El Cerrito Pre-School Cooperative parade at Solano Stroll 2009. Photo: Alan Stross.

It’s the East Bay’s largest street festival and it’s been going since 1974. This weekend sees the return of the Solano Stroll, a family-friendly celebration which includes everything from the actual stroll — a parade featuring more than 100 participating groups — entertainers, carnival games, booths and music.

And of course, being a Berkeley-centric event, there’ll be lots of food and some wacky art cars thrown in.

The Solano Stroll is hosted by the merchants and cities of Berkeley and Albany and over five hundred vendors, non-profit organizations, food booths and entertainers will be in attendance. The “Green Zone” on the east end of Solano Avenue will provide  guidance on changes to make to reduce global warming, including displays of green technology like solar panels, tank-less water heaters and current composting techniques. Environmental experts will be on hand to answer questions.

Free bike valet parking will be provided by EBBC and Albany Strollers & Rollers.

Free valet bicycle parking will be provided by the East Bay Bicycle Coalition and Albany Strollers & Rollers. It will be available at two different locations: the Wells Fargo Bank parking lot at the Berkeley end of the stroll, and an empty lot in Albany just west of the BART tracks sponsored by Bua Luang Thai Cuisine.

At last year’s Stroll, hundreds of cyclists enjoyed free valet parking. The aim, says Bicycle Coalition program director Dave Campbell, is “to keep the Stroll a green event”.

The Stroll is on Sunday September 12, 10am-6pm — full details are available on the Solano Stroll’s website.

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Tracey Taylor is co-founder of Berkeleyside and co-founder and editorial director of Cityside, the nonprofit parent to Berkeleyside and The Oaklandside. Before launching Berkeleyside, Tracey wrote for...