Escondido Street Fair(e) goers who didn’t get their fill of arts, crafts and music Sunday, May 15 at the semi-annual fair definitely got their fill of politics, local and otherwise. Everybody was there from Peta and green energy to Bernie, Sam and strange causes that seemed head-scratchers at best.
People not only could register to vote, they also could find out about just about any political possibility and movement they could possibly imagine, and then some.
Major activity took place between Broadway and S Kalmia Street. That’s where Patrick Malloy, Democratic challenger for the 50th Congressional district held sway, along with local progressives, Alianza Escondido and, if one were so inclined, face painting at the Alianza booth thrown in for good measure.
Malloy greeted fair strollers, passing out literature and introducing himself all around. “This is a great chance to get out and meet voters,” he said, in between photo ops and street talk. “I want people to know there is a better alternative to Duncan Hunter.”
Hunter didn’t make it to the festival. His official residence is around East County somewhere. When Escondido got gerrymandered into the newly reformed 50th Congressional District earlier this decade it inherited the Hunter family fiefdom. Duncan Hunter Sr. who served from 1981 to 2009 passed down the heavily Republican-registered district to his son.
June 7 is the primary between Malloy, Hunter and a small army of challengers, write-in and otherwise. Top two finishers square off again in the November general election.
But we digress.
Politics aside, the aftermath of the street fair has yielded some interesting community observations about the event that began in 1988 apparently in a much more eclectic form.
Many commenters on Facebook bemoaned the perception that the fair has become more commercialized and geared towards commerce, veering away from the funky arts, crafts and just plain stuff people liked to do and see rather than buy.
The next street fair is scheduled for October. That’s the month before you know what happens. Politics, and concerns, should resume on the street in even greater force then.