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News and Features
May 16-22, 2007

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Metro Summer Guide 2007:
Air Guitar Championships | Music | Venues and concerts | Festivals | Stage | Art shows | Classical music | Sports and recreation | Family fun | Summer movies


Story Road Tamale Festival

The Story Road Tamale Festival, June 2.

Festivals, Fairs and More

A day-by-day guide to all the kids' zones, wine-tastings and celebrations fit to print


May

Circus Chimera
Circus artists from around the world perform amazing human feats. May 17-20, call for times; $3-$22. Children's Discovery Museum, 180 Woz Way, San Jose. 888.663.7464.

CineCats Film Festival
Local filmmakers compete in this one-day festival of short films. May 17, 3pm; $5. Los Gatos Cinema, 41 N. Santa Cruz Ave, Los Gatos. 408.354.7377.

St. Joseph International Festival
This annual family festival has something for everyone, including rides, live entertainment and international foods. May 18, 5-10pm; free. St. Joseph School of Mountain View, 1120 Miramonte Ave, Mountain View.

Champions on Ice
The world's best skaters take to the ice, including Sasha Cohen, Irina Slutskaya and the South Bay's own Rudy Galindo. May 18, 7:30pm; $25-$95. HP Pavilion, 525 W. San Carlos St, San Jose. 408.998.TIXS.

St. John Vianney Fiesta
Games, rides, food and live entertainment. May 18, 5-11pm, May 19, 11am-11pm and May 20, 11am-9pm; free. St. John Vianney School, 4601 Hyland Ave, San Jose. 408.258.7832.

Wings of History Air Museum Open House
The aerial museum opens its doors for a day of airplane simulator rides, tours antique cars and free Young Eagle airplane rides for youth ages 8 to 17. May 19, 8am-4pm; free. Wings of History Air Museum, 12777 Murphy Ave, San Martin. 408.683.2290.

21st Annual Hands on the Arts
Multicultural arts festival where youth ages 3-12 can explore hands-on art, music, dance and theater projects under the guidance of professional artists. May 19, 10am-4pm; $5. Sunnyvale Community Center, 550 E. Remington Dr, Sunnyvale. 408.730.7350.

San Jose MotoFest
Former Santana lead vocalist Leon Patillo makes a guest appearance at annual festival featuring car, truck, boat and motorcycle displays, a barbecue, face painting, a climbing wall and motorcycle stunts. May 19, 10am-4pm; free. Cathedral of Faith, 2315 Canoas Garden Ave, San Jose. 408.267.4691.

Cupertino Special Festival
Live bands, bounce houses, a barbecue, a beer garden, health exhibits and more. Proceeds benefit children with autism. May 19, 10am-6pm; free. Cupertino Civic Center, 10300 Torre Ave, Cupertino.

Chinese School Carnival
Learn about Chinese culture, watch live performances of traditional dances, and play games and browse arts and crafts displays. May 19, 10:30am-2:30pm; free. Leland High School, 6677 Camden Ave, San Jose.

Celebrate Cambrian
Join in the celebration of this San Jose neighborhood with live entertainment, games, food, resource booths and more. May 19, 11am-3pm; free. Camden Multi-Service Center, 3369 Union Ave, San Jose. 408.559.8553.

Carnival at Lakewood
Help raise funds for school technology and library programs while playing carnival games, listening to live music and eating food from local restaurants. May 19, 11am-3pm; free. Lakewood Elementary School, 750 Lakechime Dr, Sunnyvale.

Spring Fling 2007
Support Don Callejon School at this fundraiser, including live local entertainment, a silent auction, food, game and exhibit booths and appearances by the San Francisco 49ers, Santa Clara Firefighters and members of the Santa Clara Police Department. May 19, 11am-5pm; free. Live Oak Park, 4025 Rivermark Pkwy, Santa Clara. 650.520.9065.

Centennial Celebration
The Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk commemorates its 100th anniversary with live music from Papa Doo Run Run and the Watsonville Community Band, skydivers and high-dive acts and more. May 19, noon-8pm; free. Main Beach, Santa Cruz. 831.423.5590.

KTSF Asian Family Heritage Celebration
This event brings together the music, food, dance and traditions of more than 25 different Asian cultures. May 19, all day; free with admission. Paramount's Great America, 4701 Great America Pkwy, Santa Clara. 408.986.1776, ext. 8858.

Sunset Weekend Celebration
The magazine opens its doors for an open house with interactive exhibits and demonstrations. May 19-20, 10am-5pm; $10-$12, 12 and under free. Sunset, 80 Willow Road, Menlo Park. 800.786.7375.

Artichoke Festival
The edible thistle gets its day at this annual festival with food, children's activities, musical performances and cooking demonstrations. May 19, 10am-5pm and May 20, 9am-5pm; $6 general, $3 kids under 12. Main Grounds, Merritt Street, Castroville. 831.633.2465.

Los Altos Rotary Art and Wine Festival
Featuring works by more than 220 artists, plus wine tasting from local vintners and live music. May 19-20, 10am-5:30pm; free. Lincoln Park, Foothill Expressway between Edith and Main, Los Altos. www.rotaryartshow.com.

A La Carte and Art
Synopsys presents this 11th annual food and art festival, featuring chef demonstrations from Meyer Appliance and Kitchens by Meyer, a kids' zone, wine, beer and margaritas and live music. Plus an appearance by Delta Burke of the TV show Designing Women. May 19-20, 10am-6pm; free. Castro Street, downtown Mountain View. 650.964.3395.

Wild West Fun Fest
Two days of face painting, prize drawings, food, a science booth, a petting zoo, bungee jumping and other family fun. May 19, 11am-4pm and May 20, noon-4pm; free. Sunnyvale Christian School, 445 S. Mary Ave, Sunnyvale.

Boogie on the Bayou
Campbell hosts this festival with arts and crafts booths, live music, international and Cajun cuisine, beer and wine and kids' activities. May 19-20, 11am-5pm; free. East Campbell Avenue, downtown Campbell.

Silicon Valley Open Studios
The final weekend of this art event covers the studios of artists along the Peninsula. May 19-20, 11am-5pm; free. www.svos.org.

Friendship Day
Mid-Peninsula Old Time Auto Club holds this 33rd annual car show and barbecue, featuring more than 850 cars. May 20; call for times and prices. Caņada College, 4200 Farm Hill Blvd, Redwood City. 650.941.1120.

Fire Truck Day
Honor our local firefighters with the day of hands-on activities, demonstrations, live music and displays of modern and antique fire trucks. May 20, 10am-3pm; $3.50-$5. Ardenwood Historic Farm, Fremont. 510.635.0135.

Hakone Matsuri Festival
Hakone Gardens hosts this Japanese cultural heritage festival, now in its eighth year, with judo, ikebana, live traditional music, Japanese tea ceremony and Japanese foods. May 20, 11am-5pm; $3.50-$4. Hakone Gardens, 21000 Big Basin Way, Saratoga. 408.741.4994.

St. Martin of Tours Spring Festival
Including carnival booths, a barbecue, bingo, live music, games and dancing. May 20, 11am-6pm; free. St. Martin of Tours Church, 200 O'Conner Dr, San Jose. 408.294.8953.

Memorial Day Weekend

Boardwalk Opens
The seaside amusement park kicks off its summer season with extended hours and rides. May 25. Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk. 831.423.5590.

Fanimecon
The Bay Area's largest anime convention, Fanimecon also hosts its second-annual music festival featuring Japanese and local indie acts on May 26. May 25-28; see website for times and prices. San Jose McEnery Convention Center, 150 W. San Carlos St, San Jose. www.fanime.com.

Watsonville Fly-In
Annual festival of antique flying machines, aerial tricks and fireworks. May 25, noon-10pm, May 26, 9am-10pm and May 27, 9am-5pm; $5-$15. Watsonville Airport, 100 Aviation Way, Watsonville. 831.763.5600. www.watsonvilleflyin.org.

Kids 'n' Kites Festival
A family-friendly day celebrating the wind, with kite-flying demonstrations, live performances and more. May 26, 11am-4pm; free. Central Park Softball Complex, 1110 Stevenson Blvd, Fremont. 510.790.5523.

Felton Remembers Parade and Covered Bridge Festival
Now in its 19th year, this annual festival and parade celebrates those who have served. With games, entertainment, food, a beer and wine garden, arts and crafts and more. Parade starts on Highway 9 between Henry Cowell and Graham Hill Road at 10am. May 26, 10am-4pm; free. Felton Commons Park, Felton.

Carnaval San Francisco
The streets of the city are filled with cultural dancing, a parade, live music from Los Lonely Boys and more. May 26-27, 10am-6pm; free. Harrison Street, between 16th and 24th streets, San Francisco. 415.920.0125.

Evergreen Fine Arts Festival
A weekend of art, food and music featuring local artisans. May 26-27, 10am-5pm; free. Evergreen Village, Ruby Avenue off Aborn Road, San Jose. 209.296.1195. www.pacificfinearts.com.

Mushroom Mardi Gras
Food, a wine tent and beer garden, a 10K and 5K fun run and walk, live performers, "Munchkinland" for kids, a parade and stage show and crafts. May 26, 10am-7pm and May 27, 10am-6pm; free admission and parking. Monterey Road between Dunne and Main avenues, downtown Morgan Hill. 408.778.1786.

15th Annual Santa Cruz Blues Festival
Music festival featuring acts such as Los Lonely Boys, Etta James, Robben Ford, Roy Rogers and Tony Castro. May 26-27, 10am-7pm; $20-$190. Aptos Village Park, 100 Aptos Creek Road, Aptos. 831.479.9814. www.santacruz bluesfestival.com.

Civil War Battles and Encampment
Experience historic battles complete with the sounds of cavalry charges, musket fire and artillery shells. May 26-28; call for times and prices. Roaring Camp, Graham Hill Road, Felton. 831.335.4484. www.roaringcamp.com.

Boulder Creek Art, Wine and Music Festival
Stroll the streets of Boulder Creek, wine in hand, and listen to live music, nosh on a variety of foods and browse collectibles, craft booths and art displays. May 26-28, 11am-6pm; free. Downtown Boulder Creek. 831.338.2578. www.bcba .net.

Red, White and Cool BBQ
This annual all-you-can-eat barbecue includes potato salad, hot dogs, chicken, watermelon and more. May 26-28, noon-2pm; $9-$13. Gilroy Gardens, 3050 Hecker Pass Hwy, Gilroy. 408.840.7100. www.gilroygardens.org.

Memorial Day Ceremony
A special ceremony, held in honor of local service men and women who have given their lives for the cause of freedom. May 28, 9am; free. Veterans Memorial Park, 455 E. Calaveras Blvd, Milpitas. 408.586.3210.

Memorial Day on the Farm
Kids can help take care of chores in the morning, taste some farm-baked cookies, participate in old-time games and more at this historic holiday on the farm. May 28, 10am-4pm; call for prices. Ardenwood Historic Farm, Fremont. 510.635.0135.

Memorial Day 2007
Kids can make simple instruments and flags and participate in a Memorial Day parade. May 28, 10am-5pm; $7-$8. Children's Discovery Museum, 180 Woz Way, San Jose. 408.298.5437. www.cdm .org.

Memorial Day Parade and Picnic
Gilroy honors fallen officers with this annual community event, including a remembrance ceremony at St. Mary's Cemetery, parade, family festival and live music. May 28, 9am-5pm; free. Christmas Hill Park, Gilroy. 408.846.0460.

Memorial Day Ceremony
An event honoring and celebrating those who have served and lost their lives. May 28, 1-2pm; call for prices. USS Hornet, 707 W. Hornet Ave, Pier 3, Alameda. 510.521.8448.

June

St. Clare Community Festival
The school hosts its 60th annual three-day festival of family fun, including carnival rides, a rummage sale, entertainment and barbecue. Jun 1, 5-10pm, Jun 2, noon-9pm and Jun 3, noon-7pm; free. St. Clare School, 725 Washington St, Santa Clara. 408.246.6797.

Story Road Tamale Festival
This annual festival celebrates Latino heritage with food (including a zacahuil, a large Aztec tamale measuring 6 feet), plus music from Pete Escovedo and the Nu Day Band. Jun 2, 11am-6pm; free. Emma Prusch Park, 647 S. King Road, San Jose. 800.5.TAMALE.

AVArtFest 2007
A large variety of juried art—watercolor, oil, pastel, mixed media, calligraphy and fiber arts—will be on display for show and sale. June 2-3, 10am-5pm. Triton Museum of Art, 1505 Warburton Ave, Santa Clara. 408.266.6103.

Sunnyvale Art and Wine Festival
The city of Sunnyvale hosts its annual event, now in its 33rd year, including wine tasting from regional wineries, food and crafts booths. Jun 2-3, 10am-6pm; free. Washington and Sunnyvale avenues, Sunnyvale. 408.763.4971.

Vintner's Festival
Art, food and wine event at wineries and restaurants throughout Santa Cruz County. Jun 2-3, east side of Santa Cruz Mountains; Jun 9-10, West Side of Santa Cruz Mountains; 11am-5pm; $30/$35. 831.479.WINE.

Greek Festival
Featuring authentic Greek food, arts and crafts, cooking demonstrations and live music. Jun 2, 5-10pm, Jun 3, 11am-10pm and Jun 4, 11am-9pm. St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church, 1260 Davis St, San Jose. 408.246.2770.

St. Christopher Parish Festival
The church and school throw a fundraiser with live music, carnival rides, an auction, bingo, food, games and a flea market. Jun 8-10; call for times and prices. 2278 Booksin Ave, San Jose. 408.568.0171.

Nativity Carnival
Music, eats and rides in a carnival setting. Jun 8, 6:30-10pm; Jun 9, 1:30-10pm; Jun 10, noon-6pm; free. Nativity School, 1250 Laurel St, Menlo Park. 650.323.7914.

Somos MayFair Celebration
MayFair Improvement Initiatives celebrates its 10th anniversary with a community festival featuring carnival rides, multicultural entertainment, a health and social services fair and more. Jun 8-10, 10am-9pm; free. Tropicana Shopping Center, San Jose.

Dia de Portugal Festival
Participate in this worldwide day of celebration with Portuguese and Brazilian dance shows, live music, a parade, children's activities and an art show. Jun 9, 10am-7:30pm; free. Kelley Park, 1650 Senter Road, San Jose. 415.999.7894.

Sunnyvale Cherry Festival
Hardly the pits, this annual festival celebrates all things cherry, featuring food, games and contests, music from the Hot Rods, face painting and activities. Jun 9-10, 9:30am-6pm; call for prices. C.J. Olson Cherries, 348 W. El Camino Real, Sunnyvale. 408.736.3726.

San Jose Gay Pride Festival and Parade
Two days celebrating the LGBT and diverse cultural community of the South Bay, with performances from Marga Gomez, Smash Up Derby, the Cheeseballs and Orchestra De Soul. Jun 9, noon-6pm and Jun 10, 11am-8pm. Discovery Meadow, West San Carlos Street at Woz Way, downtown San Jose. 408.278.5563.

Burlingame's Art in the Park
Arts- and craftspeople display their wares at this 37th annual event. Plus food and live music. Jun 9-10, 10am-5pm; free. Washington Park, 850 Burlingame Ave, Burlingame. 650.558.7300.

Mountain Art Guild Art and Wine Festival
Join a variety of Santa Cruz artists for this 11th annual weekend of wine, food, art and music in conjunction with the Santa Cruz Mountains Vintners' Festival. Jun 9-10, 10am-6pm; free. Radonich Ranch, 25140 Highland Way, Santa Cruz. 408.353.1325.

The Gamer Festival
Three days of video game challenges, contests, unlimited game play and gaming-related merchants. Jun 15, 1-9pm and Jun 16-17, 10am-9pm; $13-$40. Santa Clara Convention Center, 5001 Great America Pkwy, Santa Clara. www.thegamerfestival.com.

Vertical Challenge
The largest helicopter show in the country lands at the San Carlos Airport. Jun 16, 9am-5pm; $10-$15, 4 and under free. San Carlos Airport, 601 Skyway Road, San Carlos. 650.654.0200.

Campbell Highland Games
A Celtic celebration with Scottish Heavy Athletics challenges, including the caber toss and stone put, plus bagpipe music, ceilidh dancing, Scottish organizations and more. Jun 16, 9am-5pm; $8-$12. Community Center, 1 W. Campbell Ave, Campbell. 408.219.9264.

Willow Glen's Dancin' on the Avenue
Community event featuring music from the Joe Sharino Band, NuDay, the Groove Kings and others. Jun 16, 5-10pm; free. Lincoln Avenue between Minnesota and Willow streets, Willow Glen. 408.298.2100.

Birthday Fireworks Show
The Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk celebrates 100 years of family fun with a pyrotechnic extravaganza choreographed to custom music. Jun 16, 9pm; free. Main Beach, Santa Cruz. 831.423.5590.

Immigrants Day Festival
Celebrate the peninsula's diversity at this multicultural family event. Jun 16, noon-4pm; $1-$2. San Mateo County History Museum, 200 Broadway, Redwood City. 650.299.0104.

Juneteenth San Jose
An annual celebration of African American history and the emancipation of slaves. Jun 16-17, noon-8pm; free. Cesar Chavez Park, South Market Street, downtown San Jose. 408.292.3157.

Hats Off to Dad
A Father's Day celebration with steam engine rides, and a chuck wagon barbecue, and dads receive engineers' caps and free handcar rides. Jun 17, 11am-4pm; reservations recommended, prices vary. Roaring Camp Railroads, Graham Hill and Mount Herman Road, Felton. 831.335.4484.

Monterey Bay Blues Festival
Featuring Buddy Guy, the Whispers, Red Beans and Rice, Tommy Castro and Lil Jimmy Reed. Jun 22-24; call for details. Monterey Fairgrounds, Monterey. 831.394.2652.

Alameda County Fair
This annual fair is literally one of the hottest places in summer, so no one will blame you for looking at the indoor displays for an extra few minutes. Includes a fireworks display on Jun 22. Jun 22-Jul 8; $4-$9. Fairgrounds, 4501 Pleasanton Ave, Pleasanton. 925.426.7600.

San Carlos Jamboree
West San Carlos Business Association hosts this day of free antique appraisals, rock climbing, bed races and more. Jun 23, 10am-4pm; free. Shasta Avenue and West San Carlos Street, San Jose. 408.947.8711.

Surf City Classic A chance to view more than 150 restored classic woodies. Plus live music and prize drawings. Jun 23, 10am-4pm; free. Santa Cruz Municipal Wharf. 831.420.5273.

Puerto Rican Cultural Festival
The annual Dia de San Juan features live music, folkloric dancing, a domino tournament, arts, crafts, children's activities and food. Jun 24, 11am-7pm; call for prices. Shoreline Amphitheatre, 1 Amphitheatre Pkwy, Mountain View. 888.200.1488.

Civil War Re-enactment
Take a living history lesson on what the war between the states was like. Jun 23-24, 9am-6pm. Casa de Fruta, 6680 Pacheco Pass Hwy, Hollister. 408.842.7282.

Hawaiian Lu'au
Hula Halau 'O Pi'ilani hosts this dinner and Hawaiian show, including music from Auntie Linda and Nalu, a raffle and arts and crafts. Jun 30, 5-9pm; $35. I.F.E.S. Portuguese Hall, 432 Stierlin Road, Mountain View. 408.247.0500.

Red, White and Cool BBQ
This annual all-you-can-eat barbecue includes hot dogs, chicken, watermelon and more. Jun 30-Jul 4, noon-2pm; $9-$13. Gilroy Gardens, 3050 Hecker Pass Hwy, Gilroy. 408.840.7100.

July

KIHNCERT
A day of music from the Greg Kihn Band, Foghat, Wild Child, Aja Vu and Evolution. Jul 1, noon-9pm; $9.85/$15. Discovery Meadow, San Carlos Street at Woz Way, downtown San Jose. 408.294.2100, ext. 444.

Back in the Day Summerfest
A rockin' party with Sly and the Family Stone, Average White Band and the Latin Sensations, featuring Jorge Santana. Jul 7, 10am-8pm; $15. Arena Green, San Carlos Street and Woz Way, downtown San Jose. 800.620.6300.

Palo Alto Clay and Glass Festival
Local artisans display the fruits of their toiling. Plus live music, food, workshops and clay activities for kids. Jul 7-8, 10am-5pm; free. Palo Alto Art Center, 1313 Newell Road, Palo Alto. 650.329.2366.

Monterey Celtic Festival
Toro Park is taken over by pipe bands, caber toss throwers, Irish step dancers and kilts. This 40th annual event is preceded by a Celtic Week celebration beginning Jul 1. Jul 7-8; call for times and prices. Toro County Park, off Highway 68, Monterey. 831.647.6311.

Moscow Circus
The troupe of acrobats, clowns, gymnasts and aerialists performs throughout the week as part of the Boardwalk's Centennial Celebration. Jul 8-Aug 16, Mon-Thu, noon and 3pm and Sun, noon and 6pm; free. Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk. 831.423.5590.

California Rodeo Salinas
Rope yourself a good time with live country music (and a performance from Mary J. Blige on opening night), a daily horse parade, games and food, a "Miss California Rodeo" pageant, a heritage museum, barrel races and roping contests. Jul 13-22, times vary; $7-$76. Salinas Sports Complex, 1034 N. Main St, Salinas. 831.775.3100.

Los Gatos Shakespeare Festival
The troupe opens its sixth season with Pericles, Prince of Tyre, and continues with Julius Caesar. Plus performances of Moliere's Tartuffe and a stage reading of The Further Adventures of the Three Musketeers. Thu-Sun, Jul 13-Aug 4, 8pm; $14-$20. Oak Meadow Park, corner of Blossom Hill Road and University Avenue, Los Gatos. 800.838.3006.

Los Altos Art and Wine Festival
Featuring 380 booths of crafts, works from local artists and food and wine, plus a KIDZONE, street performers and three stages of music. Jul 14-15, 10am-6pm; free. Main and State streets, Los Altos. 209.296.1195.

Obon Festival
The largest Japantown cultural happening of the year features food, dancers, music and more. Jul 14-15, noon-10pm; free. Buddhist Church Betsuin, 640 N. Fifth St, San Jose. 408.293.9292, ext 0.

Art on the Wharf
Local artists overtake the Santa Cruz Municipal Wharf to display original paintings, photography and other works. Plus live jazz and fun for kids, including face painting and printmaking. Jul 15, 9:30am-5:30pm; free. Santa Cruz Municipal Wharf. 831.420.5273.

CultureFest
The Mountain View Library Foundation hosts this festival highlighting the importance of diversity in the area. Jul 21, 10am-6pm and Jul 22, 10am-5pm; free. Castro Street, downtown Mountain View. 650.526.7014.

Connoisseur's Marketplace
A fine-crafts festival, plus a wide variety of food treats and kids' events. Jul 21-22, 10am-6pm; free. Santa Cruz Avenue, between El Camino Real and Johnson Street, Menlo Park. 650.325.2818.

Midsummer Mozart Festival
An annual celebration of Mozart, with performances from the Midsummer Mozart Orchestra taking place around the Bay Area. Jul 21-23 and 26-29, times vary; $30-$60. Various locations. 415.627.9141.

Shakespeare in the Park
Since 1983, Shakespeare in the Park has provided an opportunity for everyone to see professional theater free of charge. Fri-Sun from Jul 21-Aug 5, 7:30pm; free. Cupertino Memorial Park, Mary Avenue and Stevens Creek Boulevard, Cupertino. 800.978.PLAY.

Festa Italiana Community Street Fair
Sample Italian cuisine, listen to live music, view a chalk art gallery and more. Jul 22, 10am-5pm; free. South B Street between Tilton and Second avenues, San Mateo. www.festafoundation.org.

Founders Day 1777
Celebrate the 230th anniversary of Founders Day at the historic Peralta Adobe with authentic songs and dances of early California, historical displays, food and guided tours of the Peralta Adobe and Fallon House. Jul 22, noon-5pm; free. Peralta Adobe-Fallon House, 175 W. St. John St, San Jose. 408.918.1050.

Wharf-to-Wharf Race
First run the scenic six miles, then listen to dozens of bands, feast on local cuisine and relax in the Santa Cruz breeze. Jul 22, 8:30am. Starts at Municipal Wharf, Santa Cruz. 831.475.2196.

San Jose Grand Prix
Race cars take to the streets of downtown San Jose. Plus a streetfest, fundraiser and other related activities. Jul 27-29; call for times; $25-$129. Downtown San Jose. 408.277.6290.

Gilroy Garlic Festival
Gilroy's annual event celebrating the stinking rose. With food, live music, cook-offs, a children's area and more. July 27-29, 10am-7pm; $6-$12. Christmas Hill Park, 7050 Miller Ave, Gilroy. 408.842.1625.

Day Out With Thomas
The only Northern California appearance of Thomas the Tank Engine. The day includes rides, storytelling, puppet shows and more. Jul 27-29 and Aug 3-5; call for times and prices. Roaring Camp, Graham Hill Road, Felton. 866.468.7630.

Fourth of July

Day on the Meadow
A warm-up for the Festival for Independence featuring live music from local and national acts. Jul 3, call for details. Discovery Meadow, San Carlos Street at Woz Way, downtown San Jose. 408.294.2100, ext. 444. www .festivalforindependence.com.

July 3 Celebration
Grammy-nominated swing act Big Bad Voodoo Daddy takes the stage at Stanford Lively Arts' annual pre-Independence Day celebration, preceded by a picnic and followed by a fireworks spectacular. Jul 3, 5:30pm; $22-$44. Frost Amphitheater, Stanford University. 650.725.ARTS. livelyarts.stanford.edu.

Fourth of July Celebration
Including a Patriotic Sing Festival and Street Dance on Sunday, and a pancake breakfast, 5K run, parade and fireworks on America's birthday. Jul 3-4, times vary; free. Various locations, downtown Morgan Hill. 408.779.3387. www.mhidi.com.

All-City Picnic and Fireworks
This annual event includes family-friendly events such as a petting zoo and carnival games, plus a pancake breakfast, a picnic and live entertainment. A fireworks display ends the day at dusk. Jul 4, 8am-5pm; free. Central Park, 909 Kiely Blvd, Santa Clara. 408.615.3140.

Cupertino Fourth of July
The city hosts a day of events, including a pancake breakfast, parade, community sing-along, games and live entertainment, and ends the day with a bang, setting off a fireworks display. Jul 4, all day; call for times and prices. Various locations, Cupertino. 408.777.3110.

July 4th in Los Gatos
The city of cats hosts a full day of fun, beginning with an "All American Picnic and Games," and continuing with music from the San Jose Wind Symphony, free cake and ice cream, bingo and lemonade and a barbecue, and concluding with dancing to the Hit Men. Jul 4, all day; free. 110 E. Main St, Los Gatos. 408.354.9300.

America Festival for Independence
Celebrate the diverse cultures that make up San Jose through live music, entertainment and activities—not to mention fireworks. Produced as a benefit for the Emergency Housing Consortium. Jul 4, noon-11pm; fireworks at 9:30pm; free. Discovery Meadow, San Carlos Street and Woz Way, San Jose. 408.294.2100, ext. 444.

Spirit of Watsonville
This annual event includes a pancake breakfast and parade. Jul 4, 8am-5pm; free. Downtown Watsonville. 831.728.6183.

Saratoga Independence Day
Participate in community events and watch the annual parade. Jul 4, 10am; free. Azule City Park, 12777 Goleta Ave, Saratoga. 408.252.7447.

Redwood City Independence Day Parade and Celebration
This 68th annual celebration includes the largest Independence Day parade in Northern California, a pancake breakfast, arts and crafts booths, entertainment and fireworks. Jul 4, 10am-10pm; free. Brewster and Winslow streets, Redwood City. 650.599.3428. www.parade.org.

World's Shortest Parade
Just about everyone shows up to display their patriotism, send a political message or poke fun. Preceded by a pancake breakfast and followed by a party in the park. Jul 4, 10am; free. Soquel and State Park drives, Aptos. 831.688.1467. www .aptoschamber.com.

East Bay BBQ Competition
Start off the day with an old-fashioned barbecue competition, including various vendors, live entertainment and dancing. Jul 4, 10am-4pm. Jack London Square, Broadway and Embarcadero, Oakland. 866.295.9853.

Fourth of July Celebration
An old-fashioned family day, including sack races, a balloon toss, hoop contests and live music. Jul 4; call for time and prices. Roaring Camp, Graham Hill and Mt. Hermon Road, Felton. 831.335.4484. www.roaringcamp.com.

USS Hornet Independence Day
Climb aboard the historic aircraft carrier for a day of live music, food, games, family activities and a view of fireworks. Jul 4, all day; call for prices. U.S.S. Hornet Museum, Pier 3, 707 W. Hornet Ave, Alameda. 510.521.8448.

Fremont Fourth of July Parade
The Historic Niles District hosts this annual patriotic parade, including pre- and post-parade events. Jul 4, 10am-noon; free. Niles Boulevard, Fremont. 510.676.7523.

Independence Day at Ardenwood
Featuring patriotic music, games, races and a steam engine, simulating a traditional Independence Day in the early 1900s. Jul 4, 10am-4pm; call for prices. Ardenwood Historic Farm, 34600 Ardenwood Blvd, Fremont. 510.796.0663.

Monterey 4th of July
A parade down Alvarado Street, barbecue picnic, live music and a fireworks display over Monterey Bay. Jul 4, 10am-5pm festivities, 9:15pm fireworks; free. Colton Hall, Pacific Street between Madison and Jefferson streets, downtown Monterey. 831.646.3866.

Old-Fashioned Independence Day Celebration
Step back 100 years and celebrate Independence Day as it was in 1906. Includes a noon parade, games, children's crafts, music and living history demonstrations. Jul 4, 11am-4pm; free, plus day-use parking fee. Wilder Ranch, off Highway 1, north of Santa Cruz. 831.426.0505.

Living History Day
Time travel back to 1840s Monterey through hands-on history exhibits and activities, such as rope making, leather stamping, tortilla making, children's games and crafts. Jul 4, noon-4pm; call for prices. Cooper-Molera Adobe, 525 Polk St, Old Monterey. 831.649.7118.

26th Annual Chili Cook-Off and Summer Festival
Spice up the Fourth with local band Johnny Super, a wide variety of food vendors, kids' activities and, of course, a heated chili competition. Jul 4, noon-5pm; free. Mitchell Park, 600 E. Meadow Dr, Palo Alto. 650.463.4921.

July Fourth Celebration
Milpitas celebrates our country's Independence Day with an afternoon pool party and a concert and fireworks display in the evening. Jul 4, 1-5pm and 8-9:30pm; free. Milpitas Sports Complex, 1325 E. Calaveras Blvd, Milpitas. 408.586.3210.

Red, White & Blues Festival
Featuring Tom Rigney and Flambeau, Zydeco Flames and others, including local Bay Area blues acts. Jul 4, noon-8pm; free with fair admission. Alameda County Fair, 4501 Pleasanton Ave, Pleasanton. 510.836.2227. www .bayareabluessociety.net.

San Jose Wind Symphony
The symphony performs a program titled "This Land Is Your Land." Bring a chair or blanket for this outdoor concert. Jul 4, 1:30pm; free. Los Gatos High School lawn, 20 High School Ct, Los Gatos. 408.927.7597. www.sjws.org.

Pier 39 Fourth of July
Big Band Beat and Tainted Love perform, followed by an extravagant fireworks display. Jul 4, 1-9:30pm; free. Pier 39, San Francisco.

Scotts Valley Fourth of July
A day of live music, fun for kids, food and more. Plus a fireworks display in the evening. Jul 4, 3pm doors, 9:15pm fireworks; $7. Scotts Valley Community Center and Skypark, 361 Kings Village Road, Scotts Valley. 831.438.3251

Old-Fashioned Fourth of July
Enjoy live music, food, games and a fireworks show synchronized to music. Jul 4, 4-10:30pm; $2-$10. Robertson Park, 3500 Robertson Park Road, Livermore. 925.373.5700

Spirit of America
Church on the Hill hosts this annual festival with fun and games for the family, including bounce houses and face painting, and food from Armadillo Willy's, Taco Bravo and more, concluding with a fireworks display. Jul 4, 5-10pm; $2. Church on the Hill, 500 Sands Dr, San Jose. 408.265.9000.

Fourth of July Spectacular
The San Francisco Symphony, conducted by guest Randall Fleischer, presents "The Best of Broadway" and a fireworks show. Pre-concert entertainment includes magicians and face painters. Jul 4, 5pm doors, 8pm show; $15-$29.50. Shoreline Amphitheatre, 1 Amphitheatre Pkwy, Mountain View. 408.998.TIXS.

Gilroy Fireworks Salute
Fireworks color the skies above the garlic mecca. Jul 4, 9:15pm. Gilroy High School, 750 10th St, Gilroy. www.ci.gilroy.ca.us.

August

Spirit West Coast
Three days celebrating Christ and the Christian life, with sermons, comedians, workshops and a horde of Christian bands, including Newsboys, Switchfoot, Third Day and tobyMac. Aug 2-4, times vary; $27-$120. Laguna Seca Raceway, Monterey. 831.443.5399.

Santa Clara County Fair
This year's fair opens with live music from Sha Na Na and fireworks and includes other performances from Elvin Bishop, Starship with Mickey Thomas and the Gregg Rolie Band. Aug 1, 4-10pm and Aug 2-5, 10am-10pm; $5-$20, children 5 and under free, plus $8 parking. Santa Clara County Fairgrounds, 344 Tully Road, San Jose. 408.494.3100.

Swing Time in the Square
A street dance with the Joe Sharino Band. Aug 3, 7-9:30pm. Homestead and Benton streets, Santa Clara. 408.615.2219.

Monterey Bay Strawberry Festival
This year's sweetly seedy fest includes the addition of a "Jest in Time" children's circus. Aug 3-5; call for times; free. Ramsay Park, Watsonville. 831.566.1230.

Fremont Festival of the Arts
With arts and crafts booths, live music, a kids' zone, a firefighters' combat challenge, food and wine. Aug 4-5, 10am-6pm; free. Paseo Padre Parkway and Mowry Avenue, Fremont.

Cabrillo Music Art, Food & Wine Festival
Two days of world music and dance, art, food and local vintners. Held with the Jul 30-Aug 12 music festival. Aug 4-5, 11am-8pm; free. Santa Cruz Civic Auditorium street front, 307 Church St, Santa Cruz. 831.426.6966.

Fiesta Hispana
Live music, food and more representing Latin America's cultural traditions and flavors. Aug 5, all day; free with park admission. Paramount's Great America, 4701 Great America Pkwy, Santa Clara. 408.986.1776, ext. 8858.

Vintage Vehicles and Family Festival
An extravaganza of one-of-a-kind vehicles, including antique cars, classics, hot rods, bicycles and motorcycles, plus family activities. Aug 5, 10am-4pm; call for prices. El Camino Park, across from the Stanford Shopping Center, Palo Alto. 650.321.1004.

Comcast San Jose Jazz Festival
Featuring more than 80 acts performing in a multiplicity of forms and subgenres of jazz. Aug 9-12; see website for details; $5. Downtown San Jose. www.sanjosejazz.org.

San Mateo County Fair
Traditional exhibits, animals, rides and entertainment. Aug 10-19; call for times and prices. San Mateo County Expo Center, 2495 S. Delaware St, San Mateo. 650.574.3247.

Festival of India
Now in its 15th year, this festival showcases Indian culture and heritage through a family-friendly fair with booths, dances, music, a parade and health fair. Aug 11, 9am-8pm and Aug 12, 9am-2pm; free. 39439 Paseo Padre Pkwy, Fremont. 510.909.7007.

Fiesta de Artes
Los Gatos' premier art and wine festival, featuring live bands, local talent, arts and crafts and more than 150 vendors. Aug 11-12, 10am-6pm; free. Los Gatos Town Center, Main Street, downtown Los Gatos. 408.395.8016.

Scotts Valley Art & Wine Festival
California artists and vintners share their wares at this annual event presented by Scotts Valley Chamber of Commerce. Aug 11-12; 11am-5pm; free. Skypark, 361 Kings Village Road, Scotts Valley. 831.438.1010.

International Musical Saw Festival
A chance to hear a traditional folk instruments in concert and participate in workshops and jam sessions. Aug 11, 1pm (outside Bookshop Santa Cruz) and Aug 12, 11am-4pm; free. Roaring Camp Railroad, Graham Hill Road, Felton. 831.335.4484.

California Extreme
This pinball and classic video games show is in its 11th year. Aug 11-12; call for times and prices. Parkside Hall, 160 Park Ave, San Jose. 408.390.PINS.

Monterey County Fair
"Home Grown" is this year's theme. The traditional fair includes music, dancing, food and fun for all ages. Aug 14-19, call for times; $4-$8. Monterey County Fairgrounds, 2004 Fairgrounds Road, Monterey. 831.372.5863.

California State Fair
The state capital is packed with rides, multicultural performances, live entertainment, art exhibits, agriculture displays and games. Aug 17-Sep 3; call for details. Cal Expo, 1600 Exposition Blvd, Sacramento. 916.263.FAIR.

Celebrate Milpitas
The event formerly known as the Summer Art and Wine Festival is now focused on celebrating the "crossroads of culture and technology" that is Milpitas, with live music, activities and food. Aug 18-19, 10am-6pm; free. Milpitas Boulevard, between Los Coches and Turquoise streets, Milpitas. 408.262.2613.

Civil War Days
The North and the South fight again in this re-creation event, including staged encampments with authentic sights and sounds of the day. Aug 18-19; call for details. Ardenwood Historic Farm, 34600 Ardenwood Blvd, Fremont. 510.796.0663.

Aloha Celebrity Races and Polynesian Festival
Novice racers are encouraged to participate in this outrigger canoe-racing event, which includes a celebration of island cultures. Aug 19, races at 9am, festival at 11am; free. Santa Cruz Municipal Wharf. 831.420.5273.

Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus
The longest-running circus troupe in America heads into San Jose to perform dazzling feats and daring spectacles. And what's a good circus without the clowns? Aug 22, 7:30pm; $12-$95. HP Pavilion, 525 W. San Carlos St, Downtown San Jose. 408.998.TIXS.

Harvest Festival and Grape Stomp
Along with the grape stomp contest, the winery hosts a salami toss and botched-up bocce ball, plus live music and a barbecue. 21+. Aug 25, 2:30-9:30pm; $45-$55. Guglielmo Winery, 1480 E. Main Ave, Morgan Hill. 408.779.2145.

Palo Alto Festival of the Arts
Several hundred arts and craftspeople come together at this community extravaganza. Aug 25-26, 10am-6pm; free. University Avenue, downtown Palo Alto. 650.324.3121.

September

Mountain View Art and Wine Festival
Beer and wine, live music, arts and crafts vendors and children's activities. Sep 8-9, 10am-6pm; free. Castro Street, Mountain View. 650.968.8378.

Capitola Art and Wine Festival
Fine art, wine, music and food by the sea. Sep 8-9, 10am-6pm; free. Stockton Avenue and Esplanade, downtown Capitola. 831.475.6522.

Ghirardelli Square Chocolate Festival
This chocoholic's dream event features chef demonstrations, tastings, live entertainment and kids' activities. Sep 8-9, noon-5pm; free. 900 N. Point St, San Francisco. 415.398.5655.

Renaissance Faire
Enter a world of music, history, excitement and laughter, with theater, wine tasting, food and arts. Saturdays and Sundays, Sep 8-Oct 14, times vary; $10-$35. Casa de Fruta, 10031 Pacheco Pass Hwy, Hollister. 408.847.FAIR.

Los Altos Summer Community Picnic
Join neighbors and strangers alike for this day of live entertainment, a bocce ball tournament, a classic car show, art and more. Sep 9, 11am-3pm; free. Civic Center, San Antonio Road and Hillview Avenue, Los Altos. 408.947.2790.

To Life! A Jewish Cultural Street Festival
Now in its ninth year, this festival highlights facets of the Jewish culture, including music, dancing, art and food. Sep 9, 11am-6pm; free. California Avenue between El Camino and Park, Palo Alto.

Antique Autos in History Park
Autos built in before 1946 will be on display along with early-day gas engines, historic fire equipment, classic clothing and vintage motorcycles. Sep 9, noon-5pm; free. Kelley Park, Senter Road, San Jose. 408.918.1050.

Vintage Santa Clara
An annual wine and food celebration. Sep 9, 1:30-5pm; call prices. Mission Gardens, Santa Clara University. 408.554.6800.

Santa Cruz County Fair
Games, rides, displays and some livestock. Sep 11-16; call for details. County Fairgrounds, 2601 E. Lake Ave, Watsonville. 831.724.5671.

Ohlone Day
Celebrate the Ohlone People through traditional dance, demonstrations, stories, songs and crafts. Sep 15, 10am-4pm; free. Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park, off Highway 9, Felton. 831.335.7077.

Bark in the Park
This is a festival for the entire family, including the dog, with performances, demonstrations and live music. Sep 15, 10am-5pm; free. William Street Park, William and South 16th streets, San Jose. www.nagleepark.org/bark.

Aki Matsuri
Kids' events, food and Japanese entertainment. Sep 15, noon-5pm; free. Wesley United Methodist Church, 566 N. Fifth St, San Jose. 408.285.0367.

Celebrate Saratoga!
Dance your way to various food and wine vendors while listening to live music acts. Plus a kids' zone. Sep 15, 5:30-10:30pm; free. Big Basin Way, downtown Saratoga. 408.867.0753.

Annual Luau
Featuring all-you-can-eat Hawaiian food, a hula show, raffles and vendors. Sep 15, 6-9pm; $15-$35. I.F.E.S. Hall, 432 Stierlin Road, Mountain View. 408.712.4464.

Cupertino Jubilee
Browse arts and crafts booths, sample beers and wines and listen to live music. Plus a kids' area with rides, games and hands-on activities. Sep 15-16, 10am-6pm; free. Community Hall, 10350 Torre Ave, Cupertino. 408.243.1771.

Santa Clara Art and Wine Festival
This fundraiser event features talents from local and regional artists, international foods, more than 175 booths and a kids' area. Sep 15-16, 10am--5pm; free. Central Park, 969 Kiely Blvd, Santa Clara. 408.615.3140.

Fiestas Patrias Festival and Parade
Celebrating Mexican Independence Day with live entertainment, art and crafts and more. Sep 16, 9-11am parade, 10am-6pm festival; free. Discovery Meadow, West San Carlos Street and Woz Way, San Jose. 408.288.9470.

Almaden Valley Art and Wine Festival
A fundraiser for local organizations and schools, now in its 31st year, including arts and crafts, entertainment and a kids' area. Sep 16, 10am-6pm. Almaden Lake Park, Coleman Road and Almaden Expressway, San Jose.

California Poets Festival
Poetry Center San Jose hosts this event featuring readings and lectures from various poets. Sep 22, 10am-4:30pm; free. History Park, 1650 Senter Road, San Jose. www.californiapoetsfestival.org.

Cajun/Zydeco Festival
Featuring down-home Louisiana-style music and food. Sep 22, 10am-7pm; call for prices. Ardenwood Historic Farm, Fremont. 510.635.0135.

Polish Festival
St. Albert Polish-American Roman Catholic Pastoral Mission hosts festival, including live polka music, folk dancing and Polish food. Sep 23, 11am-5pm; call for prices. St. Albert's, 10250 Clayton Road, San Jose. 408.251.8490.

Labor Day Weekend

Belmont Greek Festival
A three-day all-Greek affair including Greek food, music, dancing, folk singing, a live play, children's activities and more. Sep 1-3, noon-10pm; $2.50-$5. Greek Orthodox Church of the Holy Cross, 900 The Alameda, Belmont. 650.591.4447.

Sand Sculpture Contest
Dozens gather to carve, scrape, dump and mold sand into works of art. This contest helps kick off the annual Begonia Festival. Sep 1, 8:30am-noon, with judging beginning at 1pm; free. Capitola Beach, Capitola. 831.476.3566.

Millbrae Art and Wine Festival
Food and drinks, plus music, arts and crafts and a kids' stage. Sep 1-2, 10am-5pm; free. Broadway Avenue, downtown Millbrae. 650.697.7324. www.miramarevents.com/millbrae.

Great Train Robberies
Shootouts, duels and other blazing re-enactments will demonstrate why the West was wild. Sep 1-2; call for times and prices. Roaring Camp Railroad, Graham Hill Road, Felton. 831.335.4484.

Comcast Art and Soul Oakland
Three days of music, food, art, poetry and entertainment in downtown Oakland. Sep 1-3, 11am-6pm; $5 general, children under 12 free. Frank H. Ogawa Plaza, 14th and Broadway, Oakland. 510.444.CITY.

Tapestry Arts Festival
A huge array of arts, crafts and live entertainment with more than 350 booths. Sep 1-2, 10am-6pm and Sep 3, 10am-5pm; free. San Carlos and Santa Clara streets, San Jose. 408.494.3590. www.tapestryarts.org.

Begonia Festival
This nautical parade of begonia-festooned floats on Sunday is a beachside tradition. The best viewing starts Sunday at 1pm from Cliff Avenue, Wharf and Stockton roads. Other activities include group volleyball, live music in the park and rowboat races. Plus an outdoor film showing kicking off festivities on Aug 31. Sep 1-Sep 3, all day; free. Various locations, Capitola. 831.476.3566.

Ardenwood Rail Fair
Take a ride on America's only scheduled horse-drawn train. Explore local railroad history, visit rail and hobo camps, see model railroads in action and give a hand car a try. Sep 1-3; call for times and prices. Ardenwood Historic Farm, Fremont. 510.635.0135.


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