default avatar
Welcome to the site! Login or Signup below.
Logout|My Dashboard

Lodi Grape Festival ends on a high note

Baboons, butterflies, tasty food and perfect weather draw big crowds this year

Font Size:
Default font size
Larger font size

Posted: Tuesday, September 17, 2013 12:00 am | Updated: 10:00 am, Wed Sep 18, 2013.

The weather was perfect, the new attractions were popular and the entertainment was great, resulting in a very successful Lodi Grape Festival in 2013.

So says festival Manager Mark Armstrong, who was getting ready for the final night of the festival on Sunday.

Some years, the Grape Festival doesn’t draw so well, Armstrong said. If the weather is hot, people won’t show up in the daytime. If it’s cold, they won’t come at night. And once in a while, the festival even gets hit by rain.

Not only was the weather outstanding this year, but organizers beefed up security to make it safer for festival-goers, said Armstrong and Lodi police Lt. Steve Nelson.

Armstrong added that three new attractions were quite popular — Wild About Monkeys, Butterfly Adventures and “Tractor Town,” a play area for children.

At the Wild About Monkeys show, Kevin and Martina Keith displayed some baboons who have been on TV and the movies. One was Mickey, who starred with Tom Cruise in the movie “Rock of Ages” in 2012.

Mickey hammed it up big time and clapped his hands when Kevin Keith told the audience, “All of these animals know applause.”

Another baboon, Dagney, kept stealing Keith’s hat and putting it on her head.

“You know what’s great about having a baboon for an assistant?” Keith asked the audience. “Your work really is for peanuts.”

During its four-day run, the Grape Festival had its usual staple of live concerts, grape murals and all kinds of decadent foods, including “monster-size” corn dogs, the always popular Lockeford Sausage, Merlot-infused cupcakes, a peanut butter and grape jelly funnel cake, deep-fried peanut butter and jelly and a whole lot of beer.

See you next year.

Contact reporter Ross Farrow at rossf@lodinews.com.

More about

Rules of Conduct

  • 1 Use your real name. You must register with your full first and last name before you can comment. (And don't pretend you're someone else.)
  • 2 Keep it clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually oriented language.
  • 3 Don't threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
  • 4 Be truthful. Don't lie about anyone or anything. Don't post unsubstantiated allegations, rumors or gossip that could harm the reputation of a person, company or organization.
  • 5 Be nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
  • 6 Stay on topic. Make sure your comments are about the story. Don't insult each other.
  • 7 Tell us if the discussion is getting out of hand. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
  • 8 Share what you know, and ask about what you don't.

Welcome to the discussion.


Popular Stories



Mailing List

Subscribe to a mailing list to have daily news sent directly to your inbox.

  • Breaking News

    Would you like to receive breaking news alerts? Sign up now!

  • News Updates

    Would you like to receive our daily news headlines? Sign up now!

  • Sports Updates

    Would you like to receive our daily sports headlines? Sign up now!

Manage Your Lists