It’s an extra long weekend, full of popsicles, hot dogs, parades and fireworks. From pancake breakfasts to outdoor movies to a celebration of San Francisco’s birthday, there’s plenty to keep you going before the weekend ends with a serious fireworks bang.

photo: Kate Loweth

San Francisco

Pasados del Presidio: San Francisco’s “Birthday”
Descendants of the original founding families of the Juan Bautista de Anza Expedition (1775-76) return to the Presidio to recognize the journey of their ancestors and the founding of El Presidio de San Francisco. The program includes formal remarks, a procession by the Amigos de Anza horse mounted riders and a roll call of the people who made the original 1200+ mile trek from Sonora/Mexico. In the afternoon, enjoy guided tours (1 and 3 p.m.) and crafts for kids (11 a.m.-3 p.m.). Sat. Event details

Dress Up For The Sound of Music
Sing-a-long to a classic, The Sound of Music. This musical fave will feature subtitles so that the whole family can sing out loud, really loud. Goody bags will be handed out to everyone and audience members can add to the fun by dressing up as a favorite character for the costume contest. Fri.-Sun. Event details.

Get Jazzed at the Filmore Jazz Festival
Spend the 4th of July weekend in the heart of San Francisco’s historical jazz district. Fillmore Street between Jackson and Eddy will be lined with stages of live music, fine art and crafts, food, beverages and plenty of spontaneous dancing. It is the largest free jazz festival on the West Coast. Sat.-Sun. Event details. 

East Bay

Say Ahoy on the Hornet this Fourth
Hey, little sailors come celebrate July 4th onboard the Aircraft Carrier USS Hornet. On deck will be live music, food, classic cars and activities for the whole family to enjoy. A kid’s zone includes face painting, flight simulator rides, bounce houses and more. View nearby fireworks at 9:15 p.m., weather permitting. Wed. Event details

Moonlight Movies on the Town Green
Sweltering East Bay days usually mean blissfully warm summer evenings, so no need to swap out the shorts and t-shirts for this post-sunset excursion. The best part just might be the kids crafts and activities starting at 6:30 p.m. and running up until movie time (sundown). Tonight’s movie The Little Mermaid. Fri. Event details

South Bay

Pancakes and the World’s Shortest Parade
Start the Fourth bright and early for a Pancake Breakfast from -10 a.m. in the burger Aptos parking lot. After, make your way to the “World’s Shortest Parade” from 10 a.m.-noon and then immediately after make your way to the Aptos Village Park for the Party in the Park featuring local vendors, food, music and activities until 4 p.m. Wed. Event details.

Have an Explosive Time at Discovery Park
Head to Discovery Meadow in downtown San Jose to celebrate our nation’s independence! The fireworks show will begin at approximately 9:30 p.m., after dusk. Home of the Children’s Discovery Museum of San Jose, you can spend the day there before the fireworks. Wed. Event details. 


Red, White and Blue in Redwood City
Since 1939, this parade has brought families to downtown Redwood City to don their red, white and blue. Head to the RWC Fire Department for the pancake breakfast from 7:30-10:30 a.m. The parade starts at 10 a.m. and is followed by a festival that fills the streets. Fireworks kick off at 9:30 p.m. for a full day of festivities. Wed. Event details

Fireworks Meet the San Francisco Symphony
Hang out at the Shoreline Amphitheater in Mountain View and watch fireworks to the sounds of the San Francisco Symphony. Grab some seats or spread out on the lawn under the stars. There will be fireworks on the stage and in the sky. Wed. Event details.

North Bay

Visit ACR’s Martin Griffin Preserve in Stinson Beach
Plant your feet at Audubon Canyon Ranch’s Martin Griffin Preserve every Saturday. There’s plenty to do, including hiking eight miles of trails, picnicking under the redwoods, checking out wildlife. hanging with nature guides, playing in the curiosity room and shopping in the nature bookstore. Sat. Event details

Funky Fridays at the Hood Mansion
Dance the night away with Sonoma’s Funky Friday outdoor concert series on the lawn of the historic Hood Mansion. This being Sonoma, you can expect plenty of great food and drink from vendors including Henhouse Brewing Company, Kenwood Vinyards, TIPS Tri Tip Trolley and much more. With a new group playing each week you’ll need to swing by more than once this summer. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. Fri. Event details

—Kate Loweth