Have fun in Downtown Alameda on July 4 while viewing one of the longest Independence Day parades in the nation. The Alameda 4th of July Parade is one of the best Fourth of July celebrations in the Bay Area and begins at 10:00am at the corner of Park Street and Lincoln Ave.
Watch as more than 170 entries and 2,500 parade participants travel along Park Street before proceeding to Webster Street. Spectators will marvel at the huge variety of hand-decorated flatbeds, antique cars, marching bands, dance troupes, bicyclists, musicians, clowns, costumed characters, and dancing horses.
The 2019 July 4 Parade Grand Marshals are two downtown business owners who are known for their inspiring community support:
Otto Wright (The Local, 1333 Park Street) has hosted community food and supply drives for victims of the North Bay fires, federal employees during the government shutdown, and residents of Midway Shelter. He also employs students with disabilities through a program with AUSD.
Gene Oh (Alameda Bicycle, 1522 Park Street) conceived of and organizes the annual Bike For The Parks fundraiser that raises thousands of dollars for our parks each year. He also sponsors an annual kids’ Books 4 Bikes program and gives away bikes and helmets to encourage reading for fun.
The best viewing spots for the parade can be found in Downtown Alameda where the performances, cheering, and flag waving are especially exciting along the first stretch of the parade. For a front row seat along the sidewalks, plan to arrive well before the parade’s start time.
There’s also a 5K run and walk that follows the parade route starting at 9:00am — an hour before the parade. The start line is located in front of Lola’s Chicken Shack at 1417 Park Street.
And, if you’re in want of a refreshment or are looking to do a little shopping on July 4 (or any day of the year), you’ll find a parade of locally-owned businesses in the downtown district, from breakfast spots to bookstores.
For more information, go to www.alamedaparade.com
Downtown Alameda is a marvelous destination for shopping, dining, playing, relaxing, and socializing. The district is ever-changing with new places to discover on each visit. Help us welcome our newest businesses!
New Downtown Businesses:
Dose of Lashes, 1343 Park Street (inside We Are Hair)
Customized eyelash extensions.
Lashfab, 1421 Broadway
Quality eyelash services.
Made Pho You, 1245 Park Street
Trendy Vietnamese restaurant utilizing fresh ingredients and old family recipes in every dish.
New Style Salon, 1219 Park Street
Styling for men, women, and children. Walk-ins welcome.
The Cusack Group, 2310 Alameda Ave
Real estate matchmakers dedicated to refining the process of buying and selling homes in the East Bay.
Windermere Bay Area Properties, 1700 Park Street #220
Experts in all areas of real estate focused on creating thriving communities.
New Associate Members:
Admiral’s Cove by Greystar, 101 Singleton Ave
Luxury townhouse apartments with with easy access to entertainment and dining.
Bloom Innovations (Alameda NUG Shop), www.nug.com
Vertically integrated Cannabis company with state-of-the-art retail stores.
Coral Reef Inn, 400 Park Street
Family owned and operated hotel featuring well appointed rooms, a pool, private balconies, and lagoon views.
Edit One Productions, 2310 Clement Ave
Full service video production for commercials, corporate videos, live events, and more.
Jamestown Properties, 523 South Shore Center West
Open-air shopping destination featuring nationally known retailers, local businesses, and restaurants.
Tinker Bus, www.tinkerbus.com
Mobile maker space, classroom, and innovation lab for kids of all ages — on a remodeled school bus!
In the Works:
Dunkin’ Donuts, 2413 Clement Ave
Fire & Wings, 1620 Park Street
Holiday Inn Express, 1825 Park Street
Park Street Bar & Grill, 1511 Park Street
Spinning Bones, 1205 Park Street
Twelve 31 Eatery, 1231 Park Street
View more new businesses: https://downtownalameda.com/news/new-businesses-april-2019/
Do you have a new business in the works within the downtown district? Contact the Downtown Alameda Business Association at (510) 523-1392 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
School break is almost here and it’s time for families to make summer plans. Get ready to shop, play, eat, and learn in Downtown Alameda while enjoying art, music, and more. Our historic business district is full of fun things to do this summer.
Alameda 4th of July Parade
Thursday, July 4th, 10:00am
Alameda’s parade is one of the largest in the nation and it starts on Park Street at 10:00am. The Alameda R.A.C.E. is a 5K run/walk that starts at 9:00am in front of Lauren’s Closet (1420 Park Street) and follows the Alameda parade route. For optimal viewing of the activities, arrive well before the start time to grab a front row seat on the curb. Details and parade route: www.alamedaparade.com (Note: Volunteers are needed for the parade: www.alamedaca.gov/parade)
Alameda Summer Art Fair & Maker Market
Sunday, July 7, 10:00am-6:00pm
See over 65 local Alameda and Bay Area artists at this free outdoor art festival. Mingle with local emerging and established artists while enjoying art demonstrations, poetry, live music performances, kids creative activities, and open studios. The outdoor festival takes place in the lot of Studio 23 near the intersection of Oak Street and Encinal Avenue. Details: www.alamedaartfair.com
35th Anniversary Art & Wine Faire
July 27 & 28, 10:00am-6:00pm
Come see what’s new at the Art & Wine Faire and stay to enjoy all that Downtown Alameda has to offer! Visit local shops and restaurants while browsing over 250 art and craft booths; dance the day away in front of three music stages. The expanded area on Central Avenue features local talent on the third stage, lots of dining tables, and family-friendly activities. Details and music schedule: www.DowntownAlameda.com/artandwine
Alameda Mini Maker Faire at Alameda Point
Sunday, August 11, 10:00am-4:00pm
FREE, all-ages event where makers, businesses, artists, DIY enthusiasts, and crafters showcase their work. Attendees will have the opportunity to experience interactive exhibits and be inspired by the creativity and innovation of the maker community. The Alameda Mini Maker Faire is a collaboration between Downtown Alameda Business Association, West Alameda Business Association, and the City of Alameda. More information: www.alameda.makerfaire.com
Congratulations to all the Downtown Alameda businesses that have been selected “Best of Alameda 2019” by the readers and editors of Alameda Magazine. A number of downtown businesses, both new and old, received recognition for the very first time.
Winners were selected in four categories: Food & Drink, Retail, Services, and Lifestyle & Leisure.
We encourage you to check out these Best of Alameda 2019 winners the next time you find yourself in the Downtown Alameda business district…
(blue = first-time winner)
LIFESTYLE & LEISURE
Alameda Bicycle (1522 Park Street) Best Family Bike Ride
Mayor’s 4th of July Parade (Park Street and beyond) Best Cultural Event
Starland School of Music (1631 Park Street) Best Music Lessons
The Local (1333 Park Street) Best New Business; Best Comedy Night
Alameda Bicycle (1522 Park Street) Best Bike Shop
Alameda Eyes Optometry (1432 Park Street) Best Eyeglass Store
Alameda See Spot Run (2510 Santa Clara Ave) Best Pet Store
Books Inc. (1344 Park Street) Best Book Store
Lauren’s Closet (1420 Park Street) Best Children’s Clothing; Best Resale Clothing
Second Home (2534 Santa Clara Ave) Best Furniture Store; Best Antique Store
The ReCrafting Company (2449 Santa Clara Ave) Best Way to Clear Out Your Crafting Stash
To Herb With Love (1336 Park Street) Best Spot to Score a Pair of Retro Sunglasses
Toy Safari (1410 Park Street) Best Children’s Store
Walgreens (1600 Park Street) Best Pharmacy (more…)
Strolling through the downtown district reveals that Downtown Alameda is historic and hip. With its grandiose old buildings, its unique businesses, and its vibrant community, the Historic Park Street district is always worth a trip.
Prior to 1864, the Park Street area was home to just a few scattered farm houses. With improved railroad transportation came hubs of commerce. By 1905 over 150 ornate commercial buildings lined the downtown streets. But, as time progressed, many of the older buildings were either replaced or converted into something else.
Today, thirty of the historic structures still stand with a variety of commercial uses. Here’s a story about two of the buildings:
1435-1437 Park Street – Schroeder Building
Believe it or not, this is the oldest building in what is officially designated as the Historic District. It was built in 1873 for Fritz Boehmer who had a grocery and hardware business on the ground floor. The upper floor contained a public meeting hall. In 1876, Fritz sold the building to Adolph Schroeder (co-owner of a local feed and fuel business), who used it as rental property. Between 1882 and 1894, a portion of the ground floor housed Alameda’s first telephone exchange. While significantly altered over the years, the building still retains its original architectural shape.
What’s there now? The ground level corner space is now occupied by Town Tavern — one of the newest businesses in Downtown Alameda. Above, on the second floor, is China House — one of the district’s oldest continuously operating restaurants.
1350-1364 Park Street; 2402-2410 Central Ave – Post Office Block
Originally completed in 1890, the “Post Office Block” was a landmark on Park Street with its prominent Queen Anne architecture and corner tower. William Patton, the designer, was a noted San Francisco architect and Alameda resident. The grandiose commercial building housed Alameda’s main post office from 1890-1900, and then the Commercial National Bank starting in 1922. In 1938, the bank commissioned a major remodel that resulted in the building’s present appearance. With the removal of the corner tower and the addition of stucco walls, it became an excellent example of Streamline Moderne.
What’s there now? The eye-catching building is currently home to a multitude of popular businesses. Sumbody Spa, Tootsies, Poke Koma, Rocket Fizz (the newest business in the block), House of Bagels, and Starbucks fill up the Park Street side while TuttiMelon and Central Florist face Central Ave. Additionally, PloyThai Spa can be accessed from the adjacent parking lot.
As you stroll through the historic downtown district and view these magnificent buildings, imagine the bustling streets of another time.
Read about other historic Downtown Alameda buildings in Part 1 of our history series: https://downtownalameda.com/news/historic-downtown-alameda-part-1/