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Featured Events:

Free Zoo Days for Children
FREE admission for all children age 14 and younger with adult paid admission
Every day (Jan 8-Jan 31)
Location: 1 Zoo Road, San Francisco Map

(0 January 2018) SFZoo_PenguinsFree.jpgWe wanted to kick off 2018 with something big, that’s why we are excited to celebrate the New Year with a very special gift to the entire Bay Area.

 

From January 8-31, we are pleased to be offering families FREE admission for all children age 14 and younger with adult paid admission.

 

For many children, meeting a giraffe, bear or lion is the highlight of their year and we can’t think of a better way to start 2018 than with a Zoo visit.

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December

Curious Contraptions
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Exploratorium
A temporary exhibition of the charming, often hilarious mechanical sculptures known as automata
Date: Every day (Nov 16-Jan 28) from 10:00am to 5:00pm
Ages: All
Special Instructions: Pier 15, which is on the Embarcadero at Green Street

(0 Nov 2017) Exloratorium_CuriousContraptions.jpgExplore small, surreal worlds at Curious Contraptions, a temporary exhibition of the charming, often hilarious mechanical sculptures known as automata. Like complex mechanical toys, these whimsical machines are brought to life by intricate arrangements of handmade cams, cranks, and other simple mechanisms.

 

Each sculpture performs an absurd miniature drama reflecting its maker's worldview and sense of humor. Take a look at their exposed inner workings and investigate the low-tech mechanisms that make these automata move.

 

This year, Curious Contraptions features the varied viewpoints of artists including Carlos Zapata, Paul Spooner, Keith Newstead, and Fi Henshall, plus artist residencies with Zapata, Hernán Lira, and Noga Elhassid.

 

TICKETS


Location: Pier 15, San Francisco Map
website San Franciscocreate a direct event link
iskate
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Chamber of Commerce Capitola-Soquel
Ice skate by the sea!!
Date: Every day (Dec 15-Jan 7)
Admission Fees: $10 with ice skate rentals available for $5, or bring your own

(0 Nov 2017) IceSkating.jpgiSKATE Capitola glides into California's oldest seaside resort town for three weeks of unique winter fun.

 

Trade your flip-flops for ice skates and enjoy a one-of-a-kind experience at Santa Cruz County's first eco-friendly, synthetic ice rink, located in Esplanade Park, in front of the stage and overlooking Capitola Beach and the Monterey Bay.

 

 


Location: Esplanade Park , Capitola Village Map
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Toy Trains 2017
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MAH and Golden State Toy Train Operators
Experience a mini-universe of model trains that delight the young and young at heart.
Date: Every day (Dec 15-Dec 31)
Ages: All Admission Fees: Free

11576814514_83f0111875_k

Experience a mini-universe of model trains that delight the young and young at heart.

Back for their 12th year, the Golden State Toy Train Operators, Inc. presents Toy Trains. Watch a massive standard gauge steam engine from the 1920s start up with the headlight flashing and drive wheels spinning. Marvel at smoke flowing from the smoke stack, and a mighty whistle. Members of the the Golden State Toy Train Operators will be on hand to help young engineers' master controls and to answer questions. You can even bring your own toy train and put it on the track!

Also enter the raffle to win a toy train! Raffle drawing will be on Saturday December 30th at 12:00 noon.

Holiday Hours: The Museum is closed on Christmas Day, and closes early at 3pm on Christmas Eve and New Years Eve.

December 15 - December 31


Location: 705 Front St, Santa Cruz Map
Phone: 831.429.1964 •website Santa Cruz create a direct event link
Holiday Book Drive
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Bookshop Santa Cruz
Give the gift of reading!
Date: Every day (Dec 1-Dec 31)

Special Instructions: June 1st through September 5th

Holiday Book Drive, Bookshop Santa Cruz, November 24th to December 25th.


The Santa Cruz Education Foundation is once again partnering with Book shop Santa Cruz to gather donations of book s for use in school libraries and classrooms throughout Santa Cruz City Schools. Donate books or buy a gift card to fulfill the wish lists of book s in highest demand carefully compiled by your school librarians. All book s purchased for the Holiday Book Drive will be offered at 20% off from November 24th through December 25th. Co-sponsored by The Santa Cruz Education Foundation, Good Times and the Santa Cruz Warriors.

 

Special Bonus! Donate from December 4th- December 10th to be entered into a raffle to win a Warriors fan pack including four tickets to an upcoming game!

For more information or to donate now, visit: http://www.bookshopsantacruz.com/hbd

 


Location: Pacific Av, Santa Cruz Map
website Santa Cruz create a direct event link
Reindeer at SF Zoo
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San Francisco Zoo
Come see the reindeer on loan from Santa
Date: Every Fri and Sa (Nov 18-Jan 1)

Special Instructions: Sloat Blvd at Great highway

(A Dec) Christmas_ZooReindeer2015.jpg

Santa is sending his favorite reindeer, "Belle", "Holly" and "Peppermint" to spread holiday cheer at San Francisco Zoo & Gardens!  Until January 1, majestic reindeer will be romping at SF Zoo's Playfield Lawn, near the spectacular Elinor Friend Playground.  We will have a Program Guide at the Reindeer from 11:30-4 daily.


Celebrate the holiday season by visiting the animals who help Santa deliver presents to all the children in the land.  Learn what they eat (besides carrots and cookies on Christmas Eve) and see what they look like up close and on the ground.  Reindeer and caribou are classified as the same genus and species - Rangifer tarandus.

Reindeer are domesticated caribou and the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species lists them as "vulnerable" after a 40% decline in population over the last 20-30 years.  Reindeer are highly adapted to their life in cold climates as they have two thick layers of fur to keep them warm and what are called "turbinate" bones in their nose, which helps warm cold air before it enters their lungs. 

They also have specially designed hooves which provide extra traction on the wet, spongy tundra during the spring; in the winter the footpads shrink and tighten, exposing the rim of the hoof which cuts into the ice and snow for a surer grip.  They are used by many circumpolar cultures for their meat, hide, milk and antlers.

 

 


Location: 1 Zoo Road, San Francisco Map
Phone: (415) 753-7080 •website San Franciscocreate a direct event link
Holiday Ice Skating
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Beach Boardwalk
Ice skate by the beach, on real ice!
Date: Every day (Nov 11-Jan 7)
Admission Fees: Each 1-hour session includes ice skate rental. $12

Boardwalk Holiday Ice
Presented by Dignity Health Medical Network

November 11, 2017- January 7, 2018

Celebrate this holiday season with a new family tradition - ice skating at the Boardwalk!

Festivities Include:

  • Ice Skating by the Beach - on Real Ice!
  • Holiday Lights and Decorations
  • Boardwalk Rides* & Games
  • Indoor Arcades, Mini Golf, and Laser Tag
  • Classic Holiday Movies

Schedule

November 11 - December 24, 2017, and January 2 - 7, 2018

Fridays-Sundays: 12pm-9pm

Mondays-Thursdays: 4pm-9pm

December 25, 2017 - January 1, 2018

12pm-9pm

Ice Skating

Our new 40' x 60' covered ice skating rink is open rain or shine!

Each 1-hour session includes ice skate rental.

$12

photo of ice skating

Reserve your ice skating session before you arrive!

(Online reservations coming in November)

 

*Please call (831) 423-5590 the day of your visit to confirm which rides and games are open.

 


Location: 400 Beach St, Santa Cruz Map
website Santa Cruz create a direct event link
Fantasy of Lights
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County of Santa Clara Parks
Magical wonderland of thousands of colorful twinkling lights, exciting, animated displays and favorite holiday music
Date: Every day (Nov 1-Dec 30) from 6:00pm to 10:00pm
Admission Fees: Tickets available NOW!
Special Instructions: OPEN DECEMBER 2-30

Fantasy of Lights is a spectacular 1.5 mile Drive-thru extravaganza of Holiday Lights and Displays for the entire family.

Enjoy a magical evening in the warmth of your vehicle as you drive through large animated
displays while listening to Holiday music on your car radio. See the sights and sounds of
an erupting volcano in the dangerously fun Dinosaur Den, cheer on Santa shooting hoops,
wave at a pen of playful penguins, watch blazing Pirate Cannons and sail through tunnels
of moving lights. Over 50 themed displays and a 90-foot twinkling tree will have you
"oohing and aahing" throughout your adventure.

 

(0 Nov 2017) Christmas_FantasyWalk.jpg Saturday December 2 and Sunday December 3 ONLY!  4:00 pm - 9:00 pm, ADMISSION WITH PRE-PAID TICKETS ONLY! -- ON SALE NOVEMBER 1!


  • $10 - adult (13 & up)
  • $5 - child (4 thru 12)
  • FREE - 3 years old or younger

(0 Nov 2017) Christmas_FantasyDrive.jpgTuesday, December 5 - Saturday, December 30, 2017 - 6:00pm - 10:00pm, (Closed December 25), ADMISSION WITH PRE-PAID TICKETS ONLY! -- ON SALE NOVEMBER 1! --

 


  • $20 - PER VEHICLE (up to 12 people)
  • $50 - oversize vehicles (capacity 13+)

IMPORTANT NOTE!
There is NO event parking at Vasona County Park! Free parking & shuttle available at NETFLIX, 121 Albright Way. We HIGHLY encourage ridesharing with LYFT or UBER.  Please respect our neighbors! Event cancelled ONLY with heavy rains or unsafe conditions.


Location: Vasona Lake County Park, 333 Blossom Hill Dr, Los Gatos Map
Phone: (408) 355-2201 •website Los Gatos create a direct event link
Farley's Christmas Wonderland
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Farley's Christmas Wonderland
Visit an elaborate Christmas-themed oasis
Date: Every day (Nov 23-Dec 31) from 5:45pm to 9:00pm
Admission Fees: Donations accepted

Farley's Christmas Wonderland

untitled-design-37Tucked away in Seabright is a one-of-a-kind local neighborhood attraction: Farley's Christmas Wonderland.

 

Pat Farley, a local Seabright resident, creates an elaborate Christmas-themed oasis each year in his front yard and opens it up for the public to walk through and view.

 

If you're looking for a uniquely local Christmas experience to share with family then consider stopping by Farley's Christmas Wonderland.

 

Visit the Farley's Christmas Wonderland website or Facebook page for more information.

 


Location: 108 Seaview Ave., Aptos Map
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Write A Letter to Those Who Serve
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Libraries - All
It's easy to participate and your letter and/or artwork will make some one very happy. Kids are especially encouraged to write.
Date: Every day (Nov 15-Dec 31)


(0 Nov 2017) Library_VeteranLetter.jpgOperation Gratitude sends 200,000+ Care Packages each year to Deployed Troops, Veterans, New Recruits & First Responders. Of all the items included in these packages, the most cherished are the personal letters of appreciation! That's why we're partnering with Operation Gratitude on a letter writing campaign at all of our libraries.

 

We'll have pens, pencils, paper, and inspiration available at all branch libraries and at the Veterans Information Center at the Downtown Library. We will begin gathering letters from our branches starting now and continuing through the New Year. We will mail one giant box with our letters to Operation Gratitude!

 

It's easy to participate and your letter and/or artwork will make some one very happy. Kids are especially encouraged to write.


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Cabinet of Curiosities Exhibition
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San Lorenzo Valley Museum
An exhibition of the strange, weird, unusual, fantastic, and FUN objects we collect in our life's adventures.
Date: Every Su, Wed, Th, Fri and Sa (Dec 15-Jan 28) from 12:00pm to 4:00pm
Ages: All ages Admission Fees: Free

(0 Dec 2017) slvmus_CabinetCuriosities.jpgCabinet of Curiosities Exhibition

An exhibition of the strange, weird, unusual, fantastic, and FUN objects we collect in our life's adventures.

Have something unusual to share - what have you collected on your life's adventures? Something from a relative, bought on a trip, found in the yard, made at work - let us make this the most unusual collection of exhibited items - younger, older, and in-between-er's are encouraged to share their treasured possessions.

 

Contact slvmcollections@sbcglobal.net.

Opening Reception December 16, 2-4pm

This special holiday exhibition will be on display from Friday December 15 through January 28, 2018.


Location: 12547 Highway 9, Boulder Creek Map
Phone: (831) 338-8382 •website Boulder Creek create a direct event link
Norrie's Gift Shop Open House
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Arboretum
A collection of holiday gifts, plants, and handmade treasures you won't find anywhere else!
Date: Every day (Dec 2-Dec 31) from 10:00am to 4:00pm

Special Instructions: OPEN HOUSE DECEMBER 2

(0 Nov 2017) Norries2017.jpgNestled upon a hill in the UC Santa Cruz Arboretum lies Norrie's Gift and Garden Shop. Only here can you find a stunning array of handmade wreaths, ornaments, centerpieces, succulent pumpkin planters, dish gardens, candles, and more, that draw upon the Arboretum's rare and extraordinary collection of natural materials.

 

This shop also curates a collection of books, jewelry, toys, scarves, logo apparel and accessories that have drawn accolades from local press to Sunset Magazine..

 

Join in the festivities: tastings and displays by local vendors and artists. Sample cider, hot chocolate and homemade cookies along with abundant holiday cheer.

 

Members enjoy a 10% DISCOUNT. Memberships and Gift Certificates can be purchased as well.

 

Norrie's Gift and Garden Shop is run entirely by volunteers. The UC Santa Cruz Arboretum is a 50-year-old treasure and beloved destination for the central coast and local community. All profits support the Arboretum's conservation, education, research and horticulture programs.

 


Location: 1156 High St, Santa Cruz Map
Phone: 831.427.2998 •website Santa Cruz create a direct event link
Coastal Art & Poetry Exhibition
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Seymour Marine Discovery Center (at Long Marine Lab)
A Special Family Friendly Science Sunday
Date: Every Su, Tues, Th, Fri and Sa (Dec 1-Jan 31) from 10:00am to 5:00pm
Ages: all ages Admission Fees: $6-$8

COASTAL ART & POETRY CONTEST WINNING ENTRIES

December 2017 - January 2018

 December 2017 - January 2018

The Seymour Center is happy to display winning entries from the 2017 Coastal Commission's Coastal Art & Poetry Contest.

 

This beautiful art and poetry features a California coastal or California marine theme, all done by K-12 students from across the state.

 

Show these students your support for their creations!

 

Holiday Closures
Sunday, December 24
Monday, December 25
Sunday, December 31
Monday, January 1, 2018


Location: 100 McAllister Way, Santa Cruz Map
Phone: (831) 459-3800 •website Santa Cruz West Sidecreate a direct event link
Santa Cruz Gives
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Santa Cruz Gives
Date: Every day (Dec 11-Dec 31)


(0 Nov 2017) SantaCruzGives.jpgWe vetted and selected 33 valuable local nonprofits and created a platform to make it easy for you to browse, donate at SantaCruzGives.org and help make our community an even better place to live. Donations accepted at SantaCruzGives.org through December 31, 2017.

If you have walked on a clean beach, enjoyed a park, attended an arts event, music event, adopted a pet, received health care services, or enrolled a child in an activity-you have encountered the good work of numerous local nonprofits.

Often the benefits are not visible-when the work prevents or mitigates negative impacts. One thing is certain: Our community would be far less desirable without the dedication of these groups, driven by nothing more than a desire to improve our collective circumstances.

Join in and do some good for the holidays!


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FIRST NIGHT MONTEREY
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First Night Monterey
Dance, play, act, perform, create and sing our way into 2018!
Date: Every day (Dec 17-Jan 1) from 3:00pm to 12:01am
Admission Fees: $0 - $20

Welcome to our FNM 2018 website, celebrating 25 years! Planning is being finalized and we will keep you updated with changes as they occur. Watch for a complete listing of performers, coming later this month (you can see a sneak peek here). 80% of the performances are indoors and an FNM Button is your ticket to those performances. 

 

Kids' Night Out! The First Act for the Young and Young-at-Heart

The most creative New Year's Eve you will have with your family!

Kids' Night Out! The First Act for the Young and Young-at-Heart

First Night is Monterey's most exciting, imaginative and uplifting cultural event. FNM is an affordable, alcohol-free family celebration of the arts on New Year's Eve from the 3 pm Opening Ceremony to the Countdown to Midnight; our theme for FNM 2018 celebrates "25 Years of Magic". The many performances range from Classical to Hip-Hop, Jazz to Reggae, dance and artwork.

(0 Dec 2017) FNM_2018YouthButton_300x200.jpg (0 Dec 2017) FNM_Parade1.jpg (0 Dec 2017) FNM_2018AdultButton_300x200.jpg

The most creative New Year's Eve you will have with your family!

Kids' Night Out (5 and under free) features music & art activities for the younger set, culminating with the Costume Contest & Twilight Procession at 5:30 pm.

 

At 3:00 p.m. kick-off at Colton Lawn on Pacific Street, culminating with the Twilight Parade at 5:30 p.m on Alvarado Street serving as the kids' Finale. Music, song, drumming, dance, ballet, face art, art creating, hat making and more! Check out the Colton Lawn on Pacific Street, the Monterey Art Museum and the Work Building on Alvarado Street for activities to complete artful time.

 

Make sure to have your FNM button - admission to all the fun for the over-5 set! Please refer to the afternoon and evening grids to plan your New Year's Eve and participate in all the fun! Thanks to First Five Monterey County for their support of the free kids' activities.


Location: Historic Downtown, Alvarez St, Monterey Map
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Strike Out Hunger
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Boardwalk Bowl
Can of food for a free game
Date: Every day (Nov 1-Dec 31)


(0 Nov 2017) BoardwalkBowl.jpgYou can help #StrikeOutHunger and bowl for FREE!  Bring a can of food to the Boardwalk Bowl, now through December 31st, and bowl a game on us.  Food for the needy...free bowling for you! All donations go to the Second Harvest Food Bank Santa Cruz

 

Bring a can of food, and bowl a game for FREE!
All food donations go to Second Harvest Food Bank of Santa Cruz County to help feed local families. Last year, we collected over 10,810 cans or over five tons of food!

 

For a $100 cash donation to Second Harvest, we're giving away 25 FREE BOWLING passes for use at the Boardwalk Bowl on future visits.

 

Boardwalk Bowl League Players who bring in 3 cans of unexpired food during league play receive 3 FREE BOWLING passes for a future visit.

 


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Ice Skating at Circle of Palms
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San Jose Downtown
Skaters never tire of circling, twirling and gliding beneath 32 palms that stand majestic by day and twinkle by night
Date: Every day (Nov 17-Jan 29)
Admission Fees: 15 10-under $17 11-older $10 bring your own skates

Downtown Ice is not only located in a spectacular setting - the Circle of Palms between the Fairmont Hotel and San Jose Museum of Art. Basking in the glow of the iconic, only-in-San Jose ice rink are partners Hawaiian Airlines and Olympic figure skating champion Kristi Yamaguchi, who bring the aloha spirit and a lot of pizzazz to the rink

 

Our goal is to take care of all customers and make this ice rink the best skating experience anywhere.

 

If you've never been to the ice rink, here's what to expect, a step-by-step guide to ensure a cool Downtown Ice experience.

 

Downtown Ice is part of San Jose's Downtown for the Holidays traditions

 

Downtown Ice is located in the core of the South Bay's leading winter attractions and family friendly activities, which include the traditional Christmas in the Park and Winter Wonderland. Park once and make a day of it in downtown San Jose: dine, dance, laugh, and enjoy the spirit of the season swirling about you.

 

Parking is affordable and easy. Find $5 flat-rate parking after 6 p.m., seven nights a week in city-owned lots and garages. After 6 p.m. and all day Saturday, receive validation from a participating business and park the rest of the night for FREE in city-owned garages. Visit sjdowntownparking.com for more information.

 

November 17 - 18
Friday: 5 p.m. - midnight
Saturday: Noon - midnight

November 19 - 25
(Thanksgiving Week)
Sunday: Noon - 9 p.m.
Monday - Tuesday: 5 - 9 p.m.
Wednesday: 2 p.m. - midnight
Thursday/Thanksgiving: 2 p.m. - midnight
Friday - Saturday: 11 a.m. - midnight


See website for January schedule


Location: 120 S. Market St., San Jose Map
Phone: (408) 610-4055 •website San Josecreate a direct event link
Holiday Movies
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Beach Boardwalk
Free Christmas and Hanukkah movies
Date: Every day (Dec 14-Jan 7)
Admission Fees: Free

Classic holiday movies

Through Jan. 7, 2018 - 6pm-9pm at the Neptune's Stage (near the Pirate Ship) 

On outdoor screen near Ice Rink (More on skating here).

 

Admission free!

 

From Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk:

"Share the tradition of these nostalgic short films.

  • A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965)
  • Frosty the Snowman (2000)
  • Rudolf the Red-Nosed Reindeer (1964)
  • How the Grinch Stole Christmas (1966)

"Thursday, Dec 14 watch Maccabees: The Story of Hanukkah will rotate 6pm-9pm."

 

Schedule

November 11 - December 24, 2017, and January 2 - 7, 2018

Fridays-Sundays: 12pm-9pm**

Mondays-Thursdays: 4pm-9pm

December 25, 2017 - January 1, 2018

12pm-9pm**


Location: Near Ice Rink, 400 Beach St, Santa Cruz Map
Phone: (831) 423-5590 •website Santa Cruz create a direct event link
The quilts are back!
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Pacific Grove Museum of Natural History
Beautiful quilts on exhibit!
Date: Every day (Dec 11-Apr 15)
Admission Fees: Free - $5

(0 Dec 2017) Quilt-Flowers.jpgThe quilts are back!
The Museum has partnered with the Monterey Peninsula Quilters Guild for a new temporary exhibit, "Wildflowers Through a Quilter's Eyes," beginning with an opening reception on Monday, December 11th, from 6-8 p.m. This temporary exhibit will be on display through mid-April.


http://www.pgmuseum.org/.../wildflowers-through-a-quilters-ey...


Pictured are quilts from last year's reception.
#Quilts #Quilters #Monterey #PacificGrove

 


Location: 165 Forest Ave, Pacific Grove Map
Phone: 831-648-5716 •website Pacific Grovecreate a direct event link
Elephant Seal Walks
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State Park Ano Nuevo
3 mile hike over sand and sloping terrain to see thousands of elephant seals, including newborn pups, their mothers, and bulls
Date: Every day (Oct 20-Mar 31)
Ages: All: (Lots of walking) Admission Fees: Guided $7; Self-guided free
Special Instructions: Dec 15 - Mar 31

Explore Año Nuevo with a Docent Naturalist

gudied walks

Guided Elephant Seal Walks

Ticket sales open Friday, October 20

Cost: $7 per person + $3.99 reservation fee

www.parks.ca.gov/anonuevo

Journey to view a large colony of Northern elephant seals, guided by your docent naturalist on this moderate 3-mile, 2.5 hour adventure. In the month of December, male elephant seals, or bulls, arrive along the shore of Año Nuevo State Park to establish hierarchy, while pregnant females come ashore to birth to their pups.

 

These popular guided walks take place rain or shine, so be prepared for windy, rainy conditions as well as muddy trails. Layered clothing, sturdy shoes, and rain gear is strongly advised. Umbrellas and strollers are not permitted. Pets are not allowed in the park. Parking is $10. For more information, please call (650) 879-2025 or for recorded information (650) 879-0227.

 

People with accessibility needs may reserve an equal access tour along the boardwalk.

These tours take place on Fridays, weekends, and select holidays. For reservations and info call ReserveCalifornia at 1-800-444-4445. Events made possible by Coastside State Parks Association and California State Parks.

 

Self-Guided Seal Walks

Daily, between 8:30am and 3:30pm (Natural Preserve closes at 5pm)

Stroll over sand dunes, enjoy beautiful ocean views, and gain a unique opportunity to view a large colony of Northern elephant seals on this 3-mile, 2.5-hour self-guided trail! Visit the female elephant seals as they return to shore to molt, or shed their fur, in this annual excursion.  Additionally, young pups are still ashore from the winter breeding season. Layered clothing, closed-toes shoes, and rain/wind gear are strongly advised. Umbrellas and strollers are not permitted inside the dune area. Pets are not allowed in the park. Walk is free; day-use vehicle fee is $10. Entrance to the reserve for your self-guided walk requires a free permit that can be obtained at the entrance station, or the Visitor Center. Please contact the park at 650-879-2025 for further information.

 

If you require mobility assistance, you may request a volunteer-led equal access tour. You will board our accessible van and get a ride to our wheelchair-accessible boardwalk. A volunteer(s) will accompany you to the two seal-viewing decks, explain the Northern elephant seal natural history, the history of the park, and answer questions. Reservations are required. Please, allow a 2-week advance notice. The volunteer led tour is free, day-use vehicle fee is $10. Contact the park at 650-879-2033 or email Ano.EqualAccess@parks.ca.gov. Events made possible by Coastside State Parks Association and California State Parks.


Location: Hwy 1, Pescadero Map
Phone: (650) 879-2025 •website Pescadero create a direct event link
Tour the Pacific Migrations Center
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State Park New Brighton
Self-guided tour highlights history of Pacific Rim migrations
Date: Every Su, Tues, Wed, Th, Fri and Sa from 10:00am to 4:00pm
Ages: 7-12

 Tour the Pacific Migrations Visitor Center at New Brighton State Beach

Come explore the Pacific Migrations Visitor Center at New Brighton State Beach. This free mini-museum highlights the history of Pacific Rim migrations and how they have influenced the Monterey Bay area. 

The exhibits explore the contributions of Chinese fishers, who established fishing camps on the Monterey Bay coastline beginning in the 1850s. Fishers dried and shipped most of their catch to markets up and down the coast, as well as across the Pacific. Chinese fish merchants also sold their fresh catch in local towns. China Beach, as New Brighton was known at the time, lasted until the mid-1880s. 

The center, which is supported by Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks, is open 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesdays to Sundays. It also includes a ParkStore, offering nature and history-themed merchandise for sale. All proceeds benefit local parks and beaches.

Self-guided tours of the Pacific Migrations Visitor Center are free. Docent-led tours are available for groups. Contact Jean Bernard at the Visitor Center, 831-464-5620, to schedule. Parking at New Brighton State Beach is $10 and supports the park. New Brighton State Beach is located at 1500 Park Ave. in Capitola


Location: 1500 Park Ave, Capitola Map
website Capitola create a direct event link
Free First Friday
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Santa Cruz Museum of Natural History
Enjoy our intertidal touch pool, large-screen microscope, and geology exhibit and "dig pit".
Date: Every day from 11:00am to 4:00pm
Ages: All ages Admission Fees: FREE

FREE First Friday 11am-4pm. Enjoy the Museum for FREE with your family on the first Friday of every month. Enjoy our intertidal touch pool, large-screen microscope, and geology exhibit and "dig pit". Santa Cruz Natural History Museum. 1305 East Cliff Dr, Santa Cruz. 420-6115


Location: East Cliff Drive, Santa Cruz Map
Phone: (831) 420-6115 •website Santa Cruz create a direct event link
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