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Everything You Need to Do in San Francisco on Your Next Visit

Updated On 02/05/2018 at 05:13PM EST Updated On 02/05/2018 at 05:13PM EST
things to do this winter in SF
Courtesy of Exploratorium
December
Aladdin
Aladdin | Deen van Meer
December
Monday - Sunday
Dec 18-Jan 7
SHN Orpheum Theatre
If you know all of the words to “A Whole New World” then you should definitely make all of your wishes come true and see this hit Broadway musical before it flies off to a new city.
Cost: $55 to $240 (depending on what seats you want)
Monday - Monday
Dec 18-Jan 15
Union Square Park
The seasonal ice rink in Union Square is your chance to show off your best Nancy Kerrigan impression without the fear of getting Tonya Harding-ed on your way off of the ice.
Cost: $18 (includes skates); free (including lessons) from 8:30 to 9:30am every Saturday and Sunday
Thursday
Dec 21
Warfield
The duo reunites! See just How High Method Man & Redman actually are at this all-ages show at the Warfield.
Cost: $25 to $50
Wednesday
Dec 27
Levi's Stadium
OK, so it might not be the best matchup ever, but watching the Arizona Wildcats and Purdue Boilermakers this annual bowl game will still be more fun than any Niners home game this season. If you can’t make the actual game, hit up any of these fun bars that’ll surely be showing it.
Cost: $20 to $250
Sunday
Dec 31

Say 'good fucking riddance' to 2017

Say 'good fucking riddance' to 2017

Anywhere you'd like
Needless to say, 2017 was an interesting year, and we can’t say we’re sorry to see it go. Stay tuned for our weekend events calendar for all of the fun parties.
Cost: Depends on if you prefer to ring the New Year in wearing jammies or black tie
January
SF Restaurant Week
SF Restaurant Week | Courtesy of Golden Gate Restaurant Association
January
Monday
Jan 1
Union Square Ice Rink
Put on your most outrageous bathing suit and head to Union Square at 2pm for an ice skating version of the Polar Bear Plunge.
Cost: $18 (includes skate rental)
Thursday
Jan 4
The Exploratorium
It’s the first “After Dark” of the year at the Exploratorium and the theme is “Bright and Shiny.” Discover nature’s brilliance from the gleam of an insect wing to the stars in the sky, all while making your mood bright and shiny with cocktails and beer.
Cost: $17.95 advanced; $19.95 at the door (plus the cost of drinks)
Sunday
Jan 7
Golden Gate Music Concourse
The Hot Chocolate 15K/5K is a race through SF’s most scenic spots with “sweet stations” along the course, followed by a post-race party with lots and lots of chocolate. It’ll probably be the fastest you’ve ever run in your entire life.
Cost: $56 for the 5K; $81 for the 15K
Thursday - Sunday
Jan 11-28
Various locations in SF
Might as well start 2018 off with some laughs. After 2017, you deserve it. The 17th annual SF Sketchfest has a jam-packed lineup of tributes, movies, live reads, music, improv, podcasts, and more. There are over 700 performers, which means there’s something for every sense of humor -- even yours!
Cost: $15 to $50
Thursday - Saturday
Jan 18-20
One Market, Bentley Reserve, and Pier 27
The Zinfandel Experience is a three-day food and wine extravaganza celebrating zin. Choose from a farm-to-table dinner, a winemakers auction, and dinner, or the Grand Tasting... or, if you really love zinfandel, do it all.
Cost: $45 to $299
Monday - Wednesday
Jan 22-31
130 restaurants around San Francisco
SF Restaurant Week is your chance to try new place, as tons of amazing restaurants offer special prix fixe menus all week long.
Cost: A two-course lunch costs $15 or $25, while a three-course dinner will run you $40 or $65.
Tuesday - Thursday
Jan 23-25
Nob Hill Masonic
As part of Sketchfest, Ricky Gervais is doing three shows in SF. He says it’s his best stand-up tour EVER. Go find out if you agree.
Cost: $350 to $380
Friday - Sunday
Jan 26-Feb 4
Castro Theatre
If double-dealing, double-crossing, and disillusionment are your thing, get an all-access pass for Noir City, a film festival that, this year, is focusing on film noirs from the years 1941-1953.
Cost: $120 for a 10-day passport; double-feature tickets sold separately
February
SF Beer Week
SF Beer Week | Suni Sudhi
February
Thursday
Feb 1
The Exploratorium
“After Dark” at the Exploratorium is always a fun time, but it gets hotter (scientifically speaking) on this night where the theme is “Sexplorations,” and you get to discover surprising ways sperm and eggs come together, while also discovering all of the beer, wine, and cocktails for sale.
Cost: $17.95 advanced; $19.95 at the door (plus the cost of drinks)
Tuesday - Thursday
Feb 6-Mar 1
SHN Orpheum Theatre
The Book of Mormon is back in SF for a limited month-long run. If you’ve never seen this outrageous musical comedy about mismatched missionaries spreading the Good Word in Africa, you should remedy that ASAP. Special underwear not required.
Cost: $60 to $214
Friday
Feb 9
Exploratorium
The Science of Cocktails is definitely the Exploratorium’s best late night event of the year. Learn about the connections between cocktails and science while sipping on drinks from local mixologists and beer from the Exploratorium’s staff brewers. You can also explore the entire museum and its hands-on exhibits and dance to music from Tumbledown House and DJ Celeste. All proceeds benefit the museum’s education programs.
Cost: $150 to $275
Friday - Sunday
Feb 9-18
Bars all over SF
If there’s one thing we love in SF, it’s craft beer. SF Beer Week is a chance to celebrate that love with tons of events that cater to various beer, food, and entertainment interests. All of the events are amazing, but the opening gala on February 9, 2018 is considered the largest and most prestigious annual gathering of the Northern California beer community and is not to be missed.
Cost: $80 to $120 for the opening gala
Saturday
Feb 10
Tofino Wines
Forget overpriced prix fixe Valentine’s Day menus. Head to this stylish wine bar on Saturday night for the first annual “Winter Formal, Here We Are” party. There will be oysters, Champagne, and lots of by-the-glass specials, as well as a DJ spinning funk, soul, and more. It’s a formal, so you’ll need to dress up in your fancy clothes. Tickets are limited and can be ordered by calling Tofino Wines at 415-872-5782.
Cost: $25 admission (includes a glass of sparkling wine)
Saturday
Feb 10
AT&T Park
Sure, the Giants sucked last season, but Giants FanFest is still a fun day at the ballpark and a chance to meet the players, watch Q&A sessions, get autographs, and cross your fingers that next year will be better. Please.
Cost: Free
Saturday - Sunday
Feb 10-11
Lodi, California
It’s just a short drive from SF to this under-the-radar wine region, and this is the weekend to go, because not only will you get to sip wine and sample chocolate at 50 different wineries, there will also be live music and a chance to win prizes.
Cost: $55 advance; $65 day of
Tuesday
Feb 13
Various locations in the Mission
Carnaval San Francisco is kicking off its 40th anniversary season by hosting 17 Fat Tuesday Mardi Gras celebrations with free admission at venues like Blondie’s Bar, Make-Out Room, Latin American Club, and more. There will be live samba drummers, dancers, and lively music. Costumes are encouraged. A percentage of the drink and food sales will go to support Carnaval SF.
Cost: Free, but drinks will cost ya
Tuesday
Feb 13
Ferment. Drink. Repeat.
Wes Rowe is going back to his pop-up roots for this food and beer pairing. Rowe will be cooking dishes like pickled shrimp, Nashville hot chicken sliders, and smoked brisket tacos, all of which will be perfectly paired with FDR beers.
Cost: $30
Wednesday
Feb 14

Give love to the people you love

Give love to the people you love

In your heart
Sure, Valentine’s Day is a cheesy Hallmark holiday on which every restaurant has an overpriced prix fixe menu and rushes you out of there, but you’ll still make someone’s day if you give them a sweet treat, red roses, or a handmade card.
Cost: Can you put a price on love? (Definitely more than $20.)
Wednesday
Feb 14
Emporium
Anchor Brewing and San Franpsycho are throwing a Valentine’s Day party at SF’s hottest new arcade bar. There will be a Skee-Ball competition, local DJs, onsite live-screen printing, the chance to meet Anchor brewers and tons of pinball, old-school arcade games, pool, and air hockey. The party’s for everyone, so if you’re single, maybe you’ll manage to impress someone with your shuffleboard skills. Or at least temporarily distract yourself from the loneliness. It goes from 8pm to 11pm.
Cost: Admission is free
Wednesday
Feb 14
Justin Herman Plaza
If everyone you know is coupled up, find a single friend and get out your sexual frustration by beating strangers over the head with a pillow. BYO pillow, bandana to cover your mouth unless you like choking on feathers, and a garbage bag so you can help clean up after.
Cost: Free
Wednesday
Feb 14
All over SF
So you hate Valentine’s Day but still want to keep the romance alive? You’re in luck. We sat down with Cupid and got the inside scoop on dates that aren’t incredibly corny, expensive, or confusing (is a table at White Castle actually romantic?!).
Cost: Can you really put a price on love?
Thursday
Feb 15
California Academy of Sciences
The Academy of Sciences’ weekly Nightlife party is celebrating SF Beer Week with a pop-up beer hall featuring dozens of local breweries and a chance to learn about the yeast and fermentation process, as well as the discovery of alcohol in space, which makes the idea of living on Mars so much more palatable. There will also be DJs and food for purchase, as usual.
Cost: $15
Friday - Saturday
Feb 16-24
E&O Kitchen and Bar
E&O is celebrating the Year of the Dog with a limited-time Lunar New Year Menu that expires on parade night when live lion dancers will perform in the restaurant.
Cost: Dishes will range from $13 to $20
Saturday
Feb 17
Festival Pavilion, Fort Mason Center
The 2018 San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition offers a public tasting every year where members of the public get to taste the contestants’ wine paired with delicious food. We’ll drink to that.
Cost: $55 to $95
Saturday - Saturday
Feb 17-Mar 17
Victoria Theatre
In this stage performance of the Adam Sandler movie, Bay Area Musicals! takes you back to the ‘80s when hair was big, the collars were popped, and the music was totally bitchin’.
Cost: $35 to $60
Monday - Sunday
Feb 19-25
Venues throughout the Bay Area
The Noise Pop Music & Arts Festival is one jam-packed week of independent films, concerts, art shows, and happy hours all over SF and the East Bay. Get a badge and gain access to every single one of the 90+ events, or buy tickets to individual events.
Cost: $195 to $399 for badges
Saturday
Feb 24
Chinatown
The Chinese New Year Parade is one of the most elaborate and dramatic parades in the world, and is one of the most fun ways to celebrate the Spring Festival. But, sorry: bad news if you’re a dog. This is your year, but according to Chinese astrology, your zodiac year is considered unlucky. (Wear lots of red to ward it off.)
Cost: Free
Saturday
Feb 24
Levi's Stadium
The Bacon and Beer Classic returns to Santa Clara for an afternoon or evening of indulging in bacon dishes and craft beer. Pretty sure it doesn’t get better than that.
Cost: $59 to $125