Family-friendly activities, a live orchestra, carnival rides, lots of delicious food, local beer, wine, and an impressive fireworks finale will be on display at the Paso Pops celebration on July 4th at Paso Robles Event Center.
The fourth annual Paso Pops patriotic concert and Independence Day event is an opportunity for families and friends to enjoy a late afternoon and evening under the stars.
Conductor Andrew Sewell will lead the San Luis Obispo Symphony, featuring more than 72 professional and student musicians. SLO Symphony is a longtime community supporter of music education.
At 4 p.m., children’s activities, carnival rides, and carnival games for the kids will be available. Helms & Sons Amusements will keep the kiddos busy all evening. For parents’ convenience, wristbands for unlimited rides can be purchased in advance for $10 each or $15 onsite. Single-ride tickets are $3 per ride. Carnival games are available on a pay-as-you-go basis, which range from $3 to $5 per play.
At 8 p.m., master of ceremonies and emcee Casey Biggs, known to many as the debonair and dry-witted Paso Wine Man, will arrive to the Pops stage in grand fashion to kick off a dazzling fireworks display between 9:45 and 10 p.m.
“Last year, we had a video of Casey at the airport missing the helicopter, then ‘beaming’ down onto the stage using magic act effects,” said Steve Cass, president of Paso Pops. “I’m sworn to secrecy about this year’s entrance, so you’ll just have to attend and see!”
“So far, we’ve signed up 24 wineries from all over Paso Robles and we expect to have over 30 wineries participating on the day of the event,” Steve said. “Firestone Walker is our featured local beer. We had a great turnout last year so we’ll be configuring the wine tasting area to accommodate everyone.
“We are adding more food trucks, service groups and caterers,” Steve said. “But we also want to encourage people to bring picnic lunches and to have a blast decorating their tables! We’re talking to Mayor Steve Martin about serving as judge for the Best Table decoration.”
Last year, 4,400 attended the Paso Pops celebration. At Paso Robles Event Center, guests can utilize the venue’s generous parking across the street or adjacent to the event site with VIP tickets. Trees and shade structures will offer ample protection from sun and wind during the pre-show wine tasting and kids’ events. General admission bleacher seating will provide great sightlines and eliminate any burden of schlepping in lawn chairs. Guests will also find bathrooms easily accessible on the event center grounds.
Ticket options range from General Admission at $30 each for bleacher seating to sponsored President tables at $2,500 each that seat eight guests and come with perks, such as wine tasting, a gourmet buffet by Cass Winery, wine and beer, plus reserved VIP parking. Vice-President tables are $750 each, seat eight guests, and include wine tasting and reserved VIP parking. Multiple table buyers also receive additional discounts.
To honor active and retired military veterans (with military ID), and to provide discounts for students and seniors, entry to Paso Pops will be available at 50 percent off the General Admission (or $15 each). Families receive a discount, too. Kids age 12 and under get in free when accompanied by a paid adult admission.
Net proceeds from this year’s Paso Pops will directly benefit Paderewski Festival youth programs, Steve noted.
“If we do really well, proceeds will be shared with other community youth arts programs, such as Studios on the Park, Paso Robles Youth Arts Foundation, and SLO Youth Symphony,” he said.
Travel Paso, a 501(c)(6) nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting Paso Robles tourism, is the title sponsor for Paso Pops. Cass Winery and Firestone Walker Brewing Company are local founding sponsors. But it is the hands-on efforts of community volunteers that ensure the event’s return for families to enjoy.
“We have high hopes this year,” Steve said. “I want to encourage the community with the fact that everyone can make a direct impact on area nonprofit organizations through their support of Paso Pops.”
To sponsor Paso Pops, email Steve Cass at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (805) 239-0873. For complete details on Paso Pops, visit pasopops.org. To see a preview of Paso Pops, visit them on Instagram.