Category Archives: Weekend Fun

Weekend Family Fun Oct 17th-18th

Friends of the Santa Rosa Libraries is a not-for-profit corporation that sells donated used books and other library-type materials in support of the Santa Rosa Central, Northwest, and Rincon Valley branches as well as the Local History and Genealogy Library. The Book Faire runs Friday through Monday. Phone: 707-545-0831 ext. 541
October 16, 17, 18, 19, 2009
Fri. – 3p to 7:30p; Sat. & Sun. – 10a to 5p; Mon. – 2p to 7p
Finley Hall, Sonoma County Fairgrounds
Admission: Friday – $5.00 / Saturday thru Monday – Free

Target Family Day is downtown San Francisco’s biggest family block party, with free admission to four leading museums, special art activities for kids, and free performances on three stages. Explore a sculpture garden, make an animated film, enjoy a live circus, and more. Participating organizations include the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Contemporary Jewish Museum, the Museum of the African Diaspora, Zeum: San Francisco’s Children’s Museum, and Yerba Buena Gardens Festival.
For information, call 415-614-3216 or visit
Sunday, October 18, 2009, 11am – 4pm
Museumwide – Yerba Buena arts district at 3rd Street and Mission Street in downtown San Francisco.

Free Airplane Rides for Kids with EAA Young Eagles  Pilots from the local EAA Chapter 124 are volunteering to fly young people ages 8-17 for free to see Sonoma County from the air. EAA chapter 124 has done this for the last 20 years giving more than 2,000 kids in Sonoma County the adventure of a lifetime.  Contact or 707-584-9682 for reservations. Only available for kids from the ages of 8 – 17. All participants must be accompanied by a parent or guardian. Contact or 707-584-9682 for reservations.
Saturday, Oct 17 8:30a to 1:00p
Pacific Coast Air Museum, 2230 Becker Blvd., Santa Rosa

Petaluma Mothers’ Club Fall Carnival Would you like some Fall fun for the whole family with FREE admission? Join the Petaluma Mother’s Club for their Fall Carnival! Costume contest for babies, toddlers, and preschoolers – register by 12 noon, contest begins at 12:30. Musical performance by “Miss Kitty”, live snake show, “Museum on the Go” from North Bay Children’s Museum, petting zoo sponsored by Petaluma High Agriculture department, soccer demonstration by Lil’ Kickers, jumpy houses, carnival games, and more! Hot dogs, baked goods, ice cream, and drinks available for purchase
Sunday, Oct 18 11:00a to 2:00p
Kenilworth Jr High School, 800 Riesling Rd., Petaluma

Family Day  The third Saturday of each month, Green String Farm has fun activities set up for children and their parents. Arts & crafts projects and games will focus on basic concepts of natural food and farming, like compost, animals, and water. Come to the farm store at 2 for an hour of fun, and stay for some farm fresh snacks after. RSVP:
Saturday, Oct 17 2:00p to 3:00p
at Green String Farm, 3571 Old Adobe Rd., Petaluma
Suggested donation $2 per person.

ARTrails This is the second weekend for the annual ARTTrailsHeld annually in the fall, ARTrails provides a rare opportunity for the public to meet local artists in their studios and learn about their diverse creative processes and techniques. Through hands-on demonstrations as well as intimate conversations, ARTrails artists will take you into their world where colors, shapes, materials, and textures merge into unique and collectible works of art. A number of the open artist studios are located in or near downtown Santa Rosa.
Sat Oct 17th – Sun Oct 18th, 10am – 5pm
Info on sites and venues at

Next weekend’s preview:  On Sunday October 25th, there will be a worldwide phenomenon – trying to beat the record for most people dancing to Thriller at the same time.  We got off lucky, our time will be 5:30 pm.  Others, like Ireland, will be at ungodly hours like 1:30 am.  Ick.  The reason I am mentioning this now is because you’ve gotta learn the dance to be a part of the Thrill the World event!  There are events going on around town this weekend for learning the dance.  But I can’t find any exact locations or times.  If you know of one, can you leave it as a comment?   For now, go to this link to learn the dance in the comforts in your own home.  —-> Thrill the World – Learn the Dance

Weekend Family Fun, Oct 10th – 11th

There are so many things to choose from for this weekend that it’s easy to ask, where to start?  From Apple Festivals to Fleet Week to ARTrails, good luck on making a choice for your family outting this weekend! 

All Things Apple Festival  Bringing community together through art and celebration, this event is promising for the whole family! There will be special music by members of the Polkanomics Band, free art & an origami making booth, apple tasting, the Sweet Treat Cafe and more. All proceeds support the after school program: The Purple Apple: Creative Arts and Self-esteem.
Sat Oct 10th, 1pm – 5:30pm
Monroe Hall
1400 West College Ave, Santa Rosa
Adult – $5.00, children 12 and under – FREE

Community Safety Fair In celebration of Fire Prevention Week, the Santa Rosa Fire Department is hosting the 3rd Annual Community Safety Fair. Bring friends and family to enjoy a free BBQ (first 300 to arrive), see demonstrations, participate in events, play some games, and most important – learn about safety.
Sat, Oct 10th, 10am – 3pm
SRFD Training Tower, 2126 West College Ave., Santa Rosa
(Parking at 55 Stony Point Road)

ArtTrails  While little kids might not appreciate ARTrails (though, who knows? You might have a well cultured toddler), the older kid will most definitely enjoy going to different studios and experiencing different levels and venues of creativity. In fact, my 11 year old daughter wanted to make sure that this was included.  Held annually in the fall, ARTrails provides a rare opportunity for the public to meet local artists in their studios and learn about their diverse creative processes and techniques. Through hands-on demonstrations as well as intimate conversations, ARTrails artists will take you into their world where colors, shapes, materials, and textures merge into unique and collectible works of art. A number of the open artist studios are located in or near downtown Santa Rosa.
Sat Oct 10th – Sun Oct 11th, as well as next weekend, 10am – 5pm
Info on sites and venues at

Multicultural Food and Music Festival showcases Cotati’s rich cultural and traditional heritage through live entertainment, food stations, vendors, and other activities. The festival is being held to bring Cotati and other Sonoma County communities together for a fun-filled weekend of art, food, music, and dance while also learning a little more about the rich cultural diversity that exists in our community. The festival is a signature event for the city and region, offering a quality and festive experience in the comfortable settings of downtown Cotati. The event will feature world class food, music and dance. For more information, call (415) 725-0157.
Sat Oct 10th & Sun Oct 11th, 11am – 6pm
North Gateway Field – Highway 101 North and Gravenstein Highway 116 exit, Cotati

San Francisco’s Fleet Week  This is a spectacular family event featuring the Navy Blue Angels, Navy ships and other exciting demonstrations. This weekend there will be the Air Show, the procession of Navy ships, live music, the Italian Heritage Parade (Sunday) from Fisherman’s Wharf to North Beach, and a spectacular display of fireworks on Saturday. Join in on the celebration of the men and women of our armed forces.
Oct 8th – Oct 13th, see website for information on event schedules
Parade of ships will be at Piers 27 and 30/32
See website for further details and locations of events (too many to list!)

Fiesta Italiana  Bring the family for a fun-filled day of good food, folk dancing, classic auto show, silent auction, face-painting, travel education programs, mercato shopping, cooking demonstrations, bocce ball for adults and children and much more. The 19th Annual Festival at the Santa Rosa Veterans Hall is sponsored by the North Bay Italian Cultural Foundation to benefit Italian Cultural Programs. The theme this year is Discovering Florence, Italy.
Sun, Oct 11th, 11am – 6pm
Santa Rosa Veterans Memorial Building
$5.00 Pre sale ~ $8.00 at the door, under 10 FREE

Weekend Family Fun 10/3-10/4

Levi’s Kids Only Cross Race!  Bummed about missing the registration to take part in Levi’s Gran Fondo Race? Well, it’s not too late for your kids to take part in their own race with Levi Leipheimer! This fun race is for children ages 9 and under and will follow the King Ridge Gran Fondo Ride. Kids must wear an approved helmet and bring their own bike. Parent or legal guardian must be present and sign a release waiver. Parents are allowed to walk or run with their child during the short race and help them over barriers and through obstacles if necessary.
Saturday, Oct 3rd  2pm start time (subject to change)
Start and finish will be at the Finley Center in Santa Rosa

Redwood Empire Live Steamer’s Interactive Railroad Museum  Have a little nostalgia for the steam power from Handcar Regatta?  Relive some of the excitement with a good old fashioned train ride on the new portable track at Youth Community Park!  The last public run of the summer season is this weekend, so don’t miss it!  Donations accepted. 100% of all proceeds will further fund development of museum.
Saturday, Oct 3rd – 4th 12pm to 4pm
Youth Community Park (near Piner High on Fulton Rd)
$1 per ride

Autumn Faire & Market  The Monte Rio Amphitheater will be filled with artisans, farmers, kids games and contests and entertainment. Come celebrate the bounty of all Sonoma County with the quirky flair of the Western County. Incredible food will be available all day including star chef Gerard Nebesky and his famous paella! This is an occasion to get out and enjoy the fine weather offered in October and sample the wares and flavors that we have all come to love in our region.
For information contact Dawn Bell at 707-865-9956 or at
Sunday, Oct 4 10am to 6pm
Monte Rio Ampitheater

Community Harvest Celebration  The festivities will include live music, a farmer’s market, a pumpkin carving contest, kids’ talent show, face painting, home baked goods, and so much more! Info & contest applications: Rebecca 707-869-4105 or Beth at email
Saturday, Oct 3 10am to 5pm
Guerneville Community Church, 14520 Armstrong Woods Rd, Guerneville

And of course, I can’t forget to mention…..

Harvest Fair  There is so much that Sonoma County has to offer – especially in the fall. Join the community at the Sonoma County Harvest Fair for FREE Harvest and Farm Ag-tivities and other special things for kids and families to enjoy. Be sure to catch all of the special contests, pumpkin carving, scarecrow building and the spooky haunted room. There are enough events going on at the Harvest Fair to keep the whole family entertained! And of course, don’t miss the grape stomp! Kids will get a kick out of seeing the various teams getting sloshed with purple grape juice! Visit the events page to get a full rundown on the calendar of events scheduled Friday through Sunday.
Fri Oct 2rd to Sun Oct 4th
Fri 10am-8pm, Sat/Sun 10am-7pm
Sonoma County Fairgrounds
Admission Free – $6
Tasting combo $25

Best Bets for the Weekend, 9/26-9/27

This weekend it’s all about the FREE! Lucky for us on a budget, there are several really great events going on around the area for us to choose from.

Photo courtesy of SittersPlace.comBaby & Child Fair  Everything you need in one day from pre-conception to pre-K! Come to the fair and find out about mom & baby health, working from home, maternity & baby supplies, medical & dental care, preschools & childcare, adoption & foster care and much more. Heads up, the Santa Rosa Mother’s Club will be giving away two annual memberships at the event. Stop by their booth and enter their drawing. For more information on the event, go to
Finley Community Center, Santa Rosa
Saturday, Sept. 26th, 10 am – 4 pm

Smithsonian Museum Day & FREE Family Day  Join some of the members of the Sonoma County Woodworkers Assocation to celebrate a family day and the nation-wide Smithsonian Museum Day. Kids will be making traditional birdhouses, cars & trucks, all out of wood. Chess for Kids will also be there. You can also make your own Sundaes, courtesy of Clover-Stornetta.
Sonoma County Museum, Santa Rosa
Saturday, Sept. 26th, 1 pm – 4 pm

Handcar Regatta 2008Handcar Regatta  This event was first introduced last year, and was such a hit it is being brought back again this Sunday! See hand-built railcar races, arts, crafts, and performances. Experience live music, fine foods, costumed rabble & more.
For more info on the event, and ideas for costumes (yes, you should wear a costume if you can…) go to
Sunday, Sept. 27th, 11 am – 6 pm
Railroad Square

Now and Zen Fest  This might be a weird event to put in a blog about family friendly happenings. But let me tell you, this is actually a blast for families. I took my daughter when she was 4, and she enjoyed listening to the music, and bouncing along with the songs that she knew. That year, Train was the headliner. This year they’re back, and they will perform alongside Colbie Caillat, Dashboard Confessional, and Howie Day. And to make it even sweeter, this year the event will be free for the first time ever!
Sunday, Sept. 27th, Noon – 5 pm
Golden Gate Park in San Francisco
(put on by Radio Alice)

Do you know of a family friendly event coming up? Perhaps you are hosting an event. CLICK HERE to find out how you can get your weekend event highlighted!

Best Bets for the Weekend, 9/19 – 9/20

GlendiGLENDI  Enjoy foods from Middle Eastern, Eritrean, Kenyan, Russian, Greek, Balkan, Romanian, & American cultures, dancing to live Balkan music, and let the kids play in the Children’s Craft & Play Area, complete with a moon bounce and other children’s game booths. Proceeds benefit the St. Seraphim Orthodox Christian Church.
St. Seraphim Orthodox Christian Church, 90 Mountain View Ave.
Saturday, 11 am – 9 PM, Sunday, Noon – 6 PM
$10 for adults and teens, children under 12 free, $6 for seniors.

Sonoma County Book Festival  For the past decade, the Sonoma County Book Festival has provided a free day of locally treasured and nationally recognized poets, novelists, essayists, reporters, children’s writers, aspiring writers, book group experts, publishers, bookstores, and other delightful and instructive displays on Old Courthouse Square in Santa Rosa. This year the tradition continues by bringing the literary arts to the public connecting authors, readers, and publishers.
Saturday, 10 am – 4 pm.
Old Courthouse Square

Build for Veterans  HobbyTown is hosting a special event to raise money to support the Petaluma Veteran’s Day parade. You can bring your child to HobbyTown USA to build a free snap together model with help from local model club members and members of the Petaluma American Legion. Parents are encouraged to make a donation to the parade while they are there.
(Models for the event have been donated by Great Planes Model Distributors and Revell USA.)
Saturday – Sunday during store hours
HobbyTown USA, 171 N. McDowell Blvd. Petaluma, CA 94954 (in the Petaluma Plaza, next to Trader Joe’s)

Wild Cats AdventureWild Cat Adventure  The Wild Cat Adventure presentation features 5 live wild cats. You may see a cougar, African leopard, cheetah, snow leopard, ocelot, Siberian lynx, Canada lynx, serval, caracal or an extremely rare king cheetah. Each cat is shown on the stage as information about its habits, habitat and threats is shared with the audience. While not a circus act, natural behaviors like climbing, leaping and hunting are demonstrated in a safe and exciting manner. The audience, from preschool age children to grandparents, learns, first hand, about these amazing cats that share our planet with us and what all of us can do to help save these magnificent animals from moving toward extinction.
Sunday, 3 PM
Sebastopol Community Center, 390 Morris Street, Sebastopol
$10 for adults and $5 for children under 12.

Sonoma County CHANGE Program  is having their 2nd annual BBQ & Fundraiser. Proceeds go to care of horses rescued by Animal Control in Sonoma County! Equestrian entertainment, wine tasting, door prizes, silent Auction and lunch catered by “Blazing Saddles!” Tickets at or call Betsy @ 707-479-5639. Tickets also available at S.R. Saddlery and Dave’s Hay Barn.
Sunday, 11 am – 3 pm
New Santa Rosa Junior College off River Road, Healdsburg
$35 adults/kids $15.

Human ChessHuman Chess  In cooperation with the Sonoma County Arts Council, 8-Track Minds Productions present “LORDS of the BOARD!” a chess tournament which will be played by children who are part of Chess for Kids, a local non-profit. Each child will make their move on a normal board for reference, an announcer will broadcast the move, and then the player will come and physically move each performer according to the game on a 24’ x 24’ human sized chessboard. Each piece will then perform his/her lines and interaction according to who he/she is up against on the opposing team, so it is a different performance EACH GAME!  There will be three games on each performance day. There will be a 10 minute break between games for photo opportunities with the costumed characters.
P.S. Look for SantaRosaMom Crissi Dillon, aka WineCountryMom, in the crowd.
Sunday, 12 noon – 4 pm
Courthouse Square


Do you have a family friendly weekend event coming up? CLICK HERE to find out how you can get it highlighted in the Best Bets for the Weekend blog.

Best Bets for the Weekend: 9/12-9/13

Best bets for the weekend:

Katmandu Fall Festival
Saturday Sept 12th, 11 am – 5 pm


(Photo courtesy of

Celebrating Nepalese culture, the Katmandu Fall Festival is a benefit for the Children’s Medical Aid Foundation. Enjoy the many cultures of Nepal, India and Tibet with exotic food, world music, and ethnic dance performances. The event is kid friendly, and is even located near a playround. Located at Depot Park, 270 1st St. W in Sonoma.

Free Grandparent’s Day at the Zoo
Sunday Sept 13th, 10 am – 4 pm


Sunday will be free for all grandparents, from opening time at 10 am until the zoo closes at 4 pm. But here’s a secret tip: Bring in any type of hand-colored picture of a zoo animal – one for each child and you’ll all get in FREE. For more information, call (415) 753-7201.

Saturday Farmer’s market
Saturdays (and Wednesdays) 8:30 am – 12 noon

farm market

(Photo courtesy of

When we’re able to, this is one of the kids and my favorite things to do on a Saturday morning. Just the sight of wonderfully colored veggies at all the booths is enough for inspiration for that night’s dinner. And it’s a great way to get the kids motivated to eat their veggies. The Santa Rosa Farmer’s Market is open on Wednesday and Saturday mornings 8:30 a.m. to 12:00 noon. It’s located in the Veterans Bldg East Parking Lot 1351 Maple Ave. For more info, email mail

Do you have or know of a family event that you want other moms to know about? Email me at by Wednesday to make it into Friday’s blog of “Best Bets for the Weekend”.