Oakland’s biggest celebration of good food, Eat Real Fest, returns to Jack London Square this weekend for its ninth year. Bringing awareness to traditional food craft and entrepreneurship, a variety of regional vendors and local food trucks will be showcasing their versions of sustainable food while informing festival goers about who grows it and how to make it. The festival welcomes Oakland’s Aburaya Japanese Fried Chicken for the first time and returning vendors such as Bombzies BBQ and Frozen Kuhsterd. “More than ever, we feel it’s critical to celebrate our wonderfully diverse community, and our way of doing that is through food,” Eat Real Fest director Ally DeArman said. As a state fair-block party fusion, Eat Real Fest will host events and activities for attendees of all ages, including music by the Oakland Symphony, a live cooking competition, and interactive games for kids. The three-day festival is free, and proceeds from a percentage of the food sales and all of the beverage sales will go to Food Craft Institute, an Oakland-based nonprofit that teaches food artisans how to succeed in the industry.
Friday, Sept. 22, 3-9 p.m.; Saturday, Sept. 23, 10:30 a.m.-9 p.m.; Sunday, Sept. 24, 10:30 a.m.-6 p.m.; free, Jack London Square, Oakland, EatRealFest.com.