Marin Family Weekend Events for 4th of July Weekend

July 1, 2016

Here are our picks for great events and activities for children and families this Independence Day weekend. The Marin County Fair opens on June 30. Find out more about here.

Looking for a place to watch the fireworks in Marin? Check out our list of places here.

Friday, July 1

  • Marin County Fair
    Marin County Fairgrounds, San Rafael
    Friday–Monday, 11 am–11 pm

    Come to the fair for over 12,000 exhibits, carnival rides, headline entertainment, the barnyard, an international short film and video festival, nightly fireworks, and more! Admission: $20 adults, $15 children 4–12 and seniors 65+, free for children 3 and under. For more information, call (415) 473-6800 or visit their website.
  • Free Children's Garden Series: Caterpillar Puppets
    Yerba Buena Gardens, San Francisco
    Friday, 11-11:30 am & 12:15-12:45 pm

    This free event is part of the Children's Garden Series at Yerba Buena Gardens in San Francisco. Joe Leon’s Caterpillar Puppets don’t just entertain kids and parents. Like his version of the Big Bad Wolf and the Three Little Bla-bla-blas, or the shy artist mouse Amadeus who needs encouragement from the audience to fulfill his calling. Meet the artists after each show! This show will take place on the Esplanade. 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, Dance-Off: Street Dance Theater. For more info, visit their website.
  • Jazz & Blues by the Bay
    Gabrielson Park, Sausalito
    Friday, 6:30–8 pm

    Jazz & Blues by the Bay at Gabrielson Park in Sausalito is a free event. Lawn seating available (first-come first-served). This Friday:  Bobbie “Spider” Webb – blues. For more info, call (415) 289-4100 or visit their website.
  • Tam Valley's Creekside Fridays
    Tennessee Valley Cabin, Mill Valley
    Friday, 6:30–8 pm

    Bring the family, pets, chairs, and blankets to the weekly free musical event. This Friday, Second Street Band. Food available for purchase. For more info, call (415) 289-4152 or visit their website.
  • Fair Fireworks and S’more Feast
    McInnis Park, San Rafael
    Friday, 8:30–10:30 pm

    In celebration of our nation’s birthday, come see the Marin County Fair fireworks from the top of the Nike Site at McInnis Park. It is an easy uphill stroll from the skatepark parking lot to sweeping views of the bay and surrounding hills. Rangers will prepare s’mores just in time for the firework show that begins promptly at 9:30 pm. Don’t forget to bring low back chairs or a blanket. Hot chocolate and s’more fixings provided. Location: 310 Smith Ranch Road, San Rafael. For more info, visit their website.

Saturday, July 2

  • Marin Country Mart Farmers Market
    Marin Country Mart, Larkspur Landing
    Saturday, 9 am–2 pm

    Enjoy the best local and organic produce, flowers, pastured meats, seafood, organic cheeses, yogurt and milk, breads, baked goods, pasta, confections, olive oil, and brunch and lunch offerings! Kids can take a pony ride and visit the petting zoo (10 am–2 pm), try out some arts and crafts (9 am–2 pm) and listen to family music (9:30–10:30 am). For more info, visit their website.
  • Red, White and Zoo
    San Francisco Zoo
    Saturday & Sunday, 10 am–5 pm

    Celebrate 4th of July at SF Zoo! We’re highlighting “patriotic” animals naturally colored red, white and blue on 4th of July weekend. Check out Keeper Talks on animals like red panda, polar bear, and white pelican. Enjoy a family BBQ in the Depot Grill. On Saturday, the zoo partners with KQED to bring the classic red children’s character "Clifford" to cruise the Zoo, greet and take pictures with guests. Free after zoo admission. For more info, visit their website
  • 32nd Annual Fillmore Jazz Festival
    San Francisco
    Saturday & Sunday, 10 am–6 pm

    Blending art and soul in one of the country’s most unique neighborhoods, the Fillmore Jazz Festival is the largest free jazz festival on the West Coast, drawing over 100,000 visitors over the Independence Day weekend. From sunup to sundown, visitors can groove to the sounds of live music from multiple stages, browse the offerings of over 12 blocks of fine art and crafts and enjoy gourmet food and beverages. Location: Fillmore Street, between Jackson and Eddy. For more info, visit their website.
  • Builder's Challenge
    Novato Library
    Saturday, 11 am–noon

    Children of all abilities ages 4–12 are invited to build, play, engineer and destruct together. Registration is not required but space is limited to 30 people on a first-come, first-serve basis. Materials will be provided. Location: 1720 Novato Boulevard, Novato. For more info, visit their website.
  • Disney's The Little Mermaid
    Berkeley Playhouse
    Saturday, 1 & 6 pm, Sunday, noon & 5 pm

    Ariel has always dreamed of leaving her underwater kingdom to see what lies beyond the sea. When she falls in love with a handsome prince who lives on land, she's willing to give up everything to be with him. Based on the Hans Christian Andersen story and the Disney film. Tickets: $23–$60. Location: 2640 College Avenue, Berkeley. For more info, visit their website.
  • Healthy Parks, Healthy People
    Presidio of San Francisco
    Saturday, 2–4 pm

    Is getting fit difficult because you could use some motivation and change of scenery? Your National Parks can help! Join the Healthy Parks Healthy People Rangers and leaders each month as we work our way to fitness and a healthier lifestyle. Through hiking, beginner exercises and family games, you'll get to know your various National Park sites while getting those hearts and waistlines happy. Meet in front of the Presidio Visitor Center at building 36 Lincoln Boulevard. Wear comfortable exercise clothing you can move in and don't mind getting dirty. Don't forget your water bottles. RSVP: (415) 561-4323. For more info, visit their website.
  • Sun Valley to Fireworks Walk
    San Rafael
    Saturday, 8:30–10:30 pm

    Join a ranger for a nature walk to experience this unique preserve after dark. We’ll discuss nocturnal animals and things that go bump in the night! The highlight of the walk will be to enjoy the Marin County Fair fireworks from one of the best viewing spots on Open Space. Fireworks start at 9:30 pm. This event is ideal for all ages. Don’t forget to bring a flashlight. Meet at the Dan Abraham Trailhead. For more info, visit their website.
  • Fireworks over Bodega Bay
    Westside Park
    Saturday, 9:30 pm

    Fireworks show produced by Pyro Spectaculars will start at dark around 9:30 pm. The display can be seen from all around Bodega Bay. Handicap parking at Westside Park. For more information, visit their website

Sunday, July 3

  • Civic Center Farmers' Market
    Marin Civic Center, San Rafael

    Sunday, 8 am–1 pm
    There's lots of organically grown produce, breads, eggs, and fresh cut flowers, as well as live music, bounce houses, and more. This farmers' market is a great one to take the kids to. It’s located in the main Civic Center parking lot. For more info, visit their website.
  • Children's Program at Green Gulch Farm
    Green Gulch Farm Zen Center, Muir Beach
    Sunday, 10–11:30 am

    On the first Sunday of each month, the beginning of the lecture is especially for children. After a short talk, the children leave the zendo to participate in their own special programs. Activities include crafts, seasonal projects on the farm and garden, yoga, and ritual. Please check in before the program at the table near the southwest side entrance of the zendo. Suggested donation: $20 per family. Location: 1601 Shoreline Highway, Muir Beach. For more info, visit their website.
  • Free Sundays at the Asian Art Musuem
    San Francisco
    Sunday, 10 am–5 pm
    Target First Free Sundays—free general admission on the first Sunday of every month and the family programs offered on that day—are made possible by Target. Admission is granted on a first-come, first-served basis. Due to capacity restrictions, admission is not guaranteed. Location: 200 Larkin Street, San Francisco. For more info, visit their website.
  • Off the Grid: Presidio Picnic
    Presidio, Main Parade Ground in San Francisco
    Sunday, 11 am–4 pm

    Presidio Picnic offers great food, a lively atmosphere, and exciting crowds. Situated on the sprawling Main Post lawn, guests can take in the picturesque views of the bay, Golden Gate Bridge, and the historic feel of the Presidio while enjoying food and drinks from any of the market's 34 vendors. Get ready for free yoga at noon, weekly activities at the Presidio Adventures tent, a ride-share zone, biking trails, and urban hikes to beat the traffic. For more info, visit their website.
  • Songs & Stories with Megan
    Book Passage, Corte Madera
    Sunday, 11:30 am

    Megan is a children's music teacher, performer, and recording artist, offering classes and events across the north bay and San Francisco. She graduated from the Berklee College of Music in Boston with a degree in music therapy. Free. Learn more about Megan at Location: 51 Tamal Vista Blvd., Corte Madera. For more info, visit their website.
  • Stern Grove Festival: Hieroglyphics
    Sigmund Stern Grove
    , San Francisco
    Sunday, 2 pm

    The free Stern Grove Festival presents Oakland's own underground hip-hop collective, Hieroglyphics this Sunday at 2 pm. Arrive early—space is available on a first-come, first-served basis. Free admission. From noon until 1 pm before every concert, kids of all ages are invited to participate in hands-on arts projects and programs at KidStage in the West Meadow. Kids can enjoy craft-making, singing and dance lessons, games, and more! Location: 19th Avenue and Sloat Boulevard. For more info, go to
  • Summer Sunday Concerts at Piccolo Pavilion
    Old Corte Madera Square
    Sundays, 5–6:30 pm

    Bring the family to the free outdoor summer concerts at the Old Corte Madera Square. This Sunday, Luke Strand Band - (soul/r&b). Bring lawn chairs, a blanket and a picnic. For more info, visit their website.
  • Marin County Fair (see Friday for details)

Monday, July 4th

Here are a few of the fantastic 4th of July events taking place in Marin this Saturday. For a complete list of Independence Day events, parades, and fireworks displays in Marin and throughout the Bay Area, check out our article here.

  • The 64th annual Buckaroo Breakfast
    Monday, 7–10 am

    The annual Buckaroo Breakfast is a traditional part of the 4th of July festivities in Novato. Breakfast is served at the Redwood Credit Union parking lot at 1010 Grant Avenue in downtown Novato. Come enjoy eggs, pancakes, sausage, orange juice, and coffee. Hosted by the Presbyterian Church of Novato, proceeds benefit Novato Youth Center. Suggested donation: $7 for adults, $5 for kids. For more info, visit their website.
  • Independence Day Pancake Breakfast
    Monday, 8–11 am

    The Corte Madera-Larkspur festivities celebrate start off with at the 64th Annual Independence Day Pancake Breakfast—with pancakes, sausages, fruit, coffee, orange juice, and milk—at Larkspur's American Legion Twin Cities Post 313 at 500 Magnolia Avenue. The cost is $10 for adults and $5 for children 12 and under, with famous 1928 recipe gin fizzes and the Post 313 Renowned Mimosa for $5 each. Breakfast is from 8–11 am; flag raising ceremony at 7:45 am. Info: call (415) 924-6283 or visit their website.
  • Bay Area Color Dash Run
    San Rafael
    Monday, 8:30 am

    Super family friendly event and great healthy way to kick off the 4th! Location: 4th & A Street, San RafaelRegister here.
  • Novato’s Fourth of July Parade
    Downtown Novato
    Monday, 10 am

    Novato’s annual Fourth of July Parade is one of the largest in the Bay Area and begins at 10 am in downtown Novato on Grant Ave. between Reichert and 7th Avenue. Every year Novato hosts 15,000 to 20,000 spectators and over 100 parade entries ranging from classic cars and vintage military vehicles to Irish bagpipers and a Chinese drum and bell corps. Along the parade route, you will also find food and refreshment booths and souvenir t-shirts. For more info, visit their website.
  • Sausalito 4th of July Parade
    Monday, 10 am

    Sausalito’s one-of-a-kind 4th of July parade starts at Second and Main Streets at 10 am, and moves along Bridgeway and into Dunphy Park at noon. A picnic in Dunphy Park and games follow the parade at noon. Live music starts at noon and lasts all day. Food, dancing, family games, tug-of-war and famous traditional egg toss help make this an exciting event for the whole family. For more info, visit their website.
  • Sonoma's Old-Fashioned 4th of July Celebration
    Sonoma Square, Downtown Sonoma
    Monday, 10 am-5 pm

    The parade begins at 10:00am and traverses the Plaza before ending with a Wet Zone to cool things off. After the parade, enjoy an old-fashioned carnival with food, drink and game booths run by Sonoma's non-profit organizations. All proceeds raised from the celebration benefit Sonoma's nonprofit community. For more info, visit their website.
  • Corte Madera-Larkspur 4th of July Parade
    Redwood High School
    Monday, 10:30 am

    One of the biggest 4th of July events in Marin, the parade boasts the elaborate floats, precision drill teams, classic cars, and the Corte Madera Town Band. Accompanying festivities at Corte Madera's Town Park take place from 9 am–5 pm include arts and crafts, food and drink, carnival games, children's activities, bounce houses, and stage shows. The parade leaves Redwood High School at 10:30 am and winds through downtown Larkspur from Magnolia Street and into Corte Madera by way of Tamalpais Street until it reaches Corte Madera Town Center. Info: (415) 924-0441 or
  • Town of Ross 4th of July Parade and Picnic
    Ross Common
    Monday, 11 am-2 pm

    The town of Ross celebrates the 4th of July at its annual parade and picnic on the Ross Common. Festivities begin at 11 am with a one-of-a-kind parade followed by a picnic lunch and old fashioned games. Food trucks will offer a tasty selection of fare for lunch. More info:
  • July 4th Fireworks Extravaganza
    Gabrielson Park, Sausalito
    Monday, 6:30–9:30 pm

    Enjoy live entertainment and a spectacular fireworks display off Spinnaker Point. Fireworks begin at 9:20 pm. This year, the display is set to music—tune in to 1610 AM or Comcast Cable channel 30 during the show. Info:
  • 4th of July Weekend BBQ on the Lawn
    Rancho Nicasio Restaurant & Bar
    Monday, 4 pm

    Rancho Nicasio Restaurant & Bar will hold its annual 4th of July Weekend BBQ on the Lawn, featuring Zydeco Flames, at 4 pm at the town square (doors open at 3 pm). The cost is $15 per person. Children under 3 are free. Bring your beach blankets and low-backed sand chairs. Picnic tables reservable for parties of 8 or more. Location: on the town square in Nicasio. For more info, call (415) 662-2219 or
  • Angel Island 4th of July
    Angel Island
    Monday, 5–10:30 pm
    There’s no better place to spend July 4th than on an island in the Bay….Angel Island offers spectacular views of the San Francisco Fireworks Show. Enjoy a ferry ride from either SF or Tiburon to Ayala Cove on Angel Island. There will be live music, BBQ, fireworks, tram ride and more.  Please bring blankets or chairs for viewing the fireworks. Tickets are limited so don’t wait! Puchase tickets here. 
  • Marin County Fair (see Friday for details)