July 18-19: Connoisseurs' Marketplace returns to downtown Menlo Park


A new Culinary Arts Corner will feature demonstrations by 10 Bay Area chefs at the 29th annual Connoisseurs' Marketplace on Saturday and Sunday, July 18-19, along Santa Cruz Avenue in downtown Menlo Park.

The street festival, presented by the Menlo Park Chamber of Commerce, will be held from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. each day, showcasing art in the form of jewelry, glassware, paintings, ceramics and photography. At Gourmet Island, food vendors will offer savory and sweet bites to sample and purchase.

Music on the stage at Fremont Park will range from jazz with the Doug Miller and Mike Keating Quintet to Singing Wood's marimba music. Glassblowing demonstrations will take place both Saturday and Sunday.

Free art activities for the children will be offered at the new Kids' Creative Center, sponsored by the city of Menlo Park's Community Services Department.

Santa Cruz Avenue between El Camino and University Drive will be closed to traffic for the event.

Click here for more information.

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1 person likes this
Posted by Brian
a resident of Menlo Park: The Willows
on Jul 19, 2015 at 2:26 pm

I have to say I am disappointed in the Connoisseurs' Marketplace this year. It seems that Menlo Park got the idea to focus on "Fine Art" this year and as a result most of the booths I have enjoyed in the past were not there this year. I did not see a lot of the things for kids that we like nor did I see the soap maker or others. The selection of food the beers being served were also a disappointment. I would love it if the foods were selections from local places and or at least offered variety. Last year they had much better food including the paella that was being made and served. The beer selection seems to be just an offering of main stream beer with no good local offering. We have places like FreeWheel Brewery near by, why not feature their beer and other local choices? If it is like this next year I'll just stop going and find a better art and wine festival...

1 person likes this
Posted by free wheeling puppets
a resident of Menlo Park: Stanford Weekend Acres
on Jul 19, 2015 at 3:41 pm

Agreed. Do not take the locals for granted (yes, I know the numbers show that out-of-towners have always dominated the event.)

If the food/beer/booths are disappointing to the few commentators, one can multiply that dissatisfaction many-fold.

FreeWheel, and Devils Canyon are both fine locals.

1 person likes this
Posted by Jenny
a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Jul 20, 2015 at 10:17 am

So disappointed. No big Sat eve concert? The kids area was terrible. .nothing for the little guys. This festival used to be so great.

1 person likes this
Posted by pogo
a resident of Woodside: other
on Jul 20, 2015 at 10:46 am

pogo is a registered user.

I hope the people who organize this event is reading this thread.

The theme of this fun weekend has clearly changed ... and not for the better.

2 people like this
Posted by free wheeling puppets
a resident of Menlo Park: Stanford Weekend Acres
on Jul 20, 2015 at 12:01 pm

No Pride and Joy.

Literally AND figuratively.

1 person likes this
Posted by Chris
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Jul 20, 2015 at 10:19 pm

Dissapointed... That's the only word that comes to mind to describe how I felt on both Saturday and Sunday. No main stage music- Huge mistake! Attendance was down by at least 60% and the entire atmosphere was blah. No bands even on the side streets. No kids zone. No Paella ( last year that guy had the biggest line!).
I spoke to a guy from the information booth and asked him why there was no music? His response was of pleasure that" it's nice and quiet and not that Rock n Roll stuff". I told him , I like that Rock n Roll stuff and obviously by the attendance here , a lot of other people liked it too. Then his next response was that " the local residence by the park complained"... I told him , I live a couple of houses away and I know my neighbors - not one complained. Possibly could of been one lady but who cares!!! One person? Give me a break. The Chamber of Commerce had a personal agenda to do what they thought was best for them and not for the people or uphold the reputation of this usual fun filled festival. I felt like I was in the movie, Footloose!
Total disaster

2 people like this
Posted by Joe
a resident of another community
on Jul 21, 2015 at 12:29 pm

I ate some really good brownies there. A sweet middle aged lady with orange brown hair and horned rimmed glasses dressed in "new age" attire sold me some. They were a bit pricey but they sure were good. After eating those brownies I went to quite a few food stalls. All the food tasted really good.

1 person likes this
Posted by Karl
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 17, 2015 at 4:04 pm

Our family and friends have always looked forward to Menlo's street festival. The last few years have not been as great as previous years. Assumed there were were problems at Chamber of Commerce with organization or lack of interest from others being involved. This year was the worst Connoseurs Market in history. My understanding from other comments is someone needs to step down rather than to continue being in denial about the situation.

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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