Community Faire Comes to Moraga


Karmi Chan and Katie Hoskins

On Saturday, May 12, the Moraga Chamber of Commerce hosted its sixth annual Community Faire in the Rheem Shopping Center parking lot. Every year the fair provides a fun, friendly environment for residents to connect with local businesses and artists while playing carnival games, enjoying local delicacies, and listening to live music.

Sixty seven vendors and businesses set up booths and stalls to promote themselves to visitors. Many booths appealed to younger generations as well with fun activities like free caricatures, a jumpy house, professional face painting, and giveaways of popcorn and snow cones.

Six carnival games and an antique car show were also scattered around the area for people to enjoy. This year also boasted a dunk tank, where attendees young and old could try their hand at dunking local celebrities including Howard Harpham, the town council vice mayor, and Bob Priebie, the Moraga Police Chief.

Musicians performed live music throughout the day. The Campolindo Chamber Singers, the Peter Pan Foundation Singers, and Oak Grove Bluegrass, a family group, delighted the crowd as they meandered through the booths.

Miramonte students had the opportunity to volunteer at some of the booths. Junior Kimberly Cheng and senior Steven Zhou, along with others, worked at Be the Star, a live online radio talk show promoting teenage life.

“It’s a literacy charity that does anything and everything to increase the power of the teenage voice in our community,” Zhou said.

Zhou has been working with the program for over one year as a host, tech administrator, and producer. This was the organization’s first year at the community faire, where they recorded a live radio broadcast, interviewing visitors from the crowd.

“I was actually surprised,” Zhou said. “I didn’t think many people would show up. It was mostly little kids who wanted to be on the show, but people were interested in seeing the portable set up.”

“The fair attracted a lot of people and it was really fun to see all the other booths,” Cheng said. “It was a great opportunity for us to publicize the program and I highly recommend it.”

Food was also amply supplied at the fair with local restaurants like Panini’s, Kara’s Cupcakes, and El Ranchero.

Ellen Beans of the Moraga Chamber of Commerce has organized the fair since its debut in 2007. The goal is to bring Moraga businesses together and give them a platform to reach out to the community.

“We got started to get people to think, let’s shop Moraga first,” Beans said. “Let’s keep our tax dollars in Moraga.”

The first fair was in 2007 with 37 local vendors and was put together in less than two months. Now the fair has more than doubled their vendors and Beans expects over 3,000 visitors next year.

“I hope that people spend time and visit with the different vendors,” Beans said. “I want them to take another step in supporting the businesses that we have here in town.”