Strauss Festival of Elk Grove

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It’s become somewhat of a summer tradition for me to attend the Strauss Festival of Elk Grove, which takes place Thursday through Sunday at Elk Grove Regional Park’s Strauss Island. The event celebrates the music of Johann Strauss and showcases a live orchestra accompanied by costumed waltz and polka dancers. It’s similar to seeing a ballet—there’s a storyline (this year it’s “Spring Time in Vienna.”)—but with different dancing and costumes.
 
I enjoy the music, but I am always mesmerized by the dancers. The women wear these gorgeous, vibrantly colored gowns, the kind little girls fantasize playing dress up in. (Or big girls as is the case with me.)
 
The festival is free, though you do pay $10 for parking. Vendors will be on hand selling food, wine and beer, but many people bring picnics. The performance starts with a prelude at 7:45 p.m. and the show at 8:15 p.m., but people start showing up around 6:30 p.m.
 
Important! Click on the website to find out about reserving your seat beforehand, especially if you plan to sit on a blanket. It’s a process, but it’s worth it. The Strauss Festival is a fun way to spend a summer evening, and it’s suitable for families, couples on a date or as a place to take grandma out for the night.