Even if you haven’t been holding out all year for a pumpkin spice latte, there’s a little part of all of us that revels in fall celebrations. In the San Francisco Bay Area, September and October hold some of the best! Events offer live music, pumpkin patches, street fairs, and foods of all kinds. Here are a few fall festivals around the Bay Area to add to your calendar. And this is just a warm up, a Part 1 if you will. Much more to come in mid-to-late October!
Sept. 15-16 | 11 a.m.-6 p.m.
Grant Avenue, Chinatown, San Francisco
This street fair kicks off with a parade down Grant Street followed by a weekend of entertainment, about 200 arts and crafts booths, and Chinese food stands. The festival is timed to coincide with the full moon, and there’s no better time to enjoy a weekend of colorful Chinese traditions ranging from performances by acrobats and martial artists to booths selling the festival’s famous mooncakes.
Sept. 15 | 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Memorial Park, Cupertino
This multicultural community festival will open at 11 a.m. at the amphitheater stage in Memorial Park. The day will be filled with games, music, food, and entertainment on stage throughout the event. Rotary Club of Cupertino is a festival sponsor, and proceeds from the day will be donated to local charitable projects.
Pier 48, San Francisco
Celebrate the season in authentic German style. The 21-piece Chico Bavarian Band headlines non-stop musical performances. The biergarten opens at 5 p.m. Friday. There will be authentic food and dance each day. Sunday’s highlight is the annual German parade. For details, visit https://oktoberfestbythebay.com/.
Oct. 13 | 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
Cedar Rose Park, 1300 Rose St.
The city’s outdoor summer-long music series culminates in a fall celebration with performances from Spazmatics, Motor Dude Zydeco and Tortilla Soup. Make sure to pack your blanket and lawn chairs (leave the adult beverages at home—it’s a family friendly event) and get there by 11 a.m., when the live music begins. Kids will love the bounce house, scarecrow making, and balloon art, while the grown-ups can check out food demonstrations and the Garden Expo.
Oct. 13-14 | 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Main Street, Half Moon Bay
Highlights of this behemoth of a pumpkin celebration in the “World Pumpkin Capital” include a pumpkin weigh-off with champions the size of small cars and a pumpkin carve-off where winners are museum-worthy creations. This free festival also features live music, a pumpkin patch, a parade, the world’s largest mosaic pumpkin sculpture, and games and contests.