Published in the Aug. 5-18, 2015 issue of Morgan Hill Life

Janis McDonald

Janis McDonald

The 26th Annual Taste of Morgan Hill held in our historic downtown is right around the corner. There are going to be some exciting changes this year as we work to coordinate with the city and contractors who are working to improve downtown.

In addition, we are inviting some new and different arts and crafts vendors to attend this year’s festival. We are always working to upgrade the quality of fine art vendors while including some of the longtime vendors who make a point of joining us each and every year.

Chamber staff and board members have attended multiple festivals and fairs in the Bay Area, asking some of the more unique artists looking to sell their wares to visit our quaint town. Anyone who wishes to sell at this year’s festival should visit or call me at (408) 779-9444. There is still time and we promise you a fun home-town festival that attracts upwards of 50,000 people each and every year.

Visitors will see some changes this year due to the downtown road improvements. Third and Fourth streets will be closed and the city’s highly successful Pop-up Park means our wine and beer tent will be moved to the middle of Monterey Road, though the details of that move are still being worked out with the city. We will still feature wines from our local vintners for your enjoyment.

This year, we are moving our concert — usually held on Third Street — to the Downtown Amphitheater to accommodate more people and provide a better venue for concert-goers. The Bay Area All Stars will play from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. and Entourage will close the festival Saturday night with a rocking show from 8 to 10 p.m.

In addition, this year will include a more expanded Kids Zone with more rides and games in the same location south of Wells Fargo Bank. Returning will be the pony rides and petting zoo, an annual popular attraction. Also returning this year is the Locavores — a group of locally grown and sourced foods – that we hope to put in the same location near Main Avenue.

The Wildlife Education and Rehabilitation Center, a longtime staple at the Taste of Morgan Hill and a favorite of children and adults alike, will return to their usual spot on the west side of Monterey Road between Second and Third streets.

New this year will be several spaces throughout the festival for smaller acoustic acts who will perform throughout both days of the festival.
The annual car and quilt show will return: the car show on Monterey Road from Dunne Avenue to Fourth Street, the Quilt Show in the Community and Cultural Center.

If you’re a longtime resident, we know we’ll see you downtown Sept. 26 and 27. If you’re new to town, pack up the kids and come enjoy the annual Taste of Morgan Hill – voted the best festival in Morgan Hill and a favorite way to end the summer. We will continue to offer the best in entertainment, arts and crafts, beer and some of the best wine grown in the state.

Janis McDonald is the director of operations at the Morgan Hill Chamber of Commerce.

26th Annual Taste of Morgan Hill

When: 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sept. 26 and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sept. 27
Where: Historic Downtown Morgan Hill