Fiesta Days bigger, better than ever this year?

This weekend La Cañada Flintridge will put its best foot forward with its 39th annual Fiesta Days celebration.

The event has grown from modest beginnings into a three-day series of activities culminating in a Memorial Day parade, which last year drew thousands.

In addition to the parade, fireworks, live music, a vintage car show and a free screening of “Puss in Boots” in Memorial Park will draw residents to the action.

Organizers have added new attractions to Fiesta Days each of the last two years. A bridge tournament, hosted by the Community Center of La Cañada Flintridge, will return for the second time, and this year the La Cañada Flintridge Tournament of Roses Assn. is hosting an open house for the first time.

“People think we start building the float around Thanksgiving, and we really wanted people to know we start before that,” said Ann Neilson, president of the association.

Residents can see the float in its earliest stages, check out a rendering of what the final product will look like, and learn how flowers are applied to the float’s framework. The float will be in the parking lot behind the Valley Water Company at 4524 Hampton Road.

Also new this year is the sponsor of the Sunday family dinner and fireworks show, NASA Services, which in 2011 became La Cañada’s third trash hauler. Co-owner Nick Sarkisian said that he and his brother, Arsen Sarkisian, approached the La Canada Flintridge Chamber of Commerce about the sponsorship.

“We want people to know we’re resident owned, we live in the city, we support the community and we’re always there,” said Sarkisian.

Chamber President Pat Anderson said organizers wanted this year’s Fiesta Days to go above and beyond its predecessors as the chamber turns 100 this year.

“It’s our centennial year, so everything this year is a little bit over the top,” Anderson said.


Community Center Bridge Tournament — Friday, May 25, 2 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. The event kicks off Fiesta Days in La Cañada. Cost is $20 and includes dinner. Community Center of La Cañada Flintridge, 4469 Chevy Chase Drive. For information, call (818) 790-4353.

Community Breakfast and Vintage Car Show — Saturday, May 26, 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. Memorial Park, 1301 Foothill Blvd. French toast and strawberries served by the Kiwanis-AM club. Breakfast tickets are $7 adult, $3 for children 11 and under. Admission to car show is free. Call (818) 790-4289 for ticket information.

Farmers Market — Saturday, May 26, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Ongoing farmers market takes place every Saturday at 1346 Foothill Blvd.

“Behind the Gate” Open House — Saturday, May 26, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. The La Cañada Flintridge Tournament of Roses Assn. invites area residents to drop by the float construction site to learn about what goes into building the city's Rose Parade float. Welding, screening, use of seeds and other dry materials, and information about paint selections will be covered. Talk to crew members and see the color rendering of the 2013 float, “Dino-Soar.” The construction site is located behind Valley Water Co., 4524 Hampton Road.

Family Flick, “Puss in Boots” — Saturday, May 26, 8:30 p.m., Memorial Park. Free. Bring lawn chair or blanket to sit on. Film will start when it becomes dark enough. Snacks will be available for purchase.

Summer Whites Picnic and Open House — Sunday, May 27, noon to 4 p.m. Lanterman House, 4420 Encinas Drive. Bring picnic, lawn chair or blanket if you'd like to picnic on the museum's grounds. Free tours of the house will begin at 1 p.m. Live music. Call (818) 790-1421 for more information.

Family Dinner, Music and Fireworks Show — Sunday, May 26, 6 p.m. Memorial Park, 1301 Foothill Blvd. Dinner tickets are $15 for adults, $5 for children. La Cañada High Jazz Band will perform at 6:30 p.m. Fireworks program is scheduled for about 8:45 p.m., or as soon as it is dark enough. Call (818) 790-4289 for dinner ticket information.

Crescenta-Cañada Family YMCA 1-mile family fun run, Cherry Canyon hike, 10k run, 5k run and 5k walk — Monday, May 28, 7:15 a.m. and 8 a.m. at Descanso Gardens, 1418 Descanso Drive. Entry fees for all events except Family Fun Run are $25 before race day and $35 on race day. Fees for the Family Fun Run are $38 per family before the race and $45 on race day. T-shirts are available for $8 each. For more information, call (818) 790-0123, ext. 243.

Memorial Service — Monday, May 28, 9 a.m. Memorial Park, 1301 Foothill Blvd. A tribute to members of the U.S. armed forces who have given their lives in service to the country.

Fiesta Days Parade — Monday, May 28, 10:30 a.m. Foothill Boulevard, between Cornishon and Gould avenues.

Afternoon in the Park — Monday, May 28, noon to 3:30 p.m. Memorial Park, 1301 Foothill Blvd. Games, music, family fun. Snacks or meals available at Food Court.

Music in the Park — Monday, May 28, 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Memorial Park, 1301 Foothill Blvd. Captain Cardiac and the Coronaries kick off the city's annual summer concert series.

La Crescenta Memorial Day Observance — Monday, May 28, 8 a.m. Sponsored by American Legion Post 288 and VFW Post 1614 and held at Two Strike Park War Memorial, 5107 Rosemont Ave., La Crescenta. The event will take place rain or shine.

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