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Wednesday, January 16 , 2019, 6:29 am | Fair 50º


Downtown Fridays in Santa Maria Kicks Off Third Season

The family-friendly event is scheduled each week through September

Customers add seasonings and condiments to the roasted corn that proved popular at Downtown Fridays in Santa Maria on Friday. Click to view larger
Customers add seasonings and condiments to the roasted corn that proved popular at Downtown Fridays in Santa Maria on Friday. (Janene Scully / Noozhawk photo)

The third season of Downtown Fridays kicked off in Santa Maria on Friday with music, food, beer, wine and more.

The family-friendly event is scheduled from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. every Friday at the downtown Santa Maria Town Center West parking lot near Broadway and Cook Street.

“Great turnout,” organizer Ed Carcarey said Friday. “The weather held. I was worried. If the weather holds, Californians come out. So I’m very pleased with it already.”

The weekly event is scheduled to continue through Sept. 28, weather permitting. 

This year’s event features a larger kids’ zone, expanded food booths and more lighting.

Local musicians also will perform during the event, with Drive-In Romeos and Umo kicking off the season on Friday.

The Drive-In Romeos perform for visitors to Downtown Fridays.
The Drive-In Romeos perform for visitors to Downtown Fridays. (Janene Scully / Noozhawk photo)

Carcarey said the kids’ zone is expected to grow even more in the coming weeks.

“It will be huge. It will look like a carnival,” he said.

Downtown Fridays, organized by local promoters Carcarey and Sofia Lariz, launched in 2016 as part of the city’s revised Downtown Specific Plan, which focuses on ways to draw in more visitors to the downtown area.

Last year, about 2,000 people attended each Downtown Fridays event, according to the organizers. 

“I’m very pleased with the mix of people, too — all the different demographics that are out here," Carcarey said while looking at the crowd Friday night. "I love that. I love to see Santa Maria come together and not be so divided.”

Noozhawk North County editor Janene Scully can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

Christina Melena escorts the Easter Bunny (Darlene Chavez). Click to view larger
Christina Melena escorts the Easter Bunny (Darlene Chavez). (Janene Scully / Noozhawk photo)

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