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Music, wine, fun (and compostable foodservice items) offered at annual Millbrae festival

25 Aug 2008 9:41 PM | Anonymous

School supply shopping doesn’t have to be your only fun activity this Labor Day.

Millbrae is hosting its 38th annual Art and Wine Festival on Aug. 30 and Aug. 31, featuring live music, specialty foods and original art exhibitions. The festival is done in the spirit of Mardi Gras, which means it is a big, upbeat outdoor party, said festival spokesperson Tim Beeman.

“It’s a Labor Day tradition of the Peninsula that people really look forward to,” he said.

The festival, which lasts from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. both days, takes place downtown along Broadway, one block west of El Camino Real, covering several blocks between Victoria and Meadow Glen avenues.

Because the last four years have shown an increasing interest in live music, this year’s festival boasts a lineup of tribute bands from Zepparella—an all-female group covering Led Zeppelin songs — to Roustabout, an Elvis tribute group. Other groups, such as The Best Intentions, who cover Motown classics, Brother Buzz, San Franz, The Reed Fromer Band and Dreamroad are also on the roster.

The street fair festival usually welcomes over 100,000 attendees.

“This year, more than ever, because of the uneven economy and because people are staying closer to home,” said Beeman, “we are planning for having a bigger crowd.” Gas prices have also lured Bay Area residents into the comfort of local family festivals like Millbrae’s.

It’s basically a sea of people in tents, Beeman chuckled. “And it really is a tremendous entertainment value.” Admission is free, and fairgoers merely pay for what they want — good food, potent wine and appealing art.

Keeping with the Bay Area’s eco-conscious “green” buzz, the festival prides itself on becoming more environmentally friendly each year.

This year’s production staff will use electric-only vehicles. All serviceware will be compostable and biodegradable, and recycling efforts have increased. “The Boy Scout troop that does all of our on-site cleanup does all our recycling, too, which is a tremendous help,” said John Ford, the president/CEO of the Millbrae Chamber of Commerce.

Additionally, sponsors of green products will be present at the fair to educate attendees. The Chamber of Commerce is also encouraging all food vendors to make use of the on-site food compost bins to reduce the amount of waste.

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