Everything goes better with bacon, right? That certainly goes for San Jose, so I hope the city makes efforts to welcome more events like this holiday weekend's San Jose Bacon Festival of America.

Whether it's last month's SubZERO Festival on South First Street, the outdoor World Cup viewing parties downtown or even a Zombie Crawl, San Jose needs these off-the-wall events to stay engaging for a growing population of tech-savvy, fun-seeking residents. But it's worrying to hear that it's not easy to stage these kinds of events in San Jose, and in some cases it would be cheaper to hold them in other communities, including San Francisco.

A recent article in the Metro weekly detailed the troubles that Ryan Sebastian, who started the bacon festival last year, has had in getting his brigade of food trucks in line with rules that are stricter -- and ultimately costlier -- in San Jose than elsewhere. I talked to him on Thursday as he was preparing for 10,000 people to attend the bacon festival over two days, and he said that San Jose may be the toughest large city to have a food-truck event.

Pointing to costs that are already around $50,000, he said, "There's no way you could do this event without it being hinged on admission and alcohol the way the city has it set up."


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We shouldn't relax our standards when it comes to safety guidelines, but there should be consistency at least within Santa Clara County on how they're applied. And costs clearly have had an adverse effect on other festivals and events that have disappeared, from the Holiday Parade and the Tapestry Arts Festival to the San Jose America Festival that used to take place in Discovery Meadow over Fourth of July. While stalwarts like the San Jose Jazz Festival, Cinequest and Christmas in the Park are still very popular, a steady stream of low-cost, creative events would certainly help lure young professionals to downtown.

Sebastian -- a San Jose booster who also produces weekly Moveable Feast foodtruck events, last month's San Jose Taco Festival of Innovation and an upcoming Siracha festival -- says more pop-up retail and food could be an answer for downtown areas filled with empty storefronts like Second Street. "Bringing that type of activity to Second Street through temporary use could really turn that area around," he said. "We've seen examples of that working in places like downtown Oakland."

Pop-up music is even a possibility, as anyone who experienced the Silicon Valley Music Festival -- pop-up shows at various venues for a week at the end of June -- can attest. And more creative events like that should be encouraged not just downtown but in other neighborhoods, too, like Willow Glen and Santana Row.

With a massive football stadium and other developments rising in Santa Clara, San Jose should be concerned about the South Bay's cultural focus shifting elsewhere. And that includes all that sizzling bacon.

THE TOUGHEST SUPERVISOR: I'm not sure if you were being as lazy as I was last Saturday morning, but I'll bet you weren't doing anything as hard as Santa Clara County Supervisor Ken Yeager, who took part in the Gladiator Rock'n Run at Joseph D. Grant Regional Park.

The 6-kilometer event included crawling through mud, climbing up walls and even carrying logs. In his first mud run, Yeager finished in 1 hour, 8 minutes, just 25 minutes after the winner and 281st out of the 2,641 competitors.

"I was a bit surprised how well I did," said the San Jose supervisor. "It was my first mud run. I plan to do more."

None of this should be a surprise since Yeager is one of the valley's more fitness-conscious politicians. After all, he inaugurated the City Hall stair challenge, an 18-story climb, when he was a San Jose councilman. I'm just glad he didn't ask for a media escort.

JAZZ AT THE CALIFORNIA: One of the aftershocks of the San Jose Rep's collapse has hit the schedule of the San Jose Jazz Summer Fest, which has used the Blue Box theater in downtown San Jose as a stage for a few years now. The Rep's bankruptcy makes the venue unavailable for the time being, so San Jose Jazz will be moving some of its acts to the grandeur of the California Theater on South First Street.

The move actually makes the festival's footprint a little tighter (and festival goers' footsteps a little easier), and producer Bruce Labadie says he's staged plenty of acts at the spacious California before and thinks it'll be a top-notch stage. Personally, I like any opportunity to introduce more people to that jewel of an auditorium.

The 25th annual festival runs Aug. 8-10, and you can check out this year's lineup at www.sanjosejazz.org.

FRONTIER VILLAGE MEMORIES: South Bay natives of a certain age remember Frontier Village, the Western-themed amusement park in San Jose that was open from 1961 until 1980. The annual picnic reunion of former employees and park visitors, spearheaded by Shaughnessy McGehee, took place June 28 at the park's former site -- now known as Edenvale Park.

Filmmaker Jenn Jacobson created "Frontier Village Remembered," a 15-minute mini-documentary at the picnic that's chock full of interviews and memories from Indian Island to the Fall Guys (anyone remember Cactus Kong?). You can watch the video at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=93KX63numfs, and you can also share your own memories at a Facebook group dedicated to the park called "Remembering Frontier Village."

ANNIVERSARY GRANT: It's been 40 years since Dorothy Bogen Farrington established a trust with the donation of her Willow Glen home, and the Farrington Historical Foundation is celebrating the anniversary with a special 40th anniversary grant that will provide a total of $40,000 of funding for special, one-time projects by Santa Clara County nonprofits.

The grant application period is open until Aug. 18 and funds will be awarded near the end of September. The grant guidelines are available online at www.farringtonfoundation.org/grants/approach, but Farrington Historical Foundation Executive Director Pam Bliss encourages applicants to attend an orientation at the Kirk-Farrington House at 10 a.m. July 14 to learn more about the grant process. RSVPs are required by calling 408-264-8258.

Contact Sal Pizarro at spizarro@mercurynews.com. Follow him at Twitter.com/spizarro.