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  Santa Cruz Parent Santa Cruz County
Summer, Glorious Summer
May 1, 2014
The Adventure of Camping
Pool Party & World's Largest Swim Lesson
Unique Focus Camps
Growing Up Wild
Overnight Camps
Why DayCamp Matters
Day Camps
Cell phones at summer camp?
Science Camps
Tiffany: Swim Safely and Make History
Swim Lessons
The Arts

Sports Camps
Summer Festivals
Click to view our Business Directory
  The Adventure of Camping

PLEASE CLICK TO VIEW ENTIRE CAMP GUIDE

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Whether in the back yard, an overnight camp or day camp, camping is an adventure for our children.

When we look at all the wonderful camps and summer classes we think fondly of the summers of our youth and just a little wistfully wish we were kids once more. It's  time to start filling out those registration forms and signing up for swim lessons.  

Camp is about experiencing something new, creating memories and making new friends. Most day camps are offered on a weekly basis and some offer a daily rate. Many offer scholarships for families in need. Children as young as 3 can enjoy half day and full day programs and teens can find day, overnight camps, counselor in training (CIT) programs.

(Photos General) MountMadonna_Summer2.jpgGo online to our A-Z SUMMER CAMP DIRECTORY to find detailed descriptions and contact information.

If you know of a camp we have missed, let us know! Click on the camp ads below to reach their websites and you will be delighted with the quality programs available. 

Have fun planning a great summer! Parmalee

photos courtesy of Frontier Ranch and Mount Madonna.

  Pool Party & World's Largest Swim Lesson

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  Unique Focus Camps

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(Ads Camp 2014) MOD_2014.jpg

Aux Tois Pommes Fast ForWord with SpeechRighter
Little Garden Patch Farm Camp
BasketBall Jones
MOD Artist Inventor Camp New Leaf Cooking Camp
Cabrillo Summer Youth Forest Farm Camp Pediatric Therapy
Camp SEALab Growing Social SPCA Camp
Chartwell Summer Jane Addams Peace Camp  
(Ads Camp 2014) JaneAddamsPeaceCamp_2014.jpg (Ads Camp 2013) AuxTroisPommes_2013_ad3.jpg (Ads Camp 2014) LittleGardenPatchCampAd2014.jpg

(Ads Camp 2014) Chartwell_Summer2014.jpg

  Growing Up Wild

(Photos General) GrowingUpWild_woods.jpgGrowing Up Wild has been leading camping trips for youth and family camps in Santa Cruz County since 2008.  As a grassroots nonprofit nature adventure program, the vision driving Growing Up Wild is to help build community and give children a positive experience learning about nature.  The program is operated by a small group of people, all of whom volunteer some of their time to do the various tasks needed to run a community-based outdoor education program successfully. 

Growing up in a working class neighborhood near downtown San Jose, founding director, Ismael Cruz, became inspired to build the program after he witnessed the positive impact that nature programming has on youth and families while working as a counselor for Camp Unalayee, a wilderness camp located in the Trinity Alps Wilderness of Northern California.  In 2005 Ismael and his family acquired a small parcel of land in the redwood forest of Corralitos and set out to transform it into a campground to run camping programs for the local community.  Today, almost 10 years later, the Cruz family has successfully turned this forest (Photos General) GrowingUpWild_waterfall.jpgland into a unique campground retreat center, which they call, "Camp Cruz."  It is here where youth and families who participate in Growing Up Wild programs get to enjoy and learn about nature. 

Camp Cruz is an ideal nature camp for it offers privacy and seclusion yet it is only 30 minutes from town.  It has a year-round creek and a beautiful landscaped garden.  It is a natural habitat for a seasonal ladybug migration.  It has the comforts of luxury camping that many other campgrounds do not offer such as a fully stocked outdoor kitchen on a deck, indoor cold food storage, hot showers, an arts and crafts work station, playground equipment, a sweat lodge, a geodesic dome for indoor activities, camping gear to lend out, and more. 

Growing Up Wild puts on an annual all-ages fundraiser concert at Camp Cruz to increase awareness of its programs and raise funds for scholarships.  This year's outdoor concert in the redwoods will take place on June 28th, and will feature live bands at night and kids' activities in the afternoon including a performance by bubble magician, Tom Noddy. We expect the event to draw around 500 people this year.  

(Photos General) GrowingUpWild_Woodz_balancebeamTent.jpgThe Growing Up Wild program is called Boys in the Woodz (BIWz), a coming-of-age summer program for boys ages, 10- 17.  Youth camp out for four days at a time at Camp Cruz where they engage in outdoor activities that connect them to nature and foster life skills such as team building, communication and problem solving. They go on field study hikes, learn wilderness survival skills, complete a high ropes course, participate in a sweat lodge, and more.  The last week of the program consists of a camping trip to the Arroyo Seco River where youth get to explore the back country wilderness and enjoy a wild river. 

(Photos General) GrowingUpWild_Woodz_shower.jpgSubsidized by grants, the goal is to make Boys in the Woodz affordable to every family who wishes to register their child.  As a bilingual public school teacher in Watsonville, Ismael provides a bilingual staff for Boys in the Woodz, and part of the program emphasis is on bilingual immersion.  In 2014 the program runs every week in July from Tuesday-Friday.  Family camp programs can be scheduled upon request by a group of families who wish to have a private camp-out of their own.

To learn more about CampCruz, go to: www.growingupwild.org

  Overnight Camps
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Camp Campbell

Camp Hammer

Camp Koinonia

Camp Winnarainbow

Frontier Ranch at Mission Springs

Growing Up Wild

Monte Vista Horsemanship

Camp SEA Lab

Mt. Hermon Camps

Camp Unalaye

Kennolyn Camp

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  Why DayCamp Matters

Andy Kimmelman

When looking for summer activities for their children, parents today are faced with an incredible wealth of options. Many of these options describe (Photos General) Camp_StreamHiking.jpgthemselves as "camp": sports camps, arts camps, school camps (which always strikes one as somewhat oxymoronic), and, of course, the ubiquitous "day camps." Each of these offers benefits to the family, but certain programs stand apart.

According to several parents and camp directors, what we will term a traditional day camp, with a program mirroring the classic resident camp program, presents something uniquely advantageous to its campers and families. Traditional day camps matter in a way that differs from the host of other summer activities. Thus, questions arise: Why does day camp matter, and how do we position this kind of program among everything else?  Read more>>>

Andy Kimmelman is the camp director at Tumbleweed Day Camp in Los Angeles, California. He also serves on the Editorial Advisory Committee for Camping Magazine and in numerous other volunteer positions for the American Camp Association.

  Day Camps

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Baymonte Summer Quest  Kruz Kids
Renaissance Camp
Boulder Creek Camps La Selva Beach Day Camp Santa Cruz City Parks & Rec
Boys and Girls Club Live Oak Farm Camp Santa Cruz County Parks & Rec
Boys In the Woodz Montessori Scotts Valley Santa Cruz Montessori
Camp Auxilium Mount Madonna
Santa Cruz Waldorf
Camp Capitola Mt Cross SLV Quest
Camp Gateway Mt Hermon Redwood Camp Tara Redwood Inner Compass
Camp Kayetz Ohana Gymnastics Watsonville Parks & Rec
Camp Seascape Orchard Performing Arts Watsonville YMCA Day Camp
Camp Wonderworks Quail Hollow Time Travelers Sammy Slug Summer Camp
Campus Kids Connection Quaker Camp Kennolyn Camps

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 (Ads Camp 2013) CampGateway_Camp_2013.jpg  (Ads Camp 2014) camp_seascape_ad_2014.jpg
 (Ads Camp 2014) Tara-180x300_summer2014.jpg  (Ads Camp 2014) CityofSC_Summer2014_180.jpg  (Ads Camp 2012) SCMontessori_2012.jpg
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  Cell phones at summer camp?

BY Mitch Albom, FREE PRESS COLUMNIST

(Photos General) Camp_LetterHome.jpgThe Fourth of July always meant summer to me, and summer, when I was very young, meant summer camp. And summer camp meant disappearing into another world.

It was a world of woods and fields and bunks, a world without Mom and Dad, without friends from the neighborhood, without TV, without movies, a world where you wrote letters to communicate with your "other" life.

You know what? That never scared me.

Today, kids get the shakes about summer camp, because they might have to surrender their cell phone, BlackBerry, Droid, PDA, iPhone, iPod Touch or iPad. Some will opt out of summer camp altogether if it means they can't arrive with their plugs, adapters, chargers and monitors.

Apparently, it's a dilemma for summer camps, which, after all, need kids to operate. And it's obviously a dilemma for the campers. But after looking into this a bit, you know whose dilemma surprises me the most?

The parents

It is often Mom and Dad who want little Joey to be in touch at all times. It is Mom and Dad who can't bear the thought of not having their baby within the press of a speed dial.

Check out the message boards and forums on camp Web sites. You will find a startling number of postings by parents who think their kids SHOULD have cell phones all through summer camp. Some worry about safety. Some worry about their child's loneliness.  Some worry about bigger issues.  We can't live in constant fear.  it's summer. Lighten up.

I'm in favor of a ban on all electronic devices once you step on that camp bus. And like those nervous parents, I say this out of fear. I fear kids are losing the ability to exist.

When we went to camp, we were in the moment. We jumped in the pool; we didn't film ourselves jumping in the pool. We spoke while looking eye to eye; we didn't text each other across the bunk.

Kids need to learn that memories are not the same as storage devices and feelings are not the same as postings. Summer camp is a great place for that. I can't remember all the sensations from childhood, but I can sure remember the heat of a campfire on my face, the freeze of a Popsicle on my lips, the sweaty shirt that stuck to me after a baseball game, the excitement of a letter from home.

No phone was necessary. No one needed an alert. You can't absorb an experience if you're constantly sharing it. Remember, as kids, we didn't have any problem letting go for the summer.

As parents, we shouldn't either.

Contact MITCH ALBOM: 313-223-4581 or malbom@freepress.com.

  Science Camps

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Camp SEA Lab SC Children's Museum of Discovery
MOD SCChildren's Museum of Discovery
HOWL Science MakersFactory Camps Nature's Apprentice
IRIS Museum of Natural History Summer
Outdoor Science Fun
Life Lab Science WOLF (Web of Life Field) School
 
Seymour Ocean Explorers

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  Tiffany: Swim Safely and Make History

(Photos General) Seahorse_RyanHannahBrochureshot.jpgThe month of May is "National Water Safety Month", which brings heightened awareness and focus for learning how to swim so that everyone can play in, on and around water safely.

While swimming and water play is one of the most popular summer activities, tragically, drowning remains to be the leading cause of unintended injury and related death for children ages 1-5 and the second leading cause of accidental death for children under 14. Research also shows participation in formal swimming lessons can reduce the risk of drowning by 88% among children aged 1 to 4 according to the American Red Cross.

There are several ways to increase water awareness and water safety that you can share with your family, friends and children this summer.


(Logos Business) RedCross_app2014.jpgThe American Red Cross just released a new water safety mobile application in April 2014. The app compliments their "Learn-to-Swim" aquatic program and is ideal for adults or children who want easy and accessible information on water safety and drowning prevention. Interactive videos, performance charts and progress badges that can be shared on social media are all part of this new application. Find this FREE application on the iTunes or Google Play stores or by going to the Mobile App section of the Red Cross website.

(Photos General) Seahorse_EmmaSlayton.jpgNational Water Safety Awareness Month also brings attention to "Make a Splash," a national child-focused water safety initiative of the USA Swimming Foundation aiming to provide the opportunity for every child in America to learn to swim. Make a Splash partners with Red Cross swim instructors and water safety advocates across the country to provide swimming lessons to educate children and their families on the importance of learning how to swim.

Seahorse Swim School, a proud local partner of the "Make a Splash" initiative, is offering FREE swim lessons for all ages on the first Saturday of each month at Lifestyle Fitness in Watsonville from 12-2pm.

Seahorse Swim School is also participating in the "World's Largest Swimming Lesson," an attempt to set a new Guinness Book of World Record for the largest swimming lesson ever conducted. Seahorse Swim School will contribute to the global record attempt on Friday June 20 at 8 am at the Santa Cruz High School swimming pool.

Parents are invited to learn more about this phenomenal event by visiting WLSL.org or the Seahorse Swim School web site. Join Seahorse Swim School and make history!

As we get set for summer fun in the sun, it's important to remember to keep a close eye on children when they are around water; use beaches and pools staffed with lifeguards and seek ways to educate children on how to swim and how to swim safely. Summer is just around the corner and it's so important to know how to swim!


Tiffany Harmon, owner of Seahorse Swim School, Inc. since 1999, has a BA in Psychology from UCSC. She is also a Water Safety Instructor Trainer with the American Red Cross. Teaching thousands of people to swim in Santa Cruz County, she trains her staff to not only teach swimming strokes, but to focus in on water safety.

As part of our NEW local partnership of the Make a Splash Initiative Seahorse Swim School is offering:FREE SWIM LESSONS, Level assessments & Jr. Guard Tryouts for our Summer program at SCHS ~~ Saturday,  May 3, 2014 :: 12- 2pm. ~~ Thereafter the 1st SAT of every month at Lifestyle Fitness, Watsonville.  Bring a friend, we will assess your levels too.

FREE SUMMER KICK OFF PARTY::  Saturday May 31 from 2-5 pm @ Santa Cruz High School Pool
415 Walnut Ave .. Corner of Myrtle and Taylor Streets near the gym of the High School

  Swim Lessons

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 Adventure Sports Unlimited  Santa Cruz State Jr. Lifeguards Jim Booth Swim School
 Cabrillo Swim School  Seahorse Swim School SLV Swim Center
 Cougar Swim School  Simpkins Swim Center  SC County Swim Classes
(Ads Camp 2014) CabrilloSwimSchool_ad_2014.jpg  (Ads Camp 2014) camp_seascape_ad_2014.jpg (Ads Camp 2014) SCCParksRec_swim2014.jpg

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  The Arts

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All About Theatre

Aptos Academy of Performing Arts

Aptos Music Camp

Art Factory

Be Natural Music

Community Music School

CYT Musical Theatre Summer Camp

Dancenter

Cabrillo Youth Chorus

Earth Art Studio

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Seven Directions

Steps Dance

Studio 501

Studio Sprout

Romanoff Music

Watershed Art

West Performing Arts

Young Actor's Theatre Camp

Kimberly Hardin Art School

Lutheran-Messiah Arts Camp

International Academy of Dance SC Museum of Natural History Camps
Santa Cruz Mountain Arts
Motion Pacific Dance Orchard Peforming Arts Musical Me

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If I create from the heart, nearly everything works; if from the head, almost nothing.” Marc Chagall

 

“Ah, music," he said, wiping his eyes. "A magic beyond all we do here!”
J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone

I found I could say things with color and shapes that I couldn't say any other way--things I had no words for.” Georgia O'Keeffe

 

(Ads Camp 2014) SCMusNatHist_Camp2014.jpg
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“All the world's a stage.”
William Shakespeare,
As You Like It
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  Sports Camps

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Adventure Sports

Aikido Santa Cruz

Basketball Jones Hoop Camp

Bike Dojo Camp

 Camp Flip at Ohana Gymnastics

Catalyst Soccer

Lightspeed Martial Arts

MB Horse Center

Monte Vista Equestrian

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Santa Cruz Soccer Camp

Surf School Santa Cruz

Toadal Fitness Camps

UCSC Sailing

Valley Sports Camp

Horse 'n Around

Luma Yoga

Pleasant Valley Horse Club

(Ads Camp 2014) RidgemarkFarmCamp2014.jpg (Ads Camp 2014) SantaCruzSoccer_2014_180.jpg (Ads Camp 2014) LizzyFowlerCamp_2014.jpg

 

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 (Ads Camp 2014) OhanaGymnastics_Summer2014.jpg

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  Summer Festivals

(BUILT IN) (Icons/Graphics) Text_Calendar.jpg(Ads) SantaCruzParentCamp.jpgA - Z Summer Camps

 

 

 

SUMMER FESTIVALS 

 
Now in our third year of operation, the MakersFactory Summer Camps offer the most technologically-advanced camps in the Santa Cruz County with an added heaping dose of fun.

With new hands-on, collaborative challenges, kid-tested projects, and engaging subjects this year, our camps are ready to inspire the next generation of innovators, programmers, gamers, builders and dreamers.

Summer is the perfect time to tap into kids' natural curiosity to learn about the world around them through the high-tech tools we teach like 3D printers, laser cutters and robotics.

Our small class sizes insure a relaxed, supportive environment where the ideas of all campers can take flight.

Makersfactory.com

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Just look at a few of the Outdoor Science Exploration summer science topics designed to ignite children's imaginations and introduce them to an amazing world of science.

Frederick Street Park parking  - Very cold Temps+candles, Invisible Water Balls, Oxidizing+phase changing Zn+Fe, Radiometers+Reflecting Fun...

behind Nat'l History Whale Museum - Boomerang Physics, Rock Cycle+Fossils, Paper Clips+Magnets+Dust, Venus Fly Traps, Pi+UV Beads, Buzz Gloves... 
Pogonip Preserve/Golf Club Dr. parking - Spin Forces of Tops+Wheels, Suction cups, Touch Sensor Density, Kinetic Energy Sticks, Bridge physics...

Depot Park parking - Playing Catch with a Van, Laws of Motion, Bernoulli Ping Pong, Revolving+Balloon Catching, Water Misters, Maxi Colors...â

Blue Ball Park parking - Multi-Siphons, 2 Liquids=Bouncing Ball, Balloon Helicopters, Wrist Holes, Lateral+Averted Vision, Buzz Saws...
Antonelli Pond by Natural Bridges - paleolithic Turnduns, Finding pulses, Balance point, Water arthropods, Marine Terrace Fault, Kinetic+potential...

You can see why children come home abuzz with new ideas.  These are only a fraction of the topics and locations for Outdoor Science Exploration with Irvin Lindsey.

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Summer Camp Guide
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  Summer Camp Guide
Date:
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4th Annual Santa Cruz Rejuvenation Festival
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  4th Annual Santa Cruz Rejuvenation Festival
Rejuvenation Festival
Date: 05/17/2014 from 10:00am to 7:00pm
Details: Free Family Fun under the Sun!
City: Santa Cruz view all details >>
     
Summer Camp Guide
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  Summer Camp Guide
Date:
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Boardwalk 2017 Concerts
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  Boardwalk 2017 Concerts
Beach Boardwalk
Date: Every Fri (Jun 16-Sep 1)
Details: Come on down for free Friday night concerts
City: Santa Cruz Phone: (831) 423-5590 view all details >>
     
Free Movies at the Beach
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  Free Movies at the Beach
Beach Boardwalk
Date: Every Wed (Jun 21-Aug 16) at 9:00pm
Details: Bring the family and your blanket or low back chair and join us for these classic hits!
City: Santa Cruz view all details >>
     
The Gilroy Garlic Festival
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  The Gilroy Garlic Festival
Gilroy Garlic Festival
Date: Every day (Jul 28-Jul 30)
Ages: All
Details: "Ultimate Summer Food Fair"; three d9ys of incredible food, beverages, arts & crafts, live entertainment and
Special Instructions: Santa Teresa Blvd & Club Dr
City: Gilroy Phone: 408-846-6886 view all details >>
     
Scottish Games & Celtic Festival
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  Scottish Games & Celtic Festival
Scottish Society of the Monterey Peninsula
Date: Every day (Aug 5-Aug 6) from 9:00am to 6:00pm
Details: Pipe bands, Drum Major and Solo and Pipe Band competitions, Highland Dancing, Irish Step Dancing, Sheepdog Herding and...
City: Monterey Phone: (831) 682-2022 view all details >>
     
Juneteenth Celebration
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  Juneteenth Celebration
Louden Nelson Community Center
Date: 06/11/2016 from 12:00pm to 5:00pm
Ages: All Ages
Details: Come celebrate Juneteenth with us!
City: Santa Cruz Phone: (831) 420-6177 view all details >>
     
Cabrillo Music Festival
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  Cabrillo Music Festival
Cabrillo Music Festival
Date: Every day (Jul 30-Aug 12)
Details: The HERE and NOW of contemporary music for a world-class orchestra!
City: Santa Cruz County view all details >>
     
Redwood Mountain Faire
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  Redwood Mountain Faire
Valley Women's Club
Date: Every day (Jun 4-Jun 5)
Ages: All
Details: Join us RAIN or SHINE! Music lovers, arts and crafts aficionados, people of all ages, will enjoy this remarkable festival
Special Instructions: Parking: $5
City: Felton Phone: 831/ 335-4484 view all details >>
     
EAT LIKE A GREEK Food Faire
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  EAT LIKE A GREEK Food Faire
Greek Orthodox Church
Date: Every day (May 19-May 21)
Details: Enjoy authentic, handcrafted Greek Food and Desserts
City: Santa Cruz Phone: 831.429.6500 view all details >>
     
Mad Hatter Tea and Croquet
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  Mad Hatter Tea and Croquet
Louden Nelson Community Center
Date: 04/30/2016 from 1:00pm to 3:00pm
Ages: All Ages
Details: Join us for a leisurely round of croquet, or simply spend some quality time with friends
City: Santa Cruz Phone: (831) 420-6177 view all details >>
     
Wacky Carnival Fun
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  Wacky Carnival Fun
Louden Nelson Community Center
Date: 07/15/2017 from 1:00pm to 3:00pm
Ages: Families with children 2-12yr.
Details: Come join us for fun in the park with lots of carnival games
City: Santa Cruz Phone: (831) 420-6177 view all details >>
     
Mole & Mariachi Festival
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  Mole & Mariachi Festival
State Park Mission
Date: 09/20/2014 from 11:00am to 4:00pm
Details: Join us for a day of mole, mariachis & much, much more!
Special Instructions: at the end of School Street off the Santa Cruz Mission Plaza
City: Santa Cruz Phone: (831) 425-5849 view all details >>
     
Aloha Celebrity Races & Polynesian Festival
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  Aloha Celebrity Races & Polynesian Festival
City of Santa Cruz
Date: 08/20/2017 from 8:00am to 5:00pm
Details: Discover the excitement of outrigger canoe racing, taste of the tropics- fresh flower leis, Hawaiian shaved ice, Maori face pain
City: Santa Cruz Phone: 831-420-5273 view all details >>
     
Japanese Cultural Fair
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  Japanese Cultural Fair
Japanese Cultural Fair
Date: 06/10/2017 from 11:00am to 6:00pm
Ages: All ages
Details: Explore traditional and contemporary Japanese culture
Special Instructions: Japanese Theme
City: Santa Cruz Phone: (831) 462-4589 view all details >>
     
Monterey Bay Strawberry Festival
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  Monterey Bay Strawberry Festival
City of Watsonville
Date: Every day (Aug 5-Aug 6) from 10:00am to 7:00pm
Details: Strawberries, music, food and strawberries every way you can imagine
City: Watsonville Phone: 831-768-3240 view all details >>
     
Scotts Valley Art, Wine & BeerFestival
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  Scotts Valley Art, Wine & BeerFestival
Chamber of Commerce Scotts Valley
Date: Every day (Aug 19-Aug 20) from 10:00am to 6:00pm
Details: Come enjoy fine art, wine & beer tasting, great food, and live entertainment in an open park setting
City: Scotts Valley view all details >>
     
Capitola Begonia Festival
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  Capitola Begonia Festival
Capitola Village
Date: Every day (Sep 1-Sep 4) from 7:00am to 8:00pm
Details: A Labor Day weekend filled with fun events for the whole family. Beautifully decorated floats, concerts, sand
City: Capitola Village Phone: (831)476-6522 view all details >>
     
California Rodeo Salinas
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  California Rodeo Salinas
California Rodeo
Date: Every day (Jul 20-Jul 23)
Ages: All
Details: 2016 California Rodeo... Cowgirl and Cowboy Up!
City: Salinas Phone: (831)775-3100 view all details >>
     
     
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