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Kate Van Brocklin | Photo: Courtesy of winetrain.com | June 10, 2014
Escape the city fog and head for the twilit train rides in the hills, sailing lessons in the bay, or art festivals down south.
Free Sailboat Ride Day at Cal Sailing Club
What: Learn how to steer, raise sails, tie knots, and use lots of other nautical jargon at this free introductory sailing class in the San Francisco Bay.
Where: Cal Sailing Club, 124 University Ave, Berkeley, CA
When: Sunday, June 15th, 1-4pm
Why: Because every Bay Area local should know how to sail.
Walnut Creek Wine Walk
What: Stroll down Walnut Creek's downtown while sipping California wine and listening to acoustic live music at the 7th annual June Wine Walk.
Where: Pro Home Systems, 1561 Civic Drive
When: Wednesday, June 18, 6-9pm
Cost: $30/person in advance and $40/person at the door
Why: You'll be doing a good deed. A portion of the proceeds benefit the Diablo Regional Arts Association and the Walnut Creek Library Foundation.
Night Hike Adventure
What: Tap into your nocturnal side and spend the evening with some bats, owls, raccoons and scorpions. This after-hours excursion at Mount Diablo State Park, led by naturalist Michael Marchiano, will give you some up-close-and-personal time with some night time critters that only come out on warm evenings.
Where: Mitchell Canyon Parking Lot
When: Friday, June 13, 5:30–9:30 pm
Cost: $6 per vehicle, $5 for seniors. Reservations are required. Email firstname.lastname@example.org
Why: How often do you get to see Mount Diablo State Park after hours when the gates close?
The Carmel Valley Art and Wine Celebration
What: This celebration has the best of both worlds: award-winning wine and exhibitions showing the work of over 50 artists. Peruse local paintings and photographs and don't worry about transportation—free rides on the Grapevine Express between downtown Monterey and the festival ensure safe passage as you sample wines.
Where: Carmel Valley Village
When: Saturday, June 21st
Cost: Admission is free; wine tickets are $30/person
Why: Not only will you enjoy an array of wine and art, but many jewelry designers, crafters, and artisans will have their products for sale.
What: All aboard the Moonlight Escape! This train ride gives couples the chance to dine in romantic private booths as you hurdle through the vineyards. You'll be treated to a five-course gourmet dinner in Napa Valley Wine Train's 1952 glass domed Vista Dome.
Where: 1275 McKinstry Street, Napa
When: Friday, June 13, 5:50pm
Why: This sounds like an adult version of the Hogwarts Express. Plus, there is only seating for 24 couples on this train—don't you want to be one of them?!
Americana/bluegrass band Hot Buttered Rum at Long Meadow Ranch
What: Grab a picnic blanket, soak up the Napa Valley sunshine and enjoy the tunes of Hot Buttered Rum, a up-and-coming string band from San Francisco that combines bluegrass, reggae, folk and jazz into a new form of Americana. Marin County-based band Midnight North opens the show.
Where: Long Meadow Ranch, St. Helena
When: Fathers Day, June 15, Doors are at 2pm, showtime at 3:30pm
Cost: $35/advance, $45/door
Why: What could be better than farm-to-table food and some good ol' fashioned Americana?
The 2014 Hop N’ Barley Beer and BBQ Festival
What: With more than 60 breweries, two stages of live music and a whole lot of BBQ, this festival is perfect for the whole family. The event is free for all non-tasters (including your dog) and parking is free as well.
Where: Skypark, 361 Kings Village Road, Scotts Valley
When: Saturday & Sunday, June 28-29, 10am-5pm
Cost: Free for non-tasters, $35/Day One, $55/Both Days
Why: On Sunday, June 29, they’re hosting a disc golf tournament and a craft beer competition.
The 60th Annual North Beach Festival
What: San Francisco's quaint Italian neighborhood has a lot to offer at this festival—more than 100 arts and crafts booths, gourmet food booths, two stages of live entertainment, Italian street painting, beverage gardens, kid's chalk art area and live music.
Where: Washington Square Park, Grant Avenue near Columbus Avenue, San Francisco
When: Saturday & Sunday, June 14-15, 10am-6pm
Why: It's right here in our own backyard and great for kids and older folk alike.