Thursday, July 25, 2002
Topaz and the Gems
PACIFIC GROVE FEAST OF LANTERNS America''s Last Hometown has been re-enacting the Blue Willow folk tale of two star-crossed young Japanese lovers since 1905, when town residents paraded through downtown streets carrying lanterns. It''s now a week-long street party, featuring the FEAST OF SALADS luncheon and children''s art show TODAY at Chautauqua Hall; a PET PARADE at 2:30pm FRIDAY, starting from Caledonia Park, and street dancing by the post office from 6:30-9pm; and game, food and fun all day SATURDAY in Lovers Point Park, highlighted by a children''s SAND CASTLE CONTEST at 11:30am. Festivities culminate Saturday at 8pm with the GREAT PAGEANT AT LOVERS POINT PARK, where Katie Miller, this year''s Queen Topaz, escapes her arranged marriage and sails off into the sunset with her poor, but extremely handsome young lover. Fireworks close out the night, but come back SUNDAY at 4pm for CLOSING CEREMONIES at the First Methodist Church. Everything''s free, except for face-painting and such-like, and geared to the whole family.
THURS.-SUN., IN AND AROUND LOVERS POINT PARK, PACIFIC GROVE.
SPIRIT WEST COAST It''s like a parallel universe; it embraces hip hop, country, alternarock, ska, stadium bands, indie acts, ski hats, green hair, dyed blonde hair, a video production business, airplay politics and hordes of fans-tens of thousands of them. In fact, the only difference between the Christian music industry and the other music industry would appear to be the lyrics and the hobbies of the fans. This three-day Christian music fest, which draws 50 acts and 60,000 spectators, is the biggest of its kind. From 9am-midnight every day the main stage and five side stages at Laguna Seca reverberate with music or gospel messages. One of the highlights of the weekend is bound to be the Friday 1pm appearance of Heather Mercer and Dayna Curry, the two evangelists who were kidnapped by the Taliban in Afghanistan last fall. Then on Saturday night at 8pm, hip hop phenom Kirk Franklin takes the stage, followed by Audio Adrenaline at 9pm. There''s a whole other world out there.
9AM-MIDNIGHT THURS-SAT. LAGUNA SECA RACEWAY, HIGHWAY 68. $42/DAY GENERAL OR $22/DAY FOR KIDS 5-11, AND $99 GENERAL AND $44 KIDS FOR ALL THREE DAYS. 443-5399 OR WWW.SPIRITWESTCOAST.COM.
A Fun and Fragrant Experience
GILROY GARLIC FESTIVAL Love is in the air. No wait, it''s not love, it''s garlic. The 24th annual weekend festival boasts three live-music stages, arts and crafts, activities for the kids, a Miss Gilroy Garlic pageant, daredevil skateboarders and BMX bikers. But the real reason to come is for the food. The "Gourmet Alley" chefs use literally tons of garlic to prepare their famous specialties. Last year they cooked 28,329 servings of garlic bread alone. And then there''s the calamari, oysters, mushrooms, scampi and pesto pasta-all made with lots of love and even more garlic. Because some people don''t like garlic seeping out their pores, Listerine will be giving away free PocketPaks (those cool breath mints that look like really thin, translucent pieces of paper).
FRIDAY THROUGH SUNDAY, 10AM-7PM DAILY. CHRISTMAS HILL PARK, 7050 MILLER AVE., GILROY. $10 GENERAL ADMISSION ($5 KIDS UNDER 12 AND SENIORS 60 AND OVER). 408-842-1625.
PEBBLE BEACH EQUESTRIAN CLASSICS GRAND PRIX Anybody who loved watching Kristin Scott Thomas jump the fence on her big warm-blood in Gosford Park will love this show. In the GRAND PRIX, the best horses and riders in the West get all gussied up and take on Olympic-height jumps for a $30,000 prize. It''s better than mud wrestling and the drama can be riveting. After the best horse has won, the dogs take the arena for the mostly fun HORSE SHOW DOG SHOW, the highlight of which is the Costume class (last year a Corgi dressed in black leather Harley gear took top honors). SUNDAY morning sees the STIRRUP CUP, a fun, kid-heavy Hunter contest for those brand new to showing. And then on Sunday afternoon comes the >$10,000 JUMPER DERBY, a test of endurance and athleticism in which horses jump a full course in one arena, hop the fence and complete another course in that paddock, and jump back over. Best part: if you can''t make it this week, the same thing happens all over again next week.
GRAND PRIX 3:30PM FRIDAY, FOLLOWED BY HORSE SHOW DOG SHOW. STIRRUP CUP 8AM SUNDAY. JUMPER DERBY 2PM SUNDAY. PEBBLE BEACH EQUESTRIAN CENTER, PEBBLE BEACH. FREE, EXCEPT FOR $8 PEBBLE BEACH GATE FEE. 625-2756.
Hippies, Nudes and Members Only
PG ART CENTER RECEPTION Three new shows open tonight at the PG Art Center. In the Main Gallery, Anita Benson''s drawing students show off their recent work with Go Figure, while the Central Coast Art Association trucks in its best stuff for the 2002 All-Members Show in the Dyke and Boyer galleries. Off to the side, photojournalist John McCleary signs copies of his cultural encyclopedia of the 1960s and ''70s, The Hippie Dictionary, next to a display of photo montages from his book. The Center''s receptions are always wall-to-wall people, many of whom seem more interested in the grub (which is plentiful) than what''s hanging on the walls, so don''t be surprised if you have to elbow folks out of the way to see the art.
RECEPTION FROM 7-9PM, 568 LIGHTHOUSE AVE., PACIFIC GROVE. 375-2208.
Twirling Under the Redwoods
DANZAS ADITI ENSEMBLE A multi-talented, multi-cultural dancing troupe will shimmy down the coast to Big Sur''s Henry Miller Library today to perform "Hands Across Time," a flurry of footwork combining Spanish Flamenco, Hawaiian Hula and Chinese-"style" dancing. The Big Sur Natives will add their own Middle Eastern, East Asian and modern fusion dances, and arts and crafts from around the world will be on sale.
2-5PM. HENRY MILLER LIBRARY, HWY.1, BIG SUR. $7 GENERAL, KIDS 12 AND UNDER FREE. 655-0725.
Hip-hop, Reggae and Rock En Español
MUSIC IN NATIVIDAD CREEK PARK Baktun-12 Productions, a group of East Salinas spoken word artists, is putting together two Sundays of music, food and games in Natividad Creek Park-their present to the community. Today''s line-up includes East Salinas reggae band Dubwize; Santa Cruz rock band Sapos Muertos; Salinas hip-hop duo Aficcial Poets; "Lost Boy," noted East Salinas spoken word poet; and two Sacramento bands-the all-female Velvet Fury, and "Rock En Español" group Diciembre Gris. The day will be a mix of English and Español, and is geared to the entire family. Best of all, the whole thing''s free.
NOON TO 7PM, NATIVIDAD CREEK PARK, SALINAS. CO-SPONSORED BY THE CITY OF SALINAS PARK AND PLAYGROUNDS DEPARTMENT. 596-0225.
Smokin''and Singin''in Seaside
BLUES IN THE PARK Doesn''t matter what the weather is like today, it''s gonna be hot, hot, hot at Laguna Grande Park in Seaside where Kaye Bohler opens the Sunday Blues concert for Lady Bianca. Being fairly regular performers at Sly McFly''s, both Bohler and Bianca are familiar to blues hounds on the Peninsula, and with Bohler''s big, smoky, sultry voice opening the show, and Lady Bianca''s smoother, soulful vocals closing the afternoon, it''ll be an intense afternoon of womanly blues. If the sun shines, it''ll be a bonus for the families and blues aficionados who spread their blankets on the grass, open their picnic baskets, kick off their shoes and dance.
1PM, LAGUNA GRANDE PARK, ACROSS FROM CITY HALL, SEASIDE. FREE. 899-6270.
Onthe Old Dusty Trail
MOSS LANDING ANTIQUE FAIR Moss Landing''s annual street fair kicks off with a pancake extravaganza that will send visitors into a "rusty-purchase" frenzy, ready to hit the streets and buy, buy, buy. The town will be roped off and the streets will be filled with hundreds of vendors touting thousands of items aged to perfection. Moss Landing''s 20 permanent antique shops will also be open and busting at the seams with outdated luxuries. Sharon Bousquet entertains with her acoustic guitar, and numerous food booths ensure no empty bellies. Antiques expert Steve Yvaska will be on hand to tell weary buyers whether their purchases are really worth anything.
7:30AM-5PM. MOSS LANDING, OFF HWY. 1. $3 ADMISSION, PARKING FREE. 633-4501.