San Francisco events October 2018. Things to do in San Francisco.

San Francisco
Best events for 12 months

San Francisco events October 2018

Japanese films

October 1 - 7, 2018
1.1 miles NW
See contemporary Japanese cinema at the Japan Film Festival of San Francisco at New People Cinema. All films have English subtitles.

Fleet Week

October 2 - 8, 2018
2.5 miles north
Fleet Week includes tours of Navy ships at Marina Green, a parade of ships under the Golden Gate Bridge, air shows with the Blue Angels, and military dogs. Free. Pier 39 has a Fleet Week Celebration October 5 to 7, with bands and exhibits.

Santa Cruz Film Festival

October 3 - 7, 2018
76 miles SE
Santa Cruz Film Festival celebrates innovative and original filmmaking and screens locally made films.

Film festival in Mill Valley

October 4 - 14, 2018
Mill Valley & San Rafael
See quality films from around the world at the Mill Valley Film Festival (MVFF), plus panel discussions most days and live music most nights.

Ideas festival

October 5 - 6, 2018
13.5 miles NE
Hear expert speakers, join thought-provoking conversations, see pop-up performances, and mingle at a party during Uncharted: The Berkeley Festival of Ideas at various venues in downtown Berkeley.

Country bluegrass concert

October 5 - 7, 2018
4 miles west
Hardly Strictly Bluegrass presents 90 country and bluegrass acts on multiple stages with food vendors in Golden Gate Park. Free.

San Jose half marathon

October 5 - 7, 2018
47.7 miles south
Rock ‘n’ Roll Half Marathon San Jose (plus 5K and 10K) follows a relatively flat course, with live bands on the way, and a free two-day health & fitness expo.
  • Oct. 5 & 6 – fitness expo
  • Oct. 6 – kids’ events and 5K
  • Oct. 7 – half marathon and 10K

Celebrate San Francisco Bay

October 6, 2018
multiple locations
Bay Day events include free entertainment and food trucks at The Yard SF, family activities at Jack London Square in Oakland, the Port Fest festival in Redwood City, and activities (pre-register) on Angel Island.

Columbus Day ball

October 6, 2018 (5 to 11 p.m.)
1.2 miles NE
The black-tie optional Grand Ball includes a banquet, no-host cocktails, and dancing at the Palace Hotel, organized by San Francisco Italian Heritage.

Art fair in San Carlos

October 6 - 7, 2018
28.5 miles south
San Carlos Art & Wine Faire features 275 art and craft booths, three stages of entertainment, food vendors, wine, beer, a car show, and a family zone at San Carlos Avenue & Laurel Street. No pets. Free.

Small-town Oktoberfest

October 6 - 7, 2018
33 miles NE
Find German food, beer, wine, arts & crafts, carnival rides, street performers, and a parade (noon Saturday) at outdoor Clayton Oktoberfest. Free entry.

Castro Street Fair

October 7, 2018
1.6 miles SW
Castro Street Fair features local artists, vendors, craftspeople, LGBT organizations, live music, and dancers at Castro & Market Streets. Donation.

Columbus Day Parade

October 7, 2018 (12:30 p.m.)
2.3 miles north
Italian Heritage Parade begins at Fisherman’s Wharf and ends in Washington Square. Free.

Wine tasting

October 9, 2018
1.1 miles NE
Taste fine wine paired with restaurant bites, oysters, and cheese at the Top 100 Tasting by Wine & Spirits magazine at City View at Metreon.

Pool party

October 10, 2018 (6 to 9:30 p.m.)
0.4 miles north
Watch local celebrities get soaked at the $125 Pool Toss, with “fabulous food, refreshing libations, wacky entertainment, and a wet-and-wild celebrity auction pool toss” at the Phoenix Hotel for charity.

Daredevil stunts

October 11, 2018 (7:30 p.m.)
48 miles south
Watch 30 freestyle athletes perform mind-blowing stunts, freestyle motocross, and BMX routines when Nitro Circus comes to SAP Center at San Jose.

Antiques show

October 11 - 14, 2018 (preview Oct. 10)
2.3 miles north
Browse fine antiques from 50 international dealers and hear expert lecturers at The San Francisco Fall Art & Antiques Show in the Festival Pavilion at Fort Mason.

Festival under the stars

October 13, 2018
1 mile NE
See dozens of music, dance, and art performances at Yerba Buena Night around Yerba Buena Lane. Free.

Beer tasting on a ship

October 13, 2018 (1 to 4 p.m.)
2.2 miles NE
Sample 70 beers from local breweries with live music, food vendors, and spectacular views at Brews on the Bay aboard the historic ship S.S. Jeremiah O’Brien at Pier 45 for age 21+.

Celebrate Oakland

October 13, 2018 (10 a.m. to 7 p.m.)
9.5 miles east
Life is Living Festival has live music, theater, African dancing, dance classes, a kids’ zone, and vendors at DeFremery Park. Free.

Car show in Alameda

October 13, 2018
15.3 miles east
See 400 classic vehicles lined up along Park Street in Alameda during the Classic Car Show (vintage coupes, antique roadsters, hot rods, and muscle cars). DJs will be playing oldies from the ‘50s and the ‘60s. Free.

Bike & beer festival

October 13, 2018
20 miles north
See handmade bikes, visit 70 exhibitors, take a bike ride, buy a ticket to taste 35 hand-crafted beers, and hear live music at Biketoberfest in Fairfax. Free.

Horse fair

October 13, 2018
32.1 miles south
Day of the Horse is a free event with live music, food, exhibits, a petting zoo, and stagecoach rides in the small town of Woodside, with an optional ticketed ride for horse owners. See schedule.

Art in Livermore

October 13, 2018
43.8 miles SE
Browse artwork by 200 artists outdoors and in shops, hear music in the park and plaza, and check out family activities at ArtWalk Livermore. Free.

Art fair in Livermore

October 13, 2018
44 miles SE
Browse art from 200 artists and hear live music at ArtWalk indoors and outdoors near First Street in Livermore. Free.

Music festival

October 13 - 14, 2018
10.1 miles NE
Treasure Island Music Festival has 25 bands playing indie-rock and electronic dance music, interactive art installations, roaming performers, and food vendors at Middle Harbor Shoreline Park in Oakland.

Pumpkin festival - Half Moon Bay

October 13 - 14, 2018
29.4 miles south
Expect crowds at Half Moon Bay Art & Pumpkin Festival, plus giant pumpkins, pumpkin carving, art & craft booths, four stages of entertainment, wine, beer, food vendors, and a parade (Sat. noon) on Main Street. No pets. Free.

Miniatures show

October 13 - 14, 2018
45 miles south
See miniature objects displayed by 100 dealers and attend workshops at the Good Sam Showcase of Miniatures at Doubletree Hotel San Jose.

People in the street

October 14, 2018 (Excelsior)
San Francisco neighborhoods
Walk, bike, or roller skate on a city street when most cars are banned for Sunday Streets, which are held about once a month from March to October.

Astonishing magician

October 19, 2018
0.8 miles NE
Master magician and mentalist Jay Alexander entertains with comedy, sleight-of-hand, and human lie detection at Marrakech Magic Theater, with optional appetizers and cocktails for sale. Reviews.

Ticket deal $23 to $28

Beer party - Golden Gate Park

October 19, 2018 (6:30 to 11:30 p.m.)
2.5 miles west
A ticket to Botanicals and Brews Beer Garden includes one craft beer and access to the Conservatory of Flowers (until 10:30 p.m.) and the Palm Terrace beer garden (until 11:30 p.m.) for age 21+.

Literary festival

October 19 - 20, 2018
San Francisco & Oakland
Book lovers unite at Litquake, a giant independent literary festival with cutting-edge panel discussions, a Lit Crawl in local bars on Oct. 20, and hundreds of mostly free author readings.

Greek films

October 19 - 20, 2018
2.3 miles NE
San Francisco Greek Film Festival screens 25 films about Greece and Cyprus, plus films made or directed by Greek filmmakers and filmmakers of Greek descent at Delancey Street Screening Room. English subtitles.

Garden lights festival

October 19 - 20, 2018 (6 to 11 p.m.)
12.3 miles east
Autumn Lights Festival features illuminated art, fire dancers, larger-than-life art installations, live music, interactive arts, and a food court in The Gardens at Lake Merritt in Oakland.

Arabian films

October 19 - 21, 2018
San Francisco Bay Area
The Arab Film Festival screens films about the beauty, complexity, and diversity of the Arab world, plus its people, culture, art, history, and politics.

Working-class drama

October 19 - 21, 2018
1.1 miles NE
Factory workers gather in a local bar to share laughs, hopes, and cold beer in Sweat, but soon a recession and a lockout loom, sending shockwaves through these lifelong friends, at A.C.T.’s Geary Theater

Ticket deal $19 to $66

Halloween at Great America

October 19 - 28, 2018
42.6 miles south
Halloween Haunt at Great America features hundreds of monsters, 8 haunted mazes, 5 skeleton key rooms, 5 live shows, and 3 scare zones at California’s Great America in Santa Clara (Fri., Sat., Sun. evenings) for age 13+. Great Pumpkin Fest (daytime on weekends) is for age 12 and younger. Closed October 21.

Family haunted house

October 19 - 30, 2018
37.8 miles SE
Candle Lighters Ghost House is a low-scare haunt with goblins, ghosts, witches, and warlocks in a historic carriage house, plus games, caramel apples, and a country store in Fremont. Special events include a dance party (Oct. 29), lights on for kids (Oct. 21) and a kiddie costume parade (Oct. 27). Closed Oct. 15, 22.

Halloween at Six Flags

October 19 - 31, 2018
34.7 miles NE
Enjoy pumpkin painting & trick-or-treating in daylight, but beware of ghosts, ghouls, and zombies at night during Fright Fest [website has sound] at Six Flags Discovery Kingdom in Vallejo. See schedule.

Haunted attractions - Pleasanton

October 19 - 31, 2018
36.2 miles SE
Pirates of Emerson Haunted Theme Park offers five haunted attractions at the Alameda County Fairgrounds in Pleasanton. See schedule.

Black comedy

October 19 - Nov. 3, 2018
1.1 miles NE
Based on a novel by Tennessee Williams, this new adaptation of Baby Doll follows a virgin child bride and her alcoholic husband into a revenge plot of seduction and justice at Shelton Theater.

Ticket deal $20

Haunted house - San Leandro

October 19 - Nov. 3, 2018
23 miles SE
Fear Overload Scream Park offers two popular attractions in San Leandro. See schedule.

Haunted house - San Jose

October 19 - Nov. 3, 2018 (7 to 11 p.m.)
52.6 miles south
Dead Time Dreams Haunted Attractions has multiple mazes at 2501 Tully Road in San Jose. See schedule.

Campy parody

October 20, 2018 (9 p.m.)
0.7 miles SE
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Live is a drag parody of the TV series about a high-school cheerleader who faces vampires, demons, and the forces of darkness, at the Oasis (which has a two drink minimum) for age 21+.

Ticket deal $35

Neighborhood festival

October 20, 2018
1.9 miles SE
Potrero Hill Festival has a stage with live music, local restaurant food, a kids’ area with a petting zoo, and 100 local artists and vendors on 20th Street. Free.

Wharf festival

October 20, 2018
2.3 miles north
San Francisco’s Wharf Fest has live music, street performers, craft and food vendors, and a chowder contest (sold out) on the Embarcadero (from Taylor to Powell). Free.

Urban music & art festival

October 20, 2018 (12 to 7 p.m.)
5.1 miles south
BayviewLive is a street festival featuring “notable performers, muralists, and tech tastemakers” focusing in 2018 on female artists, at 1439 Egbert Avenue (from 3rd to Jennings). Free.

Locally made crafts

October 20, 2018 (11 a.m. to 5 p.m.)
15 miles east
Shop from 40 Bay Area producers of apparel, home accessories, garden products, food, and beverages at Where Craft Meets Innovation: A Market & Showcase in the Alameda factory of Concreteworks. Free, unless you buy a factory tour.

Farm festival in Muir Beach

October 20, 2018 (10 a.m. to 4 p.m.)
18.3 miles NW
Meet baby goats and lambs, feed chickens, millk goats, make cheese & crafts, see beehives, dance to live music, buy food for sale, walk the trails, and enjoy ocean views during Fall Harvest at Slide Ranch.

Free music in Marin

October 20, 2018
18.6 miles north
Marin Music Festival promises four local bands, arts and crafts booths, food trucks, beer and wine, kids’ activities, and a waterfront view in San Rafael. Free.

Neighborhood comic con

October 20, 2018
47 miles south
Small and family friendly Campbell Con celebrates comic books, movies, fantasy, sci-fi, superheroes, and collectibles at West Valley College in Saratoga.

Country-western comedy

October 20 - 21, 2018
1.8 miles NE
Nominated for seven Tony Awards, The Best Little Whorehouse In Texas is a musical comedy about the famous Chicken Ranch brothel, its colorful occupants, and its friends and foes at The Gateway Theatre for age 18+.

Ticket deal $25

Musical comedy show

October 20 - 21, 2018
1.9 miles NE
Billed as “the world’s longest-running musical revue,” Beach Blanket Babylon features Snow White on a trip around the world meeting satirical celebrities, at Club Fugazi for age 21+ (except all ages on Sunday).

Ticket deal $32 to $34

San Jose home show

October 20 - 21, 2018
48.3 miles south
See home improvement products, services, and demonstrations at the San Jose Fall Home Show at the San Jose convention center. Repeats in March.

Medieval fair

October 20 - 21, 2018
92 miles SE
Watch knights joust on noble steeds, mingle with costumed minstrels and troubadours, shop at 200 artisan and food-purveyor stalls, and see children delight in games and activities at Northern California Renaissance Faire in Hollister. Children age 12 and younger are free.

Switzerland festival

October 20 - 26, 2018
San Francisco
Celebrate the fact that Zurich is San Francisco’s sister city by attending dozens of events during Zürich Meets San Francisco, including films, concerts, dinners, talks, tours, science workshops, and even a startup night.

Fashion week

October 20 - 28, 2018
San Francisco
Attend fashion related events during San Francisco Fashion Week at locations throughout San Francisco.

Visit art studios

October 20 - Nov. 11, 2018 (weekends)
San Francisco locations
Visit up to 800 emerging and established artists in their studios during the weekend SF Open Studios, and attend preview and tasting parties on weekdays.

Flamenco show

October 20 - Dec. 15, 2018 (Saturdays 7 p.m.)
2.1 miles NE
The mother-daughter team of Carolina Lugo & Carolé Acuña entertain with pulsating sounds of footwork, songs, castanets, syncopated hand clapping, and guitar at Peña Pachamama in North Beach. (Minimum purchase of two food or drink items.)

Ticket deal $11

Days of the Dead in Oakland

October 21, 2018 (12 to 4:30 p.m.)
13 miles east
Days of the Dead Community Celebration begins with a procession of Aztec dancers. It includes folkloric dance, mariachi music, art vendors, food booths, and community-made altars honoring the dead at Oakland Museum of California. Children younger than age 8 are free.

Sunset cruise

October 21 - Nov. 4, 2018 (6 p.m.)
2.6 miles north
California Sunset Cruise includes two hours of romantic views, live guitar music, a drink, and a light appetizer buffet with sandwiches, fruit, and cheese on a motor boat departing from Fisherman’s Wharf.

Ticket deal $44

Register to vote

October 22, 2018
Today is the last day to register to vote in the November 6 election, and you can do it online.

Jewish film festival

October 22 - Nov. 11, 2018
Palo Alto & San Jose
Watch two dozen feature-length films at the Silicon Valley Jewish Film Festival, with special events opening and closing nights.

Epic musical

October 23 - Nov. 4, 2018
0.3 miles east
Written by the creators of Les Misérables, Miss Saigon is about the tragic romance between a strong-willed Vietnamese woman and an American soldier during the last days of the Vietnam War at SHN Orpheum Theatre.

Ticket deal $45 to $70


October 23 - Nov. 11, 2018
0.6 miles NE
Inspired by the popular film, Waitress is about a pie maker stuck in a small town and a loveless marriage who must summon strength and courage to rebuild her life, at SHN Golden Gate Theatre.

Ticket deal $45 to $70

Sexy poetry

October 24, 2018 (8:30 to 11:30 p.m.)
1.1 miles SE
Inspired by 19th-century bordellos of Paris and New Orleans, The Poetry Brothel presents a rotating cast of poets in an immersive and lush, speakeasy-style environment with a bar and cabaret entertainment at The Great Northern for age 21+.

Ticket deal $20

Museum party

October 25, 2018 (6 p.m.)
3 miles west
Tour a haunted hall full of scientific curiosities, visit a haunted arcade of games, watch a drag show, join a costume contest, and order food/drinks at Creatures of the NightLife at California Academy of Sciences in Golden Gate Park for age 21+.

Halloween cabaret

October 25 - Nov. 3, 2018
1.3 miles SE
A Very Scary Misfit Cabaret blends musical theater, rock ‘n’ roll, high-flying aerialists, burlesque, and vaudeville starring singer Kat Robichaud (of The Voice) and her band Darling Misfits at Z Space. Costume contest.

Ticket deal $10 to $25

Celebrity chef dinner

October 26, 2018
1.3 miles NE
Taste America: San Francisco includes a 6 p.m. cocktail reception and tasting, a 7:30 p.m. seated dinner and dessert reception, and an auction at Fairmont San Francisco for $375 to support the James Beard Foundation.

Halloween costume ball

October 26, 2018 (9 p.m.)
1.3 miles NE
Halloween International Ball is a multi-room spectacular with dance music at W San Francisco.

Halloween in the park

October 26, 2018 (3 to 9 p.m.)
5.2 miles SW
Scaregrove is a ticketed event with a costume parade, haunted house, hayrides, carnival rides, games, and food for sale at Sigmund Stern Recreation Grove.

Show-business musical

October 26 - Nov. 17, 2018
1.8 miles NE
The Boy From Oz is the poignant true story of an Australian who married Liza Minnelli and then discovered he liked to dance, at Theatre Rhinoceros.

Ticket deal $5 to $23

Halloween party - Regency

October 27, 2018 (9 p.m.)
0.7 miles north
Join 2,000 costumed revelers at A Nightmare on Van Ness for three floors of DJ & live music, a costume contest, and go-go dancers at The Regency Center for age 21+.

Halloween party

October 27, 2018 (9 p.m.)
1.4 miles NE
Wear a costume to Haunted Hotel at W San Francisco for music (EDM, House, Deep House, Top 40, and Hip Hop), six DJs, dancing, and a bar for age 21+.

Home tour

October 27, 2018
1.9 miles NE
Visit an elegant private home in Noe Valley during the Annual Home Tour of The Junior League of San Francisco, which highlights architecture, art, history, and interior design.

Pet parade

October 27, 2018 (1 p.m.)
2 miles SE
Watch decorated dogs walk with their owners on 18th Street (from Arkansas to Texas) during the Annual Pet Parade, followed by a costume contest. Free.

Halloween cruise

October 27, 2018 (boarding 9:15 p.m.)
2.1 miles NE
Take a three-hour Speakeasy Halloween Party Cruise aboard San Francisco Belle, with bay views, DJ dance music, three levels of entertainment, and a cash bar, leaving Pier 3 for age 21+. Costumes are welcome.

Ticket deal $44

Halloween cruise

October 27, 2018 (boarding 8 p.m.)
2.2 miles east
Titanic Masquerade Halloween Party Cruise is a 3.5-hour ride on San Francisco Bay with two DJs, views of the city and bridges from three decks, and an open bar for age 21+. Requires a mask and semi-formal attire.

Halloween party

October 27, 2018 (9 p.m.)
3 miles south
Funhouse promises celebrity DJs, live performances, and dancing at Spin for age 21+.

Halloween party for kids

October 27, 2018
3 miles west
A ticket to SuperNatural Halloween gets you trick-or-treating, dancing, face painting, magic shows, science, pumpkin carving, crafts, food, and drink at California Academy of Sciences in Golden Gate Park.

Vegetarian festival

October 27, 2018
3 miles west
World Veg Festival features speakers, cooking demos, exhibitors, a children’s corner, samples, and food for sale at San Francisco County Fair Building.

College football

October 27, 2018 (3:30 p.m.)
14 miles NE
Watch the California Golden Bears play the University of Washington Huskies in an exciting home game at California Memorial Stadium in Berkeley.

Ticket deal $19 to $31

Halloween at S.F. zoo

October 27 - 28, 2018
7.7 miles SW
Children can enjoy treats, watch animals eat pumpkins, dance to music, bounce, walk on a haunted trail, make crafts, and join the 11 a.m. costume parade and contest (no masks) during Boo at the Zoo at San Francisco Zoo.

Halloween at Oakland zoo

October 27 - 28, 2018 (10 a.m. to 3 p.m.)
19.2 miles east
Children can collect treats, watch animals eat pumpkins, dance to music, and get a free ride (if wearing a costume) during Boo at the Zoo at the Oakland Zoo.

Rocky Horror live

October 27 - Nov. 3, 2018
1.1 miles south
The Rocky Horror Show is a cult musical with quirky characters and unforgettable songs like the “Time Warp” at Victoria Theatre.

Ticket deal $15 to $20

Halloween children’s festival

October 28, 2018 (noon to 2 p.m.)
1.2 miles NE
Halloween Hoopla features a costume parade, interactive performances, and games for kids under 10 and their adults at Yerba Buena Gardens. Free.

Neighborhood festival

October 28, 2018
3.7 miles south
Fiesta on the Hill features live bands, dancing in the street, street artists, pumpkin carving, kids’ activities, and food vendors on Cortland Avenue in Bernal Heights. Free.

Halloween pub crawl

October 31, 2018 (6 to 11 p.m.)
Bay Area
Check in at Mayes Oyster House between 6 and 9 p.m. for the Adult Trick ’R Treating Pub Crawl, which includes drink specials at 7 bars. Costumes welcome.

Vampire tour

October 31, 2018 (8 p.m.)
1.3 miles NE
Celebrate Halloween on the Nob Hill Vampire Tour of San Francisco, which includes historical facts, vampire lore, humor, and a costume contest, beginning at the corner of California & Taylor Streets.

Ticket deal $13

Halloween comedy

October 31, 2018 (8 p.m.)
1.8 miles NE
Comedians perform jokes in costume and in character during the Halloween Comedy Showcase at the Punch Line, which has a two drink minimum and is age 18+.

Free classical concert

October 31, 2018 (1 to 2 p.m.)
8 miles SW
Hear two pianists play “Petrushka” by Stravinsky and “The Banshee” by Cowell at the Annual Scary Concert in the Creative Arts Building at San Francisco State University. Free.

San Jose neighborhood haunt

October 31, 2018 (6 to 9 p.m.)
48 miles south
Just a normal house the rest of the year, Albertson Halloween House is a neighborhood attraction at Halloween. The theme in 2018 is “video games.” Free.

Used book sale

October 31 - Nov. 4, 2018
2.3 miles north
Browse 500,000 books, DVDs, and CDs at the Big Book Sale by Friends of the San Francisco Public Library in the Festival Pavilion at Fort Mason.