We love a party here, especially a party for a cause. There are some great fundraisers in the mix this weekend: SF faves’ Charity and the JAM Band bring the noise for Noe Valley Nursery School; and Tree Frog Treks holds a combined St. Patty’s Day party and silent auction. Think green! For more St. Pat’s fun, visit Habitot’s Shamrock Day with a treasure hunt throughout the museum and potato stamp art projects. (Potty) Dance it up with Ralph’s World at one of its two local shows (SF and Walnut Creek). And after a year and a half of renovations, Happy Hollow Park and Zoo in San Jose is open again sporting new green facilities. Run down and take a closer look at this new old favorite.

San Francisco:

Picture Me Rollin’

If the weather compels you to take to the streets on two-wheels, join the SF Bike Coalition for a family ride over the Golden Gate Bridge. They even note you might like to stay on the NB side and hit up Bay Area Discovery Museum. Now they’re thinking like mommies! Sun., 10:30 a.m., Marina Green, San Francisco, free (Note: kids should be on 16” bikes or above, or in bike seats or trailers) Read more.

Big Kids’ Party

Escuela Buena Vista goes big with its La Gran Pachanga fundraiser at 111 Minna. It’s not just for art hipsters any more. Don your favorite “I used to hang out in the Mission” gear and break it down like it’s 2001. And you have no kids. And you go out at night. And stay up past 9:00. p.m. (And know you did it all for the kids!). Fri., 8:00 p.m. – 2:00 a.m., Minna Gallery, San Francisco, $15 at door. Read more.

East Bay:

Playtime in the Old Time

Come by one of our favorite spots, Ardenwood Farm for a host of kid-friendly activities, including another round of old-fashioned games. Before there was Wii, or Nintendo, or even Atari, kids used to play outdoors with ropes and rocks and balls. Crazy but true! Bring your little by for a hopscotching blast from the past. Stick around to gather some eggs and feed the animals at 3:00 p.m. Sun., 1:00 – 2:00 p.m., Ardenwood Farm, Fremont, free w/admission. Read more.


If you’ve been waiting for the perfect time to introduce your kids to Bastian, Atreyu, and Falkor, this is it. Piedmont Theatre is showing “The Neverending Story” this Sunday at 10:00 a.m. (also midnight Saturday, if you have some late-night littles). Bring the kids by to see how one little boy’s belief saves a world and he gets to ride a dragon through the back alleys of his town scaring bullies. Try not to sing along (loudly). Sat., 11:55 p.m., $8; Sun., 10:00 a.m., $5, Piedmont. Read more.

Peninsula/South Bay:

Holy Moly, Filoli!

Filoli is the perfect spot for your spring holidays. With its immaculate grounds and grand fountains, you’ll feel like you’ve tripped to Versailles without the jet lag. Their Spring Fling is a tradition not to be missed with puppet shows, nibbles, face-painting, and horse-drawn carriages. Really, who doesn’t like a good horse-drawn carriage? Sat., 10:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m., $20 – 25/adult, $5/child, 4 and under free (Buy soon, tickets will sell out!) Read more.

Make a PACT for Fun

Palo Alto Children’s Theatre continues its Saturday Playhouse Series  with “Mother Goose’s Excuses.” PACT’s original works are always a big hit with the littles, and located next to the Jr. Zoo and tons of playgrounds, no one goes away without a belly full of fun. Sat., 10:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m., Palo Alto, free. Read more.

North Bay/Marin:

Spring Greening

Cornerstone Gardens is offering a great combo: BBQ and gardening. Throw in some live music, planting bulbs, a dog named Winky, and your kids will be queuing to put some roots in the earth. Sat. and Sun., 11:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m., Sonoma, free (Pots and bulbs available for a fee.). Read more.

Better Than TV

In Animal Vs. Animal, an Aesop’s Fables Mashup, storytellers Edna and Irwin turn fables like The Tortoise & The Hare on their heads in this entertaining family matinee. an Sat. and Sun., 1:00 p.m., Mill Valley Read more.

—Nicole Cooksey-Voytenko