FESTIVALS & EVENTS : In Brea, Eat’s Time Again to Support Local Culture

Mary Helen Berg is a free-lance writer who regularly contributes to The Times Orange County Edition.

The festival that transforms City Hall into a music hall and food emporium returns Friday from 7 to 10 p.m. in the Brea Civic and Cultural Center.

“Brea Fest: A Taste of the Arts” boasts a culinary theme this year, in honor of the 25 restaurants donating food and drink to the event to raise money for the city’s cultural programs. German fare from the Fullerton Hofbrau, French cuisine from La Vie en Rose, and goodies from the menus of Magnola’s Peach Restaurant, the Crocodile Cafe and others will be among the featured edibles.

In addition, the festival offers live music and dance performances, arts demonstrations, comedy and clowns at various locations in and around the Civic Center.

On the music menu are New Orleans jazz from the strolling Ain’t Misbehavin Dixieland Jazz Band, piano ragtime in the Brea Civic & Cultural Center Gallery, and a performance by the Brea City Orchestra from 7:30 to 10 p.m. in the Curtis Theatre.


Artists will demonstrate ceramics, silk scarf painting and other crafts on the Plaza level of Civic Center throughout the evening. Dance performances by students of the Brea Dance Center and the Dance Spot will begin at 7 p.m. in the Community Room of the Civic Center (Level 2).

For those who prefer to do their own dancing, the Hit Men dance band will play nostalgic pop all evening at the outdoor stage near the Civic Center Circle. Jimmy Santos and the Yankees will perform reggae music throughout the night, poolside at the Embassy Suites Hotel next to the Civic Center. Bold festival-goers can take the stage during the karaoke sing-along running continuously in City Council Chambers. Comic relief, featuring a surprise guest from the Brea Improv, can be had beginning at 7:45 p.m. on the outdoor stage.

Visitors also can sample the current exhibit at the Brea Civic & Cultural Center Gallery: “Hand in Hand: Art and Artesania from Jalisco, Mexico,” on display through Oct. 26. Carlos Terres, the city’s artist in residence whose work is included in the show, will be on hand to autograph posters of his work.

What: Brea Fest: A Taste of the Arts.


When: Friday, Sept. 13, 7 to 10 p.m.

Where: Brea Civic Cultural Center, 1 Civic Center Circle, Brea.

Whereabouts: From the south, take the Orange (57) Freeway north to Imperial Highway exit. Go left to Randolph Avenue. Go right to Birch Street. Civic Center is on Birch and Randolph Park at the Brea Mall next to Civic Center, or Brea Marketplace across the street. From the north, take the Orange Freeway to Lambert Street exit. Go right to State College Boulevard. Go left to Birch Street. Go right to Civic Center.

Wherewithal: Admission is free. Food and beverage coupon books available for $5 and $10.


Where to Call: (714) 990-7784.