While Disney California Adventure’s Food & Wine Festival may be the more obvious choice for Southern California theme park foodies during this time of year, I’d like to suggest an alternative: Knott’s Berry Farm’s Boysenberry Festival, which began this past weekend and runs through the end of April.

Knott’s Boysenberry Festival offers up over 75 varieties of boysenberry-inspired dishes, plus all the fun attractions Orange County locals have come to expect from the theme park that began as a literal berry farm almost a century ago in Buena Park. I attended the festival’s media day with a group of four this Sunday, and we had a wonderful time, as we have each year previously.

Watch “Snoopy’s Boysenberry Jamboree” at Knott’s Boysenberry Festival 2019:

Among the live entertainment available at Knott’s Boysenberry Festival 2019 is “Snoopy’s Boysenberry Jamboree!”, which helps ring in the spring season with Easter-specific song-and-dance numbers, plus some memorable moments that pay tribute to the festival itself with the help of Snoopy, Charlie Brown, Lucy, Linus, Sally and friends.

Over at the famous Bird Cage Theatre, guests can enjoy some Old Time Melodrama in the returning show “Boysenberry Bedlam” that encourages the audience to participate by cheering, booing, hooting and hollering along to the misadventures of four old west heroes and villains. But, as always, the real star of Knott’s Boysenberry Festival is the food.

Watch Boysenberry Festival 2019 food and beverage at Knott’s Berry Farm:

Boysenberry BBQ Chicken Skewers, Boysenberry Hummus, Boysenberry Flank Steak, Boysenberry Elote, Boysenberry Sausage, Boysenberry Chili, Boysenberry Pot Roast, Boysenberry Salmon, Boysenberry Jerk Chicken Wings, Boysenberry Ice Cream, Boysenberry Waffles, Boysenberry Mac and Cheese, Boysenberry Jambalaya, and Boysenberry Tostadas and just some of the delectable dishes available around Knott’s Berry Farm during this berry-licious celebration.

Guests should consider getting their hands on the Knott’s Boysenberry Festival Tasting Card, which offers (for $35) the chance to sample a wide variety of the boysenberry offerings around the park’s Ghost Town area. My party and I took our time and spread out the items throughout the day, starting with the Boysenberry Waffles for breakfast and winding up with the Boysenberry Ice Cream for dessert right before we left in the evening. And as much as we all enjoyed the Boysenberry Festival in years past, the consensus was that the event’s food had improved at least 75% over 2018’s selections.

Food Photo Gallery:

While enjoying the boysenberry cuisine, I would recommend wandering around the park to enjoy some of the atmosphere and other live entertainment like the Boysenberry Blues band at the Boardwalk Barbeque restaurant, Chaparral at Fireman’s Barbeque, and even Calico Park Fun and Games, where kids and adults alike compete in some very silly and very fun activities.

In Ghost Town’s Town Hall building, guests can learn about the history of the boysenberry thanks to an informative video presentation and some archival photographs. And in Old MacDonald’s Farm, visitors of all ages will get a kick out of meeting real-life animal friends like horses, sheep, goats, and pigs.

Watch “Tied Up in Knott’s Art Show” at Knott’s Boysenberry Festival 2019:

Don’t forget to visit the “Tied Up In Knott’s” tribute art show, which showcases dozens of terrific paintings, drawings, and sculptures honoring the legacy of Knott’s Berry Farm and its many beloved attractions, both current and long gone. My favorites among these pieces were a wood carving representing the park’s wonderful Timber Mountain Log Ride and a portrait of one of Ghost Town Alive’s most famous gunslingers.

Watch “Space Beagle” full show at Knott’s Berry Farm:

Returning from Knott’s Peanuts Celebration this year is the “Space Beagle” show at Camp Snoopy, which sends everyone’s favorite cartoon beagle to the moon with the help of Charlie Brown and friends. Though this particular show is aimed squarely at children, it’s entertaining and bouncy enough (with some parent-friendly music cues) to entertain the whole family.

We wrapped up our day at Knott’s Boysenberry Festival with a performance by the always-engaging Krazy Kirk and the Hillbillies (formerly Disneyland’s Billy Hill and the Hillbillies). Kirk and his bandmates play toe-tapping bluegrass covers of popular classic rock tunes, plus some wild west classics. Every time I’ve seen them live, they’ve always left me wanting more.

Overall, Knott’s Boysenberry Festival is an ideal way to spend a spring day at one of Southern California’s most beloved theme parks. Between the food, shows, rides, and general park atmosphere, a group can easily fill a morning, afternoon, and evening discovering all that this event has to offer, with plenty left over for another visit.

Knott’s Boysenberry Festival runs from now through Sunday, April 28 at Knott’s Berry Farm in Buena Park, California. For more information and advance ticketing resources, be sure to visit the park’s official website.