Did you ever wonder what summer sounds like? Well here in the Bay Area it could be a garden piano, a makeshift museum choir or a beach-front band. What will you hear this weekend?

flower_pianoPhoto Courtesy of Sunset Piano

San Francisco

Play a Piano in the City’s Biggest Garden
For twelve days this month, the city’s biggest garden is home to the Flower Piano, 12 different pianos in various locations throughout the gardens for anyone to play. It’s free to play or listen (with regular garden admission; free for SF residents). On select days there will be professional performances by Allison Lovejoy and Serene Han, composer Alex Conde, and new music specialist Sarah Cahill who will be accompanied by violinist Kate Stenberg. Enjoy some special treats including the 80-piece Awesöme Orchestra, a chance to participate in a sing-along with the Community Music Center’s Choir Director Billy Philadelphia, and family-friendly activities with the costumed performers of Rabbit Hole Theatre. Fri.-Sun. Event details.

Sing Along With a Participatory Choir at SFMOMA
If you thought the new SFMOMA was just for grown-ups then check this out. Performance All Ages is hosting A Paradise Choir, wherein a series of weekend workshops and drop-in gallery activations, local musicians and museum visitors can form communal choirs dedicated to “reckless noisemaking and careful listening.” These epic, sing-song weekly gatherings set the stage for the full orchestration of A Paradise Choir on Free Family Day. During this daylong sonic installation, join in and discover mobile choruses, site-specific performances, and the museum remade into multiple music halls. Sat.-Sun. Event details.

The Sweetest Beach Clean-up Yet
How many beach clean-ups end with sundaes? Ghirardelli Chocolate Company is partnering with Surfrider Foundation’s San Francisco Chapter for two beach cleanups at Ocean Beach on World Oceans Day from 10 a.m. to noon on June 5 and again on July 10. The clean-ups will help raise awareness about protecting the urban beach. Ghirardelli will thank participants with a sweet treat and voucher to use towards an Ocean Beach Sundae. Participants will meet at Stairwell 17 (across from Beach Chalet Restaurant), where Surfrider Foundation will provide supplies of buckets and gloves. Sun. Event details.

South Bay

Friday Night Bands on the Beach
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, Taylor Dayne, Toad the Wet Sprocket, Smash Mouth 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. Friday nights, June 17 through Sept. 2. Fri. Event details.

Take a Ride With this Cool Mouse
Cool off this summer inside the Children’s Discovery Museum of San Jose with a free Sunday matinee. Beverly Cleary’s beloved award-winning books about Ralph S. Mouse are brought to life in part in this film, “Runaway Ralph,” about the adventures of a one super cool, motorcycle-riding dude. Eh, mouse. The film will run every Sunday through July. Free with museum admission. Show repeats at 1 p.m., 2 p.m. and 3 p.m. Sun. Event details.

East Bay

Concerts in this Cove Rule
Once a month on Fridays this summer, families can crawl over to Crab Cover 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. Parking is available on Webster St. or Crown Beach lot at Otis. Fri. Event details.

See Shrek Before It’s Ogre
It’s not ogre until it’s ogre. The opening show of the 50th anniversary season of the Woodminster Summer Musicals is Shrek The Musical.  Shrek The Musical is based on the Oscar-winning DreamWorks Animation film and the 1990 picture book by William Steig. Shrek is an ogre who finds himself on a life-changing journey alongside a wisecracking donkey and a feisty princess who resists her rescue. Along the way, they meet misfit fairy tale characters, a cookie with an attitude, tap-dancing rats, and more. Fri.-Sun. Event details.

Midsummer Madness with the Shakespeare Festival
Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day? Sure, because one of the things that makes summer so memorable in the Bay Area is the San Francisco Shakespeare Festival. Produced every year in San Francisco, Pleasanton, and Cupertino from July to October, Free Shakespeare in the Park provides an opportunity for over 30,000 people to see high quality, professional theater free of charge. Sat.-Sun. Event details.


Make Jazz Hands Every Friday Night
Mellow out on a hot summer Friday night with some cool Jazz at the Marin Country Mart. Throughout the season some of the hottest jazz players will strike up the shows from the Bay Area and beyond including Mads Tolling Trio, the Martin Diller Quartet, and Bill Belasco & Aguabella. Fri. Event details.

These Summer Nights Will Sing to You
The Kanbar Center at the Osher Marin JCC is kicking off its 24th Annual Summer Nights Outdoor Music Festival featuring five Saturday nights of multi-cultural live music from African music night to California JamGrass. The event includes live music dinners, cocktails, picnics, dancing, a kid zone and more. Acts include Sierra Leone’s Refugee All Stars, Diego’s Umbrella, Tea Leaf Green and Pacific Mambo Orchestra. Sat. Event details.

Say Bonjour to this Antique Market
Summer is back and so is Marin’s Outdoor Antique Market. Inspired by the best flea markets of Paris this popular antique market brings together shoppers, treasure hunters, collectors, decorators, and dozens of quality vendors with booths filled to the brim with great bargains and unique collectibles. The market mixes repurposed vintage furnishings, up-cycled architectural salvage, exquisite estate and vintage jewelry, retro décor, cottage chic, textured linens, historical maps, tempting ephemera and vintage toys, of course. Sun. 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.

U-Pick the Berry Best
Get the berry best pick of blackberry varieties and raspberries this summer at Webb Ranch. Right now the u-pick farm is open Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. The farm encourages guests to eat as they go, so there’s an $4 entrance fee per person for everyone between the ages of 4-65. Berries to go are $5 per pound. Sat. Event details.

What are you tuning into this weekend? Tell us about it in the comments below.

– Chantal Lamers