FLEET WEEK SAN FRANCISCO – Fleet Week is the Bay Area’s opportunity to honor the men and women of the U. S. Navy and Marine Corps. Tours of navy ships and a hair-raising air show that is sure to scare the dog again. Reserved seating and corporate packages available (otherwise free). The fleet sorties into San Francisco Bay under Golden Gate Bridge on Friday morning— the first ship at 11 am.
Aquatic Park and Pier 39, Fisherman’s Wharf, plus a variety of spots around town.
MILL VALLEY FILM FESTIVAL – Presented by the California Film Institute, the Mill Valley Film Festival celebrates the best in independent and world cinema. Founded in 1978, it has established an impressive track record for launching new films and filmmakers.
CineArts Sequoia and 142 Throckmorton (Mill Valley), Century Cinema (Corte Madera), and Christopher B. Smith Rafael Film Center (San Rafael). 415-383-5256
HARDLY STRICTLY BLUEGRASS . The late billionaire investment banker and banjo picker Warren Hellman, who founded this free music festival over a decade ago, called this his “selfish gift” to San Francisco. Hardly Strictly Bluegrass has since evolved beyond the banjo into the City’s biggest free musical extravaganza, featuring up to 100 acts over three full days on seven stages, with around 800,000 attendees expected. Country stars will rub elbows with indie-rock artists. The 2017 lineup includes: Friday (First Aid Kit, Conor Oberst, Brandi Carlile, T Bone Burnett, Billy Bragg), Saturday (Bela Fleck, Robyn Hitchcock, Ozomatli, Henry Rollins, Patty Griffin, Gillian Welch, Steve Earle), and Sunday (Emmylou Harris, Bob Mould, Cheap Trick, Shelby Lynne & Alison Moorer, Randy Newman, Jello Biafra, Lucinda Williams, Big Freeda).
Hellman Hollow, Golden Gate Park.
LITQUAKE – This San Francisco literary festival showcases hundreds of the Bay Area’s finest writers for a week of readings, discussions, films, cross-media events, and more. It’s all meant to foster interest in literature for people of all ages, to perpetuate a sense of literary community, and to provide a forum for Bay Area writing. Citywide
OCTOBER 12-NOVEMBER 12
ARTSPAN/SF OPEN STUDIOS – Some of San Francisco’s most exciting artists open their doors to the public and reveal their latest projects, how they work, and what’s for sale.
Check the website for locations. 415-861-9838.
ARAB FILM FESTIVAL – This is the largest and oldest independent festival featuring Arab films and filmmakers in the United States. Its goal is to present contemporary films that illuminate Arab lives and provide insights into the beauty and complexity of the Arab world alongside realistic perspectives on Arab people, culture, art, history, and politics.
415-564-1100 #AFF2017 for announcements
OCTOBER 13-14, 20-21
GRAND NATIONAL RODEO, HORSE, AND STOCK SHOW – Bareback riding steer wrestling, barrel racing, saddle bronc riding, team and tie-down roping and bull riding are among the competitive events. Also horse shows and livestock exhibitions. There will be mechanical bulls—beware. Not to mention Western-style BBQ.
The Cow Palace, 2600 Geneva Ave., just over the city line in Daly City.
SUNDANCE STOMPEDE – San Francisco’s annual Country Western weekend for the LGBT community and friends. Join hundreds of cowboys and cowgirls as they dance their feet off with three days of workshops and three nights of open dancing. Various locations. 415-820-1403.
A four-day event featuring the best dance films from around the world—including San Francisco’s own backyard. From feature documentaries on choreographic luminaries to innovative experimental shorts, the festival offers something for dance aficionados and newcomers alike. Brava Theater Center.
OCTOBER 21: 11 am-4 pm
POTRERO HILL FESTIVAL – Potrero Hill Festival showcases the talent of San Francisco’s Potrero Hill neighborhood. A selection of the area’s musicians, artists, dancers, and entertainers deliver live performances, and local chefs and food vendors provide fresh cuisine and beverages. In addition to showcasing the many skills and trades of San Francisco residents, the festival raises support for local non-profit community programs. There are special activities for the kids, including a puppet show and a petting zoo. Potrero Hill, 22nd Street between Missouri and Kansas Streets (but check the website to confirm the location).
SAN FRANCISCO FALL ANTIQUES SHOW – Said to be the oldest continuously operating international antiques show on the West Coast. It will feature 60 or so dealers from America and Europe selling a wide range of antique merchandise, including paintings, furniture, textiles, photography, Asian art, carpets, ceramics, porcelain, sculpture, rare books, works on paper, objets d’art, jewelry, and metals. 100% of net proceeds benefit Enterprise for Youth. Admission $15 in advance, $20 at the door.
Festival Pavilion, Fort Mason Center. Gala preview Oct. 25, 7-10 pm (there will be caviar, vodka bars, live music … and first crack at the sale items). 415-989-9019