5 Best Things to do This Week
Hand-picked events and happenings you won't want to miss.
1. Wharf Fest
Wharf Fest, the free Fisherman’s Wharf festival, returns to San Francisco’s iconic neighborhood for the 6th year. The day-long festival celebrates San Francisco’s historic waterfront district and invites Bay Area locals to visit the district after the tourist season has ended and before San Francisco’s fabulous fall climate fades away. This year’s festival will include a chowder cook-off competition, exhibitors, and fun family activities and entertainment and will be held on the Little Embarcadero from Taylor to Powell Streets and in the parking lot at Jefferson and Taylor, under the Fisherman’s Wharf sign.
Never heard of Litquake? Ask your local bibliophile and they’ll surely talk to you all about it, cause actually, it’s a pretty big deal. The event was originally conceived in 1999 at the beloved Tenderloin bar, Edinburgh Castle, and was dubbed Litstock. Litstock premiered as a free one-day reading series in a fog-bound Golden Gate Park, but local writers Jane Ganahl and Jack Boulware knew they wanted more. In 2002, the festival was rechristened Litquake, and began expanding its programming to include all elements of the Bay Area literary scene. Taking a cue from a USA Today report that San Franciscans spend twice the nation’s average on books and booze, in 2004, the festival inaugurated an immediately successful closing night Lit Crawl bacchanal throughout the city’s Mission District.
The event now goes off in Austin, Seattle, New York City, Iowa City, Los Angeles, Portland, London and Helsinki. Whether it’s poets reciting in a cathedral, authors discussing science versus religion in a library, or novelists reading in a beekeeping supply store, the goal remains the same: whet a broad range of literary appetites, present the literary fare in a variety of traditional and unlikely venues, and make it vivid, real, and entertaining. Now grown to the largest independent literary festival on the West Coast, Litquake continues its mission as a nine-day literary spectacle for book lovers, complete with cutting-edge panel discussions, unique cross-media events, and hundreds of readings. Expect to see Bay Area writers doing readings and open-mics in this day-long series, just look for the Litquake signs in front of each venue.
Taking place on Saturday, this free event will feature local live bands, arts and crafts booths, food trucks, beer and wine, kids activities and a stunning waterfront view. The third annual festival will be held at the Marin Rod and Gun Club, just west of the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge, in San Rafael. Founded in 1926, the Marin Rod and Gun Club is one of California’s premier outdoor sporting clubs. The days of hunting for the club’s members are long gone and the “gun” portion of the club’s title is mainly preserved for historical context. The club was formed for the purposes of conservation, preservation and propagation of fish and game in Marin County, and has grown from the original membership of 35 to over 1,200 active members. Additionally, over the years the Marin Rod and Gun Club has acquired over 55 acres of uplands and tide-lands on San Pablo Bay at Point San Quentin.
SF Open Studios, the oldest and largest open studios program in the country, is back. The annual, month-long art event takes place in October and November and showcases over 800 emerging and established San Francisco artists in their studios. 2018 marks the 43rd Anniversary of SF Open Studios — attendees are invited explore the city and find amazing art at every turn. This weekend's open studios will be at Hunters Point Shipyard.
The Cow Palace is bringing back the Wild West to the Bay Area with the annual Grand National Rodeo, Horse Show and Livestock Expo. In addition to traditional rodeo events an equestrian drill team will perform choreographed maneuvers to music. Drill teams — group of horses and riders — entertain, show sportsmanship, horsemanship and teamwork.