Festival and parade held in June every year. 2014 Parade Date: Saturday June 21- Festival: June 20, 21 & 22, 2014
The Summer Solstice Parade features more than 1,000 parade participants, complete with extravagant floats, whimsical costumes and creatively choreographed dancing ensembles. From its beginnings as a small parade featuring street artists, the Santa Barbara Summer Solstice Celebration is now the premier Santa Barbara County arts event, drawing crowds of over 100,000 spectators from around the world.
At high Noon, on a Saturday near the longest day of the year, creative floats, fascinating costumes, brilliant masks begin their journey from Cota Street up State Street to Micheltorena, transforming downtown Santa Barbara into a vibrant splash of color, music and dance. People-powered floats reignite the creative spirit of Santa Barbara. Commercial elements, such as written words, advertisements, live animals, or motorized vehicles (except wheelchairs) are excluded from the Parade, as is nudity.
The parade begins to arrive in Alameda Park a little past 1 PM, with final entry usually appearing after 2 PM. The Alameda Park Festival continues the celebration with live music by local and international artists; delicious foods and beverages from local restaurants, caterers and non-profit groups; an arts and crafts boutique with more than 75 artisans and craftsmen; a large “drum circle” formed by parade participants and anyone who cares to join in the beat. The wonderful floats from the parade are on display. A special children’s area featured a stage with storytellers, musicians, drama, and mimes.
The floats, costumes and masks in the parade are made by community members at the Solstice Workshop. Anyone can participate in the creation of the floats, masks and costumes by coming to the Workshop, where our paid staff of artisans, technical staff, costumers and maskmakers help to make your creative ideas come alive. Solstice Workshop participants have use of a variety of materials as well as the collective, creative spirit of working together in this magical place.
Look for new Parade and Festival Map, including downtown parking structures, in early June.