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

San Francisco
Best events for 12 months

San Francisco events September 2018

Film festival

September 1, 2018
(begins Aug. 24)
multiple locations
California Independent Film Festival “celebrates diversity, human rights, and freedom of expression through an array of dramatic and comedic feature films, shorts, and moving documentaries” in San Francisco, Moraga, and Orinda.

Ticket deal $20 (Sept. 1)

Taste of Sonoma

September 1, 2018
47 miles north
Rub shoulders with winegrowers, winemakers, and chefs at Taste of Sonoma during tastings and seminars at Green Music Center in Rohnert Park.

Millbrae Art & Wine Festival

September 1 - 2, 2018
14.5 miles south
Billed as “The Last Blast of Summer,” Millbrae Art & Wine Festival features 250 professional artists and craft makers, fine food & beverages, kids’ activities, “classically cool cars,” and plenty of live music. Free.
CityPass San Francisco

Scottish festival

September 1 - 2, 2018
36.2 miles SE
Scottish Highland Gathering & Games offers athletic games, a grandstand show, sheepdog trials, Scottish dance, food, music, historical demonstrations, and whiskey at Alameda County Fairgrounds in Pleasanton.

Art festival in Sausalito

September 1 - 3, 2018
9.1 miles NW via ferry
You’ll have to pay to enter the classy Sausalito Art Festival, which features 260 juried artists, 2 music stages, wine tasting, and food vendors at Marinship Park in Sausalito. No outside beverages or pets.

Belmont Greek Festival

September 1 - 3, 2018
23.9 miles south
Enjoy Greek food, music, dancing, a mythology play, and a kids’ area at the Belmont Greek Festival at the Greek Orthodox Church in Belmont. Free before 2 p.m. on Saturday & Monday, and children 12 and younger.

Art in the redwoods

September 1 - 3, 2018
32 miles south
Not the Bay Area’s biggest art fair, but perhaps its most beloved, Kings Mountain Art Fair features 140 juried artists, food vendors, and a children’s area in the forest at 13889 Skyline Boulevard. Park along the road and walk to a free shuttle stop. No pets. Free.

Anime convention

September 1 - 3, 2018
48.6 miles south
Crunchyroll Expo has exhibits, screenings, panels, and special guests from the world of Japanese animation and pop culture at San Jose Convention Center.

Shakespeare in the park

September 1 - 23, 2018
(also August)
multiple locations
Watch A Midsummer Night’s Dream by William Shakespeare in a park outdoors. Locations include Redwood City and San Francisco (McLaren Park & the Presidio). Free.

Architecture festival

September 1 - 30, 2018
San Francisco
Architecture + the City Festival features walking tours, films, exhibitions, lectures, and behind-the-scenes looks at the process of designing, planning, and building.

Union Square entertainment

September 2 - 26, 2018
(also August)
1.1 miles NE
Union Square Live is a series of summer concerts and dances that include jazz, blues, folk, Latin, tango, rock, swing, and even Hawaiian. Free.

Phantom of the Opera

September 5 - 30, 2018
0.3 miles east
The Phantom of the Opera is a timeless and tragic love story about a masked man and an opera singer by Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber at SHN Orpheum Theatre.

Ticket deal $56 to $70

Latin hip-hop musical

September 6 - 9, 2018
17.3 miles east
Characters sing and dance to hip-hop, pop, and Latin music In the Heights as they tell the story of a tight-knit New York neighborhood full of struggles, hopes, and dreams at Woodminster Amphitheater in Oakland.

Ticket deal $22-$44 (child $10-$16)

Environmental film festival

September 6 - 13, 2018
San Francisco & Berkeley
Green Film Fest promises 70 films from different countries that inspire us to make the world a better place.

Fringe theater festival

September 6 - 15, 2018
0.8 miles NE
See dozens of weird and wonderful shows by local theater groups that range from magic to solo acts at the San Francisco Fringe Festival at Exit Theatre.

Challenging walk

September 8, 2018
San Francisco
Walk 14 miles on an urban trek across 10 peaks on the Peak2Peak to discover hidden stairways and explore new paths around the city. Your ticket includes breakfast, lunch, snacks, and a beer.

Rum tasting

September 8, 2018
(3:30 p.m.)
1 mile SE
Taste taste premium rums, attend brand seminars, and visit the Tiki Bazaar area at California Rum Festival in SOMArts Cultural Center.

Freaky circus

September 8, 2018
(12 to 5 p.m.)
38.9 miles north
Lagunitas Beer Circus promises “freaktacular entertainment” by 100 performers (burlesque, side show acts, aerialists, marching band), midway games, food trucks, beer, and a costume contest at Sonoma-Marin Fairgrounds in Petaluma for age 21+.

Ticket deal $40

Game of Thrones music

September 8, 2018
(8 p.m.)
48 miles south
Immerse yourself in the breathtaking score of Game of Thrones, performed live by the composer, a full orchestra, and a choir, and set to stunning visual effects in SAP Center at San Jose.

Ticket deal $60 to $100

Pet convention

September 8, 2018
52 miles south
It’s OK to bring your pet (on a leash with proof of vaccinations) to Bay Area Pet Con, which has vendors, entertainment, agility demonstrations, microchip services, and adoptions at Santa Clara County Fairgrounds. Free.

Taste of Mexico in Santa Cruz

September 8, 2018
73 miles south
Mole & Mariachi Festival has food, beer, wine, craft vendors, giant piñatas, and dancers at Santa Cruz Mission State Historic Park. Photos. Free admission.

Chocolate festival

September 8 - 9, 2018
1.8 miles north
Ghirardelli Chocolate Festival includes chocolate tasting, chef demonstrations, live music, and vendors at Ghirardelli Square.

South Bay art & wine

September 8 - 9, 2018
37.2 miles south
Shop from 600 artists and craft makers, drink wine (plus beer, margaritas, and sangria), eat good food, and hear live music at Mountain View Art & Wine Festival on Castro Street in Mountain View.

Free films

September 8 & 22, 2018
multiple locations
Film Night in the Park presents hit films “on a giant outdoor screen in beautiful park settings.” You are encouraged to bring a picnic and a blanket. Free.
  • Sept. 8 - “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off” at Union Square
  • Sept. 22 - “Black Panther” at Dolores Park

People in the street

September 9, 2018
(Western Addition)
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.

Waterfront race

September 9, 2018
2 miles east
The San Francisco Giant Race includes a half marathon, 10K, 5K, kids’ race, and a family relay that all finish on the field at AT&T Park.

Opera in the Park

September 9, 2018
(1:30 p.m.)
2.6 miles west
Opera in the Park features artists from the fall season of the San Francisco Opera in Robin Williams Meadow at Golden Gate Park. Free.

Dine under the moon

September 9, 2018
73.6 miles north
Eat an unforgettable meal when Lincoln Avenue is closed to cars and a 1,000-foot long Calistoga Harvest Table is set up under the moon to serve food from 13 restaurants and wine from 40 wineries in Calistoga.

Rock musical

September 13 - Oct. 6, 2018
1.1 miles south
Winner of four Tony Awards, Hedwig and the Angry Inch is a brilliantly innovative, heartbreaking, and wickedly funny rock ‘n’ roll saga about seeking love at Victoria Theatre.

Ticket deal $8 to $35

Film Festival on Aging

September 14 - 16, 2018
1.1 miles NW
See thought-provoking, entertaining, and inspiring films about living a full life at the Legacy Film Festival on Aging at New People.

Oakland food festival

September 14 - 16, 2018
12 miles east
Buy locally grown food for $10 or less, hear music, and learn about sustainable farming at the Eat Real Festival at Jack London Square. Free.

Latino film festival

September 14 - 30, 2018
San Francisco Bay Area
CMSF Latino Film Festival screens films by emerging and established filmmakers from the United States, Latin America, Spain, and Portugal.

Italian festival

September 15, 2018
2 miles NE
Festa Coloniale Italiana features Italian food, wine tasting, music, vendors, and stage performances for all ages on Stockton Street (from Union Street to Filbert Street). Free.

Palestinian festival

September 15, 2018
21.7 miles south
Palestine Cultural Day has folk songs and dance, a bazaar, traditional food, and kids’ activities at Foster City Parks & Recreation. Free.

Beer in the park

September 15, 2018
(11 a.m. to 4 p.m.)
27.3 miles south
Buy “quality beers on tap from local breweries,” cider, and meals from food trucks at Pub in the Park, with lawn games and a live band playing bluegrass, Americana, folk, and old country at Red Morton Park in Redwood City. Bring a blanket or chairs. Free.

Bike ride + beer festival

September 15, 2018
40.4 miles SE
Ride 15 to 100 miles “through the majestic foothills of Mount Diablo, the San Ramon Valley, and the Livermore Valley” and then sample beer from noon to 5 p.m. with a band at V3 Hopfest in San Ramone.

Beer-only deal $25

Dragon boat festival

September 15 - 16, 2018
12.6 miles east
Watch dragon boat races and see stage shows (lion & dragon dances, taiko drumming, Tahitian dancing, and Chinese acrobats) at Northern California International Dragon Boat Festival, which has a kids’ area, fitness fair, and food vendors at Lake Merritt. Free.

Kids’ obstacle race

September 15 - 16, 2018
18.4 miles south
Kids 5 to 16 run through mud and over obstacles at Kids Obstacle Challenge at Coyote Point Recreation Area in San Mateo. Parents can race for free.

Lafayette festival

September 15 - 16, 2018
21.2 miles NE
Lafayette Art, Wine & Music Festival offers 250 arts and crafts booths, restaurant food, wine, beer, a kids’ zone, and 3 stages of music near a BART station. Free.

Adopt a pet

September 15 - 16, 2018
36.2 miles SE
You’re welcome to bring your pet to the Bay Area Pet Fair, which features 1500 adoptable animals, live shows, demonstrations, food vendors, a family zone, and pet supplies at Alameda County Fairgrounds. Free.

Medieval fair

September 15 - Oct. 21, 2018
92 miles SE
Watch knights joust on noble steeds, mingle with costumed minstrels and troubadours, shop 200 artisan and food-purveyor stalls, and see children delight in games and activities at Northern California Renaissance Faire in Hollister. Age 12 and under free.

Special weekend discounts

Sustainable design market

September 16, 2018
0.5 miles SW
Shop for sustainably made apparel, accessories, home goods, and art at the Urban Air Market, with street food and local musicians on Patricia’s Green (at Octavia & Fell Streets). Repeats in May. Free.

Outdoor sumo wrestling

September 16, 2018
(noon, 2 p.m., 4 p.m.)
1 mile NW
Sumo is an ancient Japanese tradition and martial art. Meet the wrestlers and watch matches during Sumo Champions Exhibition at Japantown Peace Plaza. Free. [Saturday is meet and greet. Exhibition is Sunday.]

Free comedy

September 16, 2018
2.6 miles west
See 40+ comedians from the Bay Area and beyond on Comedy Day in Robin Williams Meadow at Golden Gate Park.

German family festival

September 16, 2018
15.6 miles NW
Hike an easy mile to Kinderfest at San Francisco Tourist Club in Mill Valley to celebrate Oktoberfest with German food, drink, live music, and kids’ games. Tickets only online.

Polish festival

September 16, 2018
53 miles south
Enjoy Polish cuisine, traditional art, music, and dance at PolskaFest in San Jose. Free.

Art & wine in San Jose

September 16, 2018
58 miles south
Almaden Valley Art & Wine Festival has local artisans, bands on stage, boutique wines, gourmet food trucks, and a kids’ zone at Almaden Lake Park.

Improv festival

September 19 - 23, 2018
0.7 miles NE
Enjoy live entertainment by dozens of performers at San Francisco Improv Festival at Pianofight.

Oktoberfest in Redwood City

September 19 - 23, 2018
25.7 miles south
A ticket to Oktoberfest gets you a stein, a drink ticket, live music, games, contests, and German food for sale at Courthouse Square in Redwood City.

Comedian Lily Tomlin

September 20, 2018
(8 p.m.)
13.6 miles NE
Lily Tomlin provides “comical insights and wildly witty observations about the human condition” at Berkeley’s Zellerbach Hall.

Ticket deal $45

Quilt & craft show

September 20 - 22, 2018
39 miles SE
The Quilt, Craft & Sewing Festival offers workshops, seminars, and vendors of fabrics and supplies in Pleasanton.

Beer party - Golden Gate Park

September 21, 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+.

Knitting show

September 21 - 23, 2018
0.8 miles NE
Vogue Knitting Live features knitting classes and a vendor marketplace at Hilton San Francisco Union Square.

Greek festival

September 21 - 23, 2018
0.9 miles SW
Enjoy homemade Greek foods like lamb, calamari, gyros, baklava, souvlaki, and wine at San Francisco’s Only Greek Food Festival, plus dancers performing to live music at Annunciation Greek Orthodox Cathedral.


September 21 - 23, 2018
2.1 miles NE
Bring plenty of cash to enjoy beer, bratwurst, live music, and people dancing in costume at Oktoberfest by the Bay at Pier 48. No kids Sat. evening or Fri.

Monterey Jazz Festival

September 21 - 23, 2018
117 miles south
Billed as the world’s longest running jazz event, Monterey Jazz Festival features 500 artists on eight stages at the 20-acre Monterey County Fairgrounds.

Motown musical

September 21 - Oct. 21, 2018
12.9 miles NE
Dreamgirls is the rags-to-riches tale of a fictional 1960s Motown girl group based on real acts like The Supremes and The Shirelles, and featuring their hit music, at Berkeley Playhouse.

Ticket deal $19 to $28

Halloween at Six Flags

September 21 - Oct. 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.

Free museum day

September 22, 2018
Get a free ticket that allows two people to visit one of the many museums participating in Museum Day Live.

Free national park day

September 22, 2018
U.S. National Parks
Entry is free at Muir Woods National Monument and San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park on Free Entrance Days in the National Parks. Expect more people and less parking than usual.

Neighborhood festival

September 22, 2018
(11 a.m. to 4 p.m.)
6 miles SW
Sunset Community Festival promises local artisans, merchants, food vendors, musicians, and dance performers, with a kids’ area and a beer/wine garden at West Sunset Playground, 3223 Ortega Street. Free.

Beer tasting

September 22, 2018
(1 to 4 p.m.)
8.2 miles via ferry boat
Taste beer from 30 brewers at Tiburon Taps Beer Festival, with restaurant food samples and live music on the waterfront. No kids or pets.

Iranian films

September 22 - 23, 2018
1.9 miles north
Iranian Film Festival – San Francisco screens independent feature and short films made by or about Iranians at the San Francisco Art Institute.

Printing festival

September 23, 2018
(11 a.m. to 4 p.m.)
1.4 miles SE
A giant steamroller presses prints on the street at Roadworks Steamroller Printing Festival, a public printmaking and book arts extravaganza with free hands-on printmaking and book arts activities, demonstrations, and vendors on Rhode Island Street.

San Jose open street day

September 23, 2018
48 miles south
Walk, bike, or skate on six miles of city streets from Japantown to Lake Cunningham Park with vendors and activities along the route during SoFA to the Street. Free.

Fashion week

September 23 - 30, 2018
San Francisco
Attend fashion shows, tours, expos, and parties during San Francisco Fashion Week at various venues.

Concerts at the vineyard

September 26, 2018
(also August)
48.2 miles SE
Concerts at Wente Vineyards feature world-class entertainers at an outdoor amphitheater in Livermore.
  • Sept. 26 - Bad Company

Old-time music festival

September 26 - 30, 2018
12.7 miles NE
The Berkeley Old Time Music Convention features concerts, a string-band contest, square dances, workshops, kids’ activities, and plenty of jamming.

Irish film festival

September 27 - 29, 2018
2.3 miles NE
See contemporary Irish cinema, including short films, at the San Francisco Irish Film Festival at Delancey Street Screening Room. [They plan to update their website soon.]

Classical music of Stravinsky

September 27 - 30, 2018
0.1 miles SW
San Francisco Symphony performs three works by Igor Stravinsky, including The Rite of Spring, Petrushka, and a violin concerto at Davies Symphony Hall.

Ticket deal $30 (Friday)

Adventure race

September 28 - 29, 2018
4.1 miles NW
Questival is a 24-hour race that begins with a check-in party at Crissy Field. Your team of 2 to 6 people completes the challenges assigned by a smartphone app to win prizes. Video.

Japanese films

September 28 - Oct. 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.

Haunted house - San Leandro

September 28 - Nov. 3, 2018
23 miles SE
Fear Overload Scream Park offers two popular attractions in San Leandro.

Salsa festival

September 29, 2018
(12 to 8 p.m.)
25.7 miles south
Redwood City Salsa Festival fills the downtown with three stages of salsa music, salsa dancing, beer & tequila tasting, and a children’s play area. Free.

Oktoberfest in Oakland

September 29 - 30, 2018
14 miles east
Oaktoberfest in the Dimond is a family-friendly festival with 30 kinds of German and craft beer, German food and music, an eco fair, and a kids’ area at Fruitvale Avenue & MacArthur Boulevard. Free admission.

Leather fair

September 30, 2018
0.6 miles SE
Only in San Francisco will you find 400,000 fetish enthusiasts shopping for leather kink at Folsom Street Fair, which has a music stage, dance floor, and erotic artists’ area on Folsom Street (8th to 13th). Donation.

Antiques fair

September 30, 2018
38.5 miles north
Vintage and antique lovers will find an eclectic variety of items available from 200 dealers at the Petaluma Fall Antique Faire in downtown Petaluma. Repeats in April. Free.