1st Thursday

1st Thursday is an evening of art and culture in downtown Santa Barbara. On the first Thursday of each month, participating galleries and art-related venues offer free access to visual and performing art in a fun and social environment from 5-8pm. 1st Thursday venues feature attractions such as art openings, live music, artists' receptions, lectures, wine tastings and hands-on activities.

Click on one of the links below for more information:

For Participating Businesses:

Many Downtown partners partake in this event including non-conventional galleries, retailers and restaurants. In addition, State Street comes alive on 1st Thursday with performances and interactive exhibits. Look for previews of forthcoming plays, symphony performances, concerts and dance productions, as well as local up-and-coming performers. Downtown Santa Barbara also partners with Santa Barbara cultural groups for one-time 1st Thursday attractions.

1st Thursday is for locals and visitors alike. It provides an opportunity for residents to indulge in local culture, mingle with neighbors and participate in the arts community. The program also offers visitors the chance to experience, in one evening, the diversity of Downtown Santa Barbara’s visual and performing arts scene, is aimed at developing a lively atmosphere downtown as well as showcasing the cultural variety that Santa Barbara has to offer.

The 1st Thursday Passport is a printed guide and map to all of the 1st Thursday attractions and are available at participating galleries and venues, MTD shuttles, The Visitors’ Center and hotel concierge desks. More than 1,200 Passports are distributed each month.

  • January 5 – “Inspire Me!” For 2017
  • February 2 – A Little Romance
  • March 2 – MOVEMENT!
  • April 5 - Celebrate the Written Word
  • May 4 – Transportation/CycleMAYnia
  • June 1 – The Good ol’ Summertime
  • July 6 - Jump Start “Anti-Boredom” Month
  • August 3 - Fiesta (Old Spanish Days)
  • September 7 - Discover a New Passion
  • October 5 – Cuisine, Libations & Wellness
  • November 2 – Giving Back (Partner with non-profits)
  • December 7 - Happy Holidays – Holiday Under the Sea

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