Encinitas Spring Street Fair marks 34th year with music, local vendors

Annual event runs April 29-30 along Coast Highway 101


Scott Allison

Visitors enjoy a ride at the Encinitas Spring Street Festival on April 28, 2013. (NCC file photo by Scott Allison)

Lauren J. Mapp

Join the community of Encinitas as it celebrates the season during the annual Encinitas Spring Street Fair April 29 and 30 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in Downtown Encinitas on Coast Highway 101.

Started in 1983, the annual fair is sponsored this year by Scripps Health and is free to the public. It features two days of musical entertainment, arts and crafts, antiques, ethnic imports, a craft beer garden, international cuisine and carnival rides within a few blocks of the beach.

“The fair is a great way to bring everyone into the heart of downtown Encinitas,” said Irene Pyun, events and programs director for the Encinitas 101 MainStreet Association.

Organized by the Encinitas 101 MainStreet Association, this year’s Encinitas Spring Street Fair boasts an all-time high of close to 500 vendors — many of whom are local businesses.

“We wanted to make it a much more local street fair, which is why we added so many new vendors this year,” Pyun said.

A new feature of this year’s fair are changes to the format of the Beer and Wine Garden. Sponsored by North County brewery Stone Brewing and featuring six of their beers on tap, this year it will be both kid and dog friendly, and the hours have been extended to be open from noon to 7 p.m. on Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. on Sunday. Proceeds from the Beer and Wine Garden will be donated to the Encinitas 101 MainStreet Association.

Throughout the weekend, find bands playing at the four stages scattered throughout the fair. Performing at the main stage in the Beer and Wine Garden will be Seedheads, The Devastators, New Leaf, The Dubbest and DJ Carlos Culture on Saturday; and the Casey Hensley Band, Wish & the Well and DJ Mancat on Sunday.

Musical acts performing at The Lumberyard Courtyard stage include Kainga Music, Semisi & FulaBula and the Golden Standard on Saturday; followed by Superwave and Robert and SAVING GRACE on Sunday.

Also new for this year are two additional stages — one sponsored by local surf shop Hansen Surfboards and another featuring student musicians from the Encinitas School of Music.

Since there will be no parking available on Coast Highway 101 between D and J streets, Pyun suggests that locals take their bikes. This year, the Electra Bicycle Company will help to sponsor the fair and host free valet parking for bicycles, complete with security personnel to watch the bikes parked there.

If you’re looking for something to do as the fair winds down, reggae/punk band Hazmat will play an Encinitas Street Fair Afterparty at the 1st Street Bar from 5 to 8 p.m. at 656 South Coast Highway 101, and reggae/funk band HighMinded will play an after-party show at the American Legion at 210 West F St.

Lauren J. Mapp is a San Diego freelance writer