File photo

File photo

CLOVER PARK — Thousands of Santa Monicans will flock to Clover Park (located at 2600 Ocean Park) on Saturday, June 14 for the annual hometown celebration known as the Santa Monica Festival.

New to this year’s Santa Monica Festival, which will be held on Saturday at Clover Park, is the pop-up playground, which, according to city officials “allows children to create their own worlds out of everyday items.”

The festival, which started on the Santa Monica Pier in 1991 and moved to Clover Park in 1994, is free to the public (though it costs taxpayers $100,000).

It’s organized by the City’s Cultural Affairs Division, Office of Sustainability and Environment and is produced by Community Arts Resources, who also produce Chinatown Summer Nights and the Getty Museum Family Festival.

An average of 10,000 people attend every year, according to City Hall, with at least half the attendance made up by families. Most attendees are from Santa Monica or the Westside.

Also new to the 23rd annual festival is the Family Bike Hub, which will offer bike safety checks, maintenance tips, and prizes.

At 1:45 p.m. a kids’ bike parade will leave from the hub, featuring decorated bikes and helmets. Participants can stop by the photo booth before or after to capture their artistic creations on film.

Festival-goers can ride Big Blue Bus’ Route 8 to the event for free with a coupon from BBB’s website. Or they can valet park their bikes for free on 25th Street at Ocean Park Boulevard.

Santa Monica Spoke will host several stations.

“Check out a wide variety of contemporary and vintage bikes at the Santa Monica Spoke Bike Exhibition,” city officials said in a release. “A selection of demo bikes will be available to take for a spin, including cargo bikes. Learn about riding with kids and carrying cargo, and plan the best routes for your travels.”

There will be four stages with acts and performances running from 10:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Acts on the Ocean Stage include a “hot-dam” bluegrass band, multimedia hip-hop theater, and a student-run flash mob.

Over at the Farmers’ Market Culinary Stage, local chefs and culinary experts will “share their secrets to sourcing and preparing budget-friendly and sustainable meals,” according to City Hall.

Shiho Yoshikawa from Sweet Rose Creamery will be presenting at 1:45 p.m. and Kelly Dumke will run the “Kid’s Kitchen.”

The Juneteenth Stage commemorates “June 19th, 1865 – the day the last African American slaves in Texas were notified of their freedom, two-and-a half years after the Emancipation Proclamation was signed by President Abraham Lincoln,” according to City Hall.

That stage includes gospel singers, Brazilian dancers, and a blues band.

The Active Stage includes Zumba, karate, and yoga.

For more information visit smgov.net/festival.

dave@smdp.com

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