Arts & Events

New: DON'T MISS THIS: 4th of July and More

By Dorothy Snodgrass
Tuesday July 03, 2012 - 10:31:00 AM

"Oh, say, can you see by the dawn's early light?" This, of course, is our National Anthem, sung off-key at baseball games and political rallies. But then it is hard to sing this one. Forget the "bombs bursting in air." Instead, be thinking of ways to celebrate the 4th of July weekend -- bring out your American flag, banned fireworks and cold watermelon. Relaxing in a lawn chair and a hefty slice of watermelon, you might review some of the patriotic activities occurring in the bay area. 

"Fiddler on the Roof," Woodminster Ampitheatre, Joaquin Miller Park, July 13-15 & 19-22, 8 p.m. Kids come free. (510) 531-9597. 

"Sweeney Todd," Music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, July 12- August 11. Eureka Theatre, 215 Jackson St., S.F. 

Temescal 9th Annual Street Fair, Sunday, July 8th, Noon-6 p.m. Live music, food and drinks, fine crafts and more. 

Jack's Night Market, July 6, 6 p.m.-10 p.m. Celebrating Oakland First Fridays. On the waterfront at Jack London Square. Enjoy a captivating evening filled with merriment and verve. Oakland crafts, artisans and eclectric shopping bazaar. Hop on free Broadway Shuttle to Jack London Square. 

Fourth of July at the Berkeley Marina, 210 University Avenue., Berkeley. The festival features live music throughout the day, a medley of circus arts, drum performances, pony rides and explosive fireworks viewable at 9:30 pm. from the Berkeley pier and along the waterfront. (510) 548-5335. 

Alameda County Fair, 4501 Pleasanton Ave., Pleasanton. You can catch events like the hot dog eating contest, the diaper derby and barbecued delights. Through July 20th. Tues-Thur. 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.; July 11 a.m. - 9 p.m. $6-10. Kid under six free. (925-426-7559.) 

Summer Beats Concert Series, every other Saturday at Center Court, South Shore Center West, Alameda. Kicking off with John Lee Hooker, Jr. on Wednesday, July 4th, with future performances b Zydeco Flames, Tito Garcia, California Beach Boys, and Pure Ecstasy. Free parking. 

Smokey Robinson with the San Francisco Symphony. With his satin voice and effortless song style, Smokey Robinson is one of the most beloved and influential singers the history of pop music. Now he comes to Davies Symphony Hall to perform with the San Francisco Symphony, Thursday, July 5th at 7:30 p.m. (415) 864-6000. 

Oakland Art & Soul, August 4 & 5. Oakland artist, Taro Hattori. With a background in theatre setting design, Hattori creates installations, telling stories that are activated by the presence of viewers. 

"Emotional Creature," a new play by Eve Ensler, the creator of "The Vagina Monologues," now through July 15, Berkeley Rep. Under 30? Tickets half price. (510) 647-2949. 

Michael Feinstein (if you're willing to go to Reno, Nevada). July 14, John Ascuaga's Nugget. (800) 648-1177. 

Napa Valley, Festival del Sole, July 13-22. 24 hour plays (Naomi Watts, Liev Screiber) Russian National Orchestra and Dancers from the Bolshoi Ballet. or 1-800-FDS-Napa. 

"Truffaldino Says No," a commedia dell-arte update by Ken Slattery, a Dublin playwright. Shotgun Players, Previews Saturday, July 5. Opens July 6 through 22nd. Ashby Stage, 1901 Ashby Avenue. $18-25. 

Wishing you all a safe and sound July 4th!