Fetishes and Frida Kahlo, jazz and Mozart and kites and craft fairs are in the motley mix of July events in the San Francisco Bay Area; see below for when and where. We also have a separate guide to July 4 fireworks and festivities in SF and other Bay Area cities.
Fiestas Fridas San Francisco
July, various dates
Celebrate Frida Kahlo's birthday (July 6, 1907) with art exhibits, spoken word, face painting, Frida-inspired talks, a Frida-selfie contest (come in costume and with your phone), along with other related activities throughout the Mission and around The Bay.
At various venues in San Francisco. Free.
San Francisco Mime Troupe’s Summer Performances San Francisco's favorite theater of political comedy opens its 60th season on July 4th at the Mission's Dolores Park. This year's performance of "Treasure Island" takes the classic pirate novel and transforms it into a story of greedy development, complete with health and safety issues and a civil servant trying to stop one man's diabolical plan. July performances continue throughout the greater Bay Area in cities like Berkeley and Palo Alto.
At various venues in San Francisco. Free (suggested donation: $20).
Fillmore Jazz Festival
July 6 & 7 at 10 am–6 pm
This long-running festival spreads across 12 blocks of San Francisco's Fillmore and Pacific Heights neighborhoods, turning them into a full-blown extravaganza of food, music, and dance. Expect gourmet eats from Asian to BBQ, swing and salsa lessons, artisan crafts, and multiple stages featuring plenty of great jazz--including performances by the Le Boeuf Brothers and the Marcus Shelby Orchestra featuring Tiffany Austin.
On Fillmore Street between Jackson and Eddy, San Francisco. Free.
Now celebrating its 5th year, come play or listen to other people play twelve pianos that are tucked among the flowers and foliage of the San Francisco Botanical Garden’s 55 acres in Golden Gate Park. Professional pianists are scheduled to perform on Saturdays and Sundays, though everyone is invited to strike a cord.
At San Francisco Botanical Garden, Ninth Ave. at Lincoln Way, Golden Gate Park, San Francisco 94122. Free with garden admission.
Angel Island Family Day
At an open house of Angel Island's former U.S. Immigration Station, descendants of immigrants talk about how they researched their stories, and Ancestry.com experts help you hunt for your own roots. Wander the old Immigration Station, a National Historic Landmark, and hike the island’s many trails.
At the former U.S. Immigration Station, Angel Island.
Midsummer Mozart Festival
July 11-July 14
This years performers include Pianist Daniel Glover, Stephanie Cowell, author of Marrying Mozart, a sort-of Amadeus meets Little Women, and the Midsummer Mozart Festival Orchestra. Festival events are held in San Jose, Berkeley, and beyond.
At various venues in the Bay Area. Ticket prices vary.
SFJAZZ Summer Sessions
July 11-August 18
The jazz center is located in Hayes Valley and its summer series embraces several themes, including music from North, South and Central America, Mexico and Africa, dance music (with room to groove), and films with music. Their 2019 line-up is still in the works, so check the website as it gets closer.
At SFJAZZ Center, 201 Franklin St., San Francisco, 94102. Ticket prices vary.
Renegade Craft Fair
July 13 & 14
A curated market of indie, handmade crafts from the Bay Area and the US for sale, including jewelry, clothing, accessories, stationery, household goods, artwork and gourmet foods. Hands-on DIY workshops, DJ-spun music and food and drink are also offered at this popular Fort Mason event.
At Fort Mason, Festival Pavilion, Marina Blvd. & Buchanan St., San Francisco 94123. Free admission.
Bay Area Playwrights Festival
Now in its 42nd year, the Bay Area Playwrights Festival features six very insightful playwrights, each one working with directors and actors to present readings of their very different plays encompassing “relevant and irreverent, familiar yet uncommon, focused and risky stories.”
At the Tides Theatre, 533 Sutter St., 2/F, San Francisco. Tickets $15 and up.
San Francisco Jewish Film Festival
July 18-August 4
San Francisco is home to the world’s first and longest-running Jewish film festival of its kind, which this year will feature more than 65 films and 135 screenings. These include animated shorts about Jewish history, documentary and dramatic features, web series, and movies that resonate both with Jewish communities and other cultural communities worldwide. Stay tuned for a full list of this year's events and screenings.
At various San Francisco and Bay Area venues. Ticket prices vary.
Berkeley Kite Festival
July 27-28, 10 am-6 pm
Breathtaking kites (some touted to be as big as houses), kite ballet and battles, and a West Coast kite championship competition. Free lessons in kite making and flying, taiko drumming, a candy drop, food and arts and crafts booths, and pony rides and other kids’ activities, too.
At Cesar Chavez Park, 11 Spinnaker Way, Berkeley 94710. Free. Parking $15.
Up Your Alley Fair
July 28, at 11 am-6 pm
Leather lovers and aficionados of any and all fetishes flaunt their stuff in this smaller but edgier version of late September’s Folsom Street Fair. The fair area is exempt from San Francisco’s public nudity ban (clothes check service is at the entrances) but not its lewdness laws. All proceeds from admission donations and beverage sales go to various AIDS and community organizations.
On Dore Alley between Howard and Folsom, and parts of Folsom and 10th streets, San Francisco. Donation requested (get $2 off each drink if you donate at least $10).
July 12, 21, 27 & 28
Bring picnic blankets and folding chairs for hour-long outdoor circus shows that include stilt-walkers, clowns, contortionist, jugglers, and other circus acts by the Bay Area's own homegrown Circus Bella.
At various Bay Area venues. Performances are free.
July 7, 14, 21, & 28
A series of free concerts Sunday afternoons throughout summer, all performed in a stunning natural amphitheater surrounded by redwoods, eucalyptus, and fir trees. This years July acts include the SF Symphony, the SF Ballet, and singer-songwriter Mitski with an opening show by Oakland-based Madeline Kenney.
Stern Grove at 19th Avenue and Sloat Boulevard at 2pm.