Celebrate Tina Turner, Tomatoes, and More Fun Things to Do in San Francisco This Weekend

Catch the tail end of Tomato Week for some unique tomato-focused dishes.

Summer in San Francisco is unlike summer anywhere else in the country in that while everyone else is wearing T-shirts and sandals, we’re still heavily reliant on hoodies and jackets to keep us warm. After all, just because Mark Twain probably never said, “The coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Francisco,” doesn’t mean it’s not true. Still, mild-to-freezing temps are never going to keep us from visiting amazing new restaurants, grabbing a drink with friends, going on a date, discovering beautiful hikes, or even braving the beach. Plus, if you want sunshine and heat, all you have to do is cross a bridge! And while you probably have your list of favorite things to do, just in case you’re looking to spice things up, here are a bunch of fun ideas to keep your weekend lively.

Food & Drink in San Francisco

Friday, August 11–Sunday, August 13
Fisherman’s Wharf, Nob Hill, Union Square, Prices vary
Celebrate the Cable Car’s 150th anniversary by going on a classic San Francisco bar crawl that visits some of SF’s most legendary businesses, all of which you can reach by cable car. Stops include Scoma’s, Buena Vista Cafe, the Tonga Room, and Clock Bar at the Westin St. Francis. Each location will have a special Cable Car Cocktail, and if you tag Buena Vista on IG and show your stamped cable car ticket, you’ll get their famous Irish Coffee on the house. Get all the info, and enter to win some fantastic prizes at SF Travel. The Cable Car Crawl runs through October 30 (though, in theory, you could do it whenever you’d like).

Friday, August 11–Sunday, August 13
50+ SF restaurants, Prices vary
Everyone knows the best tomatoes are late summer tomatoes, and the Golden Gate Restaurant Association is highlighting that fact with a summer promo that’s all about the delicious fruit (that’s considered a vegetable). Restaurants will offer special tomato-focused dishes, so it’s the perfect excuse to discover somewhere new or revisit an old favorite.

Festivals in San Francisco

Friday, August 11–Sunday, August 13
Golden Gate Park, Prices vary
Outside Lands returns to Golden Gate Park for three days of music, food, cocktails, and fun. By now, you know the deal—the headliners are Kendrick Lamar, Foo Fighters, and Odesza, and the food and drink program promises to deliver, as usual. The good news is that if you haven’t grabbed your tickets yet, there’s still are still a limited number available on the official site, plus a bunch on StubHub. Want to have the best experience possible? Check out our guide.

Saturday, August 12
Fort Point National Historic Site, Free
Experience the 160-year-old Civil War-era fort as it used to be, complete with infantry and cannon drills, a brass band, examples of 1800s medicine and photography, and a reenactment of the daily life of soldiers and civilians of the era.

Arts & Entertainment in San Francisco

Friday, August 11–Sunday, August 13
Golden Gate Theatre, $66.50 and up
Perhaps one of the best jukebox musicals to ever hit the stage (and not just because of her death this past May), this stunning production is a must-see for anyone who has sung along to one of the Queen of Rock ’n’ Roll iconic hits. Of course, you’ll hear all of them in this performance that follows the often-times heartbreaking story about Tina Turner’s unlikely and inspiring rise to fame, marriage to Ike, and the comeback of all comebacks. Prepare to be blown away by the 10-year-old upcoming star, Ayvah Johnson, who plays young Tina (Anna Mae Bullock), as well as the dazzling stage effects and electrifying music. This musical may be almost three hours long, but it flies by, leaving you wanting more, or at least to go home and blast “We Don’t Need Another Hero” (and all of her greatest hits) in your living room. Runs through August 27.

Friday, August 11–Sunday, August 13
Davies Symphony Hall, Civic Center, $68.50 and up
Watch the fifth installment of the Harry Potter film series in a brand new and utterly magical way—on a giant screen with the live accompaniment of the SF Symphony. You’ll learn to despise Professor Umbridge in a whole new way.

Friday, August 11–Saturday, August 12
Great American Music Hall, Tenderloin, $29 and up
The “Church of Bowie” has been holding yearly Bowie bashes since 2012 and will do so for two days this weekend. Watch the talented musicians of The First Church of the Sacred Silversexual take the stage accompanied by sparkly drag and burlesque performers to perform The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars (Fri) and Aladdin Sane (Sat) front-to-back, with an encore set that draws from the greatest hits and b-sides

Sunday, August 13
Club Fugazi, North Beach, $75 to $85
Donna Sachet presents this theatrical performance that takes you through the world of SF drag, which sounds amazing enough, but then add in the fact that it comes with brunch from award-winning chef Tony Gemignani of Tony’s Pizza, and what else would you want to do on a Sunday? If you can’t make it this Sunday, take heart knowing more shows are scheduled this month.

Saturday, August 12
Stage Werx Theatre, Mission, $25 and up
Even if you don’t like improv, you may enjoy this one if only because of the way it works: A comedian takes five shots of whiskey in a row and then tries to perform an improvised play with five sober comedians. So even if it’s bad, it’ll be good.

Saturday, August 12
The Midway, Bayview, $15 and up
“Good times, good vibes, and great music” are promised at this daytime party, where DJs will be spinning hip hop, R&B, Afrobeats, and “International Vibes.” The perfect alternative if you didn’t snag Saturday tickets for Outside Lands! Food and drink are available for purchase separately.

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Daisy Barringer is an SF-based freelance writer who is taking advantage of these strange times by exploring San Francisco on foot. Follow her on Instagram to see where she goes next.