This Weekend in Santa Cruz: October 11th – 13th, 2019

West Cliff bench

Fall is a beautiful season in Santa Cruz. The hubbub has died down, but there is no shortage of entertaining and enlightening activities.

Friday’s options are a musical journey through time and space, a sound odyssey through the ocean, or the awesome Surf Film Fest.

An annual favorite, Open Studios, continues this weekend in South county. Take a farm tour while you’re there!

Harvest festivals, Oktoberfest, Open Streets and fireworks are all on this weekend as well, so pace yourself!

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


This week’s roundup is sponsored by Arts Council Santa Cruz County & the Open Studios Art Tour. We had a great time touring artist studios last weekend and are looking forward to visiting South County artists this weekend. Look for the free Open Studios guide around town, download the “Open Studios Art Tour” app, or just follow the green signs around town.

Click here for more information about Open Studios.

Photo: Paul DeSomma & Marsha Blaker Artist #187.

Friday

Fire & Grace Gala Art Party

When: 10/11 from 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm
Where: R.Blitzer Gallery

What does Medieval music have in common with Bluegrass? You’ll find out when you hear William Coulter, Grammy-winning guitarist, and Edward Huizinga, eclectic virtuoso violinist, playing from diverse musical traditions representing different times and regions of the world. Playing in an intimate setting, these consummate performers will shine. Organic refreshments and beverages will add to the sensory delights.

Get more info here.

Listen in on the Sounds of the Sanctuary

When: 10/11 from 5:00 pm to 8:00 pm
Where: Sanctuary Exploration Center

Have you ever wondered how whales find their way in the dark ocean depths? “Listening to the Sounds of MBNMS”, will explore the science of sound waves in the ocean and how marine animals use sound to survive. Celebrate the opening of this intriguing new exhibit which explores the sound landscape of our precious marine sanctuary. Marine music and yummy appetizers round out the party.

Get more info here.

Santa Cruz Surf Film Festival

When: 10/11 – 10/12 from 6:30 pm to 11:00 pm
Where: Rio Theatre

Our town has the honor and distinction to host this gorgeous homage to the ocean, surfing and film. For two days, you can immerse yourself in the beauty, innovation and awe of the sport and art of the surf lifestyle. Ticket holders will have a chance to win prizes from sponsors.

Get more info here.

Also on Friday

MUSIC/DANCE

THEATER/ARTS

OUTDOORS

MORE

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Saturday

OPEN STUDIOS ART TOUR

When: 10/12 – 10/13 from 11:00 am to 5:00 pm
Where: Various locations

Our favorite fall event continues this weekend. If you are looking for inspiration, talent, or some art to adorn your space, this weekend’s Open Studios features the artists of South County. You can pick up an Open Studios guide wherever the Good Times is available, or download the Open Studios Ap. Whether you are an art connoisseur or just appreciate beauty, meeting the artists, touring their workshops and seeing the process is unforgettable.

Get more info here.

Santa Cruz County Catio Tour 2019

When: 10/12 from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm
Where: All around Santa Cruz County

Some local cat owners have a creative solution for letting their feline friends play outside without endangering birds or feeding coyotes.  The “catio” is an enclosed outside play area for lucky kitties to prance and play. Get an inside peek into the best kitty playgrounds in the area on the catio tour. A $5 donation will give access to 15 deluxe Catios in Santa Cruz and proceeds support the county animal shelter and Native Animal Rescue.

Get more info here.

Oktoberfest!

When: 10/12 from 6:00 pm to 10:00 pm
Where: Santa Cruz Elks Lodge, 150 Jewell St. Santa Cruz

Raising money for special-needs children, the Elks are putting on a party to remember! With beer provided by NUBO, a real German Oompah band playing polkas and waltzes, and a big German dinner, this will be as close to the real thing as you can get without traveling to Bavaria.

Get more info here.

Pacific Garden Mall Historical Walking Tour

When: 10/12 from 1:00 pm to 2:00 pm
Where: Downtown Santa Cruz

Take a walk back through time and learn how downtown Santa Cruz looked before the 1989 Loma Prieta Earthquake. Stroll down Pacific Avenue with historian Ross Gibson as he points out the old landmarks and recalls the scene of this picturesque commercial center back when it earned the name Pacific Garden Mall.

Get more info here.

Pleasure Point Sip & Stroll

When: 10/12 from 12:00 pm to 5:00 pm
Where: Pleasure Point, 41st Ave.

Take a relaxing afternoon stroll and enjoy a glass of wine or your favorite brew while perusing the many shops at Pleasure Point. Registration is at Rocky’s Fitness, but buy your tickets in advance, as this event does sell out. Once you have your glass, follow the yellow balloons to over 20 locations for a tasting.

Get more info here.

Open Farm Tours

When: 10/12 – 10/13 from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm
Where: Participating farms and Alladin Nursery & Gift Shop

One of the joys of living in Santa Cruz County is the fresh organic produce available to us from so many local family farms. This weekend, more than a dozen farmers will open their barns, fields and produce stands to the community for tours, tasting, talking and eating. At the center of all the fun, Aladdin Nursery will be serving up lunch from several food vendors. Local wine, beer and cider will be available, plus live music and a family photo op!

Get more info here.

CalPoly Swanton Pacific Ranch Day

When: 10/12 from 10:00 am to 3:30 pm
Where: Swanton Pacific Ranch, Davenport

Swanton Pacific Ranch is CalPoly’s living laboratory and they invite the public to explore and learn about the activities that take place on the historic 3200 acre ranch. The ⅓ scale railroad is being repaired this year, but the trains will be on display and you can tour the roundhouse and shops, as well as learn about the sustainable forestry, agriculture, fisheries and livestock programs that take place here. An old fashioned country picnic lunch will be served, which includes grass-fed beef from the ranch while an old-time fiddle band plays.

Get more info here.

GLOW: A Festival of Fire & Light

When: 10/12 from 7:00 pm to 10:00 pm
Where: The MAH

As October nights grow darker, the MAH reminds us to light up the night and rekindle wonder at this one-of-a-kind spectacle. Interactive arts, crafts, performances, music, science and exhibits all swirl around the themes of fire and light in a festive atmosphere spilling into multiple locations. Tickets are required for full festival access.

Get more info here.

Santa Cruz Surf Film Festival

See Description Under Friday Section

Also on Saturday

MUSIC/DANCE

THEATER/ARTS

MAKE/CRAFT

OUTDOORS

MORE

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Sunday

Open Streets Santa Cruz – West Cliff

When: 10/13 from 9:00 am to 2:00 pm
Where: West Cliff Drive

Imagine if West Cliff Drive were one continuous park for pedestrians, bikers, skaters, singers and dancers and community organizations to meet up and exchange smiles, ideas and information. For one day only, this vision will come true, so join in the fun!

Get more info here.

Welcome Back Monarchs Day

welcome back monarchs day

When: 10/13 from 11:00 am to 4:00 pm
Where: Natural Bridges State Beach

How lucky are we that we get to host the migrating monarch butterflies as they journey southwards? Celebrate as the fluttering insects begin to arrive in their favorite eucalyptus grove. To kick things off, Natural Bridges State Park is going to throw a little party with ice cream, crafts and live music to welcome the monarchs home.

Get more info here.

Crystal Bay Farm Pumpkin Harvest Party Featuring The Steven Graves Band & Doug Surfing Magician

When: 10/13 from 3:00 pm to 6:00 pm
Where: Crystal Bay Farm, Watsonville

Party in the pumpkin patch! What better way to celebrate the beauty of autumn than to eat lots of organic food and drink a beer while listening to a fine band play under the fall skies? Art and crafts activities will entertain the kids, and of course, everybody loves a surfing magician!

Get more info here.

MONTE FOUNDATION 25TH ANNIVERSARY FIREWORKS EXTRAVAGANZA!

When: 10/13 at 8:00 pm
Where: Capitola Village

This spectacular fireworks show is a community favorite, not just because it’s an amazing and free event, but also because it raises thousands of dollars to benefit US. Each year the Monte Foundation gives money for important projects like skateparks, libraries, tennis courts and the like. The money is raised through local sponsors, so all you have to do is bring your beach blanket and your family and enjoy the dazzling show.

Get more info here.

OPEN STUDIOS ART TOUR

See Description Under Saturday Section

Open Farm Tours

See Description Under Saturday Section

Also on Sunday

MUSIC/DANCE

THEATER/ARTS

MAKE/CRAFT

OUTDOORS

MORE

Upcoming Events You Don’t Want to Miss

Santa Cruz Pumpkin Patches: 2019 Guide

It’s that time of year again— jack-o-lanterns, pumpkin pies, and hay mazes, oh my! Carve out some time this season to visit a pumpkin patch or two, from local favorites to family farms.

Here’s our guide to pumpkin patches in Santa Cruz County.

Santa Cruz Derby Girls – Halloween Double Header

When: Saturday, October 26
Where: Santa Cruz Civic Auditorium

Come cheer on the Santa Cruz Derby Girls at their last home game of the season. It’s a Halloween themed double-header and dressing up is strongly encouraged! May we suggest unicorns, vampires, skeletons, and monsters? As always, there are some very special half time shows planned for both games, food trucks onsite, and full concessions.

Purchase tickets below and use Discount Code: SCLife19 for 10% off.

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About Meridith Cook

Meridith Cook came to Santa Cruz 18 years ago from Minnesota. She is a homeschooling mother of 3 who enjoys exploring the beauty and culture of this unique community.

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