This Weekend in Santa Cruz: October 13th – 15th, 2017

Santa Cruz wharf and roundabout

Attention all of you weekend enthusiasts, we have a full line-up just for you. Check out the Open Studios tour in the south county for your art viewing pleasure. While you’re there, make a stop by a special State Historic Park for an open house. Are you looking for something different with a twist? View a cemetery architecture photo display or learn how to read the Tarot Cards.

There’s also plenty of food, wine, beer and music to set the perfect relaxing fall weekend mood.

See our picks for the top events each day this weekend:


Santa Cruz Film Festival

Santa Cruz Film Festival

When: 10/11 – 10/15
Where: Various locations
Cost: $10 – $75

The Santa Cruz Film Festival returns with 50 films over 5 days, beginning on Thursday.  Enjoy a single screening for $10 or go all in with a festival pass for $50.

Get more info here.

Art Twistory: Cemetery Art & Architecture

When: 10/13 from 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm
Where: Louden Nelson Community Center
Cost: $10 donation appreciated, $5 students and seniors.

View a photo presentation of the art and historical architecture of cemeteries. Compare the styles and trends of different eras and find out more about a society’s past and customs by clues found in a cemetery.

Get more info here.

Pinot Paradise – A Taste Of The Mountains

Pinot Paradise

When: 10/13- 10/15 (check website for times)
Where: Multiple Winery Locations
Cost: $25 – $80

Celebrate three days dedicated to Pinot and Chardonnay grown locally in the Santa Cruz Mountains. Choose from a variety of events over the weekend such as wine tasting, a strolling dinner by Hollins House, Pinot Picnic in the Park, and a wine tour in the Santa Cruz Mountains.

Get more info here.

Documentary Screening: STRAWS


When: 10/13 at 12:00 pm
Where: Colligan Theater at the Tannery Arts Center, 1010 River St, Santa Cruz, CA 95060

Half a billion straws are used each day in this country and end up in on beaches, streets and in landfills. Find out more about the affects of plastic pollution on marine life and what can be done to help. Q& A session to follow.

Get more info here.

Santa Cruz Bike Party Thriller Ride

When: 10/13 at 7:00 pm
Where: Meet at the Bike Church in Downtown Santa Cruz

Want a truly only in Santa Cruz experience? Get to know the Bike Church and participate in one of their bike parties, a 7-10 mile long ride with music and dance breaks along the way. This Friday’s theme is Thriller and zombies of all ages and biking experience levels are welcome to join.

Get more info here.

Halloween Events in Santa Cruz

Halloween Santa Cruz

If reading about Friday the 13th events got you in the mood for Halloween then you’ll want to check out our updated 2017 Santa Cruz Halloween Event Guide.

Santa Cruz Pumpkin Patches
No mention of Halloween events would be complete without noting our great local pumpkin patches. We rounded up all the best and you can find them here, in our guide to Santa Cruz Pumpkin Patches.

Also on Friday

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It’s In the Cards: A Tarot Card Workshop

When: 10/14 from 5:00 pm to 6:30 pm
Where: Home/Work
Cost: $74

This fun workshop will teach you how to use Tarot Cards to gain daily insight into your life. Serena Palumbo demonstrates how to spread the cards and interpret their meaning. Starter kit included.

Get more info here.

Leatherback Turtle Day and Talk


When: 10/14 from 10:00 am to 7:30 pm
Where: Sanctuary Exploration Center, 35 Pacific Ave, Santa Cruz, CA
Cost: FREE

Did you know that California’s state marine reptile is the leatherback turtle? Celebrate this endangered species at an event with artwork, kids activities and view live plankton. Stay for the “Sea Below the Surface” speaker series.

Get more info here.

Arboretum Fall Plant Sale

UCSC Arboretum Fall plant sale

When: 10/14 from 10:00 am to 12:00 pm for Members, 12:00 pm to 4:00 pm for Non Members
Where: UC Santa Cruz Arboretum
Cost: Free admission, plant prices vary.

Fall is the perfect time to established new in your yard. A large variety of drought tolerant and regionally friendly plants will be available. Product list available on their site. Sales help fund the Arboretum education and conservation programs.

Get more info here.

Open Studios Art Tour: South County

When: 10/14 – 10/15 from 11:00 am to 5:00 pm
Where: Various locations
Cost: Free

Art lovers get set! It’s time for the second weekend of the Open Studios county tour series. This weekend will feature south county artists. Enjoy another beautiful fall weekend touring the studios of our local talented artists.

Get more info here.

Earthquakes and the Adobe: Castro Adobe Open House

Castro AdobeWhen: 10/14 from 11:00 am to 3:00 pm
Where: Castro Adobe State Historic Park

Come out to Castro Adobe, the south county’s first Historic State Park for an open house. Learn how earthquakes have affected the Adobe over the years and the efforts made to restore the damage. Enjoy a snack from the cocina and tour the grounds.

Get more info here.

Capitola Branch Library BOOK SALE

Capitola Library Book SaleWhen: 10/14 from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm
Where: Capitola Branch Library
Cost: Hardbacks $2 and paperbacks $1

Time to stock up on some books for fall reading. Come and browse through hundreds of donated books in many genres at this fundraising event. While there, learn more about the new Capitola Library, too.

Get more info here.

Community Work Day for Inclusive Play

Leo's Haven

When: 10/14 from 9:00 am to 2:00 pm
Where: Chanticleer Park
1975 Chanticleer Ave, Santa Cruz,

Cost: Free

Bring your shovel and assist at this community work day in support of Santa Cruz County’s first inclusive playground, designed for kids of all abilities to play side by side. BBQ to follow at noon.

Get more info here.

Pinot Paradise – A Taste Of The Mountains

See Description Under Friday Section

Also on Saturday

santa cruz instagramKeep up with us all weekend long, and see which events we’re attending, by following Santa Cruz Life on Instagram.


Espressivo: Stringing You Along

When: 10/15 at 3:00 pm
Where: UCSC Music Center Recital Hall
Cost: $5 – $37

This “small and intense orchestra” is conducted by Michel Singher and features a line up of top local professional instrumentalists performing classical masterpieces. Campus parking lot fees will apply.

Get more info here.

Underwater Robotics Workshop

When: 10/15 from 9:30 am to 3:30 pm
Where: UCSC Campus Swimming Pool
Cost: There is no fee to attend; however, advanced registration is required

Students in grades 5-12 and their teachers or parents will learn how build underwater remotely operated vehicles (ROVs) and test them out in this science and technology workshop hosted by the Seymour Center and MATE Center of Monterey Peninsula College.

Get more info here.

Pinot Paradise – A Taste Of The Mountains

See Description Under Friday Section

Open Studios Art Tour Weekend

See Description Under Saturday Section

Also on Sunday

Featured Upcoming Event

Get your woof on and bring your best 4-legged buddy to this fun social event. Enjoy some locally crafted beer, share some light snacks with your pup, and even enter a costume contest. No dog? No problem. A brewery dog would be happy to hang out with you. All proceeds benefit the Santa Cruz County Animal Shelter.

Get more info here.

What: Barktober Fest 2017
Where: Sante Adairius Rustic Ales
When: Sunday, October 29 at 5:00 PM – 7:00 PM 

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About Valerie Lemke

Valerie Lemke is a transplant from the Bay Area to Santa Cruz County over 25 years ago, and hasn't looked back since. She is a local freelance writer and photographer who loves writing about and photographing one of the most beautiful regions in the world, the Central Coast.