The Indio International Tamale Festival is kicking off on Thursday with "Mercadito de Noche" which includes a festive night market.
The tamale festival is taking place from December 1 to December 4.
This year Thursday and Friday will be "Mercadito de Noche" from 5:00 pm to 10:00 pm. This is a night market that will feature food, rides, and entertainment. Only about 50% of tamale vendors are expected to be out during this market event.
On Saturday and Sunday, all of the tamale vendors participating will be in attendance. This year, the number of vendors is said to be doubled compared to last year.
This is thanks to a new program called "Artesano Tamaleria" which allows families, community groups, church groups, and independent 'tamaleros' to come out and sell tamales. This program is an opportunity for these small groups to honor long-held traditional recipes and sell them at the festival.
Admission is free to attend but you must pay for the rides and attractions.
Parking is permitted surrounding Miles Avenue Park. People are also encouraged to park in Old Town Indio and take the free shuttle service to the park.
Hours for the tamale festival have been extended this year.
The second half of the festival will be on Saturday, December 3 from 10:00 am to 10:00 pm and Sunday, December 4 from 12:00 pm to 8:00 pm.