A variety of Fourth of July celebrations — most of them virtual — are planned in the Santa Barbara area this holiday weekend in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Last week, the City of Santa Barbara canceled its fireworks show and banned gatherings of groups larger than 10, resulting in the cancellation of local parades because of public safety concerns. However, some organizations are still planning celebratory events that adhere to public health guidelines.
“It’s important that we honor our country’s birthday, especially in these trying times,” said John Blankenship, founding director of the foundation. “It’s something positive and patriotic, and it’s what we have to do in this environment.”
The celebration will feature film footage from past concerts and parades as well as short clips from different speakers. The video will culminate with 20 minutes of footage from last year’s fireworks show.
In lieu of Montecito’s annual Fourth of July parade, the Montecito Association has coordinated the Village 4th Road Show. It will be a car parade starting and ending at the Montecito Union School District building, 385 San Ysidro Road.
It is scheduled to begin at 11:30 a.m. Saturday and travel through the Mountain Drive, Ashley Road, Channel Drive and Coast Village Road areas along with many other streets. Community members are encouraged to dress in red, white and blue. Social distancing and face coverings are still strongly encouraged.
Old Spanish Days Fiesta will host a livestreamed concert on Friday as part of its Fiesta Music and Dance Fridays series throughout July. Friday’s concert will open with Spirit of Fiesta Alena Velasco and feature local band Area 51 as the main act.
During intermission, dancers from the Garcia Dance Studio in Lompoc will perform. El Presidente Erik Davis will introduce the 2020 “honorary presidentes and presidentas,” the people who have helped him lead the historic festival.
“I am excited and proud that we are fulfilling our commitment to keeping the Fiesta spirit alive during this challenging time,” Davis said. “We will get through this together.”