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Newcomers to Sandpoint are always surprised by the number, quality and variety of community events. It seems that there is a major activity going on each weekend. This is so true that one of the town's slogans is "Sandpoint is Happening All Year Long."
Perhaps the highlight of each year is The Festival at Sandpoint, a renowned two-week long outdoor concert series. The Spokane Symphony Orchestra performs each season as well as famous pop, country and world-music performers. Past artists include Branford and Wynton Marsalis, Emmy Lou Harris, Tony Bennett, B.B. King, Lyle Lovett, Dwight Yoakam, George Benson, Keb Mo and The Pretenders. Other major events include Winter Carnival, K & K Fishing Derby, Lost in the ‘50s, North Idaho Timberfest and the Idaho Draft Horse International.
The Pend Oreille Arts Council produces many of the community’s arts related events. Among other things, they organize a major juried Arts and Crafts Fair in August; coordinate ArtWalk, summer -long revolving self-guided art exhibits in area businesses; produce Sunday Concerts-on-the-Lawn and Summer Sounds at Park Place series; and sponsor an annual performance series at the Panida Theater.
The Panida Theater, Sandpoint's community owned theater and cultural center for cinema, theatre and music, is the site of many of the town's best performances. Located in downtown Sandpoint, this historic theater has been purchased by the people of the Sandpoint area to provide an excellent performance setting.
Below is a list of the major annual events:
- January Schweitzer ski & snowboard events
- February Madcap Mardi Gras
- March Schweitzer Stomp games
- April Caribbean Carnival
- May K & K Fishing Derby, first week. Lost in the ‘50s, third weekend
- June ArtWalk, Farmers' Market, Summer Sounds concerts
- July 4th of July Celebration, Sandpoint Wooden Boat Festival
- August Festival at Sandpoint, first two weekends. Arts and Crafts Fair, Long Bridge Swim, Bonner County Fair & Rodeo.
- September Lakedance Film Festival, Idaho Draft Horse and Mule Show
- October Oktoberfest, Harvestfest
- November Thanksgiving Fishing Derby, Holly Eve, Holidays in Sandpoint
- December Holidays in Sandpoint, New Year’s Eve celebrations
The Festival at Sandpoint is a yearly highlight featuring outdoor performances by many famed musicians and the Spokane Symphony Orchestra.