PGIF: Monterey–the Other City that Never Sleeps

After all the bustle and business of last weekend’s world-famous Concours, auctions, and races, you might think the town would take this weekend off.

But not Monterey.

Today is the “Kick-Off Party” of the 10th Annual Sand City West End Celebration, jumpstarting the three-day festival of live music, art, cuisine, and any number of Monterey’s top creative talent. Join in tonight’s party with live entertainment from Blues master Chris Cain, Red Beans & Rice (voted best local band in Monterey for 11 years in a row), and John “Broadway” Tucker (winner of the Monterey Bay Blues Festival’s Mobay Award), plus a special performance by the Monterey Bay Blues Festival’s Blues in the School Honor Band.

The celebration sets up a great lineup of musicians every year, drawing such acts as last year’s Los Lobos (the Grammy award-winning band you may know best from their hit cover of Ritchie Valens’ ‘La Bamba’). Some of 2011’s artists include Honeymoon, Jackie Greene, and Matt Masih and the Messengers.

With the many exhibitions, vendors, music, sculptures, and paintings, there’s plenty for everyone here this weekend. Plus, it’s easy being green at the festival’s ‘Green Scene,’ where you can find out more about raw cuisine, green living, and environmental health.

Saturday, August 27

If you missed any of last week’s festivities, the car shows continue! Tomorrow is the 7th Annual Mopars by the Bay Car Show at Monterey State Historic Park. In case you’re wondering, Mopar is short for Motor Parts, a term coined by Chrysler in the 1920s, which has come to describe any member of the Chrysler family, including Dodge, Plymouth and Jeep. It’s a whole day of entertainment, raffles, and awards, all free to the public.

Science rocks in Monterey! It’s Science Saturday at the Pacific Grove Museum of Natural History. This month’s feature is Rocks and Minerals, with lots of activities to help you explore nature’s geological secrets right here in our own back yard of Pacific Grove.

‘Shop for a Cause’ this Saturday, and treat yourself at Macy’s and macys.com to support the community! All proceeds go to the Marina Foundation, which grants scholarships and funds to residents, education programs, and organizations that enrich our area. You’ll also get the chance to win a $500 Macy’s gift card. This is Macy’s sixth nationwide event, which has raised more than $38 million for charities.

Sunday, August 28

The Marina Certified Farmers Market continues this Sunday, with a special addition: an Otter Day event, celebrating the return of Cal State Monterey Bay’s student Otters. The day is packed with fun activities—a scavenger hunt, healthy cooking workshops with Kari Bernardi and Dale Presson, a fashion show, drawings, live music and a DJ…plus the market’s weekly display of organic produce, crafts, and more.

‘Today’s the day the Teddy Bears have their picnic…’ MY Museum (Monterey Youth Museum) is hosting a Teddy Bear Picnic for children 5 and under, with games, snacks, and songs. And don’t forget to bring the guest of honor—your favorite bear.

One of the best parts of the weekend is Sunday Brunch! Try something new at the annual Jewish Food Festival and Crafts Faire in Carmel, this Sunday starting at 10:30am. Explore Jewish delicacies from challah bread and latkes to blintzes and strudel, plus watch a reenactment of a spirited Jewish wedding, shop from an assortment of fine Israeli and American crafts, and dance along to traditional Klezmer music.

And as a special sneak preview, there’s plenty of fun scheduled for the Monterey County Fair, starting next Tuesday, August 31–September 5. Stop by the website to buy tickets and find listings of all the fantastic upcoming events and sponsors for 2011!

Talk about things to do in Monterey! With this much to do and more year round, Monterey may well be the other city that never sleeps. The laid-back ease of coastal life combined with an exciting social calendar and the unique seaside charm of Monterey make the Peninsula a treasure for travelers and locals alike. We look forward to welcoming you!

Running Events: Music, Music, Music!

Concerts in Carmel: Fridays at Carmel Plaza
Annie the Musical: Weekends through September 25 at the Outdoor Forest Theater in Carmel.
Music on the Mall: Del Monte Shopping Center. Saturdays in August. This Saturday is the last one, so hurry if you want to catch some great music and shopping this summer!
Monterey Plaza Hotel and Spa concert series: Fridays at the Monterey Plaza Hotel.
Sunday Music by the River: Every Sunday from 1-5pm at the Big Sur River Inn.
Evenings by the Bay + Aquarium Sleepover: Saturdays and Sundays through September 4.

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