Golden Gate Park has seen its fair share of charity events that raises awareness and money for important health-related causes. As the weather becomes increasingly pleasant in the park, thousands of walkers, runners, and supporters will gather to spread the word and love. This month, you’ll find a collection of fun activities that celebrates worthy causes, nature, and plants.

Starting May 6 – Wicked Plants: Botanical Rogues & Assassins

Doesn’t the Wicked Plants: Botanical Rogues & Assassins at the Conservatory of Flowers exhibit sound interesting? The plant kingdom is full of fascinating species that actually have the ability to paralyze, strangle, and maim. The Special Exhibits Gallery at the Conservatory of Flowers welcomes an eerie display of “wicked plants.” The exhibit is offered from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. with costs ranging from $1.50 to $7. The showcase of interesting plants will continue on until October 30, 2011 – right in time for the Halloween season.

May 7 – Bay Area Brain Tumor Walk

The National Brain Tumor Society is hosting the Bay Area Brain Tumor Walk at Speedway Meadow. In addition to the walk, there will be community activities for all to explore. The walk is from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. For more information, check out http://www.braintumor.org.

May 7 – San Francisco Botanical Garden Plant Sale

When is the last time you paid attention to the happenings at the San Francisco Botanical Garden? The 44th annual Spring Plant Sale will take place in the County Fair Building (1199 Ninth Ave) from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. As you browse more than 4,000 kinds of plants, a garden gift or book may also catch your eye.

Starting May 9 – California Academy of Sciences Snake & Lizard Exhibit

Calling all snake lovers! The California Academy of Sciences has a special exhibit made just for you. Opening to the public on Monday, May 9, 2011, giant snakes and lizards will take over the museum at Golden Gate Park in a cold-blooded exhibit that runs all summer. One of the highlights of the exhibit is the 15-foot albino reticulated python (truly a rare treat) that joins 60 other exotic snakes and lizards coming from the American Museum of Natural History in New York. Another interesting feature is the giant robotic snake used in the movie “Anaconda.”

May 15 – Zazzle Bay to Breakers 12K & After-Party

The 100th Zazzle Bay to Breakers 12K will take place at 7 a.m. on May 15 – marking the continuation of one of the oldest road races in the world. Part of the course will take runners downhill through the park. There is free admission into the after-party/ post-race festival that rocks on until 3 p.m. at Speedway Meadows in Golden Gate Park. There will be live music, DJs, exhibitors, games, activities, food vendors, as well as a tasty beer-and-wine garden.

May 21 – NAMI Walk

In conjunction with National Mental Health Month, Golden Gate Park will host the 7th annual 5K NAMIWalk on May 21, 2001. Thousands of volunteers, families, corporate employees, community groups, people overcoming mental illness and NAMI staff from the Bay Area will walk to spread awareness and raise money for a good cause. The fundraiser walk is comprised of 5K (3 miles) and 1.5K walk routes. Pre-registration will take place at www.namiwalksfbay.org. Sponsors have made it possible for walkers to register for free. This is a great time to do something positive while having fun, staying fit, and making a difference. For more information, visit www.namiwalkSFbay.org, or call Laurie Williams at (800) 556-2401.

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