As Santa Cruz starts to slowly reopen, options to shop, dine, work out, and get haircuts are feeling like major events. We’ll still continue to highlight virtual happenings and any in-person events we think you’ll be interested in.
Coming up this week we have a Juneteenth celebration with a youth-led peaceful march from Louden Nelson. Virtual events include a poetry reading, a magic show, an emerging artists showcase with the Santa Cruz Baroque Festival, and Science Sunday with the Seymour Center.
Ongoing virtual events have a little something for everyone—comedy, dance, art, story time for kids and adults, livestreams from our state parks, and more!
Please submit virtual events and ideas below so we can continue to share ways to socialize and support each other while social distancing. Take care, Santa Cruz!
When: Friday, June 19, at 5:30 pm
Where: March from Louden Nelson to City Hall
This is a youth-led peaceful march that will commemorate Juneteeth, an annual celebration marking the formal end of slavery in the U.S. as well as highlight the story of Louden (London) Nelson, an education advocate and one of Santa Cruz’s first black residents in the 1850s.
Zoom Forward! Danusha Laméris & David Sullivan
When: Friday, June 19, at 5:00 pm
This event is part of the Zoom Forward Reading Series, presented by phren-Z, The Hive Poetry Collective, and Bookshop Santa Cruz to showcase writers, keep our cultural spirits high, and support Bookshop Santa Cruz. Tune in to this special online event with poet laureates Danusha Laméris and David Sullivan.
Santa Cruz Baroque Festival: Emerging Artists Showcase
When: Saturday, June 20, at 7:30 pm
Watch: Twitch TV, Facebook, or Youtube
The Youth Chamber Music Competition and Emerging Artists Showcase are annual traditions for the Santa Cruz Baroque Festival. Open to young musicians residing in or near Santa Cruz County, high quality ensembles compete for monetary awards. This presentation of breathtaking performances is a chance to support the festival and its efforts to uplift emerging artists.
Science Sunday: The Ecology of Leopard Seals
When: Sunday, June 21, at 1:30 pm
Watch: Online; Pre-registration required
Join Dan Costa, Ph.D., to learn more about the ecology, diving behavior, and movement patterns of Antarctic leopard seals. Science Sunday is for everyone interested in the world around them. Watch a public lecture from a marine scientist, who presents current research and topics in an entertaining and easy-to-understand format, with up-to-date photos, video, and discussion.
Mike the Magician
When: Tuesday, June 23, at 10:30 am
Watch: Event link sent via email registration
You are invited to a virtual magic show! Just say “Abra-ca-dabra”! Mike Della Penna creates WONDER and LAUGHTER with family magic performances that are equal parts PLAYFUL and ASTONISHING!
Shared Adventures – A Variety of Events for Those with Different Abilities
Shared Adventures is a nonprofit organization dedicated to improving quality of life for those with disabilities. The variety of virtual activities they are offering is impressive! Check out their calendar for times and links to Story Time, Art Class, Bingo, Trivia, Dance, Yoga, Crafts, and more.
Noon in the Park
When: Weekdays at 12:00 pm
Watch: Facebook Live
Enjoy story time, yoga, and music with special guests, like Kate and Aaron from Live Like Coco, Joanna of Coastal Music Therapy Services, David of Freedom Elementary, and Yvette from the Art Factory. Don’t worry if you miss the livestream. Recorded versions are available on Facebook.
Virtual Sloth: Storytelling for Adults
When: Ongoing Thursdays at 8:00 pm
Watch: Facebook Live
Storytellers from all walks of life share stories revolving around a weekly theme. This week’s theme is ‘Do I, or Don’t I?’ invites Sloth storytellers to tell some tales from the world of relationships. Appropriate for ages 16+. Event is free, but tips/donations gratefully accepted.
Ballet Folklorico (Virtual Program)
When: Ongoing Fridays at 6:00 pm
Watch: Facebook Live
Graciela Vega will be offering a virtual Ballet Folklorico class every Friday for ages 5+. Videos will be posted to the Watsonville Library YouTube page – links to come soon.
Virtual Stand Up Headliners at DNA’s Comedy Lab Online
When: Fridays & Saturdays at 8:00 pm
We need laughter now more than ever. Good thing DNA’s Comedy Lab has a virtual stage to bring comedians live from their home to yours. Keep calm and laugh on!
Santa Cruz State Parks Livestreams
Livestreams from our local state parks are fun, educational, and interactive. If you can’t attend live, you can always watch the recorded version on Facebook. Be sure to like each park’s Facebook page to receive a notification when they go live.
Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park
- What’s So Fishy about Henry Cowell State Park? 6/20 at 12:00 pm
Natural Bridges State Beach
- Sand Moles? 6/19 at 11:00 am
Wilder Ranch State Park
- Farm Animal Encounters 6/21 at 1:00 pm
Follow the Sun Art
When: Friday, June 19, at 5:00 pm
Getting creative is a great way to destress. Tune in for step-by-step live videos as Anastasiya Bachmanova of Follow the Sun Art guides you to paint some new art for your walls. Donations are greatly appreciated. All ages are welcome to participate!
Paint Along Videos with Yeshe Jackson
Cut the boredom of quarantine with paint along videos by Yeshe Jackson. We had the pleasure of taking one of his Paint & Pint classes at East Cliff Brewery and can attest to his great teaching style and fun subjects. So far he has recorded tutorials for painting an octopus, sea turtle, star fish, and a mountain sunset.
Santa Cruz Virtual Makers’ Market
Now, more than ever, is the time to support small businesses and artists. Santa Cruz Mountains Makers’ Market has found a way to do just that by creating an online marketplace of local artists who have online shops. Browse individual websites and purchase directly from artists. Be sure to check frequently for new additions to the lineup of artists and makers.
The ParkStore Online has reopened with a variety of items that help bring the great outdoors inside. Shop puzzles, seeds, coloring and activity books, field guides, science kits, educational toys, and more. You’ll also find the usual array of books, apparel, souvenirs, and household goods that reflect the natural and cultural history of our local State Parks and Beaches. Shopping at the ParkStore Online directly supports local state parks and beaches, and helps Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks achieve its mission of ensuring that our parks will thrive and be available to all. Plus, funds from the ParkStore Online stay local.
Santa Cruz Public Libraries Summer Reading Program
The Santa Cruz Public Libraries’ (SCPL) Summer Reading Program, IMAGINE YOUR STORY, has begun and runs through July 31st. The entire program has gone virtual but features many of the same perks as always, such as reading rewards, raffle prizes, and events (online).
Bookshop Santa Cruz Summer Reading Program
Bookshop Santa Cruz’s popular reading program for K-12 readers has begun, and runs through September 9th this year. Kids are challenged to read 6 books—at least 3 from Bookshop’s recommended reading list and up to 3 of their choice. Complete the challenge and not only will you have read some terrific books, but you’ll earn excellent rewards: A $5 Bookshop gift card, a free scoop from the Penny Ice Creamery, a free slice from Pizza My Heart, and a special prize from the Santa Cruz Warriors,.
Watsonville Public Library Summer Reading Program
Watsonville Public Library’s Summer Reading Program runs June 8 through July 31. Sign up, participate, and be entered in a drawing for gift certificates from local businesses.
City of Santa Cruz Virtual Recreation
Visit the City of Santa Cruz’s Virtual Recreation website for fun activities for seniors (Gentle Yoga, Line Dancing, Boomer Qi Gong and more), plus indoor/outdoor ideas, challenges, and resources for all ages.
Rocky’s Fitness Center
Rocky’s Fitness Center on Portola Dr. has been offering the public a free, stay-at-home workout class daily since Day 1 of Shelter in Place. They also include kids, senior, and classes for Spanish speakers throughout the week. Follow these live workouts on Facebook, or subscribe to their Youtube channel.
Virtual WU TANG YOGA
When: Ongoing Wednesdays at 12:00 pm and 6:30 pm
And now for something different and totally badass, yoga to hip hop music with readings from the Tao of Wu. This class is free but donations are greatly appreciated. Be sure to check out other virtual offerings from Estrella Collective including Buti Yoga, Bellydance, and Twerk.
CrossFit West Santa Cruz
Daniel J is keeping locals active with kindness, positivity, and live stream workouts. In addition to posting daily workouts on Instagram every morning at 8am, there is a daily kids workout at 10am.
Weekly Yoga with Patagonia
When: Sundays at 11:30 am
Join Patagonia Santa Cruz online for an all-levels Vinyasa Flow class taught by Elizabeth Howard. Classes are free & open to everyone!
Watch: Instagram and Facebook
Torkc is offering free daily workouts that require little to no equipment. The workouts can be adjusted to individuals fitness levels. They upload them to Instagram and Facebook accounts so people can watch them and do the workouts around their schedule. Check them out!
Salsa Suelta in Place
When: Every Thursday until July 30
For all dance-deprived dancers! Join this free Salsa Suelta dance session for all advanced beginners and up (should know the basic Salsa steps and turns). Suelta = released, i.e dancing without a partner. So, it’s a chance to practice footwork and rhythms even if you don’t live with a dance partner. The dance patterns may include Cuban styles such as Mambo, ChaChaCha, Afro-Cuban Rumba, and what many refer to as “Cuban Salsa”.