There was an abundance of energy coming from Franklin Square on Aug. 2 as residents celebrated and danced the night away at the annual Santa Clara Street Dance. Whether it was the enthusiastic crowd, spirited vendors, or lively band, the Silicon Valley Houserockers, the energy was undeniable.
Before vendors opened their booths and the music began, Santa Clara residents set out their chairs to grab the best seats for the night. Santa Claran Kathy Muraco, an annual Street Dance attendee, always arrives early to stake out the best location. “This is our spot,” said Muraco. “We try to get the same spot every year … [We come out to Jackson Street for] the music, sitting out, being with everybody and watching the dancing.”
The Houserockers, named “Best Cover Band in the Bay Area” by KFOX Radio, provided excellent music and set the tone for the evening. It was the Houserockers’ second year performing at the Street Dance and, from the start of their set, they had most people on their feet, dancing to hits by the Jackson 5, The Beatles, and Earth, Wind, and Fire. There was a dance area set up directly in front of the stage and the space was filled all night with men, women and children.
The night was a success; at least it would seem that way for the vendors. The Santa Clara Sister Cities Association fundraised by selling beer and wine, with the funds providing scholarships for students to visit one of Santa Clara’s three sister cities, Coimbra, Portugal; Izumo, Japan, or SCSCA’s newest partner city, Limerick, Ireland. “SCSCA is grateful to be able to partner with the City of Santa Clara for this event, as our students are ambassadors for the City of Santa Clara when they travel abroad and when they host students from Japan and Portugal,” said SCSCA President Kathy Watanabe. “A good, hot summer night definitely helps us sell more wine and beer.”
Other vendors, such as LifeCity Church, provided face painting and children’s games, while the smell of fresh-made kettle corn, sold by the Buchser Middle School Music Association, filled the air of Franklin Square, offering something for everyone in attendance.
“We feel the event was a tremendous success with the biggest crowd in years,” said Eversley Forte, a member of the Santa Clara Cultural Commission. “The people attending did not want the band to stop playing, and the overall party atmosphere at the Street Dance showed in the smiles on many faces.”
For bystanders and first-timers, this year’s Street Dance was a truly memorable experience, and for experienced participants and Santa Clara residents, it was yet another grand night in beautiful Downtown Santa Clara.