Living in Palm Springs gives you the opportunity to attend any number of local events and festivals without the costs of hotels and transportation. And there are really too many to choose from, especially in season from January through May. But more and more attractions are coming to the desert in the summer. August is now the scene for Splash House parties at several local, hip hotels, like the Ace and Saquaro. And rates drop at many gay resorts sponsoring splash parties during the summer months.
Below is a list compiled from many different sites. Be sure to check out the links for up-to-date information. Dates change somewhat from year to year.
Palm Springs Modernism Week. February. One of the biggest events in Palm Springs spread out over ten days. Tours of Palm Springs Midcentury Modern masterpieces, the Modernism Show at the Convention Center and a bunch of fun parties and side events.
Art Palm Springs. February. Premier art fair in the Southwest scheduled to coincide with Modernism Week.
Riverside County Fair & National Date Festival. February. Located at the fairgrounds in Indio. A county fair celebrating the annual date harvest. Where else can you find that? Typical county fair attractions, plus nightly entertainment.
American Documentary Film Festival. Late March. Also known as AmDocs. A growing exhibition of documentary films with special events and receptions at the Palm Springs Cultural Center, home of the Camelot Theater.
White Party. Late April. Jeffrey Sanker’s gigantic pool/dance/circuit party for gay models, or at least gay men who think they’re models. As a resident, you can just go to dance and skip the poolside posing. You’ll notice a bigger crowd at the gym than usual.
Dining Out for Life. Late April. Check Desert AIDS Project for schedule and locations. Local restaurants donate a portion of whatever patrons spend in their establishments on a certain day for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Coachella Music Festival. Two weekends in April. One of the most important music festivals in the US. At the Empire Polo Club in Indio. Always sold out the day tickets go on sale.
Stagecoach Country Music Festival. Last weekend in April. Follows Coachella at the Empire Polo Club. Because country music isn’t exactly the focus of Coachella. The upshot is that traffic on the 10 is a mess for three weekends in April.
Evening under the Stars. Early May. At the O’Donnell Golf Club in Palm Springs. A benefit dinner and entertainment event benefitting AAP-Food Samaritans, providing nutritional support for low-income people living with HIV/AIDS and other chronic illnesses.
Arthur Lyons Film Noir Festival - May. Fans of film noir pack the Camelot Theater for this long weekend film fest.
Queen of the Desert. Late May. Area drag queens claw their way to the top to grab the crown, lip synching and generally tearing up the stage in the process.
Palm Springs Hot Rodeo - May. Cowboys and cowgirls gather for this fundraiser. Hot and dusty. Like it should be. Rodeo grounds are out in Banning, but there are western themed events in town, too.
Desert AIDS Walk. October. A notable fundraising effort for the Desert AIDS Project.
Palm Springs Leather Pride. October. A big deal from the Leather Order of the Desert. Local sponsors hold multiple events and select the annual Mr. Palm Springs Leather.
Greater Palm Springs Pride. Early November. Long weekend event with a Sunday parade and a weekend full of parties, including a two-day downtown Palm Springs festival.
Festival of Lights Parade. Early December. The annual Palm Springs Holiday Parade takes place in the evening on Palm Canyon Drive. Lighted floats, balloons, marching bands, local news broadcasters and politicians.