Hudson Valley, N.Y. - Come vacation for a day (or a weekend!) at a sunny summer event in the Hudson Valley. Sparkling lights, the scent of popcorn and the sounds of music from stages and bandstands attract thousands to parks and fairgrounds for getaways full of fun. Roll on down to Riverfront Green Park in Peekskill on August 5th and 6th for one of the largest festivals in the valley, the Peekskill Celebration. This waterfront event showcases the colorful maritime heritage that Peekskill shares with the Hudson River. Family entertainment, fantastic food and colorful Dragon Boat Races are capped by a spectacular fireworks display. Paddle upriver to the Hudson Harbor Fest where live concerts play at the Henry Hudson Riverfront Park in Hudson on August 7, 21, 28. The Hudson River provides the beautiful scenery for a wide variety of artists from as far away as Iceland and Japan as well as popular groups from the Hudson Valley and Manhattan. Spend a midsummer evening listening to eclectic selections of rock, folk, popular and honky-tonk music while you dance the night away. Further south at Harriman State Park on August 7th and 8th, the scenic Ramapo Mountains are the backdrop for the Bear Mountain Native American Festival. Drumbeats herald the performances of Native American song and dance as you wander through stands of traditional crafts, jewelry and food. If you can't get to Bear Mountain, then come to the Daniel Nimham Intertribal Pow Wow on August 21st and 22nd in Carmel. It's an intertribal exposition of singers and dancers with displays of Native American culture, arts, and vendors with tasty food and drink. Travel to a different culture when you visit the New York Renaissance Faire in Sterling Forest. Spend a day with a knight every Saturday and Sunday through September 26th. It's a rollicking romp through Elizabethan England complete with 16th Century games, rides, arts, crafts, food, music and dance. A lively time can also be found at the German Alps Festival in Hunter on August 14th and 15th. Featuring entertainers directly from Germany and the best German American bands in the country, this fun-filled weekend has been entertaining families for over 25 years. And don't forget the beer! Old-fashioned country fairs are American as apple pie, and the Altamont Fair combines all the elements of that great family entertainment August 17th through the 22nd. Bring the kids to the petting zoo and take them on the thrilling rides at the carnival. There's a live demolition derby, an extreme motorcycle thrill show, and what would a country fair be without 4H exhibits? Blue ribbon farm animals and agricultural displays can also be found at the Dutchess County Fair in Rhinebeck, August 24th through the 29th. Watch the sun set and the lights twinkle from atop the ferris wheel, overlooking 160 acres of gardens and attractions. The midway is a maze of carnival rides and games. Five buildings contain everything from arts and crafts to a display of local snakes and wild animals, and there are over 100 vendors for favorites like cotton candy and funnel cakes. A whole different set of flavors can be found at the Taste of Sand Lake in Averill Park on August 19th. It's a celebration of arts and community set in a beautifully restored historic 1835 church. Sample the excellent local cuisine while you listen to notable regional musicians. Nothing says summer like something from the grill and the Hudson Valley Ribfest in New Paltz will satisfy those taste buds on August 21st and 22nd. It's a BBQ extravaganza with both local and national rib vendors as well as a delicious array of international cuisine. Grilling demonstrations occur both days, and it's a great place to stock up on rubs, sauces, grills and unique barbecue tools. Every weekend becomes a holiday with the wide variety of summer festivals held throughout the region. Whether it's relaxing at an outdoor concert or thrilling to a carnival ride, August is a great time to enjoy our Hudson Valley warm weather events. Hudson Valley Tourism, Inc. is the 10-county region designated by I LOVE NEW YORK to promote tourism for the area. Counties include Albany, Columbia, Dutchess, Greene, Orange, Putnam, Rensselaer, Rockland, Ulster and Westchester. Regional information can be obtained from any of the county tourism offices, the Hudson Valley Tourism website, www.travelhudsonvalley.com, or by calling 845-615-3860. CONTACTS: Peekskill Celebration, Peekskill. 914-736-2000. http://www.peekskillcelebration.com/ Hudson Harbor Fest, Hudson. 518-822-8100. http://timeandspace.org/harborfest   Bear Mountain Native American Festival, Harriman State Park. 718-686-9297. http://www.redhawkcouncil.org/ Daniel Nimham Intertribal Pow Wow, Carmel. 845-225-0381. http://www.visitputnam.org/ New York Renaissance Faire, Tuxedo. 845-351-5171. http://www.renfair.com/   German Alps Festival, Hunter. 800-486-8376. http://www.huntermtn.com/     Altamont Fair, Altamont. 518-861-6671. http://www.altamontfair.com/ Dutchess County Fair, Rhinebeck. 845-786-4001. http://www.dutchessfair.com/ Taste of Sand Lake, Averill Park. 518-674-2007. http://www.slca-ctp/ Hudson Valley Ribfest, New Paltz. http://www.hudsonvalleyribfest.org/    Contact: Susan Hawvermale 845-615-3860 scayea@orangecountygov.com