I love being home for the holidays. Being back in the Bay means walking my favorite trails, shopping downtown and catching up with old friends. I have many traditions around the holidays with my family and friends. My favorite tradition is meeting up with my friends from high school at our favorite café to grab some warm drinks and walk along Ocean Beach. Spending time with family and friends is a huge part of the holiday season. This year we hope you include the Bay in some of your holiday traditions. These are some of our favorite ways to celebrate the holidays on the Bay in style.
Spend time outside. Celebrate the winter solstice on Wednesday, Dec. 21 by stretching your legs and spending time outdoors. Enjoy a Bay view from the nearly 350 miles of the San Francisco Bay Trail or challenge your friends to hike to the top of Mission Peak in Fremont. Your legs will be burning but you’ll have a beautiful view of the Bay to enjoy while you catch your breath.
See the Bay Lights. Everyone loves to admire the neighborhood Christmas lights, but this year take it a step further and enjoy the beautiful Bay Lights on the Bay Bridge. Grab a cup of hot cocoa and stroll along the Embarcadero to enjoy the amazing view of the lights over the Bay.
River Otter Snow Day. We may not get snow days in the Bay Area but the river otters at the Aquarium by the Bay in San Francisco are getting a fresh snow day every Wednesday this month. Both kids and adults love to watch the cute otters as they slip and slide around in the snow. See the otters play in fresh snow every Wednesday from Dec. 7 to Dec. 28.
Lighted Boat Parade. The lighted boat parade is an annual tradition put on by the Fisherman’s Warf Community Benefit District and the St. Francis Yacht Club. It started in 1994 and is the oldest and largest lighted holiday boat parade on San Francisco Bay. The best viewing spots are at Aquatic Park, Pier 39, Marina Green and Crissy Field in San Francisco. The parade takes place from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 16.
Water sleigh ride on Lake Merritt. Enjoy a festive light-filled cruise around Lake Merritt in Oakland, complete with caroling and hot cider. Water sleigh rides will start at 6 p.m. on Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, from Friday, Dec. 2 to Friday, Dec 23. Rides are $6 per person.
I hope you all get a chance to enjoy the Bay this holiday season and remember to take public transportation or carpool in an effort to help reduce the amount of pollution that flows into our Bay. Happy Holidays!
The first-ever Bay Day celebration is fast approaching! To help you get ready for the big day I’ve created the 5 Ws of Bay Day! These 5Ws consist of what, why, when, who, and where. Basically, everything under the sun you’ll need to know in order to have an awesome Bay Day on Saturday, Oct. 1!
What is Bay Day?
Bay Day is an annual celebration of San Francisco Bay. It’s like Earth Day but for the Bay! Cities all around the Bay have officially declared Bay Day, and many community partners and local businesses are hosting celebrations, leading special Bay-themed programs, and offering discounts for the public.
Why are we celebrating it?
The Bay is home to not only a growing population but also to hundreds of different species of birds, fish and mammals. It is the largest and most ecologically important estuary on the West Coast, providing habitat for migrating shorebirds and larger mammals like porpoises and sea lions. When we take one day each year to celebrate this amazing natural resource, the movement to preserve and protect it for future generations grows stronger.
When is Bay Day?
Saturday, October 1, 2016. All day!
Who’s invited to celebrate Bay Day?
Everyone in and around the Bay Area is welcome to participate in Bay Day events and share their love for the Bay.
Where will Bay Day celebrations be held?
From Oktoberfest at the Napa Valley Museum to Port Fest in Redwood City the activities stretch across the entire Bay Area. Click on the links below to learn more about some of the Bay Day activities happening around the Bay Area on Oct. 1.
The first-ever Bay Day is indeed turning out to be much more than an ordinary Saturday in October.
The extraordinary support we’ve seen for Bay Day has come from every corner of the Bay Area. This amazing expression of Bay pride would not have happened without the many Bay Area cities, community organizations, and small businesses that have all come together for San Francisco Bay.
It now serves as a culmination of community effort and support for the place we call home.
We’re so thankful to cities and local leaders who have answered our call to officially declare Bay Day in their communities, and to the Association of Bay Area Governments that helped us rally support across the Bay Area. Here’s the list of cities that are on board so far — and we expect many more to join the Bay Day bandwagon in 2017!
*Formal action pending
Interactive Bay Day declaration map provided by the Association of Bay Area Governments (ABAG): http://abag.ca.gov/bayday/cities.html