Summertime means a break for parents and kids alike, but during the dog days of summer when people move slower than molasses, finding fun family activities can be a drag. So a group of Kirkland's movers and shakers, with the sponsorship of local auto dealers, are organizing the city's first-ever SummerFest for Aug. 10-11, a two-day arts and music festival.
The festival will take place in the downtown area on Lake Street and Central Way, as well as . It's free; no admission will be charged.
, is the festival’s co-chair, along with Rob Butcher of the Kirkland Views blog. Planning of the event began last autumn when Santos and Sue Contreras -- he is a former city councilman and -- decided it would be fun to create a family event in Kirkland.
Since then, a group of volunteers have worked together to put on the festival.
“It’s a dynamite team of volunteers,” said Butcher. “The event as a whole is exciting.”
The festival will feature Shakespeare in the park on Aug. 10 at 7 p.m. at the . The Seattle Shakespeare Company will perform “The Winter’s Tale,” and before the show, the chamber music band the Parnassus Project will perform music from the medieval period.
Saturday will feature most of the music and art events. According to Butcher, there will be four stages at the festival and each stage will have a different theme.
The community stage will showcase local talent from Kirkland and the Eastside, said Butcher. Another stage will feature ethnic music including Celtic, Ukrainian, and Latin bands. There will also be rock ‘n’ roll bands, blues and jazz bands, and cover bands such as Cherry Cherry, a Neil Diamond Tribute Band.
Radio Disney will play the festival from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Marina Park and Main Street. Kids will be able to participate in the various events throughout the day such as face-painting, a fitness court and story time.
Local businesses are also getting involved, said Sailor. Some of the small businesses are putting on story times and others are showcasing some art.
On Saturday, the festival will spotlight 10 artists who will paint in the park and sell their pieces to interested passersby. Sculptures made by local artists will decorate Marina Park’s landscape on Saturday as well.
The festival will exhibit a young artists show. Students from the Lake Washington School District ages 3 to 18 will be able to present their work during the show. This year’s theme is appropriately summertime.
At 5 p.m. on Saturday, most of the events will transition and become more adult friendly. “The kids events will wrap up about that time,” said Sailor. There will be a beer and wine garden at the festival as well as 16 food trucks serving different styles of dishes.
The festival is expected to entice thousands of visitors to Kirkland’s downtown area, so available parking may become scarce, but Sailor suggests that people get creative about where they choose to park.
“Don’t park where you usually park,” she said, because it will most likely be occupied.
For more information regarding SummerFest 2012, visit the website.