Bay Area Festivals: Summer ’17 Scene

From music to family fun, the region is all about getting outdoors and savoring sunshine, art, and tunes in the coming months.

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BottleRock Napa Valley
BottleRock Napa Valley is a major summer season opener each year. And the 2017 line-up, which unfurls over Memorial Day Weekend, with Foo Fighters, Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers, and Maroon Five leading the Friday, Saturday, Sunday roster.
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BottleRock Napa Valley
BottleRock Napa Valley is a major summer season opener each year. And the 2017 line-up, which unfurls over Memorial Day Weekend, with Foo Fighters, Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers, and Maroon Five leading the Friday, Saturday, Sunday roster. Be in Napa from Friday, May 26 through Sunday, May 28.
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If noshing upon tender tortillas, delish guacs, savory carne asadas, and a host of taco-based edibles is your way of ending May (and starting summer), be at History Park in San Jose on Saturday, May 27.
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Walnut Creek Art and Wine Festival
This East Bay long-runner (36 years along) is a Junetime joy, what with all of the artists and crafts people showing (and selling) their creative wares. Be in Walnut Creek on Saturday, June 3 and Sunday, June 4.
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If this dippable Golden State superstar is your weekend (and weekday) go-to appetizer, go to where all of the chokie cheer flowers best. Be at the Monterey Fairgrounds (that's right, Monterey) on Saturday, June 3 and Sunday, June 4.
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Authors, films, and a Young Authors Writing Contest will fill out a weekend devoted to words. Be in Downtown Berkeley on Saturday, June 3 and Sunday, June 4.
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Union Street Festival
The fest's name may have changed up a bit, with the inclusion of "Music" in the title, but count on those early June vibes and strolling opportunities to abound (as well as plenty of ways to hear tunes). Be on Union Street from Gough to Fillmore on Saturday, June 3 and Sunday, June 4.
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Visit California/Carol Highsmith
It's two mondo anniversaries for this celebration in 2017, what with the fair marking its 40th and the Summer of Love honoring its half-century mark. Be in the neighborhood on Saturday, June 10 for "music|art|crafts|food" and more.
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NorCal Pirate Festival
You say "arrr," we say spend Father's Day Weekend at this vibrant Vallejo tradition. It all unfurls with costumes, kid activities, and more landlubbery goings-on. Be at the Vallejo Waterfront Park on Saturday, June 17 and Sunday, June 18.
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North Beach Festival
If you've gone to each and every year of this community fun time, which includes a Blessing of the Animals, then you've been attending for 63 years. Join this venerable tradition and eat, listen to tunes, shop the merchants. Be in North Beach on Saturday, June 17 and Sunday, June 18.
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It's a community-amazing "celebration of diversity" and it will embrace that Summer of Love spirit over the course of several iconic events, including the 47th annual SF Pride Parade. Be at Civic Center Plaza, and other area venues, on Saturday, June 24 and Sunday, June 25.
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Stern Grove Festival
It's a pay-nothing-to-enter favorite, and its 80th season will roll out, grandly, and with fine performance, from June to August. Be at the Sigmund Stern Grove from June 25 through Aug. 27, on a Sunday, to savor excellent stagecraft and sounds.
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AP/Reed Saxon
If you devour peppers and arugula and artichokes and avocados and beets at just about every meal, this could be your ultimate cuisine gathering. It's ticketed, do note. And do note that you'll want to be at the Santa Clara County Fairgrounds on Saturday, July 1.
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Slurpy supping is the of the gourmand game at the 18th annual San Francisco Oysterfest Music Festival. Look for "more oysters and less moisture" in 2017 (as opposed to last year). Be in Golden Gate Park on Saturday, July 1.
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Rich Yee
Enjoy the vibrant stylings of the great Kim Nalley as well as a host of musicians who've brought the rhythms and good sounds to the festival. Be between Jackson and Eddy on Fillmore on Saturday, July 1 and Sunday, July 2.
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Spectacular fireworks and a host of other red, white, and blue to-dos will fill out Independence Day. Bonus? Spying the pyrotechnics and all of that lovely water. Be at Pier 39 on Tuesday, July 4. (Photo by David Paul Morris/Getty Images)
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Clink glasses with your oenophile BFF as you spend a mid-July Saturday getting to know labels and grapes at The Claremont Club & Spa, A Fairmont Hotel. Be at the historic property on Saturday, July 15.
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San Francisco Shakespeare Festival
Find your way to one of a quintet of parks — Pleasanton, Cupertino, Redwood City are your destinations, plus a pair of parks in San Francisco — to eye "Hamlet" in all of its dramatic glory. Of note: This is the company's big 35th season. The free Shakespeare in the Park schedule generally runs from July to October.
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Hoo boy, it is fiery, it is spicy, and, if you're into it, you could find yourself happily chomping on deep-fried garlic and garlic ice cream at the 39th outing of this famous fest. "The World's Greatest Summer Food Festival" is all about the bulb, in all of its glorious, searing forms. Be in Gilroy from Friday, July 28 through Sunday, July 30.
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It's mega, it's meal-filled, it's full of foams and wines and headliners and people who dig large-scale, three-day sound spectaculars. Who's playing in '17? Why, The Who, and Gorillaz, and Metallica, and Lorde. Be at Golden Gate Park from Friday, Aug. 11 to Sunday, Aug. 13. (Photo by Trixie Textor/Getty Images)
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California Beer Festival
It's an on-the-road, fancy-of-foam festival that puts a few stops around California on its itinerary each summer. One of those places is Santa Cruz, which will see dozens of brewhouses, near and far, come and pour. Be at Aptos Village Park from Friday, Aug. 11 through Sunday, Aug. 13.
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San Jose Renaissance Festival & Fantasy Fair
If you haven't yet worn a ruff this year, or a doublet, and you want to "huzzah" all the day long, you can do so in early August, when summertime is ripe and the jests are jovial. Be at Discovery Park in San Jose on Saturday, Aug. 5 and Sunday, Aug. 6.
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Hello, amazing line-up: Carmen Lundy, Chris Botti, and George Clinton and Parliament Funkadelic will all play the 2017 weekend, which brims with blues, classic jazz, and salsa, too. Be in Downtown San Jose from Friday, Aug. 11 through Sunday, Aug. 13.
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Gravenstein Apple Fair
Sometimes you just can't wait to get your autumn on, especially when August kicks off and you're dreaming of ciders and such. Make for Sonoma County for a day of apple-y sweetness and barn-time doings. Be at Ragle Ranch Park in Sebastopol on Saturday, Aug. 12 and Sunday, Aug. 13.
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Sausalito Art Festival
If it is Labor Day Weekend, and you're in Sausalito, and you dig paintings and sculptures and talking with the people who make them, and you like food and live tunes and breezes off the bay, bet you're at this decades-along doyen of fine-art enjoyment. Be at the waterfront from Saturday, Sept. 2 through Monday, Sept. 4.
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