5 Things to do this Memorial Day weekend

The Golden Gate Bridge 75th Anniversary Festival
The Golden Gate Bridge opened on May 27, 1937, and this weekend marks 75 years of service with a celebration at the entire northern end of San Francisco, from Fort Point to Fisherman’s Wharf. Saturday is the warm-up act, with art exhibitions and guided tours. Sunday the party starts at 10am and the area will be pretty much shut down; even if streets are open, expect traffic to make it a parking lot. Live music (11am-11pm) and vintage cars from 1937 at Crissy Field and Marina Green, and a vintage boat parade along St. Francis Yacht Club (11am-3pm), highlight the day’s events. A fireworks display over the bridge 9:30-9:50 caps it all off.

San Francisco Carnaval Festival and Parade
Three stages of live music, Salsa classes, beer gardens, drumming, a kids corner… sounds like a party, or a carnival. The festival, put on by people from cultures who actually celebrate the pre-Lenten event (and look good in beaded costumes), takes place Saturday and Sunday, 10am-6pm, in the Mission along Harrison Street between 16th and 22nd. The parade is 9:30am Sunday, starting from Bryant and 24th, then up Mission to 17th.

The Bridge on the Big Screen
What better way to celebrate the birthday of GGB than to see it destroyed on film by a giant squid. The Presidio Trust will be screening movies all summer (seven in all) that feature the bridge, and Saturday’s flick is the 1955 classic It Came from Beneath the Sea. The movie starts at sundown (live music prior) on the main Presidio post lawn adjacent to the Walt Disney Family Museum (a co-sponsor of the event). Bring a blanket and a picnic, and look into the PresidiGo Shuttle service which picks up at the Lombard Gate, because the Presidio will be closed to traffic all day.

23rd Annual Flower & Food Festival
Well, it’s a festival!, with lots of booths, and food, including fancy foods from gourmet vendors. And if you’re into flowers, bonus. There’s also live music. Larkspur is actually a pleasant little community in Marin, just south of San Rafael and a fifteen minute drive from GGB (without traffic). So it’s easily accessible and a nice way to spend a Sunday afternoon. The  festival is Sunday from 11am to 6pm. You can also use it as a jumping off point to explore other towns in Marin or take a drive up to Mt. Tam. If you go, keep in mind the GGB will be closed from 9-10pm for fireworks.

The American Legion Log Cabin Memorial Day Celebration & BBQ
You’re in for an All-American event when the Boy Scouts team up with the American Legion at the Log Cabin in San Anselmo for a Memorial Day celebration and free barbeque, Monday from 1-7pm. There’s live music and a cash bar, and plenty of fun for the kids. San Anselmo is sandwiched between San Rafael and Fairfax, another pleasant little North Bay community. And if your so inclined, post-event, you can continue west a few miles along Sir Francis Drake Blvd to Spirit Rock Meditation Center for a 7pm talk from Buddhist teacher and author Jack Kornfield.

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