We’ve nearly come full circle after two years. The last event at Knott’s Berry Farm in 2020 before everything happened was the 3rd annual Peanuts Celebration. Shortly after that, we had a chance to see a preview of the Boysenberry Festival that never was.
For those unaware, the Peanuts Celebration at Knott’s is the one time where Snoopy and the gang effectively take over the entire park, instead of being mostly contained to Camp Snoopy. That means themed decorations in every land, a Kite-eating Tree or two, and some “Peanuts” butter and Jelly-themed foods around, along with other kid-ish friendly fare.
That means in the Birdcage Theater, in lieu of a drama or comedy, there’s an art school! And each session you get to draw a different Peanuts character! A lot of kids spend a while in here, as the gaps between classes are fairly short. It keeps them busy for a while.
Not too far away at Town Hall, they have a display up inside dedicated to the nature-conscious efforts of Charles M. Schulz and the eponymous museum up in Santa Rosa. It’s definitely a nice little resting spot to walk around in when you get the chance.
But Spike is still around, spending time at the Disco Silencia over in Fiesta Village. I’m so happy this returned. It’s basically a DJ party area, but with headphones to change to 1 of 3 stations, so there’s enough variety. And DJ Cactus Jack runs the show. With pyrotechnics and a mysterious button, there’s a lot going on. And it runs until closing each night.
Pigpen was one of the first to make his debut in the Peanuts Celebration, and he’s holding down the fort, or… barn… or pigpen. Anyway, inside the barn in Ghost Town, you can meet Pigpen and also a bunch of cute piglets scurrying around, too.
Out in Calico Park, there are games throughout the day. Sure, it’s mainly for the kids, but I had to try my hand at horseshoes, and I kicked butt. Afterward, you can get a photo with the characters, too.
And just around the corner, by the fountain, you’ll regularly have a meet and greet with the other characters. Between their sessions, a devilishly handsome piano player on a bike might come strolling by to serenade you.
If you want to watch a show, the Calico Mine Stage has a show, celebrating the life of Charlie Brown, appropriately called “It’s Your Life, Charlie Brown”. The show that was previously here was reworked into a smaller show over in Camp Snoopy where it works a lot better.
Because of infectious reasons, it’s hard to accurately predict what entertainment will be available anymore. Thankfully Knott’s has built up a roster of quality musicians they can call upon in a pinch. So while the appropriately-named Jelly band was not available for opening weekend, Tomasina filled in. And while the absence of the Hillbillies was noticed in the Wagon Camp, The Mighty Tornados pitched in, without missing a beat.
But fear not, because the headlining band did make their debut this weekend, and the show is just as amazing in previous years. It’s really just fun and good energy watching these guys and I’m happy they’re a regular part of the festival.
So, that covers everything except the food. It’s pretty daunting this year, which should be expected by now. There’s a Peanut Butter Jelly Cheeseburger, but also mahi-mahi, or a grilled cheese chicken parm sandwich. Even a Kit Kat Funnel Cake. The cookies are adorable. The Peanut Butter Macaron has jelly in the middle, by the way. It’s not listed, so it’s a little sweet surprise when you bite in.
Also, Knott’s is busy reworking an old food area into the Prop Shop Pizzeria and Boysenbrewery. It should be open by summer. And from the looks of it, some new bathrooms are being built next to the bumper cars. This is sorely needed as these bathrooms were the oldest and frequently had long lines for the ladies that frequently merged with the food lines, and caused confusion. It also helps cement the “Memory Lane” Roaring 20s theme of the area they’ve been leaning into.
The little touches on these areas are what make Knott’s special. If you look at the sign, you’ll notice they are for “E. N. Amel’s Porcelain” which is about the cutest darn hint at a bathroom I’ve ever seen.
The Peanuts Celebration runs daily at Knott’s through March 6, however, some acts may be on some specific days only, so check the schedule before heading off. Tickets are available at www.Knotts.com.