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Bob Kellar: Thursdays @ Newhall returns with a slam

Posted: March 7, 2014 2:00 a.m.
Updated: March 7, 2014 2:00 a.m.

As a longtime Santa Clarita resident and a real estate professional, I know the importance of community. Santa Clarita is home to several vibrant neighborhoods, each with its own identity.

Although our city has grown to become the third largest in Los Angeles, our neighborhoods regularly come together, strengthening the tight-knit community feeling for which Santa Clarita is known.

The city of Santa Clarita hosts several events each year that call our community of neighborhoods together to celebrate holidays, milestones and Santa Clarita’s high quality of life.

One example of this is the city’s Thursdays @ Newhall series, in which art, music, dancing, food and more are offered in a block party setting on Main Street.

This popular series returned on Thursday, March 6, and several exciting themed events are scheduled through October in Old Town Newhall’s Arts & Entertainment District.

I’ve been proud to watch one of Santa Clarita’s oldest neighborhoods transform into an arts and entertainment hotspot for the entire community. Old Town Newhall’s revamped Main Street is home to a mix of popular new retailers, longtime favorite businesses and several creative offerings, providing an ideal setting for the city’s inspired Thursdays @ Newhall events.

On the first, second and third Thursday of every month, Old Town Newhall’s Main Street hosts an exciting rotation of themed events. The series kicked off Thursday with ArtSlam, an interactive outdoor gallery featuring hands-on activities, performances and artwork.

The inaugural event celebrated Women’s History Month with exhibits, music and more created exclusively by female artists.

Attendees were also treated to energetic live music by the popular all-girl band, “Go Betty Go.” ArtSlam will be held on Main Street between 6th Street and Market streets.

Thursdays @ Newhall continues next Thursday, March 13, with JAM Sessions, presented in partnership with the Ford Theatre Foundation and the James Irvine Foundation.

Held on the second Thursday of every month from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., JAM Sessions are interactive musical events aimed at inspiring residents to participate in demonstrations by eclectic performing arts groups.

Attendees can bring their dancing shoes next week for the kick-off event, Hip Hop Dance with the “Versa-Style Dance Company.”

JAM Sessions will be held on Main Street in Old Town Newhall, between 9th Street and Lyons Avenue, and will include a range of different music events, including a CalArts Balinese Ensemble on April 10; Randy Torno

Bluegrass Jam School on May 8; and Japanese Folk Dancing on June 12.

Schedules and descriptions of each JAM Session event are available at

Last but not least, I know residents are eagerly awaiting the return of Senses, which will transform Old Town Newhall’s Arts & Entertainment District into an outdoor block party on the third Thursday of the month.

Each of the highly-anticipated monthly events includes live music, attractions, food and beverages.

The 2014 Senses series begins on Thursday, March 20, with a Roaring Twenties theme. From 7 p.m. to 10 p.m., attendees will enjoy live music by a 19-piece New Orleans Orchestra called Vaud & The Villains, as well as a cabaret show, gourmet food trucks, art deco activities, contests and more.

Senses will be held on Main Street, between 6th Street and Market Street.

Residents from across Santa Clarita are invited to attend the Thursdays @ Newhall series, which provides a great opportunity to make new friends and reconnect with old ones.

Community members can also opt to take a ride on Santa Clarita Transit, which offers several routes and services to make it easy and affordable to experience Thursdays @ Newhall.

Local routes 1, 2, 4, 5, 6 and 14 include Thursday stops at Main Street, and additional details are available at

I’m proud to be part of a city that strives to keep community spirit alive by connecting residents in new and exciting ways. Additional Thursdays @ Newhall themes will be announced throughout the coming months.

You can sign up to receive Thursdays @ Newhall email updates at or by visiting

Bob Kellar is a member of the Santa Clarita City Council and can be reached at



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