Howdy, partner! Our favorite Western-themed amusement park is reopening May 21, 2021! Season passholders get a sneak peek for two weeks, beginning May 6. In the meantime, the closed park has been more popular than the Lone Ranger lately with all of the food events hoppening inside. The Knott’s Berry Farm events have been bringing guests into the closed park for food, decoration, entertainment and a little Western fun.
Let’s go over the 2021 Knott’s Berry Farm events. A Taste of Boysenberry Festival runs through May 2, and the following event kicks off May 21, during the official grand reopening! Before we hop to it, there are a few things you need to know to attend the Knott's Berry Farm events right now. Masks are mandatory. You'll undergo a temperature screening, and you'll need to follow signage to remain physically distant from other guests. You can remove your mask when you sit down in designated areas to enjoy food and beverages. Our Knott's Berry Farm reopening post should bring you up to speed.
Knott’s Berry Farm Events in 2021
Knott's Berry Farm has several events that normally take place throughout the year. The Peanuts Celebration usually kicks off the year. That leads into the Boysenberry Festival in the spring. Then, Ghost Town Alive! comes to life in the summer, Knott's Scary Farm haunts the fall and Knott's Merry Farm makes the holiday season bright (and yummy). We’ll hop through some of these annual events that take place in a normal year, as we are ever hopful that they will return in 2021. Yes, we are looking at you, Knott’s Scary Farm. We miss your terrifying self.
Knott's has some special celebrations in store for 2021. Of course, the theme parks have to be able to reopen for some events to occur. Hop over to our post on when to expect the theme parks to reopen for the latest news. If the theme parks remain closed longer than we can imagine, perhaps Knott's will keep offering modified versions of tasting events, as it has proven to be successful and the audience is literally eating it up.
Be sure to keep hopping back now, ya hear? We’ll be updating this post as Knott’s continues to add new events and confirm other major events that may occur later in the year.
Knott's Peanuts Celebration — Usually select weekends January to March (not scheduled for 2021)
Charlie Brown, Snoopy and the rest of the Peanuts gang are part of Knott's Berry Farm all year round, but they usually get their own Knott's Berry Farm Peanuts Celebration in the first part of the year. With special entertainment, meet and greets and Peanuts-themed foods and comic-strip fun. Hopfully the fun returns in 2021.
Taste of Boysenberry Festival — Select days March 5 to May 2, 2021
The boysenberry is a big (and yummy) part of Knott's history. Walter Knott was the first person to commercially cultivate the boysenberry, selling the berries at his farm stand in 1932. People kept returning to buy the large, tasty berries. He named them boysenberries, after their originator, Charles Rudolph Boysen, who successfully bred a cross between a blackberry, raspberry and loganberry.
The incredible flavor of the boysenberry can be used in both sweet and savory dishes. At the Boysenberry Festival, the Knott’s Culinary Team creates new dishes that use the berry in new and delicious ways. The festival features a unique assortment of food, dessert and boysenberry-infused drinks. Beyond food, the Boysenberry Festival is a bushel of fun with musical entertainment, a craft fair, games, craft beer tasting and more.
In 2021, we are getting a Taste of Boysenberry Festival. It follows in the footsteps of the other Knott's Berry Farm events during the theme park closure. The Festival menu offers more than 80 food and drink items. You can try beer cheese soup with a boysenberry drizzle, boysenberry BBQ carne asada pizza, pork bao buns with boysenberry kimchi and nam pla, and beef tips with creamy boysenberry mashed potatoes. In terms of beverages, there's a refreshing boysenberry mint and pineapple agua fresca, boysenberry smoothie, boysenberry beer, wine and more. In addition to tasty bites, you can do some shopping. Knott’s retail shops are open, along with 20 local artisan craft booths. Be sure to catch a performance of Krazy Kirk and the Hillbillies.
We visited opening weekend. Get a taste of this event by watching Tad's video.
To visit, you must purchase a tasting card in advance. The Taste of Boysenberry Festival tasting cards cost $45 (plus tax) for five food tastings and $20 for a junior card (ages 3 to 11) good for three tastings. Parking is free. Tickets are on sale now. We recommend purchasing early because these popular events do sell out.
The Taste of Boysenberry Festival opens at noon daily and runs until 9 p.m. (but closes at 8 p.m. on select Sundays). It runs on the following dates (subject to change):
- March 5 to 7, 12 to 14, 19 to 21 and 26 to 31
- April 1 to 11, 16 to 18, 23 to 25 and 30
- May 1 to 2
Knott’s 100th Anniversary: A Knott’s Family Reunion — May 21, 2021, through Sept. 6 2021
I’m sure your big birthday and anniversary plans in 2020 have been thwarted. Knott’s turned 100 years old in 2020. You cannot turn 100 without a big celebration, so the party moves to a summer-long event in 2021! It kicks off upon Knott's Berry Farm's grand reopening. Come relive your favorite Knott's memories while you create unforgettable, exciting new ones. This once-in-a-lifetime anniversary celebration features festive park décor, themed food items, unique entertainment, exclusive merchandise and special surprises along the way.
This event will invoke all the feelings of nostalgia associated with the historic theme park. In fact, I remember visiting Knott’s Berry Farm as a child in the 1980s. I remember the funnel cake (it’s still here!) and this incredibly cool soapbox car racing ride near where Xcelerator is today. The Haunted Shack was my favorite, as it twisted the forces of gravity so water ran uphill, along with other illusions. It was located where the Calico Mine Stage sits.
One ride is returning. It’s so thematically appropriate, as once Knott’s Berry Farm fully reopens, it will be a homecoming for everyone! The 1920s-themed Knott’s Bear-y Tales returns when the park reopens, and we’ll all return to the fair!
Knott’s Bear-y Tales: Return to the Fair — May 21, 2021 to the public (opens May 6 for season passholders)
As mentioned, this 1975 ride was revamped into a dinosaur ride (which led to a chain of since-closed rides) in the 80s and now it’s reborn in 2021 as a 4-D interactive dark ride. The new story takes place 34 years after the original adventure. Riders follow Boysen Bear and Girlsen Bear as they travel to the Country Fair to earn the blue ribbon prize for their famous boysenberry pies, but watch out. Crafty Coyote is back (along with his mischievous pups). They plan to steal all the pies for themselves. (I mean, have you tried the boysenberry pie at Knott's? Yum! It's delicious, but don't steal it or be selfish like Crafty Coyote.)
Knott's Bear-y Tales: Return to the Fair takes guests on an exciting journey through reimagined show scenes from the original dark ride, including the Boysenberry Pie Factory, Frog Forest, Fortune Teller Camp, Thunder Cave and Weird Woods. It culminates in a celebration at the County Fair.
Guests climb aboard ride vehicles equipped with jelly blasters to try and recover the stolen boysenberry pies. They travel through whimsical and beautiful environments while competing for the highest score.
Ghost Town Alive! — Summer (unconfirmed for 2021)
You cannot celebrate Knott’s 100th birthday without resurrecting Ghost Town Alive! Go on an Old West Adventure with an interactive storyline for guests to explore and mysteries to unravel with the citizens of Calico. Unlock adventures, solve puzzles and influence the day’s events. Take on challenges as you immerse yourself into the Old West alongside bandits, cowboys, judges and crafts people. Who’s down for a hoedown? While we have enjoyed this in the past, we have not heard any details for 2021. If not this year, hopfully it returns for summer 2022.
Knott’s Summer Nights — Summer 2021
Every night of summer, the park lights up with live bands, DJs and party lights from Calico Square to Charleston Circle. Dance or sing along to such bands as Suburban Legends, Hiatus, Suffragettes and others that rotate throughout the summer event. You can rock out to a top 40's band at the Calico Mine Stage, or bop to beats of the Boardwalk DJ around Charleston Circle Fountain.
Grab a food tasting card to sample delicious one-of-a-kind summertime treats and good eats. Most locations are available from 6:00 p.m. until park close. We are loving seeing some late nights scheduled this summer at Knott's Berry Farm!
In normal years, you can experience fireworks light up the sky on Memorial Day Sunday, the 4th of July and Labor Day Sunday.
Knott’s Scary Farm — Mid-September to early November
Every year since 1973, Knott’s has terrified visitors with its Halloween Haunt, Knott’s Scary Farm. We missed this separately ticketed event with its dark shadows, eerie fog and monsters emerging from hidden corners to slide out at you. The event has themed scare zones and mazes. Hop over to our Knott’s Scary Farm Survival Guide for the terrifying details. We do not yet know if Knott’s Scary Farm will return for 2021, but we’re dying to go back.
Knott’s Spooky Farm — Daytime weekends in September and October
During a normal year, Knott’s offers Knott’s Spooky Farm, a less-scary event for kids on weekends in October. In 2020, Knott’s held a Taste of Fall-O-Ween instead of Spooky Farm or Scary Farm due to COVID-19. The socially distant event was a family-friendly Halloween festival. Kids could wear costumes and trick or treat. And of course there were delicious fall foods, beverages and treats for everyone.
At Knott's Spooky Farm, your little boils and ghouls can dress in costume, trick-or-treat and enjoy wicked good fun. The whole family can enjoy themed shows at Camp Snoopy, join a costume contest and even experience a little magic.
Knott’s Merry Farm — Select days mid-November to early January
It’s too early to say if Knott’s Merry Farm will fully return in 2021. In 2020, we got a Taste of Merry Farm, so I think it's safe to say we can count on some kind of Christmas cheer next holiday season. Hop over to our festive guide to Knott’s Merry Farm to get a sense of the holiday décor, treats, entertainment and fun. Read on for a look at A Taste of Merry Farm from 2020.
The theme park was merry and bright in 2020, allowing guests to escape the challenges of 2020 and hunt for toilet paper for at least a little while and hop into the holiday spirit. The park was decorated with thousands of festive lights, the smell of holiday treats fill the air and cheery entertainment had froglets of all ages feeling cheery. You could even do some holiday shopping at the shops and artisan booths. Sadly, the season was cut short due to a Regional Stay-at-Home Order.
Taste of Merry Farm filled our bellies with holiday spirit with 60 different food and beverage items to choose from! Like the other Knott’s tasting events, admission to Taste of Merry Farm was included with the purchase of a Tasting Card lanyard. The date-specific Tasting Card for an adult was $40 (plus tax) and included five tastes. For ages 3 to 11, the $29 (plus tax) Tasting Card came with three tastes. Much like the other Knott's tasting events, Taste of Merry Farm sold out early.
Ho, ho, ho! We felt like we looked like Santa Claus after trying some of these filling menu items! Knott's may call them "tastes," but we shared the large portions.
There were many different holiday foods to try, such as Blitzen’s Christmas tree bundt cake, Comet’s maple-glazed cinnamon bun, Cupid's corn chowder soup, Scrooge’s spicy wings, turkey dinner tater tots (a unanimous winner for the Frogs), cold salmon winter salad, pulled pork mac and cheese (another top favorite), chocolate peppermint cheesecake bars, gingerbread cake and much more. And yes, you could find Knott's famous funnel cake — strawberry funnel cake with ice cream, sprinkles and a raspberry drizzle! Quench your thirst with fun holiday beverages such as Rudolph's winter pear lemonade, "Ode to Santa" milk or eggnog with candy cane cookies. You could also get classic hot cider and hot chocolate to warm your hands and bellies if it got chilly at night.
Take a trip around Knott's Taste of Merry Farm in Tad's YouTube video.
Taste of Merry Farm Dates and Hours
Taste of Merry Farm was set to run the following dates:
- November 20 to 29
- December 4 to 6, 27 to 31 (the event was already canceled December 11 to 26)
- January 1 to 3
The event ran from 12 p.m. to 9 p.m. most days, but was set to close early November 29, December 6 and January 3.
Taste of Merry Farm hotel packages were available at the Knott's Hotel. If you had a hotel stay scheduled, call (866) 752-2444 for assistance.
What's not to miss at Taste of Merry Farm? We saw people don their holiday accessories to be part of the fun. People came for the day and stayed for the nighttime hours to see the park light up with dazzling decor. We found plenty of entertainment throughout the park. You could meet Peanuts characters above the Charles M. Schulz Theatre and around Camp Snoopy (socially distanced, of course). You were allowed to drop your mask for a quick photo at Knott's.
In Ghost Town, we came across a Christmas tree, roaming stilt walkers and Scrooge on the balcony of the Calico Saloon. Don't worry — he's already had his change of heart. The crafts people were also honing their skills in Ghost Town.
In the Boardwalk area, we enjoyed DJs and a Christmas Tree salesman trying to sell off the "actual" Charlie Brown Christmas Tree for about $5,000. He did not have any takers on our visit. At times, the HangTime roller coaster lit up and flashed to music. The games of skill were open and there were some fun photo-ops.
Camp Snoopy was beautifully lit with twinkling lights and whimsical holiday decor. And Fiesta Village was festively lit, with a DJ and fun music for entertainment. We strolled through the entire park to get a different feel for the areas. You could find shopping throughout the park so you could get holiday gifts or unique craft items.
On New Year's Eve in normal years, you can experience live shows, entertainment and midnight fireworks.
Are you looking forward to attending any of the Knott's Berry Farm events this year? Please feel free to share in the comments section below.