Music and Arts Festival

James Wesley performs at a 2018 Music and Arts Festival

At the March 8 Yucaipa City Council meeting, the city council met for the approval of the 2021 Yucaipa Music and Arts Festival (YMAF) activities and associated street closures which is all contingent upon the approval of the state regarding restrictions at the time of the event. YMAF will be held Friday, May 7, from 6 to 10 p.m. and Saturday, May 8, from noon to 10 p.m.

Community Services Supervisor Mary Johnson said, “YMAF will be held on May 7 and 8 in the Historic Uptown. This event would not be possible without the support of the local organizations who take on the management of the activities and share revenue to help offset the event expenditures.”

The Yucaipa Music and Arts Festival has been a successful event for the community since its inception in 2012 to help celebrate Yucaipa’s history and culture while providing entertainment and art from the region.

The 2021 YMAF is planned and then organized by the 2021 YMAF Planning Committee which consists of the Yucaipa Valley Chamber of Commerce (YVCC), local non-profit organizations, businesses and community members. These committee members assume leadership responsibilities for one or more of the activities as a component of the event.

The Yucaipa Valley Chamber of Commerce will help with the management of vendors. The city will help market vendor opportunities and will be providing tents, electricity, lighting and a vendor parking area.

The flower show, located at the Yucaipa Performing Arts Center, invites gardeners of all ages to bring homegrown flowers to enter a free of charge show.

Knights of Columbus have operated the beer and wine garden (Garden) since 2012 and shared 50% of the profit with the city. In 2019, the city requested that the Knights provide space within the garden for Brewcaipa, Uptown Wine Merchant and Suveg Cellars to sell and distribute their products. This caused the Garden to generate less revenues than in previous years due to the change in profit sharing model. This year the Knights of Columbus are recommending partnering with local breweries and wineries in a different way. If approved by council, the Knights of Columbus will reach out to all wineries and breweries in Yucaipa. This proposed activity is contingent on COVID-19 restrictions and the issuance of an ABC license.

Vision Quest will have the art gallery open during the festival. There will be children’s activities, free of charge and a paint night for a nominal fee to event-goers.

The Gem and Mineral Society holds a Gem and Mineral Show every year during the YMAF. The Gem and Mineral Society provides marketing for the show, acquires all vendors, processes payment for approved vendors and is the only point of contact for the event, thus in the past there has never been a revenue split. Due to the change in vendor location for the parking stalls to the middle of the street, the city will provide tents, electricity and lighting.

The Rotary Club of Yucaipa will provide volunteers to help decrease the number of city staff needed to operate the Kids Zone. The city will rent all equipment and activities for the Kids Zone and will provide minimal staff to sell tickets and sanitize the equipment on an ongoing basis.

Street closures will begin on Thursday, May 6. City staff will finalize a street closure time schedule that will provide the least impact to the Uptown businesses.

Johnson said, “If approved this evening, all organizations will enter a letter of understanding with the city of Yucaipa.”

Johnson described to council that the food vendors would line California Street, YPAC would host the live entertainment, the beer garden would be adjacent to the YPAC, the Kid Zone would be located down First Street between Yucaipa Boulevard and Avenue A, food and merchant vendors would also line the Boulevard west to east (between First Street and all the way up to Adams Street). At the California roundabout the information booth and the CAL FIRE booth would be located. South of California Street will be additional merchandise and food vendors. A second stage for entertainment would be included with a section open for a lounge area. Portable restrooms will be strategically placed throughout the event.

Johnson said, “One of the proposed differences in this year’s layout will be the location of the vendors. Vendors will be located in the middle of the street instead of in parking stalls, which is historically what we have done.”

Mayor Pro Tem Bobby Duncan asked, “Whose idea was it to put the vendors in the center of the street?” Johnson answered that it was a joint team idea but concerns from the Uptown businesses that the vendors being in the parking stalls were blocking the storefronts.

Duncan said, “That’s a fantastic idea.”

Mayor Greg Bogh agreed.

Duncan asked, “Are we not having a small carnival because of COVID-19 or are we just eliminating that going forward from the agenda or from the itinerary?”

Johnson said, “Because we changed the event from a three-day event to a two-day event, it wouldn’t allow enough time for a carnival to be successful. The layout is smaller and just other factors as well.”

The event was approved unanimously by council.

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