Since 1938 the Spokane Lilac Festival Association has been celebrating the Spokane community. The annual week of festivities combines the city’s famous lilacs with community events to paint the town purple, culminating in the nation's largest Armed Forces Torchlight Parade in downtown Spokane. Following their mission of honoring our military, empowering our youth, and showcasing our region, the Spokane Lilac Festival is dedicated to local youth, the nation's military by partnering with the Fairchild Airforce Base and growing community spirit in the Pacific Northwest. For a normal year, a parade crowd of over 150,000 spectators, plus those marching, gather in Spokane for this beloved event. The yearly festivities typically commence the second Saturday of May and culminate on the third Saturday of May when the lilacs are fully in bloom, but even before this week, there are activities and events leading up to the festival. In 2021, we look forward to the Lilac Parade in November.
Spokane Lilac Festival Events
Following their mission to empower the youth of Spokane, the Spokane Lilac Festival provides outstanding young women the opportunity to participate in the Lilac Princess Scholarship and Training Program. The selected candidates attend workshops in communication, personal and professional etiquette, resume development, interview skills, military history and protocol, and self-defense. The Royalty Program culminates at the Lilac Festival Royal Court Coronation. This event is open to the public.
Royal Tea Parties
The Royal Tea Party is an annual event held at the Historic Davenport Hotel, a few weeks prior to Lilac Festival Week, that gives local "Lilac Princesses in Waiting" the opportunity to meet the Lilac Festival Royal Court. Those attending the tea will learn proper tea etiquette and be entered in a raffle to win a spot on the Jr. Lilac Parade float.
Armed Forces Appreciation Golf Tournament
Partnering with Fairchild Airforce Base, Team Fairchild, the Lilac Festival co-hosts this annual golf tournament. All funds raised benefit the Spokane Lilac Festival and the Wing Morale Fund.
Junior Lilac Parade
The Jr. Lilac Parade is a treasured, long-standing tradition in Spokane that is held on the second Saturday in May. Each spring, the Spokane community gathers downtown to celebrate our youth and kids get to be the star of the parade led by a court of junior princesses. From elementary and middle school bands to drill teams and other youth organizations, the parade showcases Spokane's lively youth.
The Lilac Festival Royal Court hosts all local and out-of-town Royalty, past and present, at the annual Spokane Lilac Festival Queen's Luncheon at the Historic Davenport Hotel, the Friday before the Armed Forces Torchlight Parade.
Spokane Lilac Festival Gala
Join the Spokane Lilac Festival for an elegant evening in the Historic Davenport Hotel's Grand Pennington Ballroom. Get dressed to the nines, enjoy amazing food, and great entertainment with Heads of Festivals from the area, VIP's, Dignitaries and family. The evening celebrates the Spokane Lilac Festival's renowned Torchlight Parade.
Spokane Lilac Festival Armed Forces Torchlight Parade
With over 80 years of bringing the largest Torchlight Military Parade in the nation to the streets of downtown Spokane, the Lilac Festival features bands, floats, military and equestrian groups, drill teams, fancy cars and much more. This event involves the entire community, no matter your age. Grab a spot along the downtown Spokane parade route before the 7:45 pm parade kickoff!