Frequently Asked Questions
What are the two fundraisers organized by the FOL?
The Beer and Wine Tasting Festival—festive food and fun for adults—takes place at Foothills Golf Club in April. The family-friendly Kick-Off Party is always on the Saturday after Thanksgiving.
When do the lights turn on and off on the medians of Chandler Blvd.?
The lights will be illuminated the Monday before Thanksgiving and turned off in early January.
Is there an admission charge to see the lights?
No! It’s simply a mile-long drive down Chandler Blvd. between 24th Street and Desert Foothills Parkway in Phoenix.
What is the “Kick-Off Party”?
The “Kick-Off Party” occurs on the Saturday after Thanksgiving, from noon to 8 pm and is a large, family-friendly festival in Desert Foothills Park. There is no fee to attend. There are 16 restaurants, a large beer & wine tavern, live music on 2 stages, 100+ Marketplace vendors, visits with Santa, a cornhole tournament, inflatables and rides. The food and drink, tournament, inflatables, and rides do have costs attached.
How many people typically attend?
How can someone apply to be a vendor on Marketplace during the Kick-Off Party?
Spaces begin selling in late August each year. Visit our Marketplace Street Fair FAQ [LINK TO SECTION] or complete a Marketplace application online. [LINK TO FORM]
How can someone apply to be a food vendor?
These spots are typically filled from year to year by local restaurants. You can apply here to be a new food vendor. [LINK TO FORM]
What is the parking situation?
There is limited street parking surrounding the park. We also provide shuttle buses from Altadena Middle School to and from the park all day.
Is there handicapped parking?
There is handicapped parking on Marketplace (entrance off Desert Foothills Pkwy) just before the vendors’ tents.
Is there a rain date?
Unless the FOL cancels the event due to unbearable conditions, the event goes on rain or shine. All fees are nonrefundable.
How can someone apply to be a charitable beneficiary for next year?
Apply online to be a charitable beneficiary. [LINK TO FORM]
When is the Kick-Off Party?
It is always the Saturday after Thanksgiving, and this year that date is November 30, 2019.
Where is the event held?
The event is held at Desert Foothills Park, which is located just southwest of the corner of Desert Foothills Parkway and Chandler Blvd. in the Ahwatukee Foothills of Phoenix, Arizona.
How many people do you expect?
Based upon past attendance, we anticipate 15,000 will attend the event at some time during the day.
What time is the event?
The official time is 12pm to 9pm, however vendors are required to check in by 10:30am. Access to the street for set-up is 8:30am-10:30am. No cars are allowed on the street after 11am.
Why do we have to be set up so early when the event doesn’t even start until Noon?
Marketplace Street becomes a mall in a matter of two hours. There are approximately 100 cars that have to unload. Because there is a hard street closure by the City of Phoenix beginning at 10:30am, we require that you arrive for unloading no later than 10:30am.
How much are booth spaces this year?
When reserved and paid by October 31, a standard interior 10×10 booth is $110, a corner booth is $135. From November 1-15, add $25 to submission fee. To be considered after November 15 (if space permits), add $50.
How big are the spaces?
It is required that you keep all of your booth set-up and products within your assigned 10’ x 10’ space.
What comes with the space?
Only the space and electricity to power lights and a radio if desired. The Festival of Lights does not provide tables, chairs, umbrella shade, or any other amenities – each vendor is responsible for providing their own booth amenities. The Festival of Lights does provide generator operated overhead lighting along the street to ensure safety in the early morning and early evening hours of the event. This lighting is sufficient to allow attendees to safely walk the Marketplace area before sunrise and after sunset. Vendors may not bring their own portable generators.
Do I need a business/tax license from the State of Arizona and/or City of Phoenix to participate as a vendor?
We do not require that you provide us a copy but The Festival of Lights is required to report a list of all vendor business names and phone numbers to the State of Arizona.
To apply for a business tax license:
City of Phoenix – http://phoenix.gov/finance/plt/index.html
State of Arizona – http://www.azdor.gov/
Does the Festival of Lights require photos of our display booth and/or the items we are selling?
No, however you are required to have a neat and clean display.
What is the deadline for applying to be a vendor?
Payment is due at the time of reservation and we strongly suggest you apply by October 31 to take advantage of early bird pricing. Spaces are often sold out, and there is no guarantee that space will be available. Applications received from November 1 to November 15 must include an additional $25 late fee. To be considered after November 15, add $50 if space permits.
Are non-profit organizations provided booth space for free?
As a rule, the answer to this question is no.
Can we purchase more than one booth?
Yes you may, but there is no price break to do so.
Can we share a booth?
Yes you may. The price is the same and you and your partner decide how you want to split the cost. We also have a list of vendors that would like to share a booth, so email email@example.com if you would like to see if there is anyone interested at that time.
How will I know what booth space I am assigned?
Approximately one week before the event, you will be emailed your booth space number. When you arrive to set up your booth you will be given directions to the space.
Can I request a specific booth space?
No. However, if you want to be located next to a specific vendor, such a request will be honored if possible.
Will there be specific instructions given to vendors on how they will access their booth space to set-up and tear down their booth?
Yes, a map will be sent to you along with your booth number. This will show your booth space location.
Do we have to stay for the entire event?
You may not tear down while the event is still going on (12pm-8pm). No cars will be allowed into the vendor area until after 8pm.
Is there an assigned parking area for vendors?
No, vendors need to park in the same public area as attendees. You are there early in the day to setup and chances are you’ll get a pretty good spot in the dirt lot.
Is there Handicap Accessibility parking?
Yes, we have a limited number of handicap spaces available on the south end of the street near Desert Foothills Pkwy. We encourage you to leave those spaces for the attendees of the event and park in the dirt lot near the Chandler Blvd. intersection.
Are you a juried event?
No, however we do screen what is sold and typically do not allow duplication of items, meaning if you are selling an item that another vendor is already registered to sell we will ask that you do not sell that particular item in your booth. There will be no offensive or sexually explicit items allowed (this is a family-oriented event attended by a large number of children). We also closely screen novelty items.
Why do you limit jewelry vendors?
Jewelry seems to be a very popular craft and in order to make this event enjoyable for both the shoppers and the vendors, we limit the number of jewelry booths. Shoppers don’t want to be inundated and the jewelry vendors don’t need excessive competition. If there is too much jewelry to choose from, shoppers have a hard time making a decision and end up not buying anything from anyone. Jewelry spots in this event are usually filled up in September.
Will I be allowed to sell food?
You can sell packaged food that is intended to be taken home. This can be in a basket or stand alone. You will be required to have a “temporary food service establishment” permit which can be obtained at the Maricopa County website.
What do we do if it rains?
You may get wet. You may melt. Bring an umbrella. Unless The Festival of Lights cancels the event due to completely unbearable conditions, the event will go on rain or shine. Booth fees are non-refundable.
What if I have a question that is not addressed on this FAQ sheet?
Submit your question via email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Festival of Lights Association
4435 E CHANDLER BLVD STE 200
Phoenix, AZ. 85048