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Food trucks, stars, more at San Diego, Palm Desert, Santa Barbara fests

California festivals honor Julia Child, food trucks and nuts at these four venues

There are a bunch of California food festivals happening in spring, whether you want to see TV chef demonstrations or hop from food truck to food truck. Here are four festivals worth checking out.

San Diego: Love the food trucks? The Great American Foodie Fest for the first time comes to Qualcomm Stadium from Friday through Sunday. You can sample more than 50 specialty food items, from White Castle's Crave Mobile for burger sliders to the Maine Lobster Lady to Tornado Potato and Frach's Fried Ice Cream.

Cost: $8 a day or $13 for a weekend pass if purchased in advance ($10 and $15 respectively at the door).

Info: Great American Foodie Fest

Palm Desert: Before the Coachella music fans come to town in April, the Food & Wine Festival Palm Desert takes place Friday through Sunday under a big tent in the city's center. The fest begins Friday with a James Beard Gourmet Luncheon and continues through Sunday with demos by chefs such as Food Network's Cat Cora, chef and restaurateur Brian Malarkey, Adam Palffy of Roy's Restaurant and others. Wine, spirits and food tastings too.

Cost: Single-day VIP Grand Tasting Pass for Sunday is $125 per person; other events are separate charges.

Info: Food & Wine Festival Palm Desert

Santa Barbara: Bacara Resort & Spa hosts a food fest that honors Julia Child, one of the world's most famous chefs who retired in nearby Montecito. The second Santa Barbara Food & Wine Weekend April 16-19 kicks off with a wine-centric dinner with actor Kurt Russell, a video tribute to Child hosted by author Dorie Greenspan and Child's former producer and director Geoffrey Drummond, and a host of tastings, celebrity chef lunches and more.

Proceeds from the festival go to the Julia Child Foundation for Gastronomy and the Culinary Arts.

Cost: Events are $25 to $199 per person.

Info: Santa Barbara Food & Wine Weekend

Chico: Check out locally grown almonds, walnuts, pecans and pistachios at the 2015 California Nut Festival on April 18. Visitors will sample wines and beer as well as watch chefs create dishes like pistachio-crusted sea bass, kale-walnut pesto and gluten-free chocolate torte made with almonds glazed with dark chocolate. Food Network champ Ashurina "Chef Rina" Younan will appear too. Tickets cost $25 in advance or $30 at the event. The festivities take place (and the proceeds go to benefit) the Patrick Ranch Museum, a newly restored mansion and working farm in Durham, according to a statement.

Info: California Nut Festival

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