With three days of gorgeous weather on the forecast and tons of activities for all ages, your Memorial Day weekend is guaranteed to be off-the-hook fun. Whether you pick a parade or the newest art exhibit made totally out of inflatables, the kids won’t want the weekend to end. Plan your family fun today!
photo: The Presidio Trust
1. Join in the 150th Anniversary Memorial Day Commemoration at the Presidio
This year marks the 150th anniversary of the Presidio’s participation in San Francisco’s annual ceremony, dating back to the establishment of this national day of remembrance in 1868. Join The Presidio Trust, the Veterans of Foreign Wars and the City of San Francisco in this ceremony that will honor the one million Americans killed while serving in the U.S. armed forces and will connect the public to the commitment and sacrifices made by military personnel, veterans and their families. Mon., May 28, 10:30 a.m.-2 p.m. Presidio Officer’s Club, San Francisco. More info.
photo: Doug Kaye
2. Celebrate the Vibrant Colors of Carnaval SF
For forty years, Carnaval SF has brought music, art and dance from Latin America, the Caribbean and the United States to convene in harmony. The festival lineup includes the grand parade on Sun., May 27 at 9:30 a.m. as well as musical and dance performances over both Saturday and Sunday. Enjoy global cuisine and a festive atmosphere for all ages. Sat.-Sun., May 26-27. Harrison Street between 16th and 24th, San Francisco. More info.
photo: Cassidy Batiz
3. Explore Massive Inflatable Works of Art.
May 25 is members’ opening night for the new Exploratorium exhibit, Inflatable: Expanding Works of Art. Fueled by the whimsy and lightness of balloons, the artists of Inflatable have infused their creations with a technology, scale and creative complexity that expands our vision of what contemporary art can look like. Included with Exploratorium admission of $29.95/adults and $24.95/kids, ages 3 and under are free. Exhibit opens on Fri., May 25 to members and Sat., May 26 to non-members. Pier 15, San Francisco. More info.
4. Go on a Golden Gate Park Excursion.
Any time is a good time to explore Golden Gate Park with so many free activities for kids and families. On Sunday at 1 p.m. you can catch a free concert in the Spreckles Bandshell (in the plaza between the de Young and the Academy) that pays homage to Memorial Day with classical works with patriotic flair. Sun., May 27, 1 p.m. San Francisco. More info.
photo: Fabrice Florin via flickr
5. Attend a “Small Town” Parade
Don’t miss the annual Mill Valley Memorial Parade. Honoring veterans both local and global, this fave parade includes plenty of colorful and creative floats by Marin County’s finest. Back to the original parade route this year, the historic Wells Fargo Stagecoach will ride again! Mon., May 28 at 10:30 a.m. Mill Valley. More info.
6. Remember Veterans and Tour the USS Hornet
This annual ceremony kicks off at 11 a.m. on the hanger deck and remembers those who served our country. The ceremony is about a half hour followed by a wreath toss. Stay the rest of the day for various activities, meet veterans and tour the ship either on your own or through a docent-led tour. $20/adults, $10/kids, ages 6 and under and veterans are free. Mon., May 28. USS Hornet open from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. More info.
photo: Eulas via flickr
7. Travel Back in Time to the Civil War
Encampments of Union and Confederate soldiers re-make history right before your eyes as you experience the sights and sounds of cavalry charges, musket fire and artillery shells in one of the longest-running historic reenactments in the West. Ride an 1880s “iron horse” through an ancient redwood forest and witness skirmishes as the steam train ascends Bear Mountain. Glimpse a soldier’s daily life as he cooks meals over a campfire, cleans his musket and prepares for the day’s campaign. $10/parking. Train ride: $32/adults, $26/kids 2-12, under 2 are free. Roaring Camp Railroad, 5401 Graham Hill Road, Felton. More info.
8. Celebrate Kids in Concord
Enjoy bounce houses, face painting, balloon art, community stage of entertainment and tons of arts and crafts at this year’s 29th annual Kidfest in Concord. Cost is $7 and just $6 if you bring a can of food for donation. The festival is all weekend long: Sat.-Sun., 10 a.m.-6 p.m. and Mon. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Mt. Diablo High School, 2450 Grant St., Concord. More info.
What’s on your family calendar for the three-day weekend? Let us know in the comments below.