The patriotic festivities dominating the earlier July events at Golden Gate Park not only pay homage to America but also help celebrate local history. This month, you can give back to the community and stay active by participating in a handful of fundraising and awareness runs and walks from several good causes. The Botanical Garden also offers an unforgettable blend of nature and music that involves pianist performances. Throughout July 2016, Golden Gate Park events also provide a wealth of activities that will please flower lovers, beer lovers, crafters, paper lovers and art lovers, as seen below:

tulips golden gate park

Friday Nights at de Young– de Young Museum – July 1, 8, 15, 22, 29

In the month of July, de Young Museum continues its exploration of different dance styles for their Friday Nights events with two final evenings devoted to swing dance. Master dance coach Cynthia Glinka provides complimentary swing lessons associated with dance trends of the 30s and 40s. In Buchanan Court, Indira Urrutia oversees mixed-media art making where participants will create their own greeting card. The Royal Society Jazz Orchestra will entertain with live music and dance at Wilsey Court (6:30 p.m.), featuring Don Neely, vocalist Carla Normand, and the ten-piece Royal Society Jazz Orchestra of San Francisco – specialists at performing tunes from the 1920s.

Overall, Friday Nights at the de Young provides a blend of culture, art, music, dance and other creative performances/ activities that are free for the public to attend. These programs kick off at 5 p.m. and end around 8:45 p.m. Additional Friday Nights at the de Young for July 2016 include:

  • July 8Dance Off: Swing (Part 2): Hosted by Meklit Hadero, the evening will include July Jubilee (featuring the Sizzling Sounds of Lavay Smith and Her Red Hot Skillet Lickers), who will present classic American jazz, swing, blues and R&B music from the mid-20th century.
  • July 15 – Getting There: Celebrating Ed Ruscha and the Great American West: Prepare for a double film screening featuring films by Ed Ruscha at Koret Auditorium, while Secret Guitar Society offers live music at Wilsey Court.
  • July 22 – MEX-I-AM: In addition to an artist demonstration “Dancing with Calaveras” at Wilsey Court (with live mural painting), you’ll also encounter a musical performance by the Bernal Hill Players.
  • July 29 – The View of Hollywood: One of the things to look forward to includes the Village Road Trio which will entertain with live music – a blend of classic and jazz traditions that mixes swing, ragtime, gypsy, American bluegrass and Romanian styles.

Bean Sprout Family Days – SF Botanical Garden – July 2, 9, 16, 23, 30

Looking for weekend fun?  The Garden plays host to a family-friendly gathering that meets every Saturday at the Children’s Garden (west end of the Garden) from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. It is here that you’ll get to enjoy hands-on outdoor experiences with flowers, crafts, gardening, book-reading, and nature games. This type of event is best suited for children ages 3 to 10.

Golden Gate Park 10K – John F Kennedy Dr & Transverse Drive – July 3

Scheduled to be held from 9 a.m. to 10:30 a.m., you can stretch your legs throughout the park with a 10K run that involves the following locations: Kennedy Drive, East Conservatory Drive, McLaren Lodge, Kezar Drive Barricade, Bowling Green, Nancy Pelosi Drive, MLK Drive, the northern end of Japanese Tea Garden Drive, and Overlook Drive. The cost to participate is free for ages up to 12 years old; $3 for 13-17 year old participants and members who are 18 and over; and $5 for non-members over the age of 18. For more details, you can call (415) 978-083 or visit here.

Patriotic America 4th of July GGP Band Concert – Spreckels Temple of Music – July 3

As with all other Golden Gate Park Band performances, it is free to join in the fun of listening to a special show referred to as ‘The American Landscape,’ where patriotic and American music fill the air. GGP Band performances begin at 1 p.m. (unless listed otherwise), and usually end around 2:30 -2:45 p.m. For the rest of July 2016, the following band events are also planned:

  • July 4 – A Fourth of July celebration
  • July 10 – Theme to be announced
  • July 17 – The music of Great Britain with tunes from Gilbert and Sullivan
  • July 24 – Stories and Solos
  • July 31 – Theme to be announced

Free Fourth of July Walking Tours – Golden Gate Park – July 4

San Franciscans who would like to explore more of their city can do so with an array of free walking tours that includes three stops at the Japanese Tea Garden at 9:30 a.m., 11 a.m., and 1 p.m. Although the tour is complimentary, the afternoon excursion throughout the Japanese Tea Garden may require a separate admission charge. At 1 p.m., there is also an ‘American History in Garden Gate Park’ tour offered at this time.

Beer Garden NightLife – California Academy of Sciences – July 7

A pop-up beer garden representing dozens of local breweries (such as Almanac, Calicraft Brewing Co., Golden State Cider, New Bohemia, Triple Voodoo, and Uncommon Brewers) will be on hand to delight your taste buds. Informal botany lessons will allow you to explore the science behind the craft of brewing. During the event, the Academy will also introduce you to their signature craft beer Aliciella Bitter (brewed by Magnolia Brewing Co.) as DJ Mawkus spins the tunes for the night in the Piazza.

Thursday NightLife events at the Academy are open only to the 21 and over crowd (with valid identification). The price of admission is $12 or $15 – depending on whether you are a member. The events last from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Other NightLife events for July 2016 to look forward to:

  • July 14 – NightLife LIVE: July: As part of the NightLife LIVE summer music series event, expect performances by Ducktails + Mass Gothic.
  • July 21 – Soundwave NightLife: An exploration of the architecture of sound is scheduled, where you can help kick off the Soundwave ((7)) Biennial.
  • July 28 – BigPicture NightLife: Enjoy the third-annual wildlife photography exhibit at the Academy.

Flower Piano – SF Botanical Garden – July 7 –July 18

If you’re a lover of music and nature, then the Garden’s Flower Piano event is something you won’t want to miss. With an invitation for you to listen and play, this outdoor concert hall provides access to twelve pianos scattered about the 55 acres of flower-filled gardens. On the weekends, professional pianists and other musicians are scheduled to perform for the public. From 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., the public is encouraged to play on the pianos. Access to the pianos is free with regular admission, where residents in San Francisco with proof of residency are not charged. To review a full schedule of Flower Piano performances and events, click here.

Plant Sale – SF Botanical Garden – July 9

From 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., the Garden’s Nursery will open its doors to hold its monthly plant sale, which concentrates on outfitting your home with gorgeous Salvias, Shrubs and Fuchsias.

AIDS Walk San Francisco – Sharon Meadow – July 17

Those participating in the 10K fundraising walk to benefit multiple HIV/AIDS programs and services throughout the Bay Area will start and end their journey at Sharon Meadow. The total distance involved is 10 kilometers or 6.2 miles. For most, it takes about 2 ½ hours to complete. Sign-in for the event kicks off at 9 a.m. with the opening ceremony following at 9:45 a.m. The actual walk starts at 10:30 a.m. A post-walk concert is scheduled for 12:30 p.m. For more information on the event schedule, as well as details concerning the route, click here.

Full Moon Walk (Flower Piano Farewell) – SF Botanical Garden – July 18

All good things must come to an end, and to commemorate the last day of the Flower Piano program, a Full Moon Walk will take place from 7 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. Scheduled for the evening is a tour of the Garden, performance, and refreshments. It is recommended to bring along a flashlight for this event, which cancels in heavy rain. This program sells out fast, so it’s suggested to pre-register to ensure your spot. Members pay $30, while non-members are charged $35. For more information and to purchase tickets, click here.

Summer Flowers: Pencil Drawing with Nina Antze – SF Botanical Garden – July 21

If you’d like to tap into your botanical creativity, you might want to consider a workshop centered on illustration – led by Nina Antze. Here’s your chance to practice colored-pencil techniques using a selection of live blooms from the Garden’s collection. The theme will center on daisy-like composite flowers. If weather permits, lunch (that you bring) will take place outside. All drawing levels are welcome to participate. Scheduled to run from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., the cost to take this workshop is $75 for members and $90 for non-members.

Walk on the WILD Flower Side (Summer Sensations) – SF Botanical Garden – July 23

Take in the sights of beautiful blooms by participating in a guided tour by the Garden’s curatorial staff. This week’s choice will focus on ‘Summer Sensations.’ Please note that heavy rain cancels this event, which is scheduled to take place from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. The fee to enjoy this tour is $15 for members and $20 for non-members.

Orchids in the Park – SF County Fair Building – July 23

With a summer show and sale, this is the event to be if you have an appreciation for the orchid. You will be able to view the gorgeous flowers on display – courtesy of local growers. You’ll also have a chance to purchase plants and supplies from vendors from all over the world. Try your luck and purchase the winning raffle ticket to get complimentary access to the Fall Antiques Show Gala. The orchid event will run from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The cost of admission is $5 for the general public, $4 for seniors, and free for visitors 16 years and under. For more details, you can contact [email protected].

Miles for Melanoma – de Young Museum / Academy of Sciences – July 24

In conjunction with the Melanoma Research Foundation (MRF) and Bristol-Myers Squibb, Golden Gate Park will host a 5K run/walk for the City of San Francisco that raises awareness and funds for research, advocacy, and education concerning melanoma. The start and finish for the race will be located between the de Young Museum and the Academy of Sciences. Check-in and registration starts at 7:30 a.m. with the run/walk beginning at 8:30 a.m. For more details and to form an official team, click here.

Vintage Paper Fair – SF County Fair Building – July 30 & July 31

You are invited to gain access to one of the largest selections of postcards, trade cards, photography, labels, brochures, sports memorabilia, and all sorts of intriguing and fascinating old paper goods held on the West Coast. From lively pin up art to glimpses into the local history of San Francisco, it’s free to attend this two-day extravaganza that pays homage to the beauty of vintage paper. On Saturday, the free event is being held from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., while Sunday’s hours are from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. There will be free appraisals onsite, so here is your time to find out just how much that old stereo view in the attic is worth.