Prosper through Unity in the Community Festival

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The first Thrive event was held June 26, 2021 at Rough & Ready Vineyards on Cattle Drive, Rough & Ready. At the Nevada County Sportsmen Club on Banner Mountain Trail, Nevada City stand Dasha Schaffer tests the bow with club member Rich Eckenburg.
Photo by John Hart

Let freedom ring across Nevada County with Thrive through Unity in the Community, a festival of music, food, and games taking place from 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday, July 2 at Western Gateway Park in Penn Valley. “The Patriotic Celebration is a joint collaboration of citizens, local businesses and veterans providing a place to gather and enjoy the history of this country that unites us all,” said Carl Cieslikowski, a local veteran. of Grass Valley.

There will be music from five different local bands/musicians, interspersed with presentations by veterans of Taps, Honor Guard, Color Guard and a 21-gun salute.

Period costumes are encouraged. There will be competitive games of spikeball, volleyball, gaga ball, giant jenga and a loose line, and archery with Nevada County Sportsman. Face painting will be done by local artist Elena Lee. There will be an “extreme wetland” for water activities, so bring your favorite water gun! Community organizations will have information and product kiosks on site and will organize numerous games.



Food will be available at various food trucks/stands offering fairs such as Indian tacos, fajita sandwiches, snow cones and ice cream. Cotton candy and popcorn are free.

Talented woodcarver Timeless will exhibit a 40-inch woodcarving of the Liberty Bell. Admire a huge replica of the preamble to the Constitution and sign your name with pen and ink.



Admission is $10 per car, $5 for a single occupant, and a non-perishable food donation (or cash donation) to benefit the Interfaith Food Ministry and Nevada County Food Bank. VETERANS are FREE with their DD214, health or DOD card.

Unity in the Community is a continuation and expansion of the first ‘Thrive’ event, organized by community-minded residents and businesses, first held in 2021 to bring teenagers together after the long pandemic lockdown of Covid. It also served to commemorate the loss of Sammy Schmidt, a 16-year-old who committed suicide that fall. The original THRIVE provided a much-needed meeting place for families and children and also served to gain community support for growth and well-being.

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