Have you ever wanted to explore a museum or art gallery, but can never decide on which one to choose? Then you should come to Santa Barbara’s 1st Thursday, on the first Thursday of any month, to experience a cultural atmosphere like no other, where a variety of venues display their work, for free!
On the first Thursday of every month from 5-8pm, downtown Santa Barbara comes to life with free attractions like art openings, live music and even wine tastings. The cultural atmosphere is infectious as several downtown partners participate in this monthly event, providing performances and interactive exhibits for locals and visitors alike. Before heading downtown, you can download the detailed “1st Thursday Passport” from the Downtown Santa Barbara website that provides the locations of all of the participating venues along with a brief description of what each venue entails. Some notable venues include the Ensemble Theater Company, Museum of Contemporary Art and Keefrider Custom Furniture. For a complete list of 1st Thursday venues, click here. While February’s 1st Thursday’s theme was unsurprisingly called “A Little Romance”, the theme for the next 1st Thursday, March 2, is “MOVEMENT!”. If you don’t have enough time to attend this month, no worries! The fun will resume on the first Thursday of April, which will be April 6.
Santa Barbara has long been a haven for creative spirits, dating back thousands of years. Many of the original inhabitants like the Native American Chumash tribe and the Spanish, had made lasting influences on the architecture and culture of Santa Barbara. The Chumash tribe was an incredibly artistic and talented group of people, weaving intricate baskets and painting symbolic rock paintings. These artistic influences definitely play a role in the hundreds of artists featured in downtown Santa Barbara’s museums and venues.
Downtown Santa Barbara’s 1st Thursday is a perfect opportunity for locals to mingle with neighbors and visitors to indulge in the rich, diverse culture of Santa Barbara. If you plan on spending the entire evening exploring what the downtown venues have to offer, then it might be a good idea to book a stay at the Inn at East Beach where you can complete your free, cultural experience with a reasonably priced night at a beautiful hotel.
Where: Various locations in downtown Santa Barbara, CA 93101
When: First Thursday of every month, 5 – 8 p.m.
Inn at East Beach
Whatever makes your ideal California weekend getaway, the Inn at East Beach Hotel in Santa Barbara is here to help you stay well- and well within your budget! 1029 Orilla Del Mar, Santa Barbara, CA 93103. 805.965.0546