Every year on the first weekend in October the Fleet comes in and San Francisco is filled with sailors. On Saturday and Sunday the city celebrates with a huge air show. SF Bay has to be one of the best venues in the world for the Blue Angels dramatic air show. People line every available edge of bay and watch the pilots do their amazing stunts.
The parade of ships begins about 10 am, depending on visiblity. October can be a foggy time so the times my be delayed. One of my favorite things to do is take my bike up on the GG Bridge and watch the boats go under. It's hard to deny the patriotic feelings that overcome you when you see the crew in dress whites and at attention passing beneath the bridge. Even a submarine had a line of seamen lined along it's surface! Fire boats welcome the ships with sprays of water.
One year I watched the air show from out on the Bay with my friends on their sail boat. The bay was a veritable parking lot! It was a floating party.
2005's event will be on October 8th and 9th. The Blue Angels do make survey flights on the 6th and a practice show on the 7th. These often come as a shock to people working in the downtown offices. More than a few have thought they were being attacked.
REVEREND CECIL WILLIAMS & GLIDE CHURCH!
The church stands for 4 words:
* Unconditional love
* True diversity
We ended up in this church because of a tip of a local. We witnessed all 4 words described above. It was atru amazing experience and we're not only talking about the great gospel music show! The church has a huge history in providing meals to the homeless. Too much history to write about here, do visit their homepage ...
Just do it!
330 Ellis St.
San Francisco, CA 94102
For those of you, who`s into stones and mineralogy..
Organized by SF Gem & Mineral society, this 54th annual Gems & Mineral show will take place in Golden Gate Park.
The theme for this year's show is California Collecting which will include such semi-precious stones as amethyst, tourmaline, jade, garnet, jasper, agate, etc.
WHERE: San Francisco County Fair Building which is just inside the park entrance at Ninth Ave. & Lincoln Way.
WHEN: August, 2 (Saturday) 10am- 6pm; August, 3 (Sunday) 10am-5pm.
TO GET THERE: Bus #44 will drop you right there (runs on the 6th avenue), so will bus #71 (runs on Market Street).
PRICE: $6 for adults, $5 for seniors/students. Children under 12 are free with paid adult. $1 discount is available with a show flyer. Just bring it with you to the show.
PRICES are quite affordable. You can spend as little as $0.5 for a Quartz Crystal or buy 5 stones of Red Jasper for $1. Amethyst stones go for $7.5 a gram, Citrine is sold for $5 a gram.
Big ships from all over the world will be docked along the waterfront offering the public an opportunity to tour, sail, and learn about maritime history.
It starts with the Festival of Sail under the Golden Gate Bridge at noon on July, 23. You can view it from about any location on the waterfront or choose the Fort Mason Firehouse where the special viewing area is located. Purchase tickets for the Festival of Sail. This Premier Viewing is free and open to the public between 11:00 am and 1:30 pm.
WHEN: 23 of July - 27 of July, 2008.
WHERE: It starts below Golden Gate Bridge and go to Bay Bridge.
PRICE: Viewing from the shore is free, but if you want to board/sail on a ship, you have to buy tickets.
The 13th annual Silent Film Festival will be playing movies accompanied by live music (piano, organ, motion picture orchestra) in the theater that was especially built to play silent movies in 1922.
WHERE: Castro theater.
ADDRESS: 429 Castro Street at between Market and 18th Street.
WHEN: July 11-13, 2008.
PRICE: Prices per movie range from $14 to $25 (less for members). Kids under 12 go for free.
TO GET THERE: Muni lines F, K, L and M.
Movies LIST. Buy tickets online.
With over 200 parade contingents, 300 exhibitors, and 19 stages and venues, the San Francisco LGBT Pride Celebration and Parade is the largest gathering of its kind in the nation.
THEME for 2008: United by Pride, Bound for Equality.
- Saturday, June 28th, 2008 at 12pm to 6:00pm
- Sunday, June 29th, 2008 from 12pm to 7:00pm.
WHERE: Celebrations are at Civic Center (it`s bound by Van Ness/McAllister/Hayes Streets).
NOTE: The actual PARADE is on Sunday, 29th at 10.30am along the Market Street. Come early to get a good spot.
To watch my VIDEO of the parade, click here.
It all began in 1985 and thrives till today. Stretched for 12 blocks (8 stages total) this Jazz Festival attracts thousands of music lovers on the Independence Day weekend. Each band will be given about 1,5 hours to entertain the public.
DAYS: 5-6th of July, 2008.
WHEN: 10am to 6pm.
ADDRESS: Fillmore between Jackson and Eddy.
PARKING-cars: at Fillmore Center Garage(Fillmore & Eddy) and Japan Town Garage/Kabuki Garage (1600 Geary).
PARKING-bikes: O`Farrell at Fillmore.
TO GET THERE from DOWNTOWN: bus #1 (runs on Sacramento Street), bus #3 (runs on Sutter Street).
Here is my 1 minute long VIDEO of the Festival, if you are interested.
ADVICE: Beer is very expensive ($8=24oz). Liquor stores (like D&M on Fillmore/Sacramento) jack up their prices, so I highly recommend to bring your own or buy it in a grocery store (like Molly Stones on California/Steiner Street).
July 4, 2008 entertainment:
There will be Cannery`s Family Festival at the courtyard (Del Monte Square) from 11am to 8pm. It`ll include face painting (11am-3pm) to entertain the children, live musical performances featuring local artists playing classic American hits plus food offerings.
ADDRESS: 2801 Leavenworth Street at the foot of Columbus Street.
Also, Fourth of July Waterfront Celebration will be held at Pier 39 from 1pm to 9.30pm. Two popular cover bands will be performing: Big Bang Beat (1pm- 4pm) and Tainted Love (6pm-9.30pm). Then visitors will be treated to Fireworks display at approximately 9.30pm shot from a barge off PIER 39 and from the Municipal Pier. Fireworks can be seen from Aquatic Park (near Pier 47) and mid-bay near Alcatraz, between Pier 39 and Fisherman’s Wharf.
- Dress warm, if you plan on attending the fireworks - its very cold near the water in the evening.
- Don`t drive there, traffic on the way back won`t be fun for sure.
If every 2nd Thursday of a month you have nothing to do and are in the mood for a movie, then this tip is for you, cause that`s when Dolores Park hosts it (around 8, 9pm). Check the website below for details.
It`s a free event, but a small donation is appreciated and much needed - to pay for the equipment, permits, Valet bike parking..
ADDRESS: 20th at Dolores Street.
DIRECTIONS: bus #33 or subway (J-Church MUNI Line).
I've seen the massive celebration for Buddha's Birthday in Seoul, Korea, but I never thought I'd stumble upon a similar event here in the US. On May 25th 2008 the San Francisco area organizations called Buddha's Light International Association, American Buddhist Cultural Society, and Light of Buddha Temple held a nice little festival at Union Square.
Buddhism as a world religion is historically concentrated in East and South East Asia, particularly China, Taiwan, Mongolia, Korea, Japan, Vietnam, Thailand, Burma, Laos, Cambodia, Singapore, Bhutan, and Sri Lanka. The US has only 2 to 6 million Buddhists, and 75 to 80 percent of these followers are of Asian descent and inherited Buddhism as a family tradition (while the rest are generally non-Asian converts).
San Francisco has a very high Buddhist population. The 2000 census reported that San Francisco had an population of over 200,000 people from Buddhist Asian countries, which is about a quarter of the city. The largest ethnic groups in San Francisco from Buddhist countries are Chinese (160,000 people), Japanese (15,000), Vietnamese (13,000), Korean (9,000), and Thai (2,000).
Held in May rather than February like the original Carnival, San Francisco's Carnival Festival is one of the Mission District's major events. The festival takes place on Harrison Street between 24th & 16th Streets along a nearly mile long stretch of city streets. We walked this mile of fun from one end to the other watching live bands, eating food, seeing crafts and other junk for sale, and seeing at least three stands advocating the legalization of marijuana.
The big draw of Carnival is the huge parade on the Sunday of the two-day event. I found that some locals didn't even know the festival actually began Saturday around 1100 AM. The event claims to draw hundreds of thousands of visitors, though there are no tickets or other ways to get an exact count. The 2008 festival is the 30th consecutive Carnival Event in the city.
The food we tried was excellent: carne asada tacos and chicken tamales for about $6 each. We also had some lemonade for maybe $4. Overall the festival was huge and well organized, with at least our stages all simultaneously playing music.
A fun little experience for the whole family.
Curious what it is all about? Read a bit of history on Wiki.
LOCATION: 1st Market Str. Justin Herman Plaza
TIME: Thursday, 14th of February from 6pm until 9pm.
1) Wait for the Ferry Building clock to strike 6:00pm.
2) Don’t hit anyone without a pillow (unless they want it).
3) Don’t hit anyone with a camera.
4) Bring only pillows filled with natural materials (like cotton, hemp, and down) and not synethetics which will wash into the Bay and harm marine life.
5) Bring a few trash bags to help clean up.
ALSO, the Food Bank and Coalition on Homelessness will be collecting donations this year. Your help with pillows, blankets, clothing and non-perishable food items is very much appreciated.
All San Franciscans love to hate Fisherman's Wharf. When we talked to some locals they stated that they were content never to have visited the area. They trully complain about the tacky shops selling cheap souvenirs, the "novelty" museums whose novelty has long worn off and busloads of tourists blocking the view to Alcatraz. TStill the locals do understand the improtance of the pier for the city and od like the never ending entertainment as well.
When we were walking towards Pier 39 (the second most visited attraction in California we were stopped by the "Smiling Police". We were asked to smile a bit more and as a reward we received a "I love San Francisco" and " I luv to smile" sticker. Ultimate tourist trap entertainment or just a kind of fun. Judge for yourself???
Beach Street and the Embarcadero, Fisherman's Wharf, San Francisco, CA 94109.
It is loosely defined as the area Ghirardelli Square (near Pier 41) and Pier 35.
This is hippie central, or at least was in the 60’s. Now it is filled with million dollar homes and tourists looking for the unique 60’s vibe. It is still there, but it feels more for show at this point.
Still, the area is a great place to shop and eat and the fair has a nice selection of jewelry artists and crafts. It has more of a counter-culture feel than most of the city street fairs. The musical acts can take you right back to a day in 1967, sitting in the park, listening to Janis Joplin. This is a one-day affair, on a Sunday in June, and if you don’t get there by 2pm, you’ll be overwhelmed by the crowds. Believe it or not, this is great day to try some of the restaurants on Haight St, because it seems like most people go to the food booths.
Last year we walked right in to the Pork Store Café for breakfast, and this year there was no waiting at Cha Cha Cha. Amazing!
This is more of a street fair with Jazz. It runs along Fillmore street, from the fancy digs in pacific heights, to the African-American neighborhoods down on the lower end. This fair has a more authentic feel than a lot of the city fairs (especially the Union St fair) and is our favorite. It retains the local neighborhood feel and has many unique artists and craft workers selling their wares. There are stages at both ends of the fair for Jazz and swing bands, with a large stage at the halfway point. Get there early in the day if you want to avoid the massive crowds.
This usually runs right before or around the 4th of July weekend, and runs for 2 days.