Marin Weekend Family Fun for November 29 & 30, December 1
November 27, 2013Posted by pamela |
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.
There's also holiday ice skating at numerous locations throughout the Bay Area, as well as opportunities to visit with Santa Claus at local shopping centers. Also, check out our guide to North Bay Christmas tree farms and Lots.
Friday, November 29
- The Great Dickens Christmas Fair
The Cow Palace, San Francisco
Friday, Saturday and Sunday 11 am–7 pm
The Dickens Fair runs on weekends through December 22. Experience Victorian London with hundreds of costumed players, shops offering one-of-a-kind gifts and Christmas treasures, dining, and pubs. Meet Charles Dickens, Oliver Twist, Tiny Tim, Jules Verne, David Copperfield, Charles Darwin, and 700 costumed characters. Of course, Father Christmas himself will be on hand to join in the fun. Adults 13+ $25, children 5–11 $12, free for children under 5. Save $2 each on kids' tickets when ordering online in advance. For more info, visit their website.
- San Rafael 34th Annual Parade of Lights and Winter Wonderland
Downtown San Rafael
Friday, noon–8 pm & Saturday, 9 am–noon
Downtown San Rafael will once again commence the holiday season with its Winter Wonderland, Parade of Lights, and Holiday Marketplace with arts and crafts that starts the Friday after Thanksgiving and continues through Saturday November 30. On Friday, there will be free snow sledding and kids activities from noon–4:30 pm and 6–8 pm, and Holiday Marketplace from noon–8 pm. The Parade of Lights begins at 5:30 pm with Santa and Mrs. Claus's arrival and, a tree-lighting takes place immediately after. Kids activities and snow sledding continue on Saturday, November 30, from 9 am–noon. On Fourth Sreet from B Street to Lootens Place in downtown San Rafael. For more info, visit their website.
- Christmas Cheer at the Mission
Mission San Rafael at Saint Raphael's
Friday, noon–6 pm
The first annual Christmas Cheer at the Mission takes place during the 34th Annual Parade of Lights and Winter Wonderland in downtown San Rafael. Plenty for the entire family to enjoy including yuletide sweets and treats, savory sausages, wine, and hot cider. Visit the mission for some fun before or after your time on the sledding hill down the street. Activities include arts and crafts for kids, a Jingle Bell Cupcake Walk, and handmade ornaments for purchase. Bring an unwrapped toy to donate to Toys for Tots or canned food for St. Vincent de Paul's food pantry if you can. Location: 1100 Fifth Avenue at A Street, San Rafael. For more info, visit their website.
- ODC/Dance's The Velveteen Rabbit
Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco
Friday–Sunday, 2 pm
Bring the family for this beloved Bay Area holiday tradition. ODC/Dance enlivens Margery Williams’ classic tale of a well-worn nursery rabbit that becomes real. Told though music, dance and a powerful narrative, The Velveteen Rabbit celebrates the unique relationship between a little boy and his stuffed rabbit, and the enduring power of love. Tickets range from $17–$47. Sunday's performance is followed by a Milk and Cookies Party (separate admission, $12). For more info, visit their website.
- Festival of Lights
Marin Country Mart, Larkspur Landing
Friday, 3–6 pm
Celebrate the Festival of Lights at Marin Country Mart with an art workshop and Hanukkah crafts for children. Complimentary latkes, served with crème fraiche and applesauce or smoked salmon, will be available from 4–6 pm. For more information, visit their website.
- Ghirardelli Square 49th Annual Tree Lighting
Friday, 5:30 pm
Enjoy free live entertainment for the entire family throughout the day culminating with the lighting of the Ghirardelli Square tree at 5:30 pm. This year’s festivities will include live music, children’s entertainment and a visit from Santa. Christina Loren, NBC Bay Area’s Meteorologist will emcee the event. Ghirardelli Square, 900 North Point Street (at Beach and Larkin), San Francisco. For more info, visit their website.
- Macy's 24th Annual Union Square Tree Lighting
Union Square, San Francisco
Friday, 6 pm
Macy's gift to the city and San Francisco's most recognized Christmas tree will be officially lit in Union Square at 6 pm. Macy's 24th Annual Tree Lighting will take place in Union Square Park between Sutter and Post and Geary and Stockton Streets, right across from the front of Macy's. For more info, visit their website.
- Cinnabar Theater Young Repertory Presents Annie
Cinnabar Theater, Petaluma
Friday, 7:30 pm
The popular comic strip heroine takes center stage in one of the world’s best loved musicals. Performed by a cast of over 50 7–17-year-olds. Admission: $15 adults, $10 your 21 and under. Location: 3333 Petaluma Boulevard North. For more info and tickets, visit their website.
Saturday, November 30
- Learn to Saltwater Fish at McNears
McNears Beach County Park
Saturday, 8:30–10:30 am
Come to McNears Beach, where rangers will teach the basics of saltwater fishing. A limited number of fishing poles and bait will be provided first come, first served to beginners thanks to the California Department of Fish and Wildlife. Fishing license is not required when fishing from the pier. Park entrance fee is $5. Location: 201 Cantera Way, San Rafael. 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 am–2 pm adjacent to the farmer's market and live music from Scott the Storyteller from 9:30–10:30 am. For more info, visit their website.
- Reindeer Romp at SF Zoo
San Francisco Zoo
Evey day, 10 am–4 pm
Reindeer Romp returns with Santa's favorite reindeer friends Belle, Holly, Peppermint, and Velvet. These four majestic animals mark the return of the holidays at the Zoo and will be on exhibit through New Year’s Day. Stop by the reindeer area on the Playfield Lawn near the new Elinor Friend Playground and check out the real story behind these majestic creatures. Free with Zoo admission. For more info, visit their website.
- Santa's Riverboat Arrival
Petaluma River Turning Basin
Saturday, 11 am.
Santa and Mrs. Claus sail into the Petaluma River Turning Basin aboard a tugboat at noon and disembark in the Golden Eagle Shopping Center on East Washington St. to greet children and distribute candy. Performers will be on hand at the shopping center starting at 11 am. For more info, visit their website.
- Fall Family Music Fest: Multicultural Sing-along with José-Luis Orozco
Bay Area Discovery Museum, Sausalito
Saturday, 11 am
José-Luis Orozco is a renowned bilingual musician, educator, and children's author. Join him for an interactive journey through Latin American culture and music. Sing and dance along to original and traditional songs in Spanish and English and learn the words in Spanish to such classics as “Old MacDonald.” Ages 6 months and up. Members $5; general $15 (includes museum admission) Location: 557 McReynolds Road in Sausalito. For more info, call (415) 339-3976 or visit their website.
- Children's Theatre: A Year with Frog and Toad
Freight & Salvage, Berkeley
Saturday & Sunday, 11 am & 2 pm
Come celebrate friendship in glorious song, as our heroes, Frog and Toad, hop through a season of comic adventures with their animal friends. Nominated for three 2003 Tony awards including Best Musical, A Year with Frog and Toad is adapted from the beloved Frog and Toad stories by Arnold Lobel. Tickets: adults $20, children $16. Location: 2020 Addison Street, Berkeley. For more info or to purchase tickets, visit their website.
- San Francisco Opera presents The Barber of Seville for Families
War Memorial Opera House, San Francisco
Saturday, 2 pm
This November, San Francisco Opera presents The Barber of Seville for Families, a special two-hour family version of Rossini’s hilarious and beloved operatic tale. It will be sung in English with English subtitles and is designed to appeal to audiences of all ages. Visit their website for more info or to purchase tickets.
- Light Up The Square Holiday Tree Lighting
Theatre Square Plaza, Petaluma
Saturday, 6–8:30 pm
The annual Holiday Tree Lighting is back and bigger than ever with a live performance by Twice as Good (2XG), ugly sweater contest, free souvenir photo booth, and new holiday lights and decor that will dazzle you! Free event, rain or shine. Location: 140 2nd Street, Petaluma. For more info, visit their website.
- Candlelight Tour of Fort Point
Fort Point, San Francisco
Saturday, 6:30–8 pm
See San Francisco's historic Civil War-era Fort Point by candle- and starlight on this magical evening tour. Reservations required: (415) 556-1693. For more info, visit their website.
- The Best Christmas Pageant Ever
Novato Theater Company
Saturday, 8 pm & Sunday 2 pm
This hilarious adaptation of the classic holiday story by Barbara Robinson tells the story of the Herdman kids as they cause mayhem at the local church Christmas pageant. Tickets: $20 adults, $10 children 12 and under. Open seating. Location: NTC Playhouse, 5420 Nave Drive, Suite C, Novato. For more info, visit their website.
- San Rafael 34th Annual Parade of Lights and Winter Wonderland (9 am–noon; see Friday for details)
- The Great Dickens Christmas Fair at the Cow Palace (see Friday for details).
- ODC/Dance's The Velveteen Rabbit (see Friday for details)
Sunday, December 1
- 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.
- Christkindlmarkt Christmas Faire
Hermann Sons Hall, Petaluma
Sunday, 10 am–4 pm
Christkindlmarkt's annual holiday craft and gift faire features traditional crafts, food, music, and entertainment from Germany, Austria, and Switzerland. There will be a wide variety of handmade products from local artists: needlecrafts, woodcrafts, quilting, baked goods, imported candies, chocolates. Santa will be there for the kids! For more info, visit their website.
- Target First Free Sundays at the Asian Art Musuem
Sunday, 10 am–5 pm
The museum's interactive family programs allow parents and children to explore the many aspects of Asian art and culture together. Listen to lively storytelling in the galleries, watch a video or performance, or create a piece of original artwork—these are just a few of the entertaining activities the whole family can enjoy. So bring the kids and have some fun learning about art! For more info, call (415) 581-3500 or 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: $10 per family. Location: 1601 Shoreline Highway, Muir Beach. For more info, visit their website.
- Mill Valley Winterfest
Sunday, 11 am–6 pm
Welcome the holiday season at the 2013 Mill Valley Winterfest. Attractions include a snow slide, holiday music, food and drink, crafting for kids, Sterling Johnson the Bubblesmith, Santa in an antique fire truck, a holiday tree lighting ceremony, costume contest, Singers Marin with Caroling Kids, and more. Event is free ($2 per snow slide). For more info, visit their website.
- Hannukah at the Museum
Contemporary Jewish Museum, San Francisco
Sunday, 11 am–5 pm
Join the CJM in celebrating the Festival of Lights with Hannukah activities throughout the museum, including drop-in art making, an olive oil tasting, and a crowd-source version of the song "Tradition" from Fiddler on the Roof. All events free with museum admission. Youth 18 and under always free. Location: 736 Mission Street, San Francisco. For more info, call (415) 655-7800 or visit their website.
- Battery Townsley Underground Tours
Sunday, noon–4 pm
Take a tour of the Bay Area's most extensive—and most—secret—World War II military fortification. Join a guided docent tour of this labyrinthine fortification, which once housed to massive naval guns and 100 soldiers. Battery Townsley is reached via a moderately strenuous 1/2-mile hike from the Rodeo Beach parking lot. for more info, call (415) 331-1540 or visit their website.
- Bill Graham Menorah Day Festival
Union Square, San Francisco
Sunday, 3–5 pm
Bring the family and gather in Union Square to participate in a local tradition. Menorah lighting ceremony takes place at 4:30 pm. Kids' activities include dreidels, food, music, and dancing. Free. For more info, visit their website.
- Menorah Lighting and Chanukah Festivities
Sunday, 5 pm
The Village at Corte Madera
Join the Village at Corte Madera for a Chabad of Mill Valley Chanukah Festival of Unity. Enjoy hot beverages, latke bar, sufagnyot, music, Chanukah gelt, dreidels, and crafts. Please consider bringing a new or gently used pair of glives, scarf, or other winter clothing to donate. For more info, visit their website.
- The Great Dickens Christmas Fair at the Cow Palace (see Friday for details)
- Children's Theatre: A Year with Frog and Toad (see Saturday for details)
- ODC/Dance's The Velveteen Rabbit (see Friday for details)