Danville awakens force for 1st in-person Star Wars Day celebration since the pandemic began

Dustin Dorsey Image
Thursday, May 5, 2022
May the 4th: The force awakens again in East Bay town
The force is strong in Danville every May the Fourth, where the community go into shops throughout downtown looking for hidden Star Wars characters.

DANVILLE, Calif. (KGO) -- The Bay Area has deep roots in the Star Wars galaxy with Lucasfilm in San Francisco and Rancho Obi-Wan in Petaluma, but the force is strong in Danville every May the Fourth.

The town is considered to be one one of the best places to celebrate Star Wars Day.

"The force is strong here in Danville," Town of Danville Teen and Youth Program supervisor RJ Natal said.

Seven years ago in a Galaxy in the East Bay, an idea was born to bring the community together.

RELATED: How did May the 4th become Star Wars Day? What to know about origins of galaxy-wide celebration

Founder RJ Natal says Star Wars bridges generations, so the town hosts annual themed-events that the whole family can enjoy and awaken the force in all of them.

"Just to have an epic event like this and for the whole community to be involved, it's one of those things that you look back upon on the last seven years and all the fun the kids have had, the community involvement, the businesses, it's been an amazing time," Natal said.

From Jedi training to Star Wars themed scavenger hunt, it is a way to say May the Fourth be with you.

We caught up with a family who took part for the first time.

"We love Star Wars," Crissy Young said. "This is our first year in Danville, so we just wanted to show the boys around and have a fun Star Wars Day today."

VIDEO: #7Things: Bay Area places where the force is strong

Here are 7 places you should know about in the Bay Area with a Star Wars connection!

It's a chance to build community and support small businesses.

The hunt takes guests into shops throughout the downtown looking for hidden characters.

The winners receive a prize and the store owners earn a victory as well.

"It's certainly a boost for spirit and a reminder to the community that we can still forage for fun and carve out a new way to experience local support in the community," Cottage Jewel owner Marcia Harmon said.

Natal says it's just as important to the businesses as it is to the families to bring the joy back in person after a drive thru event last year due to COVID.

WATCH: Celebrate May the 4th with Star Wars films, series, more streaming on Disney+

The highly-anticipated 'Obi-Wan Kenobi' limited series, which features the return of Ewan McGregor as Obi-Wan, launches May 27 on Disney+.

He hopes the tradition will continue as long as there's hope in the galaxy.

"The families and kids throughout the past couple years haven't really had something like this to look forward to," Natal said. "So, to be able to give them this opportunity to come out, be with each other again, celebrate May the Fourth be with you and have fun, we're just bringing back the fun to the community."

And I think everyone wants to enjoy a little fun again. May the Fourth be with you all.

Now Streaming 24/7 Click Here

If you're on the ABC7 News app, click here to watch live