49 Hours of SF: February Favorites
By: Cindy Hu
Photo by Daniel Parks
From belly laughs to beer pairings, from tulips to T. rex San Francisco has picked out 10 fab things to do in February that don’t involve hearts. Just sayin’ it’s not for everyone.
Could your funny bone use a little tickling? Check out Sketchfest, San Francisco’s amuse-bouche – well it’s more like an 18-course meal – comedy festival through Feb. 10. Now in its 12th year Sketchfest mixes national headliners, local favorites and the best up-and-coming groups from throughout North America for a banquet of sketch, improv, stand-up and alternative comedy.
Black History Month
Begin Black History Month with a sojourn to the gravesite of William Alexander Leidesdorff at Mission Dolores. Leidesdorff, among other accomplishments, is credited by some sources as the proprietor of the first hotel in San Francisco, once located at Clay and Kearny streets. Opening this month are The Kinsey Collection: Shared Treasures of Bernard and Shirley Kinsey, Where Art and History Intersect journeys through five centuries of African American history, culture and heritage, Feb. 8-May 19 at the Museum of the African Diaspora. The nearby Contemporary Jewish Museum presents Kehinde Wiley | The World Stage: Israel, the first major exhibition in San Francisco of African American artist Wiley —one of the most significant young artists working today, Feb. 14-May 27. The Black Choreographers Festival unfolds Feb. 9-24 and presentations at the San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park include two on Capt. William Storey, the only black whaling captain on the West Coast, Feb. 9 and 23, Visitor Center, 499 Jefferson St. and Chanteys: The African American and Caribbean Connection Feb. 23 at the Balclutha, moored at Hyde Street Pier.
Now called Live at the Rrazz, San Francisco’s former Rrazz Room has moved to new digs in the old Cadillac showroom, a 1921 Art Deco landmark at 1000 Van Ness Ave. Headliners in the next few weeks include Jack Jones, Jonathan Butler, Fishnet Follies and just announced, Patti Lupone.
Flip a coin – you’ll need a designated driver for Beer Week, Feb. 8-17, or visit Beer By BART created by Steve Shapiro and Gail Ann Williams to help visitors and locals easily find the best venues to enjoy and learn about craft beer in the Bay Area without driving. There are more than 325 craft brew events around the Bay Area and here are just a few ideas to whet your whistle: beer pairing dinners, beer release parties, charity and educational events
From Feb. 8-May 12 Dinosaur Revolution at the San Francisco Zoo blends learning and play, inviting visitors to investigate all things dinosaur. There’s a 3,000-square-foot maze, reptilian role-play activities, and the opportunity to get a dinosaur’s eye view as you travel through time, gliding through the Jurassic period. And spoil alert — dinosaurs may not be extinct!
KNBR Giants Fanfest
More than 30 current Giants players and coaches are scheduled to be in attendance at the 20th annual KNBR FanFest on Feb. 9 at AT&T Park and Pier 48. Activities include self-guided tours of the Giants clubhouse and press box, Giants memorabilia, a kids zone and the Trophy Pavilion at Pier 48. Take a photo with the 2010 and 2012 World Series trophies, the National League Champion trophy, the World Baseball Classic Trophy and the America’s Cup trophy.
The wily snake supersedes the dragon on Chinese New Year day, Feb. 10. San Francisco glides rings around other cities when it comes to the lunar new year. There will be street festivals, the Miss Chinatown U.S.A. pageant, and the not-to-be-missed grand finale – the annual Southwest Airlines Chinese New Year Parade on the night of Feb. 23 beginning at 5:30 p.m. (come rain or stars. Plan to arrive early for a good vantage point along the route which has changed because of ongoing construction for San Francisco’s Central Subway. A crowd favorite is the spectacular 268-foot Golden Dragon which climaxes the parade in a hail of firecrackers.
Daylight savings time is almost here. Clocks “spring forward” on March 10. In the meantime there is plenty of time to tiptoe through the tulips, marvel at the magnolias and romp through the rhododendrons, said to be John McLaren’s (the “father” of Golden Gate Park) favorite flower. Pier 39’s annual Tulipmania February 16-24 features guided tours at 10 a.m. daily, planting tips from experts and complimentary refreshments.
More than 20 sword swallowers will be "dropping swords" at Ripley's Believe It or Not! Odditoriums worldwide on Feb. 23, in celebration of the sixth annual World Sword Swallower's Day. In excess of 125 feet of solid steel is set to go down the hatch - hopefully without a nick! In San Francisco, Matthew Bouvier will display his amazing sword swallowing talent at a free show outside Ripley's Believe It or Not! San Francisco, located at 175 Jefferson Street. The show will start at 1:30 pm with an official "swallow" at 2:23:13 p.m. to coincide with the 2/23/13 date.
Pop Goes Noise Pop
Noise Pop, February 23-March 3, is one of San Francisco’s favorite indie music, arts and film festivals. Now in its 21st year, Noise Pop has brought early exposure to many emerging artists in the Bay Area and beyond, many of whom have gone on to widespread acclaim. Headliners this year include Toro Y Moi, Amon Tobin, Damien Jurado and 70 more singers and groups. In addition, the festival boasts a Pop Up Shop at1772 Market St. from Feb. 14-24 that will create a multi-faceted experience with music, entertainment and culinary events film series that explores the intersection of music and art;, visual arts shows, and the Noise Pop Culture Club celebrating the work of visionary and cutting edge artists.
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The hills are green. Flowers bloom. Can’t you just hear Simon & Garfunkel singing “April come she will when streams are ripe and swelled with rain” on the radio? Oh, right. On your iPhone. Whatever you’re listening to, here’s a couple of spring flings.
Whimsical hats and a retro photo exhibit are just part of what’s making us mad for March.
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