La Rosa is celebrating 10 years

La Rosa Mexican Kitchen

One of my favorite Mexican restaurants, La Rosa, is coming up on their ten-year anniversary here in Bend, and are planning on ten days of trivia fun to lead up to it. They posted on Facebook this morning:

Here comes something to celebrate! In just over a week we will have been serving you for 10 years. Starting Monday (at NWX, Tuesday at Brookswood) we will have 10 days of trivia, come check it out…. Answer the question and be entered in to win giveaways and prizes. We can’t wait! What a fun 10 days it will be!

(No details if there will be a big party after 10 days yet.)

Make sure to head over to La Rosa in the next week or so to enjoy some great margaritas and food and answer some trivia. And congratulate them on a decade in Bend!

Bend Summer Festival, July 11-13

Bend Summer FestivalTomorrow kicks off the biggest (and best in my opinion) of the Bend seasonal festivals: the Bend Summer Festival! (Additional details here.) Summerfest is going from 5 to 10pm Friday, 11am to 10pm Saturday, and 11am to 5pm Sunday, and takes over downtown with closures on Wall Street, Oregon Avenue, and Minnesota Avenue.

This is Summerfest’s 24th year, and as always it’s completely free to attend, to hang out, listen to all of the music playing on three different stages, and (especially if you’re a kid) participate in some of the activities taking place on the Family Fun Street. Food and drink (including beer, cider, wine, and cocktails) are not free of course, and you may choose to by something from one of the many artists and vendors on hand that turn Wall Street into an outdoor shopping promenade.

This is one of my favorite Bend events of the year (following the 4th of July) and the weather is going to be great for the weekend—in fact, it’s going to be hot, so make sure to wear sunscreen and drink lots of water. Walking around a good portion of the day in the sun on the asphalt and concrete will drain you quickly, so be prepared.

Have a great weekend!

3rd Annual Whole Foods Market Summer Brewfest

What’s a good way to follow up the 4th of July? How about a brewfest on the 5th?

Today is the 3rd annual Whole Foods Summer Brewfest taking place from 1 to 6pm over at the Whole Foods Market on Bend’s east side. It’s only $5 entry, which gets you the glass and 2 sample tokens, and additional tokens are only 50 cents each. Proceeds benefit the Humane Society of Central Oregon.

With some 20 breweries (or more?) pouring beer, and the weather looking beautiful, this is one you’ll want to check out!

3rd Annual Whole Foods Market Summer Brewfest

Who’s ready for the 4th of July?

Fireworks!We’re coming up on one of my favorite Bend holidays of the year, and this year is pretty ideal because it falls on a Friday—three day weekend! As usual there is a ton of things to do on the Fourth itself and on top of tall that, it’s also First Friday downtown. So after a day of celebrating you can still get your First Friday art, music, and refreshments fix and watch the fireworks off of Pilot Butte not too long after.

Visit Bend has a great FAQ-style blog post detailing many of the activities taking place on Friday, and includes some weekend-long additions (camping, river activities, etc.). That’s a good place to start if you’re looking for ideas for things to do.

Of course, I have a list of possibilities for you too:

  • If you get up early enough you can start with the Sunrise Lions Club Pancake Breakfast in Drake Park which starts at 8am.
  • Do not miss the Pet Parade in downtown Bend which starts at 10am! This is simply the best parade of the year (and yes, I like the Christmas Parade too) because it’s tradition, it’s free for anyone who wants to join it, and it’s great fun to see the variety of animals. Probably no other Bend event says “July 4th” as much as this one.
  • The Old Fashioned July 4th Festival starts in Drake Park right after the Pet Parade, at 11am. Games, food, crafts and vendors, live music, and more will be on hand to make this a lively outing in the park. This runs until 4pm if you’re so inclined.
  • For me the Deschutes Public Library’s quarterly book sale that always takes place on the 4th is a highlight and a must-stop. Cheap books, you cannot go wrong with that! This year it starts at 11am to the public and runs until 4pm. (There’s a bag sale as well the next day from 1 to 4, where you can fill a bag with books for only $5.
  • Another highlight is the annual Free Day at the Des Chutes Historical Museum, right across the street from the library book sale. From 10 to 4 admission is free and they even serve free ice cream cups out front. If you haven’t been to the Museum before—or if you have but not in a while—this is a great opportunity to stop in and check out some of Bend’s history. And, this year they are also celebrating the centennial of Reid School (the building they are housed in)! The school was built in 1914 and was the first modern school building in Bend. I will try to have a longer post about the school and the centennial up (since I’m writing a book on Bend, beer, and history) in time for the 4th.
  • If you are bicycle-minded you can check out annual Freedom Ride which is the 1000-plus-strong bike ride through downtown Bend, organizing first at Pioneer Park starting at 2pm and ending up at Columbia Park… whenever. Dress up in your best patriotic costume, please bike safely, and join the chaotic takeover of downtown Bend as many, many, many bicyclists pedal through.
  • Alternatively, you may want to check out the “Anti-Freedom Ride Freedom Ride” which isn’t trying to take over the Freedom Ride but offers more actual bike riding and less crowding. The organizer writes, “Let’s take it back to its roots with a true bike ride. With the Booty beat box playing jams, and possibly a second music bike, we’ll cruise around Bend on the best day of the year! Dance party stops with picnics, bbqs, games and activities. Don your best American regalia. Kid friendly so invite everyone you know! This isn’t a protest or ride to stick it to the man. We’ll follow traffic laws to the best of our abilities, leave no trace at stops and keep the drunken debauchery to a minimum.” Details will be posted on that page on Thursday the 3rd.
  • Jake’s Diner is again holding their Vietnam Veterans of America Fourth of July BBQ, taking place from 4 to 7pm, with all proceeds going to the VVA. You’re welcome to stick around and watch the Pilot Butte fireworks from Jake’s parking lot (but no fireworks of your own or alcohol please).
  • Worthy Brewing is hosting a “Party on the Patio” out east of town with live music, a special firkin tapping, and possibly some of the best Pilot Butte fireworks views in town (especially if you have a beer in hand!).
  • And of course, you cannot miss the Pilot Butte fireworks show that starts at 10pm. It’s approximately 20 minutes long, and radio station 99.7 FM will be playing synchronized music along to the fireworks. Always fun to watch, and you will of course be wondering at what point the Butte itself is on fire…

Happy 4th of July!