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Top Ways to Celebrate Spring in San Francisco
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Top Ways to Celebrate Spring in San Francisco

Picture of Sarah Nguyen
Updated: 18 December 2016
It is officially the end of our so-called ‘winter’ here in San Francisco, and we can now enjoy a bit of warmer weather before summer hits us with its scorching heat. Spring is the perfect time to venture out and see what outdoor events San Francisco has in store, so mark your calendars because it’s going to be a busy one!
Japanese Cherry Blossom Festival- Northern California Cherry Blossom Festival 2012 | ©davidyuweb
Japanese Cherry Blossom Festival – Northern California Cherry Blossom Festival 2012 | © davidyuweb
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Japanese Cherry Blossom Festival

April 11-12, 18-19

For two weekends, the streets of Japantown come alive with Japanese martial arts demonstrations, singing, dancing, delicacies, tea ceremonies, taiko drummers and so much more for the entire family to enjoy. This event is said to be the second largest celebration outside of Washington, DC and takes place at one of the three remaining Japantowns in the United States. This celebration comes to a close on a flowery note with a 2 hour Japanese style parade where you will be charmed by floats adorned with floral arrangements, ladies in silk kimonos, and costumed dancers and musicians.

Civic Center and Japantown

Hello Kitty Food Truck - HelloKittyCafeUSA
Hello Kitty Food Truck | Courtesy of HelloKittyCafeUSA
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Hello Kitty Food Truck

April 11, 12, 18

This cute iconic kitty has taken hearts all over the world by storm. Indulge your inner Sanrio child with Hello Kitty themed and decorated desserts like rainbow macarons, mini HK square cakes, donuts adorned with the famous bow and bow-shaped water bottles. According to their Facebook event page, this unique truck will serve an estimated 1000 excited fans!

Japantown Cherry Blossom Festival

San Francisco International Film Festival

April 23- May 7

Now in its 58th year, SIFF is the longest-running festival of its kind in the Americas. Featuring a spectacular showcase of international cinema, last year’s film festival had 158 films from 51 different countries, totalling over 263 screenings. You’re certainly guaranteed to find something happening that will leave you captivated for a long time.

SF Giants Home Opener- AT&T Park Willie Mays Gate 2010
SF Giants Home Opener, AT&T Park Willie Mays Gate 2010 | Courtesy of WikiCommons
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San Francisco Giants Home Opener

April 13

Ah, the Giants – heart and soul of San Francisco. Be one of the loud and proud fans decked out in black and orange in the stadium to help remind the Rockies, their opponents, just who won the 2014 World Series championship. Catch the early pre-game celebrations with activities like the raising of the Giants World Series Champions Pennant, and as an added bonus if you’re one of the first 40,000 fans, receive a pennant presented by Bank of America.

AT&T Park, 24 Willie Mays Plaza, San Francisco, CA, USA

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San Francisco International Beer Festival

May 9

Interested in drinking beer for a good cause? You will not only have a great time at this beer festival but will also be doing good, as the money raised will be donated to the Telegraph Hill Cooperative Nursery School where it will be put towards funding teaching and learning programs for an entire year. The ticket price includes a bottomless mug for hundreds of craft beers, from favorite local and international breweries, as well as food tastings from an array of San Francisco restaurants.

Festival Pavillion, 2 Marina Blvd, San Francisco, CA, USA

102nd Bay to Breakers | © Zappos.com Bay to Breakers
102nd Bay to Breakers | © Zappos.com Bay to Breakers
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102nd Bay to Breakers Marathon

May 17

This marathon is unlike any other. It allows you to run alongside Mario and Luigi, a school of salmons, or grown men channeling their inner ballerinas on a non-Halloween event. This 12K run will have you weaving through San Francisco, trotting through Golden Gate Park, trudging up Hayes Hill Challenge where you’ll be rewarded with the ultimate party on the beach along the Great Highway. This marathon is said to be the quintessential San Francisco experience, which means you really shouldn’t miss this one!

Howard St & Main St, San Francisco, CA, USA

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UnCorked Wine Festival

May 9

If beer doesn’t entice you, over 50 top-tier wineries will be present at the Ghiradelli Square along with live entertainment, art and craft vendors, and cooking demos from top San Francisco chefs at the UnCorked Wine Festival. The proceeds of this event will also go towards a good cause, as Save The Bay will use the raised proceeds to protect, restore, and celebrate the beauty that is the San Francisco Bay. Get your tickets as soon as possible!

Ghirardelli Square, 900 North Point St, San Francisco, CA, USA

Carnaval San Francisco- Carnaval Parade San Francisco 2014 | ©davidyuweb
Carnaval Parade San Francisco 2014 | © davidyuweb
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Carnaval San Francisco

May 23, 24

A huge two day, multi-cultural event abundant with in-your-face feathers, sparkling colors and international food, Carnaval promises to entertain. In addition, what’s a festival without a grand parade to showcase those bright costumes, cultural drumming and dancing? Get ready for an overwhelming sensory experience!

Harrison Street between 16th and 24th Street

Union Street Festival

June 6, 7

This year, unique ‘Worlds’ will be designated and decorated accordingly to each block for the Union Street Festival. World themes include fashion, culinary, health & fitness, local and technology. In addition, there will be a craft beer and wine tasting with food pairings that correspond to each World concept, ensuring that you get a customizable, unique experience as you explore the city in a different way.

Union Street from Gough to Steiner

Stern Grove Festival 78th Season- Stern Grove Festival |
Stern Grove Festival 78th Season | © _e.t/flickr
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Stern Grove Festival 78th Season – Free Concert Series

June 14 – August 16

The Stern Grove has amazing natural acoustics, which makes it a perfect place to have performances out in the cool breeze.The mission of Sigmund Stern Grove, given to the City of San Francisco in 1931, was to ultimately enhance the city’s name as a cultural center by providing high quality performances free of charge, for the Bay Area’s diverse residents. You will always have something to do every Sunday at 2PM once this concert series begins. The music is diverse each year and the lineup isn’t released yet, so keep an eye on their website however we do know who will be kicking the event off- The Doobie Brothers.

19th Avenue and Sloat Boulevard,San Francisco, CA

BONUS: The How Weird Street Fair

The How Weird Street Fair will have 10 dance music stages, colorful carnival activities, unusual and exotic spectacle and entertainment to wow and amaze you and of course plenty of food and people dressed up in costumes. This one takes place April 26 on Howard and 2nd Street. Get it? How-ward street? Clever one San Francisco, clever one…

Howard and 1st Street and Mission and 2nd Street