You’ve made it to the mid-way point of summer! Check off some of those summer bucket list items this weekend by heading to the new Inflatable exhibit at The Exploratorium or spending the night at Children’s Fairyland. You will definitely earn top dog status with the little pups!

photo: The Exploratorium

San Francisco

Behind the Bubble: Inflatable-Inspired Activities
Bring your family to the Exploratorium Friday evenings this summer for Inflatable-inspired craft activities. Wonder at Inflatable’s gigantic, air-filled artworks and explore exhibition themes such as air, illumination and motion. Make whimsical objects to take home, included with your admission. High school students receive $15 admission after 5 p.m. Fri. Event details

Watch the World Cup at the Civic Center Plaza
Watch the final FIFA World Cup game with other SF soccer fans in the Civic Center Plaza. In addition to the screenings, there will be soccer activities for kids, the mobile rock climbing wall and food trucks. Civic Center Commons Initiative will also be offering lawn games like giant Jenga and cornhole for guests to enjoy. Sun. Event details

East Bay

Sleepover at Children’s Fairyland
It’s a campout like never before, with a little touch of magic added for extra special fun. Kiddos will make a run for those sleeping bags in order to attend the magical campout at Children’s Fairyland. Pitch a tents, spend the evening riding the Jolly Trolly at dusk, or enjoying a special performance. The next morning chow on a specially prepared continental breakfast. It’s a truly unique outdoor adventure. Sat. Event details.

Concerts in this Beach Cove Rule
Once a month on Fridays this summer, families can crawl over to Crab Cove Visitors Center for free music and family fun as the sun set over the San Francisco Bay. The visitor center will stay open late, hosting activities on the deck starting at 4:30 p.m. Bring a blank, lawn chair and picnic dinner. Food will also be available for purchase at the cove. Fri. Event details

South Bay

Make Friday Night Count (and Jam)
What could be better than sunset, surf and song? The Santa Cruz Boardwalk continues its annual classic beach concerts with shows from Blue Oyster Cult, Gin Blossoms, Great White, Los Lobos and so many more. Stretch out your blanket and watch the kiddos rave. Your tiny dancers are guaranteed to sleep during the car ride home. Fri. Event details. 

Visit the Nature Museum and Blacksmith Shop
Stop by the Environmental Education Center Nature Museum at McClellan Ranch Preserve for an up-close experience with the resident animals and nature exhibits. Staff and volunteers will be on hand to help you meet the animals and learn a bit about them. Sat.-Sun. Event details


Be Free! Bird Release
The Wildlife Center of Silicon Valley will be releasing a rehabilitated bird back into the wild right here at Gamble Garden! Come witness the big moment as a rehabilitated bird returns to its natural environment. Learn about how WCSV, a wildlife rehabilitation center, treats sick, injured and orphaned wildlife. Registration required. Sat. Event details

Kick Up Your Heels for Friday
Friday night’s Music on the Square makes kicking off the weekend 100 percent better. Grab dinner from a neighborhood restaurant then come listen and dance to music on Friday nights this summer. There’s a little something from everyone, from funk to new wave and modern rock, blues, reggae as well as Journey and Santana tribute bands. Fri. Event details

North Bay

Sundays are for Summer Music
Let loose this summer during the annual Summer Music Series every Sunday at Town Center Corte Madera. Everyone is invited to get rockin’ to live musical performances in the beautiful outdoor setting of Town Center. Sun. Event details

—Kate Loweth