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American Graffiti Festival kicks off in Modesto after a year away

Visitors can see classic cars, watch a parade, and enjoy live music throughout the weekend.

CALIFORNIA CITY, Calif. — The American Graffiti Festival is coming back to Modesto after being canceled and rescheduled because of the COVID-19 pandemic

The long-awaited festival features classic cars, showcases a parade, has food vendors and music for the family to enjoy. The festival runs from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 21, and 9 a.m. - 3 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 22nd, at Modesto Municipal Golf Course.

The festival that is known worldwide is expecting nearly 900 people to attend, Brent Burnside, Chairman of the North Modesto Kiwanis American Graffiti Festival, said. The name of the festival is derived from the classic movie "American Graffiti," a film produced by Modesto native George Lucas. 

With the festival a large crowd, coronavirus protocols are in place to help keep people safe. 

“We're going to be practicing some social distancing. We're spacing out our vendors," Burnside said. "Folks have the choice to wear a mask if they choose to. We'll have different habits of where we wipe down our Porta-Potty areas, restroom areas, hand sanitizers available, all the desktops and the tabletops that you may encounter."

After a year away, Burnside hopes people get out to support the community.

"Folks, it's been a crazy year, but support your local community. [It] really makes a difference, all of our proceeds go to our local nonprofit children's groups 18 and under."

Spectator admission is $10 per person. Children 12 and under are free. The classic car parade starts at 6:30 p.m. Friday, Aug. 20th in downtown and near McHenry Ave.  

Road closures are now in effect due to the two-day Graffiti festival taking place this weekend, according to Modesto Police. 

A map of road closures can be found HERE.

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