Frequently Asked Questions
Get All the Facts about the Festival
Q: What is the purpose of the festival?
A: The Morro Bay Harbor Festival is an annual celebration of the Central Coast’s unique lifestyle and working waterfront. It is held annually on the first Saturday in October.
Since its inception, a primary goal of the festival has been to bring together a broad cross-section of members of the local fishing industry, civic and community groups, marine-related enterprises, small business, corporations, artisans, environmental organizations and individual citizens—to focus public awareness on what makes Morro Bay exceptional.
The Morro Bay Harbor Festival Inc. is a nonprofit, 501(c) 3 community-benefit organization. Substantial proceeds from the Morro Bay Harbor Festival are shared with a nonprofit organization chosen by the Board of Directors. The Festival Volunteer Program has awarded nearly $500,000 to participating nonprofit groups over the past 25 years.
Q: What’s new this year at the festival?
- Live music and entertainment all day!
- Free-flowing festival layout on the Embarcadero between Marina and Harbor streets
- FREE admission
- FRESH FISH sold by local fishermen right from the docks!
- Vendors from all over San Luis Obispo County
Q: How is this festival special?
A: The Festival is unique in that it offers festival goers the opportunity to enjoy both a special Saturday in Morro Bay, one of the more popular vacation destinations along the California Coast, as well as a true taste of Central Coast wine, beer, cuisine, and working harbor lifestyle.
As recently declared by Lois Capps, 22nd District Congressional Representative: “The Morro Bay Harbor Festival is an excellent event and we encourage people to attend. It raises public awareness of the commercial fishing industry, seafood industry and coastal environment. California Fishermen and women are responsible stewards of ocean resources, and contribute to the health, economic well being and quality of life of the people of the state. The Morro Bay Harbor Festival showcases not only the products of the commercial fishing industry but also many of the finest wines of our region.”
Q: Are there activities specifically for kids?
A: Yes, there are numerous activities that kids will enjoy – from getting fresh fish from local fishermen, seeing water rescue demonstrations in the harbor to the every-popular Hawaiian shirt contest. Additionally, Tidelands Park is closer to the Festival than ever before. This year there will also be a Tall Ship in the Harbor for family tours.
Q: Are there marine and harbor-oriented educational activities?
A: There are numerous marine and harbor-oriented educational activities such as these that have occurred at previous festivals. The Maritime Heritage Pavilion presented by the Central Coast Maritime Museum Association, the Coast Guard & Harbor Patrol Department Open House, the Educational and Ecological Exhibits.
Q: Is parking difficult?
A: Parking and shuttles from convenient park and ride locations are provided free to the Public. Morro Bay also has a free shuttle service to and from the festival from all over Morro Bay during the Festival. Please call the Harbor Festival office for details (805) 772-1155.
Q: Are there other things I should see and do over that weekend?
A: Stroll the south end of the Embarcadero in Morro Bay, visit the many local shops and restaurants, enjoy the newly expanded Museum of Natural History, play a round of golf on one of many Central Coast golf courses, hike the beautiful trails of Montana de Oro State Park, relax on the beach, or take a guided tour at Hearst Castle. You could also just wander the festival and listen to great music!
Q: What kinds of accommodations are available in Morro Bay, and nearby communities?
A: Morro Bay is host to everything from the 3-star accommodations to roughing it and camping at the County Park or Morro Strand State Beach Campgrounds. Check out the hotel reservations page for any and all lodging available in Morro Bay.
Book early. The weekend fills up fast!