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Weekend Planner: February 26


Every Friday we put together a list of the weekend events we think look most interesting and provide them here. Keep in mind there is always a lot more going on, and all it takes is a little digging to find something that will be the perfect activity for you.

Click on any of the event titles for a link to the event.


Friday, February 26



64th Annual Pacific Orchid Exposition, “A Legacy of Orchids”

Fort Mason Center, San Francisco

All Weekend, All Ages


The 2016 Pacific Orchid Exposition, taking place February 26-28 at Fort Mason in San Francisco, has chosen “A Legacy of Orchids” as the theme for its 64th annual show.

Orchids are one of the oldest plant species and date back thousands of years. Their legacy and importance in society throughout history have been noted on the Ara Pacis of Ancient Rome and in the Materia Medica, which is the oldest known Chinese pharmaceutical text.

The plant has long been a symbol of refinement, wildness and exotic discoveries, but it also represents more than just an object of beauty.  The historical significance of orchids can be further depicted in the Angraceum sesquipedale (pictured above) which is the official image of the 2016 show. This remarkable plant’s roots are traced back to naturalist Charles Darwin, who discovered ties between its extremely long spur and a pollinator moth with a proboscis, or a head appendage, long enough to reach the nectar.

The Pacific Orchid Exposition boasts over 150,000 beautiful orchids from around the world and features docent tours, orchid potting demonstrations, cultivation tips and a diverse array of orchids for sale.

The event showcases intricate exhibits from local, national and international orchid growers, as well as vibrant displays from Orchid Societies around California. Plus, throughout the weekend there is a silent auction featuring fabulous items to bid on like wine, art, trips, and more.

The Pacific Orchid Exposition, which is the largest orchid show in the United States, is hosted by the San Francisco Orchid Society (SFOS), a 501 (c) (3) organization whose mission is to foster the culture and cultivation of orchids and to promote orchid education to its members and the public. The SFOS proudly supports local horticultural conservation efforts, including research and preservation efforts at the Conservatory of Flowers, the U.C. Botanical Garden at Berkeley and many other orchid conservation groups.

*** Special 50% Youth Discount (age 30 and under) on Saturday, Feb. 27th in conjunction with the Rightsiders Band performance.  

*** Refund Policy:  All tickets are final and non refundable.



Russian Festival 2016

The Russian Center, San Francisco

All Weekend, All Ages


Come help us celebrate our 28th year of Russian festivities !

Enjoy all the flavor and fun of the Russian – American experience in one wild weekend ! Sample piroshki , borsch , pelmeni and our ever popular flavored vodkas . Our three – day performance  spectacular  will transport your to Russia of old with ballads, folk songs, ballet, folk dance, and much more; featuring such popular groups such as the Konevets quartet from St. Petersburg, Russian ; local favorities Nikolai Massenkoff, world renowned bass ; Vladimir Riazantsev’s Russian dancers ; and the Firebird Dance Ensemble .

Be sure not to miss the historic treasures in the Museum of Russian Culture, and delight in our fantastic Art Gallery to peruse or purchase originals by our own local Russian artists . Face painting and crafts for the kids! Pick up souvenirs like Russian scarves, Baltic amber, lacquer  boxes and matryoshka dolls!


Saturday, February 27



Santa Clara Bacon and Beer Classic

Levi’s Stadium, Santa Clara

12 PM, Ages: 21+





Winemaker’s Dinner with Esterlina – Everett Ridge Winery

Max’s Diner, Oakland

6 PM, All Ages


Celebrate Black History Month with Esterlina – Everett Ridge Winery, one of the few African American, family owned wineries in the country. Join us on Saturday, February 27th for some great wine paired with a comforting dinner at Max’s Diner and Bar in Oakland City Center.  We will be serving various award-winning Esterlina and Everett Ridge wines specifically paired with Max’s well known eats.

The Sterling family, owners of Esterlina – Everett Ridge winery, will share their rich cultural experience and the history of their business while pouring their delicious hand-crafted wine. Like many of the pioneering American winemaking families, the Sterlings’ participation in the wine industry is multi-generational.

Get your tickets now as the are going fast.



Elevate Ensemble Presents: Ancient Sounds Meet Modern Minds

SOMArts Cultural Center, San Francisco

7 PM, All Ages


What happens when you pair an ancient instrument with thoroughly modern San Francisco creatives? Come and find out as we present three new works for the harpsichord written by Bay Area composers alongside one of the 20th century’s masterpieces.


Danny Clay: la folia

Benjamin Sabey: Fera Machina

Nick Benavides: The Color Festivals

Manuel de Falla: Harpsichord Concerto

For centuries, the sound of harpsichord rang in castles and concert halls—the go-to keyboard instrument whenever a church organ was not available. But all that changed in the late 18th century as the piano came into its own, dominating the keyboard repertoire from Mozart to Duke Ellington.  It was not until the mid-20th century that composers began experimenting anew with the delicate twang of the harpsichord.

“Ancient Sounds Meet Modern Minds” will introduce you to this harpsichord rebirth. Historical keyboardist Derek Tam will be our harpsichord soloist for the evening. In addition to his performance, Mr. Tam will lead a pre-concert lecture on the history and evolution of the harpsichord.

Danny Clay’s la folia, a 3-movement work for string quartet and harpsichord, is built on one of the oldest themes in Western Music, the folia bass pattern. Clay says that “writing music based around a pre-existing musical idea is an experience akin to looking in a mirror. When the notes are already laid out, it isn’t what you create that defines your artistic stamp anymore, but the way you treat what you already have. Composing then becomes less of a romanticized fit of inspiration and more like a series of science experiments.”

Benjamin Sabey’s Fera Machina (latin for “Wild Machine”) is a devilish work, requiring the performers to play heaps of clusters and trills at accelerated speeds. At one point, the harpsichordist is required to use both fists and forearms to play giant note clusters. This piece is a wild, swirling ride.

Nicolas Lell Benavides’s The Color Festivals is a musical depiction of bedtime stories that the composer’s father read to him as a child. All of these stories come from Abbie Phillips Walker’s Told by the Sandman, which celebrates it’s centennial anniversary in 2016.

For his Concerto for Harpsichord, Flute, Oboe, Clarinet, Violin and Cello, Manuel de Falla found inspiration in subjects ranging from his religious upbringing to the folk tunes of his native Spain, and encapsulates them in this charming, neo-classical-styled work.

– Lecture starts at 7:15 PM. Show starts at 8:00 PM –


Sunday, February 28



Academy Awards Viewing Soireé at Assembly

Assembly, Santa Cruz

5 PM, All Ages


Event Santa Cruz presents a red carpet / black tie evening of Academy Awards viewing hosted by Assembly Restaurant. Attendees will mix and mingle through hours of champagne toasts, passed tapas, the occasional best hair in a independent animated film award and speeches that go on much too long.

Highlights Include: • Large viewing screen provides excellent backdrop for your Elie Saab or Brunello Cucinelli • Multiple savory and sweet passed tapas courses through the evening • Silent viewing room for the passionate cinephiles • Two hosted champagne toasts • Paparazzi fisticuffs (it could happen!) • A swag bag of delights for every guest

We hope you will join us for an evening not soon forgotten, even if “Manta Ray” from Racing Extinction doesn’t win Best Original Song.



Beer Judging 101 – Sac Beer Week 2016

American River Brewing Company, Rancho Cordova

1 PM, Ages: 21+


Beer Judging 101: Tasting and Describing Beer

What is it that separates a truly world class brew from a mediocre one? Do you ever wish you could better describe the flavors and aromas of beer?

Instructor David Teckam is a Grand Master V level beer judge in the BJCP, and a prominent beer educator.  Other BJCP ranked judges will be assisting with the event.

Beer Judging 101 is a class for beer appreciators who want to expand their experience and descriptive ability. The only pre-requisite is an interest in craft beer and world beer styles, paired with your innate curiosity and a bit of casual tasting experience. This class will help you hone your natural ability to recognize and intelligently discuss various components in beer. In the process, you’ll learn some of the terms that judges use to describe beer’s many attributes.

This class will help you expand your understanding of beer flavors and aromas, and we’ll even help take the mystery out of the concept of “mouthfeel.” Naturally, the best way to learn is by doing. We’ll sample and compare a number of world class examples, discussing ingredients and learning a bit about the brewing process. We will touch upon some of the major world beer styles, how they developed, and why certain beers fit into style profiles better than others. We will also examine the effects of aging on beer.

For those interested in taking it a step further, we will briefly go over what it takes to join the ranks of the BJCP: the Beer Judge Certification Program.  This 2-hour class is just an introduction to the skills required to judge homebrews or commercial beers in organized competitions.  Passing the BJCP exam to be ranked as a beer judge takes a considerable amount of organized or independent study, should you decide to take this further. We’ll tell you more about the program. Meanwhile, if you are curious, you can read more here:

Want more options? Eventbrite is a great place to start. Know about 
a great event we missed? Leave it in the comments.

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