Events with Parks and Recreation


Welcome to the Parks and Recreation Annual Events Homepage!

Special Events Permits
Looking for permit information for large, public events? Please visit the City Manager's Special Event Permits page.

Saturday, October 4, 2014
Celebration: 10:00 am – 5:00 pm | Santa Cruz Wharf

Fireworks Spectacular: 9:00 pm | Main Beach
Come join the FREE fun and fireworks as we celebrate the Santa Cruz Wharf’s 100th Anniversary. It’s a day-long community celebration not to be missed. The fun begins at 10:00 am with the Santa Cruz High School Marching Band leading a historical procession of antique cars, musicians, costumed characters and local legends onto the longest wooden Wharf on the coast of the United States. Come in period dress as we mirror the Wharf’s opening day in 1914. Then kick back and enjoy live music, bocce, face painting and photo booths all afternoon. Explore the Wharf’s historic past and exciting future in side-by-side Pop Up Museums. Savor in delicious specials from the phenomenal Wharf restaurants. End your night with a fabulous Fireworks Spectacular finale guaranteed to light up the Bay. Come celebrate! Sponsored by Whole Foods, Plantronics, the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk and the Santa Cruz Wharf. Co-sponsored by the Santa Cruz Sentinel, KSBW TV, KPIG 107.5 FM and 101.7 The Beach. Visit for details, call 831-420-5273 or email. Cost: FREE!

Friday, October 31, 2014
4:00 pm - 6:00 pm
Santa Cruz Wharf
Little witches, goblins, ghosts, and their parents can enjoy safe and sane trick-or-treating at the Parks and Recreation Department’s Halloween celebration on the wharf. Treats for kids provided at wharf businesses. A children’s costume contest on the wharf stage will add to the fun!  Sponsored by the Santa Cruz Sentinel, KCBA TV, KPIG 107.5 FM and 101.7 The Beach. Visit, call 831-420-5273 or email. Cost: FREE!

Friday, December 5, 2014
11:00 am
Santa Cruz Wharf
The Santa Cruz Wharf officially opened in December 5, 1914, and thrived as a hub of the Santa Cruz fishing industry. One hundred years later, the Santa Cruz Wharf serves as a bustling center of recreation, including fishing, plus dining and shopping. To commemorate 100 years of the Santa Cruz Wharf’s history, culture and glorious setting, join us for special ceremonies on the Wharf stage with honored guests and Santa Cruz citizens. The Santa Cruz Wharf is our gateway to the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary and a testament to Santa Cruz's spirit of ingenuity, perseverance and optimism. Celebrate the milestone and toast the Santa Cruz Wharf's future at this free event. Co-sponsored by the Santa Cruz Sentinel. Visit, call 831-420-5277 or email. Cost: FREE!

For information and sponsorship opportunities about these and other 100th Anniversary events, please call the Wharf 100 Committee at 831-420-5277. To donate, visit

Dig out your favorite Boston and/or Manhattan clam chowder recipes for the 34th Annual Clam Chowder Cook-Off, Saturday, February 21, 2015 at the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk. The two divisions are Individual and Professional. Winners will have a chance to win round-trip tickets courtesy of United Airlines and cash prizes. Trophies are awarded to first place winners in each division as well as for “Most Original” and “Most Tasted.” Entry forms will be available in October 2014 online and at the Parks and Recreation Office, 323 Church St. Check out the 2014 Entry Form to get idea of competition. Deadline will be January 16, 2015 and includes two T-shirts per team and two Unlimited Ride Passes to the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk. Call 831-420-5273 or email.

Entry fees:
Individuals $50.00
Professional (Restaurants, Caterers, Food Service) $75.00

Saturday, February 21, 2015
Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk
Teams of chowder chefs come from all over the West Coast to compete for the prestigious award of “Best Clam Chowder.” Whip up your favorite recipe for red or white chowder or just come and sample the delicious variety of chowder and fun at the Boardwalk. Check Call the Chowder Hotline, 831-420-5273. Cost: Tasting kits $9.00.


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12/05/2014 11:00 AM Not Included