San Jose

Weekend Picks: San Francisco Great Dickens Christmas Fair, San Jose Hands-on History Day, Berkeley Rumba Party and Sacramento Kings Kids Club Day

November 16, 2017

Prepare for a weekend full of festivities along the Capitol Corridor! Delight in the Christmas spirit at the Dickens Fair in San Francisco, celebrate San Jose’s 240th birthday, dance the afternoon away at a Rumba Party in Berkeley, or ice skate with the Sacramento Kings Kids Club. There is so much fun to be had all weekend long!

Great Dickens Christmas Fair: 11/18-12/17, San Francisco

What better way to get in the spirit of Christmas than spending the day at the Great Dickens Christmas Fair at the Cow Palace in San Francisco. Beginning this Saturday, and continuing every weekend until December 17, immerse yourself in a holiday experience unlike any other! Victorian characters, from waltzing royals to scrappy chimney-sweeps, will populate over three acres of twilight-lit shops, pubs, stages, and dance halls. This year offers an expansive new children’s area, juried crafts, family-friendly shows, thrilling melodramas, and sprightly dance performances all day from 10am to 7pm. For more adult-oriented entertainment, cheer on the can-can dancers and explore the bawdy Mad Sal’s Music Hall Review. Meet Old Father Christmas, ride on a hand-powered Adventure Carousel, cheer the Toy Parade, laugh at the antics of an authentic British Punch & Judy puppet show, and get a head start on holiday shopping at over 100 gift shops.

Getting there: Depending on your station of origin, take the train to the Richmond Station or Oakland Coliseum Station. From here you can connect to BART for service to the Glen Park station and ride the free shuttle provided by the fair. You can also take public transit to Balboa Park and transfer to the 8X Muni bus. Discount BART tickets and Muni tokens are available for purchase in the Café Car.

Hands-on History Day: 11/18, San Jose

Celebrate San Jose’s 240th Birthday at the historic Peralta Adobe-Fallon House this Saturday for Hands-on History Day. From 11am to 4pm, activities for the whole family will span bull roping, leather bracelet and cornhusk doll crafting, adobe brick making, and the opportunity to dress in period costumes! Take a tour of the Victorian-era Fallon House and play birthday games in the parlor, meet descendants of the Pueblo de San José de Guadalupe founders, and watch performances from the Los Lupeños de San José dancers. Activity tickets cost $1, and the Fallon House tour is $5 per person.

Getting there: Take the train to the San Jose-Diridon Station. The historic house is walking distance from the station and also accessible by the VTA with a free Transit Transfer from the Capitol Corridor.

Rumba Party: 11/19, Berkeley

Enjoy the traditions of Afro-Cuban folkloric music at the Rumba Party in Berkeley. Between 3pm and 5pm on Sunday, La Peña Cultural Center will host live Afro-Cuban folkloric drummers, dancers, and singers performing community-oriented, music and dance styles of Cuba. Developed in rural Cuba, rumba has strong influences from African drumming and Spanish poetry and singing. The Rumba Party has been a community staple at the center for more than 12 years and meets the 1st and 3rd Sunday of each month. The event is free, but donations are welcome to help support the cultural center.

Getting there: Take the train to the Berkeley Station, and connect to downtown Berkeley on AC Transit with a free Transit Transfer. Or, take the train to the Richmond Station or Oakland Coliseum Station, connect to BART, and get off at the Ashby station, which is just a short walk to La Peña Cultural Center.

Kings Kids Club Day: 11/18, Sacramento

Take you little Kings fans out to skate the ice with the Sacramento Kings Kids Club event this Saturday. Taking place at the Downtown Sacramento Ice Rink from 10am to 2pm, Kings fans will have the opportunity to skate with Slamson and meet with the Sacramento Kings Dancers and their Street Team for photos and autographs. Joining the Kids Club is free and those at the event could go home with some free Kings gear!

Getting there: Take the train to the Sacramento Station and the ice rink is a five- minute walk from the station.

Written by Sylvia Sheehan
Photo Karl Mondon/Bay Area News Group