Monday, September 10, 2007

Adobo in San Pedro

Maria, Evan and I may have found a new favorite Los Angeles festival... but we may have also experienced its final hurrah.

The 16th Annual Festival of Phillipine Arts & Culture (FilAmArts.org) took place this weekend in San Pedro (at the Pt. Fermin Park) -- and boasted everything we look for in a festival.

Cheap, delicious food? Check. Cool, interesting booths (including several selling books)? Yup. Cooking demonstrations? Absolutely. Beautiful setting, complete with ocean breeze keeping things cool? Yes. Plenty for Blogger Toddler to do, including a playground? Indeed.

And... most importantly: Free Spam samples? You got it!

One of the largest Filipino-American celebrations in Southern California, the festival is well-organized and well-attended. But it also may be in trouble.

Seems the fees to keep the festival going in the city park have become astronomical -- or so mentioned KABC's Denise Dador, who hosted part of Saturday's festivities.

But let's hope it keeps going. Despite some shortcomings -- the food selection included just two booths devoted to Filipino food (and one of those was just kinda Filipino food -- what gives? It's a Filipino festival, after all!) -- it's nicely set up inside the park to take advantage of the park's amenities, like the playground that kept plenty of kids (including Blogger Toddler) busy.

Best food bet was the vendor connected to the culinary tent, which offered huge chicken adobo rice bowls and caldereta rice bowls for just $4 (among other things), as well as lumpia for $2 and calamansi juice for $2.50. Yes, we tried it all, and yes, it was good. Actually, the cheap and tasty food is probably the main reason we now consider it our fave fest.

A band shell was used for the "generations" stage, in which younger singers and bands performed. And just on the other side of the fence was the Pt. Fermin cliffs -- and the beautiful Pt. Fermin lighthouse. (The equally beautiful Korean Friendship Bell is closeby as well.)

Hell, it was so well-organized that parking was free at a near-by lot, with shuttles regularly dropping people back and forth.

Some shots:


Ladies and gentlemen... Free Spam!


Kids on parade


Food at the Culinary Arts stage.


Food eating competish -- Whoever downed the shot of vinegar first won.


Dancers.


Pt. Fermin Lighthouse

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