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Downtown Talk

Craig Smith's Downtown Talk: It’s on: Blues, Brews & BBQ in Napa Oct. 2

  • Updated

Blues, Brews & BBQ will return Oct. 2, Noon to 6 p.m. Like virtually all large outdoor events, proof of vaccination or a Negative COVID test from no more than 72 hours prior are necessary for attendees.

We’ll all be glad when this is behind us, but unfortunately, it still isn’t. Come healthy, relax and enjoy the party.

Since we had to wait so long since the last Blues, Brews & BBQ, we decided to make this one bigger and have added a fourth musical stage.

Nancy Wright & the Rhythm and Roots Band open the Dwight Murray Plaza stage, followed by The Daniel Castro Band at 3:30.

Zydeco more your thing? I*ko YaYa kicks of the Randolph Stage. They will turn things over to Andre Thierry and His Accordion Soul Music! to finish the afternoon.

The stage at Goodman Library will be Blues from the 30s and 40s, performed by Napa’s own Smart Fellers, followed by Blues of today, performed by the Johnny Smith Trio.

The Eiko’s stage opens with Tia Carroll & Frankie G, with Marshall Law Band closing the day. I dare you to listen to any of them without dancing — I just don’t think it can be done. You don’t need to memorize the band lineups, just visit

It’s showtime …

Las Vegas recently hosted a convention where designers shared all the latest fashions for the season, and lots of Napa retailers attended.

What that means to you is that you can expect to see new merchandise coming to your favorite apparel and jewelry stores over the next few weeks.

Some merchants stock up specifically for Bottlerock, making it easy on Napans who want something new for the concerts. Wunder Boutique & Salon, at 1317 First Street (next to Anette’s) has new hats, jewelry, dresses, graphic tees and sunglasses that can make your concert look, well, yours.

And Wunder is just one of the places that fashion-conscious women can shop. There are close to three dozen places downtown offering women’s apparel and jewelry. Three dozen!

Twenty years ago, there were only half a dozen or so, and most catered to women aged forty and above, which reflected Napa’s population. Lest that sound ageist, remember when young people couldn’t wait to leave Napa for greener pastures? Those days are gone.

Compline celebrates four years with a fundraiser …

Chef Jammir is firing up the patio grill, Matt & Ryan are popping Champagne and their friends from Heitz Cellar, Brown Estate, Massican, Scribe, Ashes & Diamonds, Halcyon Wines, and Raen will be pouring their wines. Compline will donate 50% of the ticket proceeds to support Napa Valley Community Foundation and its Napa Valley Community Disaster Relief Fund, specifically targeting wildfire relief aid.

Wednesday, September 8 from 5 to 8 p.m. The $60 ticket price includes a wine tasting and snacks. Advance ticket purchase is highly recommended.

See you downtown!

Take a look at the wine country views from the Archer Napa Hotel rooftop bar Sky & Vine.

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Craig Smith is the Executive Director of the Downtown Napa Association. And if you love a good read, check out his novel Lies That Bind – How Do You Arrest Someone Who Doesn’t Exist? or 257-0322.

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