Press Releases

Excursions Calendar

Friday July 30, 2004



Carmel Bach Festival through Aug. 8 at various locations. Individual events range from free to $50. Average price for major concerts is $40; daytime intermezzo recitals are $15. 831-624-2046.  


The Heart of the Forest Renaissance Faire at Stafford Lake Park, on Sat. and Sun. from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. The festival continues on weekends in August through Aug. 15. Costumed players perform at theaters, in the lanes, and hawk their wares from market stalls. Fully-armored jousters compete twice daily. Advance tickets are $15 for adults and $6 for children. 415-897-4555. 


Wine Country Film Festival at Sequoia Grove Vineyards. Sat. from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m., $20, playing films, “The Passion of the Clown,” “Beat Angel: In the Spirit of Jack Kerouac,” and a live performance by Vincent Balestri. Sun. from 6:30 p.m. to 11 p.m. The festival continues through Aug. 15. 707-935-FILM. 


Jerry Garcia Birthday Celebration on Sun. at the McLaren Park Amphitheater. Events last from 11 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. and includes Paul Taylor and The Mountain Boys and comedien Dan St. Paul. Come dance and celebrate this legendary local hero. Free admission 


Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music from Aug. 1 -15 at the Santa Cruz Civic Auditorium in downtown Santa Cruz. The festival will feature violinist Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg, grammy award-winning guitarist Sharon Isbin, and the award winning Festival Orchestra. For tickets call 831-420-5260. 


Sonoma County Fair and Exposition, at the fairgrounds in Santa Rosa off Hwy. 12, from July 27 to Aug. 9. Entertainment includes a Blues Festival, Bluegrass Festival, Fiesta, Carnival, events for children, including magic shows and Harry Potter events, and livestock and flower shows. Tickets are $2-$7 single admission. 707-545-4200. 



Festa Italiana Italian Cultural Society sponsors a two day food and music extravaganza bringing the best Italian restaurants and clubs together to create all your favorites, from Pizza and Pasta, to Cannoli and Tiramisu. Festival Park, 3730 Auburn Boulevard. 916-482-5900. 


Carmel Valley Fiesta A family-oriented fiesta, on Sat. and Sun. with games, train ride, dog show, parade, arts and crafts, continuous entertainment, raffles, good food and a Saturday Night Street Dance. 831-659-2038. 


Crockett Art and Wine Festival on Sat. and Sun. from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Loring Ave. between Rolph and West Sts. Artist booths, food and beverages, and entertainment stage with music and dance. Resident artists will also be holding open studios. 800-310-6363. 


Rally and March to the Livermore Nuclear Weapons Lab Meet at 1 p.m. at Jackson Elementary School, 554 Jackson Ave. for a rally and march to the Livermore Livermore Lab - demand an end to nuclear weapons. Tell them to clean up their mess. To volunteer call 925-443-7148. 


Monterey Scottish Games & Celtic Festival on Sat. and Sun. in Toro County Park, between Salinas and Monterey Peninsula on Hwy 68. Entertainment includes pipe bands, Irish step dancing, Scottish athletic competitions including the famous Caber Toss, Saturday night Ceilidah and much more. Admission is $6-$15. 831-647-631. 


Sterling Vineyards and Turner Classic Movies present “The Wizard of Oz” on Sat. Grounds open at 7 p.m. for picnicing with movie at dusk. Screenings are free, suggested ticket donations: $8 adults, $5 children. Proceeds benefit farm-workers through Napa Community Foundation. “Roman Holiday” will be shown on Aug. 28, and “Vertigo” on Sept. 18. Call 800-726-6136.  


The Steinbeck Festival begins Aug. 5, at the National Steinbeck Center and additional locales in author John Steinbeck’s hometown. The festival features four days of speakers, walking and bus tours, panel discussions, and theater, with an emphasis on “Steinbeck and the Environment” and “The Politics of Steinbeck.” Single sessions are $17, and a four day passport is $75 or $60 for members of the National Steinbeck Center. 831-775-4721. 


San Jose Jazz Festival from Aug. 5 - 8 Performances on seven stages with Ray Barretto, Peter Bernstein, Dena DeRose, Dave Ellis, Pete Escovedo with special guests Ray Vega and Justo Almario, Insight, Mark Levine Pascal & Remy LeBeouf, Virginia Mayhew, Oakland Interfaith Gospel Choir, John Sanots & Machete and many more. Events include master classes, jam sessions and films. 408-998-8497. 


The American Craft Council Show displaying contemporary crafts from more than 300 artists from across the country in the Fort Mason Center from August 6 - 8. Fri. and Sat. 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sun. 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission for one day is $10 and $18 for a two-day pass. American Craft Council members and children under 12 are admitted free. 


Santa Clara County Fair on the Fairgrounds in San Jose, Aug. 6 - 8. Entertainment includes events for children, music by The Syndicate of Sound, Roy Rogers and Norton Buffalo with Tom Rigney and Flambeau, The Blues Box Bayou Band and Freddie Fender. Destruction Derby on Sun. at 5 p.m. 408-494-3247. 

AUGUST 14-15 


Sacred Arts and Music Faire, Sat. and Sun., 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. at the Gold Country Fairgrounds. Music from many world traditions, workshops, and presentations including yoga, belly dancing, crystal bowl healing, storytelling, kids activities, and peace song sing alongs. Tickets are $15 advance, $20 at gate per day. 530-613-1865. 


31st Rolex Monterey Historic Automobile Races at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, Monterey. The Monterey Historics bring out the best of racing’s past from rare pre-war racers adorned with nameplates like Bugatti and Alfa-Romeo to 70s and 80s rocket ships from Lola and McLaren. 800-327-SECA 


The Small Brewers Festival of California Sat. and Sun. behind the Tied House on 954 Villa St., with live music including the California Repercussions Marching Jazz Band, Groovy Judy, Frank Lima on the accordian, Johnny Fabulous Band and many more. Added this year is a commercial beer competition where the participants will be invited to submit their beers for a friendly competition. 


Napa Town and Country Fair from Aug. 11 - 15, noon to 10 p.m. Entertainment, including 4-H Horse Show, Charreada Mexicana, and Destruction Derby, plus wine tasting, and livestock exhibitions. Music features KC and the Sunshine Band, War, Tracy Lawrence, The Coasters and John Cafferty. Cost is $4-$7. 707-253-4900. 


Pittsburg Scottish Renaissance Festival in Buchanan Park with archery tournaments, sword fighting, Queen’s Court, Highland dances and much more. 925-209-3598.  


The 10th Annual Arts and Crafts Show and Sale at the Concourse Exhibition Center, 8th and Brannan St. on Sat. from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and on Sun. from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Over 150 exhibitors and artisans with merchandise from the Arts and Crafts era, including Art Nouveau, Native American, and California Rancho. Exhibits, lectures, and booksigning. Admission $8. 


San Mateo County Fair from Aug 13 - 22 at the San Mateo County Expo Center. The fair’s 70th anniversary theme is “A Tropical Paradise” and features commercial exhibitors, artisans and craftspeople, food, including a chili cook-off and guest chefs, and music, including Garratt Wilkin and the Parrotheads, The Ben Taylor Band, Tower of Power and The Village People. 650-574-3247. 


Gravenstein Apple Fair in Ragle Ranch Park on Sat. from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sun. from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. with music stages, children’s corner, farm animal exhibits, arts and crafts, apple pie eating contest, apple pie baking contest, beer and wine tasting, and more! Admission $4-$8. 800-207-9464. 


Sonora Blues Festival on Sat. at Mother Lode Fairgrounds. Gates open at 10 a.m. and music starts at 11 a.m. There will be concerts on three stages, and dancing at the end of the day. There will be fans, air conditioning (inside) and water misting units to keep cool! 209-533-3473. 


Sutter Creek Ragtime Festival from Aug. 13-15 with performers Nan Bostick, Tom Brier, Carl Sonny Leyland, Stevens Price, “Ah Sweet Sue” Jan Price and her “Dill Pickle Melodrama” crew, Keith Taylor and more. At Sutter Creek Ice Cream Emporium. All venues within two blocks along Main St., Hwy 49. Admission is $10-$40. including camp sites and RV facilities. 209-223-0867. 


Redwood Empire Fair at the Redwood Empire Fairgrounds from Aug. 12 - 15 with livestock exhibitions, demolition derby, cooking contests, and much more. 707-462-FAIR. 

AUGUST 21-22 


Jewish Food Festival & Crafts Faire on Sun. from 10:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. The Jewish village of Anatevka comes alive with music, crafts, and Jewish foods. Entertainment will include performances by singers Alisa Fineman and Kimball Hurd as well as the Ya Elah Spiritual music ensemble. Shuttle service will be offered from Carmel Middle School. 831-624-2015. 


Upper Sac River Jazz and Blues Festival on Sun. at Dunsmuir City Park and Botanical Garden, featuring Bammy nominee guitarist Mimi Fox and her trio, Good Bait and others. Admission is $15. Parking is free. 800-386-7684.  


SolFest at the Real Goods solar Living Center, on Sat. and Dun. from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. with a green marketplace, workshops, organic food and family fun. From 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sat. and Sun. 707-744-2017. 


Monterey County Fair at the Monterey County Fairgrounds from Aug. 17 - 22, from 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. with livestock exhibitions, a wine-tasting booth, amusement midway and delicious foods, plus great live entertainment. 831-372-5863. 


California State Fair from Aug. 21 to Sept. 6 from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. The festival will feature competitions, activities, exhibits, and presentations, including cooking competitions, kitchen demos, a baseball exhibit, and youth art graffitti competitions. Also a rodeo, horse racing and a mid-way. Admission $6-$12. Held at 1600 Exposition Blvd. 916-263-FAIR.  


Historic Railroad Square Association Heritage Days from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Historic Railroad Square. Celebrating the 100th Anniversary of Santa Rosa’s Historic Train Depot, with live music, art show, vintage car show, cooking demonstrations by local chefs and much more. 707-578-8474.  

AUGUST 28- 29 


Sierra Blues Benefest and Crafts Fair on Sat. from noon to 10 p.m. featuring ten blues bands including Mitch Woods, Annie Sampson & Her Band, NiteCry, Hamilton Loomis, Little Sister & The Bad Intentions and many more. Plus many crafts vendors and activities for children. Admission is free. 530-268-9166. 


Bodega Bay Seafood, Art and Wine Festival Sat. and Sun. from 11 a.m. with 12 restaurants, 85 art and craft vendors, 25 wineries, 13 micro-breweries, music, activities for children including pony rides, rock climbing, magicians and jugglers. Also on Sunday. Held at the Chanslor Ranch, on Highway 1, one mile north of Bodega Bay. Admission is $8 adults, $6 seniors, under 12 free, dogs $1. Benefits Chanslor Wildlife’s wetlands conservation and education programs. 707-824-8404. 


Cotati Accordian Festival on Sat. and Sun. from 9:30 a.m. With the O’Grady Family, Trio Amore & Ron Borelli, Polkanomics, The Great Morgani, Soughdough Slim and the Steve Balich Polka Band performing for dancing. Tickets are $15-$25. On West Sierra Ave. exit, off Hwy 101, 50 miles north of the GG Bridge. 707-664-0444. 


16th Annual Greek Festival An ethnic festival featuring authentic Greek food, live music, traditional dancing, a taverna and crafts. 831-424-4434. 


Golden Gate Renaissance Fair in Golden Gate Park on Sat. and Sun. from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Over 1,000 actors bring to life the times of Queens Jane and Mary Tudor and Princess Elizabeth. The festival will feature staged combat, music, song, dance, drama and comedy. 415- 354-1773. 


Vallejo Shoreline Jazz, Art & Wine Festival from Aug. 26 -29 from 11:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Outdoors and inside The Waterbarge Restaurant and Tavern. Featuring Delbert Bump Organ Big Band, Jeff Chambers Quintet, Bobby Hutcherson Sextet, Ron Tyler & New Directions, Dee Daniels, Kitty Margolis Quartet, and many, many more. Tickets are $15 for one day, $25 for two. Proceeds benefit local community organizations. 707-642-3653. www.vallejojazzfestival.comu