EVENT TO FEATURE MOLE MADE BY LOCAL CHEFS, LIVE MUSIC, WINE, BEER, KIDS ACTIVITIES, A SILENT AUCTION AND MOREFriends of Santa Cruz State Parks is hosting its first annual Mole & Mariachi Festival on Saturday, October 5, from 11-4p.m. at Santa Cruz Mission Adobe State Historic Park in downtown Santa Cruz.
Guests will enjoy great local food, wine and beer, live music, dancers, artisan crafts, fun for kids of all ages and a silent auction. Local chefs will prepare mole (a traditional Mexican sauce, sometimes made using chocolate). Mole dishes will be judged by event attendees and by a panel of local celebrity judges.
The festival highlights the comeback of Santa Cruz Mission Adobe State Historic Park, which was scheduled to close in 2012, but was saved by Friends. The Mole & Mariachi Festival also heralds the comeback of a heritage-themed festival at the Mission. The last such event held at the Mission was the Mission Fiesta organized by the Adobe Coalition, the City of Santa Cruz and the California State Parks in the first week of October from 1980 through 1990, with smaller versions held in some years during the 1990s. Prior to the Mission Fiesta of the 1980s and 90s, a similar event was held at the site from the 1920s until the start of World War II. The first week of October is traditionally recognized as the birthday of Santa Cruz, the name given to a local creek (now Majors Creek) by the Portola expedition in 1769, then established as a mission in 1791 and later incorporated as a city in 1876.
Admission to the Mole & Mariachi Festival is free with donations welcome. The event is a benefit for Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks in support of Mission restoration projects, educational programming for school children and community cultural events at the park. Friends’ agreement to fund maintenance and operations at the park includes a commitment to work with the community and build on an existing long-term partnership with California State Parks to make needed improvements.
To join the event as a chef, to volunteer or to donate silent auction items, please email Nancy.Connelly@ThatsMyPark.org.