Gloucester's next downtown Block Party is this Saturday, 8/15. Founded in 2008 by a group of local citizen volunteers, including Joey Ciaramitaro, Erika Hansen, Jackie Hardy, Janice Lufkin Shea, Linn Parisi, and Vickie & Peter Van Ness, Gloucester's Block Parties have, according to the GimmeSound "website, become the standard by which other local communities measure successful events". With a block party now happening once every month in June, July, August, and September, there is plenty of fun to be had for a Saturday night in Gloucester, all summer long! Main Street is closed to vehicle traffic for the event, which means you can literally dance in the streets!

A big draw of the downtown block parties are that local merchants are open later than usual, so it's possible to take a stroll up and down Main Street and pick up a few things until 8 or 9 PM! Also, dining opens up outside of restaurants like Ohana and Jalapeno's, so restaurants have outside seating to watch the performers and the fun. Outside seats fill up very quickly, so it's recommended to make reservations to ensure you get the seat you want for dinner!

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This weekend's theme is "Seaside Shenanigans" - according to the block party's website, which advises partygoers to "Bring your kids, bring your grandpa, but most of all, bring your sense of humor!" For this month's block party, Main Street will be one big beach party, with silliness around every corner. As usual, there will be food, shopping, and live entertainment, but this edition will have some unexpected surprises and antics - like a dog and owner look-alike contest!

Here is the schedule for this Saturday's events:

6:00-7:00 Kids' Dance Party at Eastside Stage

6:00-7:15 Keeping Company perform at Center Stage

6:00-7:30 Carlo Ciancala performs at Westside Stage

6:00-9:00 YMCA Sponsored Children's Activities

7:00-7:45 Cape Ann Center for Dance perform at Eastside Stage

7:30-8:00 Dog/Owner Look-a-Like Contest; Center Stage

7:30-9:00 John Rockwell performs at Westside Stage

8:00-11:00 Ned & The Big Babies at Center Stage

The Block Party committee is made up of several movers and shakers in Gloucester who put on a great event - Acting Mayor Sefatia Romeo Theken, who adds "her Sicilian spices to the sauce", Mark McDonough "The Goodwill Godfather of Gloucester Block Parties", Carol Thistle, the city's Senior Project Manager in the Community Development Department who "knows how to develop a party!" Kory Curcuru "The Promo Guru", and Ashley Gullett, Event Coordinator and Designer.

If you haven't yet been to a block party, you're missing out on a great event with amazing food, entertainment, and fun for the whole family. You're nearly guaranteed to run into someone you know, and you'll love the live music and entertainment!