Valparaiso Events

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Valparaiso Popcorn Festival


Saturday, September 9

7 AM to 6:30 PM

Downtown Valparaiso

This long-standing community tradition returns for its 39th year. The Valparaiso Popcorn Festival continues to offer family-fun activities for all ages.

Over 250 arts & crafts booths, 35 food booths, kids’ games, five-mile Popcorn Panic, two live music stages and the nation’s first Popcorn Parade are only the beginning of the excitement of this incredible festival.


2017 Popcorn Festival Brochure

Music Stages

Main Stage Headliner:  BoDeans at 5:00 pm


Known for their chart topping songs like “Fadeaway”, “Only Love” and “Dreams” the band is sure to deliver high energy performance for eager fans. BoDeans are celebrating the 30th Anniversary of their breakthrough album – Love & Hope & Sex & Dreams. BoDeans will take the stage as the finale of the day long entertainment that begins at noon in Central Park Plaza at the Porter Health Amphitheater.


Festival Main Stage Schedule:

Central Park Plaza at the Porter Health Amphitheater

12:15 – 1:15 pm: The Code Names

1:30 – 2:50 pm: The War on Peace

3:15 – 4:30 pm: The Bihlman Brothers

5:00 – 6:30 pm: BoDeans

Michigan Street Music Stage Schedule:

Corner of Lincolnway and Michigan Street

12:00  – 3:00 pm: Garage Bands from Front Porch Music

3:00 – 3:45 pm: Rito

4:00 – 4:45 pm: Jerica Paliga

5:00 – 5:45: Stop. Drop. Rewind



Popcorn Festival Day Activities

7:00 am – 6:30 pm:  Craft, Food and Fine Arts Booths Open

7:00 am – 6:30 pm: Ultimate Poppin’ Play Zone Open:Obstacle Course, Bungee, Inflatable Challenges

7:30 am:  Popcorn Panic 5M Run and 5K Run/Walk (hosted by Valpo Parks)

8:45 am: Lit’l Kernel Puff Race (hosted by Valpo Parks)

10:00 am: Chicagoland Popcorn Parade

11:00 am – 6:30pm: Beer Garden Open

11:00 am – 6:30pm: Chicagoland Popcorn Area Open

12:00 pm – 6:30 pm: Main Stage Live Entertainment

12:30 pm – 6:30 pm: Second Stage Live Entertainment




Popcorn Festival Pre-Event Activities

Cutest Baby Preliminaries: Saturday, August 26, 9:00 am-11:00 am at the Indiana Beverage Activity Center.  Information and Registration Form: 2017 Cutest baby contest info_entry form.

Chicagoland Popcorn Area Open: Tuesday, September 5 – Friday, September 8 at the William E. Urschel Pavilion

DAILY LUNCH:  11:00 am-1:00 pm    LUNCH MENUS

DAILY DINNER: Times vary, approximately 4:30-7:00 pm    DINNER MENUS

Popcorn Vendor Information

Click “Apply” for VENDOR application   Apply

Popcorn Parade Participant Information

Click “Apply” for  PARADE application   Apply

2017 Valparaiso Popcorn Festival Terms & Conditions / Pricing Information

Arts & Crafts / Non-Craft / Fine Arts Vendors

Commercial Vendor

Food Vendor

Parade Participant

Parade Float Building Helpful Tips and Tricks


2017 Popcorn Poster Contest

The Valparaiso Popcorn Festival has been a prominent community event since 1979 bringing 60,000 visitors to enjoy Valparaiso. Part of this event is the Popcorn Festival Poster Contest, which is now in its 9th year!  Thank you to all the artists that submitted work and to all of those that voted to decide the People’s Choice Award.

2017 Poster Contest Winners

First Place

People’s Choice Award













Prompt Ambulance Service and The United Way of Porter County claimed the title of GRAND PRIZE WINNER!


2nd Place:  Crosspointe Christian Church

Popcorn2016.122 SecondPlaceFloat

3rd Place:  Grandma & Grandpa Built a Float

Popcorn2016.154 ThirdPlaceWinner

Special Recognition:  Vale Park Animal Hospital


Best Little Kernel:  Valpo & Washington Township Girl Scouts

Popcorn2016.103 BestLittleKernelFloat

Best New Float:  Trinity Lutheran Church


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