HANFORD - With the official start of summer getting near, it’s time for Thursday Night Market Place to return to downtown Hanford.
The event, which is run and organized by Main Street Hanford, begins its 17th year May 4 and will be held weekly until Sept. 28 every Thursday from 5:30-9 p.m. The event is held on multiple blocks of Irwin Street and on parts of Seventh and Eighth Streets.
Each night will once again include weekly themed nights, food vendors, produce and entertainment.
Main Street Hanford Executive Director Shelly Johnson said attendees can expect a mix of new and returning attractions.
“We're just planning on having another fabulous season with some great new things and bringing back things that have been popular,” Johnson said.
Some of the new attractions, Johnson said, include Art in the Park night on June 1, where participants can paint or draw in Civic Center Park. There will also be new food vendors as well as nights that will include free Yoga classes and cooking demonstrations on dates to be determined.
Johnson said the market place will expand this year farther down Eighth Street and will not stretch as far down Seventh Street as in previous years.
Johnson said that should allow patrons to take advantage of more shade down Eighth Street without blocking off parking.
"Hopefully that will help more people stay cool," Johnson said.
The market place’s May 4 kickoff will include a Star Wars-themed May the Fourth Be With You night and include music performed by the old school/Latin band August.
"You might see a few stormtroopers that night," Johnson said jokingly about the movies' famed henchmen.
Johnson said there will be other nights when people are encouraged to dress up. Johnson said people routinely dress in their favorite team’s jersey on Baseball Fever Night (June 15), or wear Hawaiian shirts on Beach Party night (July 6).
Johnson said Main Street Hanford expects to have roughly 85 vendors on opening night, a number that is consistent with past years' numbers.
Said Johnson: “We’re going to have a lot of vendors, lots of food and some great bands.”
The following is the schedule for Thursday Night Market Place’s weekly themes and music.
- May 4: May the Fourth Be with You; August (old school/latin).
- May 11: Night of Giving; Cadillac Cowboys (country).
- May 18: Homecoming; Glen Delpit and the Subterraneans (American roots).
- May 25: Family Fun Night; Monsanto (old school/latin).
- June 1: Art in the Park; John Clifton Blues Band (blues).
- June 8: Dairy Appreciation Night; Rockville (classic rock/R&B).
- June 15: Baseball Fever Night; Deluxe (country).
- June 22: Health & Wellness Night; Roadhouse (classic rock).
- June 29: Red, White & Blue Night; Califas (west coast/latin).
- July 6: Beach Party; Richie Blue Band (blues).
- July 13: Firefighter’s Appreciation Night; Motel Drive (rockabilly).
- July 20: Ag Appreciation Night; Brian Smart and the Country Outlaws (country).
- July 27: International Night; Prestige (classic rock).
- Aug. 3: Country Western Night; Houston Avenue (country).
- Aug. 10: Happy 125th Birthday Hanford; The Fabulous Enchantments (old school/R&B).
- Aug. 17: NASL Appreciation Night; JJ Brown Band (pop/rock/country).
- Aug. 24: Hot August Nights; Blue Jacket (blues).
- Aug. 31: Tachi Yokut Night; Danny Millsap Band (country).
- Sept. 7: Night of Vintage Treasures; Bryan Vickers (rock/originals).
- Sept. 14: Lose Your Blues Downtown; Square One (blues).
- Sept. 21: Paint Downtown Pink; Ricky Montijo and the Mojitos (rock).
- Sept. 28: End of the Season; Sugar (rock/soul).