Bands! Beer! Carnival Rides! It’s all happening at the Adams Avenue Street Fair

Musical lineup for the free two-day event includes Los Texmaniacs with guest guitarist Cesar Rosas of Los Lobos, The Western Standard Time Ska Orchestra, The Farmers, Gregory Page, Whitney Shay and many more


There will be several firsts at this weekend’s 38th Annual Adams Avenue Street Fair, presented by Monaco Cocktails, starting with the fact the free Saturday and Sunday music marathon has a title sponsor for the first time in memory in its four-decade history.

Then there’s the new Beerfish Rock/DJ Stage at the corner of 30th Street and Adams Avenue, a full seven blocks west of the festival’s two closest stages and four blocks from the festival footprint’s former starting point at 32nd Street..

“The stage is being managed and sponsored by Beerfish, which is located across the street,” said Scott Kessler, the head of the nonprofit Adams Avenue Business Association, under whose auspicesthe Street Fair is presented.

“We’ve had a lot of growth of the hospitality sector at 30th Street and Adams Avenue, and they’ve been asking to expand the event down that way, so this is the trial run to see how it works. Buck-O-Nine will be headlining at 30th Street on Saturday night. The 30th Street Stage will also be presenting DJs on Sunday at 30th Street, which is also another first for the Street Fair — DJ’s that is!”

The involvement of Monaco Cocktails has enabled the festival to increase its talent budget. All told, around 100 bands and solo artists will perform on seven stages.

This year’s lineup includes Los Texmaniacs with guest guitarist Cesar Rosas of Los Lobos; The Western Standard Time Ska Orchestra; The Farmers; Gregory Page; Whitney Shay; Manual Scan; Hexa; pioneering Baja punk-ska band Tijuana NO!; and The Mattson 2. Also performing will be a local super-group of sorts, Bobby & The Pins, which features members of Schizophonics, the Creepy Creeps and Mittens.

As usual, the Street Fair will offer carnival rides for kids, craft beer tastings for adults, and the wares of more than 300 vendors. For the environmentally minded, there will be a bicycle valet on Adams Avenue, between 34th and Hawley streets.

If the timing of this year’s Street Fair seems both different and familiar, well, that’s because it is — at least for anyone who attended the festival 25 years or more ago.

“We moved the event from the fourth weekend of the month to the third weekend of September, as it seemed like a less crowded field of events to compete with,” Kessler said.

“In 1994, again, we switched from the third to the fourth weekend of September, so now we’re back to our original weekend. The Miramar Air Show used to be held the weekend ahead of us, but moved into the last weekend a few years ago, besides having CRSSD Festival, Oktoberfest in El Cajon and lots of other competition the last weekend in September.”

Is there anything else new or different this year?

Indeed, there is.

“We have new official Adams Avenue merchandise for the first time,” Kessler said. “Besides our traditional Street Fair shirts for sale, we also have hats, hoodies, beanies, wine coolers, tote bags and stickers.”

38th Annual Adams Avenue Street Fair

When: 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday

Where: Adams Avenue between 30th Street and 35th Street

Admission: Free