As the days lengthen and the temperatures shoot up, umbrellas are popping up across Sonoma County, marking the opening of the summer's night markets.
It's a chance for residents from Sonoma to Windsor to celebrate the season with blackened turkey legs and gritty blues music.
There are a few people who show up early to shop for the farmers' berries and fava beans. But let's be honest: At the evening markets, most of us are seeking an easy dinner accompanied by a cold beer and some cool tunes.
Wednesday Night Market
It's free fun, the people-gazing is priceless, and the mood is entirely different from that of the more food-centric morning markets that draw cooks, chefs, foodies and gourmands.
Here's the rundown on what's new at the market parties this year:
Santa Rosa Wednesday Night Market: Now in its 26th year, this market pops up from 5 to 8:30 p.m. Wednesdays through Aug. 20 along Fourth Street between Mendocino and E street.
For those who have worked up a thirst, the Wine Garden returns for its fourth year on D Street between Fourth and Fifth streets.
Four wineries pour each week, accompanied by acoustic music. It's $10 for six tastings, or $6 for three tastings.
The main stage is located at the end of Fourth Street at E, next to the farmers' booths lining E street. This Wednesday, The Deadlies bring on their surf music to the main stage.
The city of Santa Rosa will hold a Water and Green Expo on May 28. On July 23, the Wine Garden is going to switch it up with craft beers for the first time.