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June 16, 2021

10 reasons why the Art, Wine & Beer Festival will be fun

Yes, it is happening and official.

Santa Cruz County Health Officer Gail Newel has allowed the city of Scotts Valley and the Scotts Valley Chamber of Commerce to host its 20th Art, Wine and Beer Festival with Cops’ N Rodders on Aug. 21-22.

This spectacular event takes a staggering 100-200 volunteers who make this momentous event happen. About one-third of those volunteers are junior and high school students from, which compliments their community service requirements.

Together, Jeanette Larkin, Chairperson (her fifth time) and Chamber President, once again leads this impressive group of volunteers, and Angela Marshall, Artist Chairperson and Office Manager at the Chamber, join with the steadfast and tireless Chamber Executive Director Danny Reber. They pool together their resources and human talent, adding countless hours into turning a once modest community gathering into one of the largest in our nation. It’s true!

And long-standing volunteers come back year after year, like Julie Mazurek of 20 years (late husband Bob), Donna Lind, and Becky McMillion, over 13 years. I cannot list the hundreds of volunteers here, but without them, this event would not happen.  

Let’s get down to the 10 reasons we love our festival!

1. It’s Free!: Accessible to everyone, even our pets (with a leash, of course). There will be a fun zone and activities for kids and a Dog Day on Sunday. Free music, dancing and entertainment. Plus, lots of venues with local artisans, wineries and microbreweries, Classic Car Show, and let us not forget food! Go online for all the details: svartfestival.com/.

2.  It’s a LIVE event: While we still will abide by our county Covid-19 safety guidelines, we are free to walk around, visit people, and enjoy the activities compared to the lockdown of 2020. Accessible to the public, but for those who wish to enjoy wine, beer and margaritas, pre-sales are still open at their website. Bring your masks but get ready to have some outdoor connection.

3.  It’s Local: Almost all who participate in this event are local. Located this year at Siltanen Community Park, the festival goers will park at Scotts Valley High School, and the entrance will be via Shugart Park Walkway and Bridges pathways. 

4. Local Artisans: Up to 150 artists participate, and their talent is high quality; we are the best event happening for them too, due to the stark restrictions in 2020. If you are a local artist, there is still time to participate. Sign up at their website.

5. Local Wineries & Brewers: We cannot mention them all, but if you are a connoisseur of wine and enjoy the robust taste of beer from our local microbreweries or the tangy tropical flavor of a margarita, be sure to get your taste kits.

6. Dog Day (Sunday): Roof! Roof! This event is back by popular demand. If you like dogs and want to enter your dog into a contest, here is another fun event, and the audience loves cheering on your favorite pet. Be sure to register.

7. Cops & Rodders, the Classic Car Show (Saturday): This police motorcycle escorted cruise begins at the S.C. Boardwalk coast to Capitola and then ends at the Siltanen Community Park on Vine Hill School Road in Scotts Valley. A popular event, only 80 cars will participate—still, time to register.

8. Local Talent (entertainment): Besides the live band music mentioned below, our local and high school talent onstage performances, sing and perform. Be sure to contact the Chamber for specific information and perhaps be on stage too! 

9. Live Music/Bands: Don’t miss the Lost Boys with James Durbin, Joint Chiefs, Bonny June & Bonfire, Shady Rest Band and Lyin’ I’s (Eagles tribute band). We can all sing out loud and dance barefoot. What is true about this music is We Love It!

10.  Local Fantastic Food: Are you ready for some juicy, tasty and healthy, finger-licking food? There will be dozens of local venues, and after the lock-down, let’s try them all!

Finally, I ask both Jeanette and Danny the best part of this event for them. Both said how they enjoy taking a few moments during this two-day event, observing how a small community can band together in unison. They see families celebrating, conversing, laughing, dancing, and enjoying food and drink together, happy. 

Next month, we will discuss our upcoming 4th of July activities in Scotts Valley and San Lorenzo Valley.

Janet Janssen is a Toastmaster International distinguished speaker, author, business coach, and local resident and SV Chamber member. www.janetjanssen.com, [email protected].