What if they threw a party and everyone came?
That’s what happened Tuesday night, as what felt like most of Sonoma descended on the Plaza for the annual City Party. Highly unofficial estimates ranged from 5,000 people to twice that, and whatever the number, people were happily sprawled all over the Plaza, celebrating a tradition that goes back to 1996 and seems to grow more mellow with age.
Presented by the Sonoma Community Center, sponsored by Redwood Credit Union, and with valuable support from Sonoma Market, Lagunitas Brewing, The Other Guys wines (Leese – Fitch and Hey Mambo were present) and the City of Sonoma, the party poured out onto Spain Street, with a bandstand erected in front of the historic Toscano Hotel.
Music punctuated the night, kicked off with Cynthia Tarr’s powerful and moving National Anthem, and followed by an endless Tommy Thomsen medley of hometown favorites, including Sarah Summers, Dave Aguilar, Codi Binkley, Sean Cascadden and Junior Boogie.
There were, as always, girls with hula hoops, tattooed hipsters, prompt and impromptu picnics, children dashing hither and yon, fueled by crowd energy in explosive bursts of excitement. There was a veritable parade of young lovelies in sun dresses, infants in strollers, babes in arms, a big-horned Stompers mascot and even a cluster of uniformed players taking in the scene before retreating to the diamond at Arnold Field where they beat the Pittsburg Mettle 6-2.