The 26th annual Menlo Park Connoisseurs’ Marketplace takes place downtown on Santa Cruz Avenue on July 21 and 22. Presented by the Menlo Park Chamber of Commerce, admission is free. Featured this year:
Live music: An eclectic, fun-filled mix of classic rock ‘n roll, rhythm and blues, contemporary jazz, dance and party music on stage and street. The free “Saturday Twilight Concert” will feature The Big Dig, a 12-piece funk and R&B band, from 5:30-8:00 pm in Fremont Park. The music lineup includes The Groove Kings, Six String, Drive, The Jesse Charles Band, SF Bay Jazz, HeartStrings Music, and Emerson & The GroWiser Band.
Contemporary fine art, unique crafts: 250 artists and craftmakers present their latest handcrafted work in ceramics, glass, fine art, photography, sculpture, jewelry, leather, textiles, metal and wood.
Chefs’ demonstrations: Chefs from top restaurants prepare favorite dishes, pass out recipes and share the secrets and shortcuts to kitchen success. TV chef and James Beard wward–winning cookbook author Joanne Weir is on at 12:45 pm Saturday.
Food & drink: Fresh roasted corn-on-the-cob, artichoke hearts topped with crab and shrimp, samosas, tandoori chicken, lamb and vegetarian, spit-roasted gyros, falafel, Philly cheesesteaks,barbecued oysters, crab cakes, smoked turkey legs, tri-tip and portobello mushroom sandwiches, garlic fries, smoked bratwurst and Polish dogs, tamales, tacos, quesadillas, garlic chicken and pork kebobs, pupusas, fish tacos, fish and chips, nan wraps, chicken and lamb curry, organic vegan curry, kettle corn, smoothies, Italian ice and more, complemented by premium wine, microbrews, refreshing margaritas and mojitos.
Artisan specialty food: Sample artisan-produced edibles – pomegranate products, locally-grown organic vegetables, salsas, balsamic vinegars and oils, mustard blends, curds and scone mixes, marinades and finishing sauces, exotic jams and jellies, honey and honey products, butters and chutneys, dessert sauces and more.
Kids’ fun zone: Temporary tattoos, face painting, giant inflatible slides and bounces, carnival and train rides, a 24-foot climbing wall, handmade fairy tutus, feather hair extensions, fossils digs and dinosaur art, plus music, dance, games and prizes with the Radio Disney Road Crew.
Photo of 2011 Connoisseurs’ Marketplace by Scott Loftesness