Summer fairs and festivals for East Bay families

East Bay street festival and fair schedule - Summer 2014

Here is a list of outdoor street fairs and festivals to pencil into your summer plans, following on the heels of the Family Fun Festival in Downtown Berkeley and Chocolate and Chalk in North Berkeley, both on May 31: June Saturday, June 7 Sand Castle & Sand Sculpture Contest 9 am to 1 pm Kidcentric […]

Taking the San Francisco Bay Ferry

Ferry from Jack London Square to San Francisco

This weekend, my family rode the ferry from Jack London Square to San Francisco, just for the thrill of it. My kids did not have much interest in our destination, San Francisco’s epicurean Ferry Building and adjacent farmer’s market, because it was terribly crowded. They couldn’t see anything, and they’re not inclined toward gourmet food. […]

Ticket Alert: Shrek the Musical

Shrek the Musical at Berkeley Playhouse this Summer

Don’t miss the Berkeley Playhouse production of Shrek the Musical at Julia Morgan Theatre this summer. This silly modern-day fairytale is the now-familiar story of a charming ogre who goes on a big adventure with his wise-cracking donkey BFF. Together, they fight a dragon and rescue a feisty princess (while making fart jokes). NEED LUNCH […]

Fat Shafts Archery in Benicia: Fun for nearly an hour

Fat Shafts Archery in Benicia, fun for girls or boys older than 8

If you’re an archery novice, like most of us, then about 30 – 45 minutes is all you’ll be able to handle of the bow and arrows before your arms get tired and you start to feel too whiny to persevere. My seven- and nine-year-old kids and I started wilting right around that point on […]

What to expect at the Lake Merritt Boating Center

Canoe on Lake Merritt

I lived next to Lake Merritt for two years and have lived in the East Bay for 16 since then, but this weekend was my first time taking in Oakland from the vantage point of being on the lake. We rented two canoes for my family of four and paddled against the wind for a […]

99 Days of Summer for Bay Area kids {2014}

A day-by-day guide to summer fun for kids in Oakland, Berkeley and other 510 cities

Never run out of family fun ideas with our 99 destinations for summer fun! We have one for each day between Memorial Day and Labor Day. Each day, choose another adventure! Whether you like to add them to your calendar right now (go on, we fact-checked*), bookmark this page for inspiration, or print it out and stick it […]

Maker Faire 2014 is this weekend in San Mateo

San Mateo Maker Faire

If you like to get your tools out and invent in a crafty, constructy, tinkery kind of way then you should head south for the 2014 Maker Faire. There are several excellent exhibits for curious kids (but to be completely honest, I usually wish I left them at home so I could enjoy my own playtime). […]

Half-day trip to Marin for woodsy hike + pancakes

Hike to West Point Inn for pancakes

Take a lazy hike in the woods and reward yourself for the (mild) exertion with a huge plate of pancakes. You’ve just discovered the secret recipe for the Marin’s West Point Inn.

Free day at Children’s Creativity Museum in San Francisco

Free event at Children's Creativity Museum in San Francisco

Tons of free activities are open to the public at the Children’s Creativity Museum in San Francisco on Saturday, May 3. Normally $11 per visitor over 2 years old, this is a great opportunity to experience this rich museum for kids. Some of the activities planned are: Direct your own stop-motion LEGO movie with Play-Well. Learn […]

{510} Family Faves with Hip Mama, Michelle Cruz Gonzales

{510} Family Faves: Michelle is a Hip Mama

I’m excited to bring you one more in our series project profiling contributors to Bay Area-based parenting magazines, Rad Dad & Hip Mama. Visit the respective websites to purchase and read everything from childcare swaps tips to sex-positive parenting. Michelle Cruz Gonzales is the sixth in our continuing series. Michelle teaches English/Creative Writing at Las Positas College; she was […]

Treebones Resort, kid-free vacation inspiration

Treebones Resort south of Big Sur, yurt glamping

For my birthday last year, I enjoyed the luxury of a few kid-free days driving down the coast with my husband. With only three days to be wild and free, we discovered Treebones Resort, a collection of deluxe yurts with ocean views and a killer restaurant somewhere south of Big Sur. With no in-unit toilets or […]

Profile: Adventure Playground

Berkeley's Adventure Playground

Kids can imagine, build, and decorate their own play structures with saws, hammers, nails, and paint. They earn the right to use these tools by collecting hazards like loose nails…

See you at Cal Day?

visting the bug doctor

There really is something for everyone as UC Berkeley, AKA Cal, opens its doors to the families of the East Bay for Cal Day. My husband and second grader have their eyes on auditing another physics class while my kindergartner and toddler want to run around the grounds making slime and looking for doggies and […]

{510} Family Faves with Hip Mama, Airial Clark

{510} Family Faves: Airial is a Hip Mama

We’re going strong on a very cool project profiling different contributors to two Bay Area-based parenting magazines, Rad Dad & Hip Mama. Visit the respective websites to purchase and read everything from sex-positive parenting tips to childcare swaps. This is the fifth in our continuing series. Today’s guest is Airial Clark, MA, a writer, storyteller and sexuality educator […]

Berkeley libraries provide free events all April long

Berkeley library Branch Out celebration is April 2014

As media sponsors of this program, we are thrilled to share the details with 510families readers. The Berkeley Public Library has been busy with remodels and renovations galore. Now it’s time to celebrate what a wonderful community resource we have. It’s a city-wide library-warming and everyone is invited! Donna Corbeil, Director of Library Services told […]

Ticket Alert: Monster Jam brings monster truck action to the Coliseum

Monster Trucks in Oakland, Coliseum

For one night only, monster trucks will battle it out in the ultimate event of intense speed, racing and destruction as Monster Jam® returns to the O.co Coliseum. Sixteen massive trucks will be part of the dirt-flying, car-crushin’ action, during which, similar to professional wrestling, spectators will cheer on their favorite aggressive “personalities”. Tickets for […]

Laid-back birthday party: Pizza and a movie

How to: Pizza and movie birthday party LEGO Movie!

For my son’s seventh birthday, EVERYTHING WAS AWESOME (insert the rest of that infectious song for those of us who have seen The LEGO Movie) because we paired the winning combination of pizza and a movie while avoiding all clean-up. The main coordination for this type of party is juggling showtimes and pizza restaurants for […]