Summer Nights kicks off Wednesday in Nevada City |

Summer Nights kicks off Wednesday in Nevada City

Luis Villa smiles as he grills quesadillas for Sundance Quesadilla and Sausage Company, during last year's Summer Nights in downtown Nevada City.
Elias Funez/

Know & Go

What: Summer Nights

Where: Downtown Nevada City

When: 6-9:30 p.m., July 11, July 18, July 25

For info: Call 530-265-2692 or go online at

The summer events season is in full swing — and that means it’s time once again for Summer Nights, which kicks off its 28th year Wednesday in downtown Nevada City.

The street festival of art and music takes place on three consecutive Wednesday evenings through July 25.

“It’s an enjoyable evening, people just enjoy being here,” said Nevada City Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Cathy Whittlesey. “It’s the ambiance of the town.”

The downtown streets will be closed to motorized traffic and filled with arts and crafts booths featuring cool, one-of-a-kind gifts designed and produced by local artists and crafters as well as hand-picked out-of-town vendors, Whittlesey said. The event runs from 6-9:30 p.m. and there is no admission charge.

Summer Nights is a great family event, she added, with face painting and a bounce house available for the kids. There will be plenty of food such as tacos and pepper steak sandwiches available in the event’s “food court” at the bottom of Commercial Street. There will be belly dancing performances by Troupe Al Ama, as well as fire and aerial silk performers (the last two nights only).

“That’s always a draw,” Whittlesey said.

And although not a formal car show, there will be plenty of classic automobiles on display.

“We’ll have a lot this year,” she said. “People like to bring them down and show them off.”

For the adults, the chamber will be selling cocktails — a vodka-spiked lemonade and margaritas — as well as beer offerings including Budweiser, Sierra Nevada and ol ‘Republic.

Each Summer Night will feature a wide array of musicians including local favorites Ivan Najera and Soft Bombs (Wednesday), Grease, Grit and Grime and Dream & The Dreamer (July 18), Lolo Gervais and the Heifer Belles (July 25) at five different locations on Pine, Commercial and Broad streets.

As in earlier years, Miners Foundry and KVMR are partnering to present bands on the Spring Street Stage, featuring emerging artists and local favorites.

This year’s lineup features alternative rock trio Park Street Riot, featuring Marielle Walker, Ryan Sheridan and Alex Scribner today. Psychedelic metal band Aequorea, with local musicians Clay Powers, Falon Stoval, Jim Williams, and Jon Iorns, performs July 18. And on July 25, World Beatnix will perform traditional rhythms from around the world including Africa, Brazil, Egypt and the Caribbean.

“With so many talented local musicians, Summer Nights is a great opportunity to highlight them and bring people to our side of town to listen to great music, socialize and get a chance to visit our neighboring businesses,” said Miners Foundry Executive Director Gretchen Bond in a press release.

Whittlesey encourages visitors to avoid the hassle of trying to find a parking space and take the shuttle from the Rood Center, 950 Maidu Ave. The shuttle costs $5 for adults and children 15 and older, and return journeys are free for all. The shuttle will run from 5:30-10 p.m. each Wednesday of Summer Nights.

Contact reporter Liz Kellar at 530-477-4236 or by email at

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