The Weinerdog Races. (See our video coverage of the races last year here.)
Begins August 31st, ends September 2nd. Berea Fairgrounds, 19201 East Bagley Road, Middleburg Heights. Friday: 4pm-Midnight, Saturday-Sunday: Noon-Midnight, Monday: Noon-8pm. General admission online is $10. Various other ticket packages are available on the event website.
No matter what your taste is, you can get it satiated at Cleveland-based food festivals in 2019.