Published August 18, 1998
Volume 6, Number 8

First Wednesday Parties Enliven Pleasanton
CarrAmerica Sponsors First of Downtown Association's Events

CarrAmerica served as overall sponsor for the inaugural First Wednesday Street Party,
selling ice cream bars to benefit the Olson family.

By Jay Hipps
Network Editor

CarrAmerica, owners of close to 1.7 million square feet of Hacienda properties, sponsored the inaugural First Wednesday Street Party, a new event being held the first Wednesday of each month through November by the Pleasanton Downtown Association. 

"CarrAmerica has broken the ice," says Craig Scharton, the Association's executive director. "We've never done sponsorships with businesses from outside the downtown area before." 

The event takes place on a five block section of Main Street. Closed to traffic, the thoroughfare is instead filled with bands, food booths, displays from local retailers, and tables from local non-profit organizations. Over 55 different groups participated in the inaugural party, held August 4. 

"We thought it would be nice to do an event that focused on the local business person and also open it up to community groups, so it has more of an authentic local flavor," says Scharton. "Most of the events that happen downtown don't focus on the local businessesusually, it's vendors who arrive Friday and leave Sunday."

The participation of local businesses and non-profits helped attract CarrAmerica as well. 

"Part of Carr's mission statement is to be a good neighbor and get more involved in the community," explains Ernie Hughes, director of operations for CarrAmerica. "Carr wants to ensure that our presence makes each community a better place. This event was a great opportunity to get exposure and let people know that we're supporting the Pleasanton Downtown Association."

CarrAmerica had their own booth at the event, handing out free balloons to children and selling ice cream bars and other frozen treats. Proceeds from the booth's sales were donated to the Olson family. 

The theme for August's party was Family and Children's Activities. Subsequent months will feature World Cultures; Art and Music; and Livermore Valley Wines and Tri-Valley Recreation. 

Scharton is optimistic that the events will continue in 1999.

"We're going to evaluate it at the end and see what we want to do next year," he says. 

Sponsorships are still available for the coming months. Contact Craig Scharton of the Pleasanton Downtown Association at (925) 484-2199 for additional information. 


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