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Santee Street Fair doubles the fun for 2014

Santee Queens and Princesses at the opening ceremonies of the 2013 Santee Street Fair
Santee Queens and Princesses at the opening ceremonies of the 2013 Santee Street Fair
Stephen Prendergast

The Santee Street Fair was an immediate success when it debuted in 2009 and has only gotten better in the years since then. The first Street Fair drew an estimated 30,000 visitors from around San Diego County and this year as many as twice that number are expected. For 2014 the event will double the fun when it expands to two days, May 31 and June 1, and adds a Craft Beer Festival to the mix.

The Street Fair was the brainchild of then-Santee Chamber of Commerce President Rob McNelis, a successful realtor and entrepreneur. After proposing the event in January 2009, McNelis and the Chamber worked tirelessly to make it all happen in less than six months. The continued popularity of the fair is a testimony to the efforts of the entire Chamber of Commerce.

This year the Street Fair will feature two stages of continuous live music and entertainment, along with over 300 vendors of all types. A Family Fun Zone will include over a dozen carnival-style rides along with other activities and attractions. As always, a wide variety of food stands will offer everything from hot dogs and chips to barbecue and more.

One of the biggest additions this year is the Craft Beer Festival, which will include some of the top local brewers from a region acknowledged to be one of the best for craft beer. Highlighting the festival will be local brewers Twisted Manzanita Ales & Spirits, BNS Brewing & Distilling Co., Buther’s Brewing, Pacific Islander Brewing Cmpany, and Oggi’s Pizza and Brewing Company. These and others will be serving up some of their best brews for visitors to sample.

As always, celebrating and supporting our Armed Forces will be a key element of the Santee Street Fair. Santee is proud to be the only city in San Diego County that has adopted military units, counting not one but two U.S. Marine Corps units: HMH (Marine Heavy Helicopter Squadron) 462 from MCAS Miramar and the 2nd Battalion 1st Regiment from Camp Pendleton.

The fun kicks off on Saturday, May 31, at 10:00 with an opening ceremony that will feature patriotic music and the display of a giant American flag. Hours for the Santee Street Fair are 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. on Saturday and 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. on Sunday. For more information visit http://santeestreetfair.com/ or eventful.com or follow the Santee Street Fair on Facebook.