Marin Weekend Family Fun for August 18, 19 & 20

August 18, 2017

Chileno Valley
Meet Daniel Tiger and ride the train at the Bay Area Discovery Museum's Transportation Day on Saturday.

Here are our picks for great events and activities for children and families this weekend. Find more events for the whole week in Marin and beyond in our Family Events Calendar.

Friday, August 18

  • Mom & Baby Yoga
    Pomegranate, San Anselmo
    Friday, 11 am

    Enjoy your baby, reconnect with your body, and meet other new moms in our postnatal mama and baby yoga class. Class is most successful with pre-crawling babies but all are welcome to try out a class and discuss exceptions with the instructor. We want mamas to be able to get out of the house, meet other moms, and enjoy the support and exercise of a yoga class. Cost: $23 for drop-in class. Sign-up online here. Location: 25 Tamalpais Avenue, San Anselmo. For more info, visit their website.
  • Children's Series: Non Stop Bhangra
    Yerba Buena Gardens, San Francisco
    Friday, 11 am & 12:15 pm

    This free event is part of the Children's Garden Series at Yerba Buena Gardens in San Francisco. A passport to Bollywood for kiddies. Non Stop Bhangra celebrates the beautiful and vibrant spirit of Bhangra, a traditional Punjabi folk music and dance.Free. For more info, visit their website.
  • Children's Room End of Summer Party
    Mill Valley Public Library - SmartGarden
    Friday, 2:30–4 pm

    Celebrate the end of summer with your friends and library staff under the redwood trees. Crafts, bubbles, face painting, music and more! SmartGarden. Free.  Location: 375 Throckmorton Avenue, Mill Valley. For more info, visit their website.
  • Picnics on the Plaza
    Town Hall Lawn, San Anselmo
    Friday, 5–8 pm

    Come on downtown to San Anselmo for Picnics on the Plaza on six Friday evenings this summer: Grab dinner-to-go at a local restaurant, purchase food at the event, or pack a picnic and dine with old and new friends at the plaza. Enjoy live entertainment and activities; it's great, music, food and family fun! Location: 525 San Anselmo Avenue, Town Hall Lawn, San Anselmo. For more info, visit their website.
  • Friday Nights at the de Young
    de Young Museum, San Francisco
    Friday, 5–8:45 pm

    Friday Nights at the de Young are after-hours art happenings that include a mix of music, dance and theater performances, film screenings, panel discussions, lectures, artist demonstrations, hands-on art activities, and exhibition tours. The café offers a delicious prix-fixe menu and specialty cocktails, and the Hamon Tower observation level is open until 8 pm. For more info, visit their website.
  • Broadway Under the Stars: Fascinating Rhythm
    Jack London State Park, Glen Ellen
    Friday–Sunday, 5 pm
    Are you ready to be invigorated with a sensational blend of movement and song that celebrates the Fascinating Rhythm that keeps our hearts moving through life? Your toes will be tapping as you join us on this rousing and rhythmic journey of music and dance that will have you swaying to the beat all night long. Bring a picnic before the performance. The show begins at 7:30 pm. Tickets: $45–$149. Purchase tickets here. Location: 2400 London Ranch Road, Glen Ellen. For more info, visit their website.
  • Marinwood's Music in the Park Series
    Marinwood Park, San Rafael
    Friday, 6–8 pm

    Marinwood’s most popular event is back! Enjoy Friday evenings in the park, featuring live music with delicious food by Marinwood Market, wine and beer. This Friday:  Mitch Polzak and The Royal Deuces. Free; food, wine, and beer may be purchased. Location: 775 Miller Creek Road, San Rafael. For more info, call (415) 479-0775 or visit their website.
  • Jazz & Blues by the Bay
    Gabrielson Park, Sausalito
    Friday, 6:30–8:30 pm

    Jazz & Blues by the Bay at Gabrielson Park in Sausalito is a free event. Lawn seating available, first-come first-served. This Friday: Dr. Mojo Band (blues). For more info, visit their website.
  • Movie Night: Beauty and the Beast
    Corte Madera Community Center
    Friday, 8–10 pm
    Join us for your last weekend of summer before school is back in session for an enchanted evening viewing Bill Condon's 2017 version of Beauty and the Beast. Corte Madera Parks & Recreation invites you to enjoy a fun-filled evening with popcorn and a movie. All children must be accompanied by an adult. Chairs will be set up for viewing, but please feel free to bring you own seating arrangements as chairs are limited. Free. Location: 300 Tamalpais Drive, Corte Madera. For more info, visit their website.
  • Marin Shakespeare: The Three Musketeers
    Forest Meadows Amphitheater, San Rafael
    Friday & Saturday, 8 pm, Sunday, 4 & 8 pm

    The hot-headed D’Artagnan and his misfit musketeer mates serve the king with swashbuckling zeal through a series of dashing and exciting exploits. A comic adventure for the whole family to enjoy. One for all, and all for one! Tickets: $37 general, $34 seniors 65+, youth 25 and under $12. For more info, visit their website.

Saturday, August 19

  • Family BikeAbout
    San Francisco Zoo
    Saturday, 8:30–10 am

    Families can bring their bicycles to the Zoo for this informative one- and one-half hour, docent-led cycling tour. It’s great to be in the Zoo ahead of the crowds and watch the animals start their day. Registration includes parking and Zoo admission. Participants must bring a bicycle; the SF Zoo does not provide bicycles to rent. Cost: SFZS Members: $18, non-members $23. Children piggy-backing on their parents' bikes are free. Location: 1 Zoo Road, San Francisco. For more info, call (415) 753-7080 or visit their website.
  • Transportation Day
    Bay Area Discovery Museum, Sausalito
    Saturday, 9 am–4 pm

    Bring the kiddos for the Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood: A Grr-ific Exhibit Transportation Day for opportunities to meet and take photos with Daniel Tiger (9:30 am– 3 pm), train rides, transportation programs like trolley and straw rocket design, and and Bluegrass music performance by JimBo Trout (10:30–11:15 am, 11:30 am–12:15 pm). Free after museum admission. Loction: 557 McReynolds Rd, Sausalito. For more info, visit their website.
  • Marin Country Mart Farmers Market
    Marin Country Mart, Larkspur Landing
    Saturday, 9 am–2 pm

    Enjoy pony rides and a petting zoo for the kids from 10:30 am–2 pm, face kids' crafts from 10:30 am–1:30 pm, and live music from noon–2 pm, as well as fresh produce, prepared foods, and great local restaurants.  For more info, visit their website.
  • Festival of the Sea
    Hyde Street Pier, San Francisco
    Saturday, 10 am–5:30 pm
    This year, the Festival’s theme is “High-Tech on the High Seas: The Evolution of Maritime Culture and Technology.” Learn about capstans, the 1907 Hercules' powerplant, and other “engines that made a difference” while sampling traditional music on three stages at Hyde Street Pier. Family-friendly activities will include: knot tying; rigging, caulking, steam bending, and rope-making demonstrations; a small boat launch; sail raising; living history performers; kids craft stations; and more. Free admission. For more info, visit their website.
  • History Walk: Mt. Tamalpais Scenic Railroad
    Mill Valley
    Saturday, 10 am–2 pm

    It’s been 121 years since the ground breaking ceremony of the Mt Tamalpais Scenic Railroad. Join us for a 3.5 mile hike on the Old Railroad Grade as we discuss the history of the railroad. This event is ideal for all ages. Dress in layers and wear sturdy shoes. Don’t forget to bring water. High fire danger cancels: Call (415) 473-7191 to get an update on fire danger status and land closures. For more info, visit their website.
  • Presidio Family-Friendly Bike Ride
    Presidio Visitor Center, San Francisco
    Saturday, 10–11:30 am

    Join a Presidio Park Ranger and Presidio Trust guide on this gentle 4-mile bike ride. Roll through the history and nature of the Presidio at a family-friendly pace that's fun for all! Rent a bike from Sports Basement or bring your own. Appropriate for ages 8+. For more info, visit their website.
  • Fort Point Living History Day
    Fort Point, San Francisco
    Saturday, 10 am–5 pm

    Stop by and watch Fort Point come to life with music, marching, and the colorful uniforms of Civil War soldiers. See infantry and artillery drills and demonstrations, and learn about civilian life during the Civil War. For more info, call (415) 556-1693 or visit their website.
  • Open Cockpit Weekend: Vietnam War
    Pacific Coast Air Museum, Santa Rosa
    Saturday & Sunday, 10 am–4 pm

    Look inside these vintage aircraft, and learn about their history from the crews who have lovingly restored them. You may climb aboard selected aircraft this weekend and sit in the pilot's seat! This weekend, take a close look at some of the planes that fought the Vietnam War: the F-4C Phantom II, F-105 Thunderchief, A-4 Skyhawk, F-5 Tiger, EA-6B Prowler, A-6E Intruder, C-1A Trader, UH-1 Huey, H-34 Choctaw, RF-8 Cockpit, A-26 Invader, and HU-16 Albatross. Free after museum admission. For more info, visit their website.
  • Musical Storytime with Miss Melissa
    Copperfield's Books, Novato
    Saturday, 10:30–11am

    This is musical family fun for babies, kids and grown ups, too! Bring the crew! Come on down to Copperfield's Books and shake it up with local children's musician and Kidnermusik educator, Miss Melissa Ayotte, as she shares songs, stories and sign language. Location: 999 Grant Avenue, Novato. For more info, visit their website.
  • Stemple Creek Ranch Annual Open House & BBQ
    Tomales
    Saturday, 11 am–2 pm

    Join us for our annual Open House and BBQ. Bring the kids, friends, and neighbors for a tour of Stemple Creek Ranch, lunch featuring Stemple Creek burgers, and the beautiful scenery of West Marin. We will show you how we do things at Stemple Creek Ranch, including carbon farming, rotational grazing, and wildlife habitat creation. RSVP and ticket purchase required in advance. We will send directions and details to everyone who RSVP's. There will not be tickets for sale the day of the event. Tickets available at www.stemplecreek.com/events.
  • Festa Coloniale
    North Beach, San Francisco
    Saturday, 11 am–5 pm

    The Festa is a family oriented Italian culture and heritage event that has become a yearly treat. It is the only Italian Festa in San Francisco. This year's celebration will be held on Stockton Street between Union and Filbert streets, across from Washington Square Park and Saints Peter and Paul Church. Enjoy food, music and dance performances and a pizza toss! Free. For more info, visit their website.
  • Creative Family Fun: Build Your Bridge
    Presidio Officers' Club, San Francisco
    Saturday, 11 am–4 pm

    Drop in for imaginative craft-making based on the Presidio’s natural and cultural heritage. Featuring different crafts every weekend!
    Build Your Bridge: Do you know the length of the Golden Gate Bridge? Come learn the answer and other fun bridge facts as you design your very own San Francisco bridge. Registration not required, but preferred.
    Free. For more info, visit their website.
  • San Francisco Ice Cream Festival
    Spark Social SF, San Francisco
    Saturday, 11 am–4 pm
    Celebrate America's favorite dessert at the San Francisco Ice Cream Festival! Head to the GIANT astroturf field for sweet treats and summer festivities for the whole family! Get ready for fun in the sun with cornhole, giant connect 4, giant jenga, giant chess, lawn games, and mountains of the Bay's best ice cream—soooo much ICE CREAM!!! Admission: $5 adults, free for kids 10 and under. Location: 601 Mission Bay Boulevard North, San Francisco. For more info, visit their website.
  • Taste of Petaluma
    Downtown Petaluma
    Saturday, 11:30 am–4 pm

    A culinary walking journey of Petaluma's finest restaurants, galleries, shops, winers, breweries and food purveyors. Buy tickets and receive your map and menu showing over 50 different participants to choose from. For more info, visit their website.
  • End of Summer Party!
    Fairfax Library
    Saturday, 1–4 pm
    Join us for an outdoor party with tie-dye, weaving, live music, games & more! Everyone welcome at this free event!
  • Saturday Concerts on the Green
    Novato City Green
    Saturday, 5–7 pm

    Bring the entire family to the free outdoor summer concert. Grab a blanket, pack a picnic, and invite your friends. This Saturday: La Mixta Criolla. For more info, visit their website.
  • Free Mission Bay Movie Nights: Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory
    Spark Social SF, San Francisco
    Saturday, 5 pm

    Say hello to San Francisco's newest outdoor film series – FREE MISSION BAY MOVIE NIGHTS! Come early to grab a blanket spot on the astroturf, toss a few bean bags at the community cornhole, and pick up your gourmet picnic from 10+ of SF's favorite food trucks! Films commence shortly after sundown. Benefits UCSF Benioff Children's Hospitals. For more info, visit their website.
  • Family Overnight August
    San Francisco Zoo
    Saturday, 5:30 pm to Sunday, 10 a m

    This unique overnight is filled with fun, family-friendly activities, your evening will involve setting up camp in the Zoo, a delicious pizza dinner, meeting with a zookeeper, scrumptious snacks, and a guided nighttime Zoo tour before heading back to the campsite for more fun before bedtime. In the morning, you’ll wake to a slew of Zoo sounds before enjoying continental breakfast. Finish off the sleepover with an early morning tour as the animals wake up for the day. Children 6 years old and up. Ages 6-18 must be accompanied by an adult. Cost: SFZS Members: $90 per person; Non-members: $100 per person. Preregistration required. Order tickets here. For more info, visit their website.
  • Free Movie Night at Gerstle Park
    San Rafael
    Saturday, 7:30 pm

    Grab a blanket and some snacks and your family for a movie night under the stars. Featured movie: The Sandlot. Movie begins at dusk. Location: Clark Street & San Rafael Avenue, San Rafael. For more info, visit their Facebook page.
  • Evening at Stafford Lake Park
    Stafford Lake Park, Novato
    Saturday, 7:30–9 pm

    Join rangers for an evening of fun around the campfire! This is a family event. We’ll tell stories around the campfire of Marin’s past and sing campfire songs while we sip cocoa and eat smore’s. Be amazed as rangers start the campfire with a hand-drill! Snacks and fun are free! Don’t forget to bring your flashlight. Dress in layers and wear sturdy shoes. Park entrance fee is waived for participants. For more info, visit their website.

"Mommy and Me" Fall Classes in Marin

August 17, 2017

mommy and me class at pomegranatePomegranate Prenatal Yoga & Parent Center, San Anselmo; photo by Fluid Frame

Looking for a local "mommy and me" class for you and your little one? Here is our list of classes throughout Marin County for children and their moms, dads, or caregivers to participate in together.

Apple Walnut Bread is Delicious and Easy to Make

August 17, 2017

In the late summer we love to go apple picking at farms in Marin and Sonoma County. It's so much fun to choose and pick your own fruit, but sometimes you end up with more apples than you know what to do with. I've been trying to figure out different creative ways to use apples, since I hate to see any go to waste.

Fresh-baked apple walnut bread is delicious, easy to make and a great way to use up extra apples. It also makes the house smell amazing while it's baking. It's good as part of breakfast, as a snack, or even dessert. My kids love to get a slice in their lunchboxes, too.

Ingredients

  • 1-1/2 cups peeled, cored, and chopped apples
  • 1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cups granulated sugar

Family Hike at Phoenix Lake

August 15, 2017

Phoenix Lake

Like Tennessee Valley further to the south, Phoenix Lake is one of Marin's most popular spots for outdoor recreation. Located on Marin Municipal Water District watershed lands, Phoenix Lake sits at the base of Mt. Tamalpais near the town of Ross. It's a great place for a family hike or bike ride with small children, as the trails that lead to the lake and ring it have gentle slopes and relatively short distances that are manageable by most.

There are also numerous more challenging trails accessible from Phoenix lake that are sure to please more advanced hikers or mountain bikers. You'll see a lot of people running and walking dogs (on-leash dogs are allowed on trails) as well as hiking and mountain biking.

Sopa de Albondigas - Mexican Meatball Soup

August 14, 2017

sopa de albondigas - Mexican meatball soupWith fall coming and the evenings getting cooler, it's time to make some delicious comfort food for dinner. This classic Mexican soup features little meatballs cooked in broth with tons of fresh vegetables. It's tasty and healthy, too!

12 Favorite Marin Parks for Outdoor Birthday Parties

August 14, 2017

Birthday party parks in Marin

Having your child's birthday party at a local park has a lot of advantages: It's outdoors, there's plenty for everyone of all ages to do, and, best of all, you don't have to clean the house! Here are 12 terrific Marin parks that are perfect for parties. Our criteria were that they had to have plenty of space for games and the obligatory bounce house, group picnic areas, preferably with BBQs, and decent parking.

Here's our list in alphabetical order. Needless to say, reservations for group picnic areas must be made in advance; we've linked each park's name to its web page where you can get full contact information.

Dine in with Meal Delivery Services in Marin

August 13, 2017

Munchery meal delivery service

Like many families in Marin, we lead busy lives—so busy that sometimes important things like family meals can get lost in the shuffle. Fortunately, that's where meal delivery services come in! These local culinary life-savers provide you and your family with delicious, healthy meals as well as the opportunity to sit down together at dining table in the evening, without having to resort to fast food or some other quick solution.

Here are some of the meal delivery services that deliver to homes in Marin County. All these services deliver throughout the county (usually with the exception of West Marin) unless otherwise indicated. If we've missed your favorite, please let us know about it and we'll consider adding it to the list. With all of these services, you can place your order online via the web or a mobile app. We've personally reviewed a few of these services, so read our reviews via the links to learn more.

Free Outdoor Family Movies in Marin and the Bay Area

August 12, 2017

Film Night in the Park Marin County Summer

Summer means its time for free outdoor movies in Marin and the Bay Area, so grab your blankets and pillows, pack the picnic basket, and get ready to enjoy some family flicks al fresco. Here's our guide to free outdoor movies this summer and fall in Marin, San Francisco, and Sonoma County.

Most movies begin at dusk or around 8 pm; check the organizer's website for exact time and location. Some feature food trucks and even wine pairings. Popcorn is often offered for free!

In addition, the North Bay Mobile Drive-In screens movies on the side of the Old Hamilton Theater building in Novato; join their Meetup page to get notified about upcoming screenings.

Marin Weekend Family Fun for August 11, 12 & 13

August 11, 2017

Gravenstein Apple FairEnjoy good old fashioned family fun at this weekend's Gravenstein Apple Fair in Sebastopol.

Here are our picks for great events and activities for children and families this weekend. Find more events for the whole week in Marin and beyond in our Family Events Calendar.

Friday, August 11

  • Insect Discovery Lab
    Point Reyes Library
    Friday, 11 am–noon

    Prepare to be amazed when the Insect Discovery Lab visits the Point Reyes and Stinson Beach Libraries. Explore the fantastic lives of beetles, millipedes, tarantulas, and walking sticks at this interactive workshop. Free. Location:
    11431 State Route One, Point Reyes Station. Fore more info, visit their website.
  • Sonoma County Fair
    Sonoma County Fairgrounds
    Friday–Sunday, 11 am–11 pm

    The Sonoma County Fair offers both a classic full-scale carnival with plenty of excitement for thrill-seekers and a separate kiddie carnival area for the little ones, with scaled down thrills and lots of excitement. Carnival rides are an additional charge. Admission is $12 for ages 13 and up, $7 for children 7–12, and free for children 6 and under. For more info, visit their website.
  • Children's Garden Series: Unique Derique
    Yerba Buena Gardens, San Francisco
    Friday, noon & 2:15 pm

    This free event is part of the Children's Garden Series at Yerba Buena Gardens in San Francisco. A beloved Bay Area institution, the Unique Derique is a prince among clowns, an internationally esteemed performer who has honed a singular blend of physical comedy and hambone body percussion. For more info, visit their website.
  • End-of-Summer Reading Party with SF Bubble Guy Mike Ashe
    Creek Park, San Anselmo
    Friday, 3–4 pm
    Bring the kids for an hour of bubble fun by the San Francisco Bubble Man Mike Ashe. Free. Location: Sir Francis Drake Blvd & Center Blvd, San Anselmo. For more info, visit their website.
  • Circus Vargas
    Corte Madera
    Friday, 4:30 & 7:30 pm, Saturday & Sunday, 1, 4 & 7:30 pm

    Circus Vargas' presents its new 2017 spectacular SteamCirque! Come on a journey of fantastic proportions where children of all ages will marvel at the wacky and wonderful cast of characters that come alive in this exciting steampunk, science- fiction fantasy inspired circus odyssey. Tickets: $17–$72; under 2 free. For more info, visit their website.
  • Picnics on the Plaza
    Town Hall Lawn, San Anselmo
    Friday, 5–8 pm

    Come on downtown to San Anselmo for Picnics on the Plaza on six Friday evenings this summer: Grab dinner-to-go at a local restaurant, purchase food at the event, or pack a picnic and dine with old and new friends at the plaza. Enjoy live entertainment and activities; it's great, music, food and family fun! Location: 525 San Anselmo Avenue, Town Hall Lawn, San Anselmo. For more info, visit their website.
  • Friday Nights at the de Young
    de Young Museum, San Francisco
    Friday, 5–8:45 pm

    Friday Nights at the de Young are after-hours art happenings that include a mix of live music, dance and theater performances, film screenings, panel discussions, lectures, artist demonstrations, hands-on art activities, and exhibition tours. The café offers a delicious prix-fixe menu and specialty cocktails, and the Hamon Tower observation level is open until 8 pm. This Friday: Auricular Arrangements. For more info, visit their website.
  • Broadway Under the Stars: Fascinating Rhythm
    Jack London State Park, Glen Ellen
    Friday–Sunday, 5 pm
    Are you ready to be invigorated with a sensational blend of movement and song that celebrates the Fascinating Rhythm that keeps our hearts moving through life? Your toes will be tapping as you join us on this rousing and rhythmic journey of music and dance that will have you swaying to the beat all night long. Bring a picnic before the performance. The show begins at 7:30 pm. Tickets: $45–$149. Purchase tickets here. Location: 2400 London Ranch Road, Glen Ellen. For more info, visit their website.
  • Nostalgia Days Rod and Custom Car Show
    Downtown Novato
    Friday, 5:45–8 pm & Saturday, 10 am–5 pm

    Now in its 20th year, this celebration of hot rods, classic cars and small-town Americana is a great reason to visit downtown Novato this weekend. This free, family-friendly event kicks off with a Friday Night Cruise, then Saturday sees Downtown Novato transform into a classic car show, all the way from 1st to 7th Street on Grant Avenue. Live music by the Four Teardrops and the Deadlies. For more info, visit their website.
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