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September 30, 2009 > Raise a toast to Olives

Raise a toast to Olives

By Meenu Gupta

For over 6000 years it has been a ubiquitous presence throughout the world, as nutrition, medicine and a beauty aid. The Mission San Jose Chamber of Commerce invites everyone to celebrate the versatility of this symbol of peace and wisdom at their annual Olive Festival. This year the Chamber is also celebrating its 100th year. Mission San Jose was founded in 1797, the fourteenth of 21 Spanish missions established in California by troops under Sergeant Pedro Amador accompanied by Father Ferm'n Lasu en. The only surviving building from the Spanish period serves as a museum that houses a collection of artifacts, vestments and memorabilia.

Olive trees have flourished on the property of the Dominican Sisters of Mission San Jose since the late 1800s. In commemoration of the heritage and history of the early inhabitants and mission, the Mission San Jose Chamber of Commerce sponsors the Olive Festival which this year marks its ninth appearance in the olive grove behind the Mission San Jose Museum.

The festival showcases olive oil vendors, a children's area with activities and games, gourmet food, beverages including beer and wine, and food demonstrations. Trader Joe's, Federicos and Papillon will be among others offering recipes. "Arts and crafts vendors will display jewelry, leather articles, clothing, paintings, oils and watercolors," said Bob Tavares, co-chair of the event. "We have tri-tip sandwiches, hot dogs, potato chips, birthday cake, wine, beer, and sodas. Kid's center will showcase a special feature - Lollipop pool - as well as face painting and games. We normally expect anywhere between 2500 to 4000 people each year." The popular car show will again be hosted by the Mission Trail Mustangs displaying 30 to 50 vintage cars.

A combination of the pristine setting on private grounds behind the historic mission within an Olive grove and soft grassy terrain offers the perfect ambience for a relaxing Saturday afternoon. Enjoy time away from work and responsibilities listening to live music by the Canyon Band,, the Tony Boliver Band and an Ohlone College musical surprise. Entertainment, specialty foods, drinks and wine tasting add up to fun afternoon that is the hallmark of the Mission San Jose Olive Festival.

Olive Festival
Saturday, October 3
10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Mission Tierra and Mission Blvd., Fremont
(Behind Mission San Jose Museum)
(510) 651-0600

Admission is free
Free parking available at Ohlone College Parking Lot E

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