Going local in Golden Hill

More bands, more food & more fun set for 2013 Street Fair

By Margie M. Palmer | SDUN Reporter

The second Golden Hill Street Fair will be kicking off this Sunday, Oct. 13 at 10:30 a.m. and organizers are estimating upward of 30,000 people will come out to 25th Street between B and C streets to hang with friends, enjoy good music and bask in the unique culture that this relatively undiscovered, up-and-coming neighborhood has to offer.

Former Greater Golden Hill Community Development Corporation (GGHCDC) President Paul Broadway said it all started back in the early summer months of 2012, when they were awarded a $38,900 economic tourism develop support grant through the City.

Wild Wild Wets (Photo by Nicole Espina / Photo editing by Mike Turi)

Wild Wild Wets (Photo by Nicole Espina / Photo editing by Mike Turi)

“Initially the money was issued to do a gala, but by the time the grant came through some of the Community Development Corporation members who helped get it were no longer on the board, so we decided to do a street fair,” Broadway said.  “We thought it would be better attended.”

At the time that decision was made, he said, they had about 60 days to get things going. The 2012 fair held July 22 saw the return of the street festival after an eight-year hiatus.

For some, a from-scratch undertaking of this magnitude might seem near impossible. The GGHCDC, however, saw a number of untapped resources at their fingertips.

“We knew if we used local people and businesses, we could make it happen,” he said. “We put a call out to local musicians and they came. We put a call out to local food venders and they came.”

Perhaps most notable was the support garnered from storefronts on 25th Street. That, Broadway said, is what allowed everything to come together. Everyone worked alongside one another in order to ensure the Street Fair would be a success.

Although the exact number of attendees can not be fully known, the San Diego Police Department estimated nearly 15,000 people flowed throughout the return event from the time it kicked off until the time it ended.

Golden Hill resident and GGHCDC board member Judd Curran said that while this year’s event will mirror what was done in 2012, residents can look forward to a number of exciting changes.

“This year we have expanded the music quite a bit and will have two stages as opposed to one,” Curran said. “This will allow one band to be playing while another is setting up.”

Confirmed bands include local groups Ditches, Heavy Hawaii and Rafter, as well as 2013 San Diego Music Award nominees Tropical Popsicle, Ed Ghost Tucker and Wild Wild Wets. The Wild Wild Wets said they were looking forward to performing, and would be in Golden Hill for the entire day.

Organizers brought in talent from outside San Diego, including Twin Brother from Las Vegas, Strange Vine from Fresno, Calif. and Incan Abraham from Los Angeles. There will also be a 10- to 15-piece mobile mariachi band that will be moving throughout the festival.

“We’ve expanded the other areas where we have food and/or arts and crafts for sale. This year we’ll have about 35 booths, as opposed to the five we had last year,” Curran said. “We really wanted to focus on making this a local event and focusing on showcasing all that Golden Hill has to offer.”

The beer garden has been expanded as well, and in addition to the garden, arts, crafts and food sections, there will also be an area that is dedicated specifically to families and children.

web GHSF_poster_v1_FINALGGHCDC board treasurer and Youth Empowering Success Program Coordinator Ethel Sims said they will be hosting a 10:30 a.m. Opening Ceremony with the Buffalo Soldiers, San Diego Girl Scouts and Calan Nicole Elie, a youth soloist that will be singing the National Anthem.

Other youth performers will be showcased on the stage until 12:30 p.m. Free face painting, arts and crafts, a karaoke area and other family friendly offerings will be available throughout the day.

Curran said this second Street Fair is not only an opportunity to come out and enjoy good food, good fun and the wonderful fall weather, but it is also a time to come out and learn more about this undiscovered local neighborhood.

“To discover this gem that sits on a hill, and to be able to walk down the sidewalk and see the ocean, Coronado and the Downtown skyline, it just gives you a sense of what Golden Hill is all about,” he said. “It’s a unique and historic place that is just as much a part of San Diego as anywhere else.”

The fair runs from 10:30 a.m. – 8 p.m. For more information visit or email

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