2012's To-Do List 

The best of the Bay Area's annual events.

Page 2 of 7

Presidential Yacht Potomac Opening Day Cruise Celebration of the opening of yacht season, with "visits" from (aka people dressed up as) historical Bay Area notables including Jack London, FDR, Lilly Coit, Emperor Norton, and others. Lunch included. Sunday, April 29. 10:30 p.m.-2 p.m. USS Potomac, 540 Water St., Oakland. JackLondonSquare.com

The San Francisco International Film Festival The oldest film fest in the Western Hemisphere is also one of the world's most interesting, because it plays to the Bay Area's film-loving audiences instead of to industry types with two weeks of movies you'll probably never see anywhere else. April 19-May 3. Various venues. SFFS.org

Strictly Sail Pacific Boat Show With sailboat rides, sailing seminars interactive workshops, parties and live music, and more. April 12-15, free. Jack London Square, Oakland. StrictlySailPacific.com


Alcatraz Challenge Swim 1.5-mile swim begins near Alcatraz Island and ends at the East Beach of Crissy Field, located in the Golden Gate National Recreation Area's Presidio Park. Sunday, May 27. 8 a.m. TriCalifornia.com

Bay to Breakers The infamously zany 12K race features runners decked out in costumes as they traverse the streets of San Francisco. Sunday, May 20. 7 a.m.-noon. Starts at Howard St. at Beale St., San Francisco. BayToBreakers.com

Bike to Work Day Drop your car keys, grab your bike, and participate in the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition's annual celebration of the bicycle. With deals and promotions for bike riders at various Bay Area locations. Thursday, May 10. SFBike.org

SF Carnaval Festival and Parade Parade and Street fair celebrating Latin American and Caribbean cultures, with food, non-stop music, dancing, a crowning of the King and Queen, and work by local artists. May 26 and 27, free. Harrison St., between 16th and 23rd streets, San Francisco. CarnavalSF.com.

Himalayan Fair Berkeley's "Little Lhasa" comes alive at the popular annual event, but the "great mountain cultures" of Nepal, India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Bhutan also are represented, with a full day's worth of elaborately costumed traditional dance and music performers. And don't forget the spicy, charcoal-grilled food. May 19, 10 a.m.-7 p.m., May 20, 10 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Live Oak Park, 1301 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley. HimalayanFair.net

Historic Ships Cruise Get up close and personal with the mighty USS Hornet, the Jeremiah O'Brien, the Pampanito and others. Lunch included. USS Potomac, 540 Water St., Oakland. Saturday, May 26. JackLondonSquare.com

Jazz on Fourth With food, drink, and other merchants lining Fourth Street, and two stages are filled with homegrown talent, culminating in the finale's big-band pyrotechnics of award-winning, globetrotting Berkeley High School Jazz Ensemble. Sunday, May 20, free. Fourth Street, Berkeley. FourthStreet.com

Malcolm X Jazz Arts Festival With live performances; a children's court with arts, crafts, and games; a food court with crafts, community information booths, and vendors; dance performances; poets; DJs; emcees; speakers; and open ciphers. Saturday, May 19, free. San Antonio Park, 18th Avenue at Foothill Boulevard, Oakland. EastSideArtsAlliance.com

Oakland Greek Festival With Greek food, drinks, music, and dance. May 25-27. Greek Orthodox Cathedral of the Ascension, 4700 Lincoln Ave., Oakland. OaklandGreekFestival.com

Oakland Indie Awards With food and drink samplings from local restaurants; plus expos by local media, small businesses, and organizations. Typically held in May. Location TBD. OaklandIndieAwards.com

Park Street's 10th Annual Spring Festival Touted as a Mother's Day tradition, the annual festival featurs arts, crafts, food, beer, wine, and a kids' area with pony rides and petting zoo. Saturday, May 12, and Sunday, May 13, 10 a.m.-6 p.m., free. Park Street, Alameda. ShopParkStreet.com

Soundwaves Live musical entertainment plays out along the Oakland waterfront at Jack London Square. Thursday, May 17 and each Thursday through October. 5:30 p.m.-7:30 p.m., free. At the Broadway palm trees. JackLondonSquare.com


Alameda County Fair The annual fair features horseracing, contests, concerts, livestock, agriculture education, and carnival rides for the kiddies, plus plenty of barbecued ribs, turkey legs, and corn on the cob. June 20-July 8. Alameda County Fairgrounds, 4501 Pleasanton Ave., Pleasanton. AlamedaCountyFair.com

Berkeley World Music Festival Featuring live performances by Bay Area-based world music artists, as well as a crafts bazaar. Saturday, June 2, noon-6 p.m., free. Telegraph Ave., between Bancroft Way and Parker St., Berkeley. BerkeleyWorldMusicFestival.org

The Best of the Bay Ride Enjoy panoramic bay views, miles of pastoral and forested hills, and deep, cool redwood forests on optional 83-, 100-, 108, and 125-mile treks through the Bay Area. Preregistration only; limited to 150 riders. Saturday, June 16, $70-$80. Begins at the Orinda BART station. CherryCityCyclists.org

Chocolate & Chalk Art Festival With chocolate samples, arts and crafts vendors, and a sidewalk chalk art contest. Saturday, June 2 (postponed to June 9 if it rains), 10 a.m.-5 p.m., free. Shattuck Avenue, between Rose and Delaware streets, Berkeley. NorthShattuck.org

Dancing Under the Stars Weekly series of free dance styles (with different genres each week), provided by the Linden Street Dance Studio. Dance party follows each lesson. First dance of the season: Salsa. Friday, June 1 and each Friday through August. 8:30 p.m.-10 p.m. Foot of Broadway, Oakland. JackLondonSquare.com

Dimond Night Out Restaurant walk and business open house. Tuesday, June 5. Dimond District, Fruitvale Avenue, between Montana Avenue and Colma Street, Oakland. DimondNews.org


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