Tri-Cities Voice Newspaper - What's Happening - Fremont, Union City, Newark California

June 13, 2006 > Street parties are back!

Street parties are back!

by Steve Warga

Hayward's widely popular "Third Thursday Street Parties" are back again starting June 15. Crowds in excess of 6,000, including many families, simply can't be wrong. These parties are happening!

For a seventh year running, the Hayward Chamber of Commerce joins with the city of Hayward and the Downtown Business Improvement Area merchants to rock n' roll all night long (well, all evening anyway!), every third Thursday of June, July, August and September. Great music, crafts, stores and more will all be part of the fun.

"Hot Rods Downtown" may well be the feature attraction. Coordinator Frank Zanger says the only drawback is that he can't accommodate more than the first 125 cars to roll through the barricades, that's all the parking spaces available on both Main and B streets. So now he's limiting entries to pre-'73 models as they evoke much nostalgia. "If you stop and listen to the folks, you'll hear many comments like, 'Oh, I owned one of those,' or 'I had my first date in a car just like that!'  The owners are all there to talk shop and really enjoy sharing the memories."

Be sure to catch all the gleaming chrome, polished leather and paint jobs so deep and rich you'll almost get vertigo. Frank says there's a core group of regulars at every party, but each month features a different mix of lovingly, painstakingly restored beauties. And just to put the final touch on the mood, there will be a DJ spinning platters from the '50s and '60s. If you know what a "platter" is, you know it'll be great.

Festivities kick off at 5:30 p.m. and run through 8:30 p.m. Street barricades will block traffic on B Street between Foothill and Mission boulevards and also on Main Street between A and C streets. The rods will move in, merchants and exhibitors will open their displays, and multiple music acts will commence performing, telling one and all that the party's on with a family accent. Kids will want to visit the face-painting booths, watch "Alan the Amazing" or "Maggie the Clown" or, perhaps join in the "Art in Action for Kids" sponsored by the Hayward Arts Council.

Bring lawn chairs and take in Russell City-style blues in Newman Park on Main Street, or visit the beer, wine and soda garden next to Bank of the West. Each month's party will feature a different style of music complimenting the gustatory delights. And don't miss the Dreyer's Grand Ice Cream truck. There's nothing quite like yummy, cold ice cream on a warm summer evening.

Peggy Collette of the Chamber of Commerce says the parties are "a great opportunity to see Hayward at its best."

This summer's dates are June 15; July 20; August 17 and the first-ever September date, the 21st. For more information, visit

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