Oz-Stravaganza! is the longest running Wizard of Oz festival in the world, with 33 consecutive festivals held through 2011. The event happens the first weekend in June each year in Chittenango, NY. Chittenango is the birthplace of L. Frank Baum who penned the oringinal 14 Oz books.
The festival features Baum family decendants, appearances by current Oz authors, Oz history displays, L. Frank Baum historical information and displays, actors from the 1939 MGM movie, Oz related entertainment, a stage with local and regional performances in music, theater, martail arts, dance, and a host of other entertainment. The festival also features artists, authors, and authorities in all aspects of Oz and the world Baum created. Add in carnival games, amusement rides, crafters and the "Emerald City Idol" singing competition and you have one full weekend of Oz fun.
In 2010, the festival started a new attraction- "Author's Alley" where fans can meet current Oz universe authors. In just two years, the guest list for Author's Alley has included Joshua Patrick Dudley, Jullienne la Fluer, James c. Wallace II, Ron Baxley Jr, Gwendolyn Tennille Adams, Dennis Anfuso, Eric Shanower, Paul Bienvenue, Paul Miles Schneider, and Maya Gottfried.
Each year, in addition to all the festival activities, the community really comes to life as home of L. Frank Baum. Green lights light the streets and the local business and home windows, the yellow brick road sidewalk is bustling with poeple. And the postal service offers two special postal cancellations on the Friday and Saturday of the event- a once in a life time opportunity to get a special piece of mail with an Oz postal cancellation in the birthplace of the Royal Historian of Oz himself. Even the local Kinney Drugs Store has a large Oz wall mural inside.
The Parade on Saturday is a huge attraction drawing thousands of fans to the event.
The event draws between 15,000 and 20,000 people annually to the small village.
The Oz-Stravaganza! website is www.oz-stravaganza.com and the event can be found on facebook as well.