About the Event
Celebrate Good Times!
Menlo Summerfest, “Hot Fun In The Summertime” July 15-16
It's the dawn of a new era on the event scene in Menlo Park! Say hello to a vibrant, new Menlo Summerfest, “Hot Fun In The Summertime”, coming up July 15-16 ... a breath of fresh air for Menlo Park's annual summer street fair presented by the Menlo Park Chamber of Commerce.
Menlo Summerfest replaces Connoisseurs’ Marketplace, the downtown festival organized by the Chamber of Commerce over a successful 29 year run.“We felt the time was right to rebrand and revitalize the festival, enliven and freshen up our offerings, and we’re all excited about the improvements and changes which reverberate across all aspects of the festival,” said Fran Dehn, President/CEO of the Menlo Park Chamber of Commerce.
Menlo Summerfest will transform charming, tree-lined Santa Cruz Avenue into a pulsating feast of people and colorful tents for two days of world-class fun in the sun. Take a pleasant stroll and experience downtown Menlo Park like never before – a world-class sampler for the senses. Hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. both days (the Saturday Cool Down Concert with Petty Theft runs until 7 p.m.). Festival admission is free.
The re-modeled, re-branded, re-invigorated components and changes include:
- Tropical Vibrations Music Mash … the festival has upped the ante big time on music with a focus on a tropical, summery sound – including expanding to two stages (Soundwaves Stage in Fremont Park and Aloha Stage at El Camino) plus four street musician locations throughout downtown. The smashing lineup includes Petty Theft, The Houserockers, Pacific Soul Band, Fito Reinoso, Mitch Woods & His Rocket 88’s, The Reefriders, Pankind Steel Drum Band, Bob Culbertson, John Clarke, Heartstrings Music and Man In White plus the festive, tropical island sounds, rhythms and dance of AHAmele, Pumehana O’Hula, Kawailehua Hula Ohana, Stickdrum, Hiram Bell, Nemenzo Dance Studio, For The Love of Dance, and Mambonova Dance Company. The big Saturday evening after-hours concert – the Summerfest Cool Down Concert, Saturday, July 15 from 5-7pm in Fremont Park, features Petty Theft, the sensational Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers tribute band revered up and down the west coast.
- Mobile Eats … the re-modeled food component features several new vendors, a different mix and greater variety of menu offerings utilizing food trucks and food booths. Fresh, delicious poke bowls – Shoyu poke with onions and avocado, Spicy Ahi poke with tobiko and green onions, Ponzu-flavored poke, Spam Masubi; Tamales, burritos, tacos and a Wa-ha-ka bowl with organic veggies, rice, beans, guacamole, queso fresco and salsa, fresh fruit aguas frescas; all-natural frozen ice pops and ice cream sandwiches using local, organic, and fair-trade fruits, vegetables, herbs and flavoring ingredients – Snickerdoodle-Strawberry Ice Cream Sandwiches, Blueberry Cheesecake pops, Cucumber-Lime Cooler pops, Peaches & Cream pops and the Real Cool signature pop – The Strawberry Refresher; Fresh-squeezed lemonade; Dippin Dots Ice Cream – cookies and cream, rainbow ice, mint chip, banana split, and cookie dough flavors; Falafel and gyros, sausages, Philly cheese steaks, hot dogs; Barbecued oysters, sandwiches stuffed Portobello mushrooms or succulent tri-tip, giant turkey legs, hot dogs, garlic fries; BBQ chicken sticks, teriyaki chicken bowls, wraps, noodles; Non-alcoholic Pina Coladas served in all-natural coconut and pineapple cups; Shave Ice – cherry, Tiger’s blood (berries and coconut), mango, French vanilla and piña colada plus a cotton candy bar with an array of flavorings; Fresh roasted corn-on-the cob, baked potatoes with all the trimmings; Teriyaki chicken and veggie chow mein, rice bowls, crispy zucchini; Teriyaki chicken and veggie chow mein, rice bowls, crispy zucchini; Carne asada and veggie tacos, burritos, super nachos with meat and beans, fruit cups with watermelon, cantaloupe, cucumber, jicama, mango sticks; Calamari, crab fries, garlic fries, corn dogs; Sausage, corn dogs, curly fries; Shave ice – grape, strawberry, watermelon, pineapple and mango flavors with an added infusion of vitamins C and D; fresh-popped Kettle Corn.
- Deelish Drink … for the first time, a signature Summerfest cocktail – a refreshing Honeycrisp Apple Mule (Skyy Honeycrisp Apple vodka, fresh squeezed lime juice and ginger beer) plus refreshing margaritas made from fresh fruit purees – mango, strawberry, cucumber jalapeno and traditional lime – as well as premium fine wine and world-class, seasonal craft beer and hard cider – Anderson Valley Brewing Company’s Summer Solstice and Boont Amber, Drake’s Brewing Company’s Kick Back IPA and Hefeweizen, Angel City IPA and Angry Orchard Crisp Apple Hard Cider. Cool off with refreshing Honey Green Tea, Half Lemonade/Half Tea and Pomegranate Blueberry Herbal Tea from Honest Tea or Crystal Geyser Alpine Spring Water, 100% natural and bottled at the source. Sip your favorite beverage in a beautiful, collector-item wine or beer glass adorned with the stylish festival logo.
- Artsplash … Pacific Fine Arts Festivals brings its world-class and diverse lineup of professional artists and fine craftmakers to showcase their extraordinary work with many new artists and their latest handcrafted products featured. Plus the new "Summer Vibes” art contest among festival artists with $1,000 in prizes offered and and the “Express Your Summerself Color Spot”.
- Super Duper Kidz Funzone … organizers are bringing back the action-packed fun for kids in a big way: an ultra-thrilling bungee jump, wild and wacky waterballerz, a rock climbing wall, Basketball Challenge, dancing party animal puppets, caricature artists, super cool face painting and henna tattoos, exotic French hair braiding, sand art and our huge Summerfest Kiddieland Carnival with an amazing array of the latest, exciting carnival style rides – Super Slide, Tea Cups, Wrecking Ball, Frog Hopper, Wild Raft, Loop-O-Plane, and Astro Liner.
- Savory City … an array of artisan-produced specialty food sprinkled throughout the event provides the perfect opportunity to sample and purchase small-batch, handcrafted edibles as well as meet and chat with the actual producers. Custom infused balsamic vinaigrettes, balsamics, maple syrup and oils; mustard blends, curds and scone mixes, marinades and finishing sauces, exotic jams and jellies, honey and honey products, butters and chutneys, vinaigrettes and dressings; California-grown gourmet pomegranate products – fresh-squeezed juice, balsamic vinegar, marinade, balsamic grill sauce, fruit spread, syrup, grenadine; artisan cakes, cupcakes and desserts; delicious and healthy flavored and raw almonds, pistachios, cashews, pecans, walnuts, dried peaches, pears and apricots; world-class, handmade almond toffee.
- Summerfest Family Fun Run … Fleet Feet Menlo Park is sponsoring the free, all-new Summerfest Family Fun Run & Walk (3-mile and 1-mile) starting at 9 a.m. on Sunday, July 17. The first 75 who pre-register for the free Summerfest Family Fun Run & Walk event will score a popsicle-themed t-shirt in celebration of Saucony’s new vibrant popsicle-colored line of Run Pop running shoes. There will also be a limited number of the Saucony Run Pop shoes for people to try out on a first come, first serve basis. Once you finish your race, you’ll receive a cool-down popsicle, refreshments and other fun freebies. Be sure to celebrate your success in the old-school ice cream truck photo booth with your family and friends. Pre-register early for the free event to get your t-shirt on the Menlo Park Fleet Feet site.
- Aloha Friday … to kick-off Summerfest, organizers are planning an "Aloha Friday" promotion for Friday, July 14, a play off the festival’s "Tropical Vibrations” theme. “The festival is all about conveying a happy, festive, summery vibe,” said Fran Dehn, President/CEO of the sponsoring Menlo Park Chamber of Commerce. “We thought something fun like "Aloha Friday” would be a perfect way to involve the entire Menlo Park community – downtown merchants as well businesses, adults and kids alike throughout Menlo Park – and get everybody in the community 'in the Aloha spirit' for festival weekend,” Dehn said. Organizers will be encouraging event volunteers, vendors, artists and musicians to don Aloha-style shirts and togs for festival weekend and are hoping festivalgoers may get in the spirit too.
Win great prizes, enjoy free samples, meet the personalities and experience the latest products from festival sponsors: Balance Bar, Ford Experience Tour, Longboard Bar, Greenheart Land Company, Menlo Medical Clinic, Wells Fargo, Lyft, Nationwide Insurance, Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital, Cornfields Snacks, Provident Credit Union, Welk Resorts, San Mateo Credit Union, SolarCity, Renewal by Andersen, Clear View Screens, Cutco Cutlery, The Craftsmens’ Guild, Stanford Chiropractic Center, David Walley's Hot Springs Resorts, Click Scan Share, Bay Home & Window, Danmer, David Frank Design, Diamond Resorts, Sungevity, Farm Fresh To You, Shell Vacations, Bay Area Air Quality Management District, Crystal Geyser Alpine Spring Water, Honest Tea, DBI Beverage, Stone Brewing Company, Anderson Valley Brewing Company, Sam Adams, Stanford Park Hotel, Menlo Grill, Residence Inn Menlo Park, Fleet Feet Menlo Park, KPIX 5 and KBCW 44 Cable 12, Comcast, Xfinity, Alice 97.3 FM, KCBS 740 AM/106.9 FM, KBAY 94.5 FM, KEZR 106.5 FM, KGO 810 AM, KSFO 560 AM, The Almanac, Palo Alto Weekly, Metro, Silicon Valley Magazine, Recology of San Mateo County, The City of Menlo Park, Facebook, Sharon Heights Shell, Peak Performance Chiropractic, Ciardella Associates, and Friends of the Chamber.
Pay For Drink Tickets and Glasses With Plastic!
For your convenience, pay for drink tickets and glasses using any major credit card at the Ticket/Glass booths spread throughout the festival site.
Reduce, Re-use, Recycle Initiative
The Menlo Park Chamber of Commerce will once again partner with Recology of San Mateo County and the City of Menlo Park to promote and encourage recycling and minimizing waste. Free-standing containers will be positioned throughout the festival pedestrian route for recycling glass, plastic bottles and aluminum. Additionally, there will be large recycling containers for cardboard, mixed paper, glass, plastic and aluminum in strategic locations for event staff, vendors and sponsors. “Every day we talk about ways to reduce, re-use, and recycle,” said Fran Dehn, President/CEO of the Menlo Park Chamber of Commerce. “We work hard to make this a green-centric festival –– it’s a big priority for us and something we diligently plan for and try to improve every year.”
Caltrain and SamTrans will be running their normal weekend service both days. The Menlo Park Caltrain/SamTrans station drops riders off one block from the festival grounds. For Caltrain and SamTrans schedule information, call 800-660-4287 or visit www.caltrain.com or www.samtrans.com. For VTA information, call 800-894-9908 or visit www.vta.org.
Street Closures/Vehicle Parking/Bicycle Parking
Santa Cruz Avenue will be closed to vehicular traffic from El Camino Real to Johnson Street for the two-day festival. Parking will be available in the parking plazas adjacent to Santa Cruz Avenue, on side streets surrounding the festival area, and at the Caltrain station on Merrill Street. Downtown Menlo Park offers ample bicycle parking racks spread out along Santa Cruz Avenue and adjoining streets.
No Pets, Please
Pets are not encouraged at the festival with warm weather and large crowds. For the safety, comfort, and courtesy of your pets and festival-goers, please leave your pets at home.
The festival will be held on July 15-16 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. (the Saturday Cool Down Concert runs until 7 p.m.) on Santa Cruz Avenue from El Camino Real to Johnson Street in Menlo Park. Admission is free.