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Dope Stuff to Do in the Bay This Weekend: Kites, Beer, Wheels, Porch Bands

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It’s going to be gloriously warm and beautiful weekend in the Bay Area, depending on where you are. If you’re in Berkeley or Oakland, you’ll be sitting pretty with California-perfect 80s, but if you’re anywhere near Concord, you’ll be running for the AC as temperatures tip into three digits.

Whether you need to find your way into the outside wonder to celebrate all that is summer, or you need to find a chill spot filled with subzero circulated air, there are plenty of options to choose from all over the Bay.

Go fly a kite!

The 2019 Berkeley Kite Festival and Championships is popping off Saturday and Sunday down at the Berkeley Marina. The event is free for all who want to catch a glimpse of soaring dragons and sparkly butterflies for two days “where the earth, wind, and sky combine” in a festival of color and competition. Bring a picnic and the fam to get in on free kite making and flying lessons. There’ll be a kids zone packed with pony rides, face painting and bounce rides. Taiko drummers will set the mood as the masters battle up in the air above. To cut back on transportation and parking stress, a free shuttle is being offered from Golden Gate Fields.

Flying kites. Photo by Rashid Khreiss on Unsplash.

If you’ve never been, it’s definitely worth checking out. Details and a full schedule of events can be found here.

Drink up!

Hop Grenade in Concord is celebrating five wonderful, brew-guzzling years at Todos Santos Plaza. Head down to the square Sunday between 11:30 a.m. and 11 p.m. to taste two special anniversary brews partnered with Fieldwork Brewing Company and the Rare Barrel. Another Firestone pale ale special concoction will help you beat the sweltering heat without too much of that IPA punch. Hop Grenade is an awesome little tap house with strong variety game that sits at the edge of a park and shares a sidewalk space with EJ Phair next door. It’s a block designed with thirsty, hot adults in mind.

Pro tip: Order the Rubenesque with perfectly smoked, juicy corned beef courtesy of Slow Hand BBQ to go with a Pliny out on the patio. Trust me.

Get weird with wheels in Vallejo!

Alden Park at Mare Island is hosting the 8th Annual Obtainium Cup Sunday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. According to the event page, the festivity is a “madcap rally … involving decorated bicycles, pedal powered vehicles, and art vehicles that are either mechanical or human powered. They must complete 4 challenges including Flying Monkeys, Robots, Zombies and the Queen of Hearts and Her Court.”

Obtainium Cup at Mare Island. Photo courtesy of Obtainium Works

The “steampunk” event is free to attend and offers vendors, food, entertainment and a beer and wine garden.

Hit the porch!

If you’re in the mood for something different and don’t mind a little drive, head up to Wine Country for the annual Napa Porchfest. On Sunday from 12:30 to 5 p.m., bands will be coming out of the garage and setting up musical shop on front porches with food and drink carts to help keep you satisfied as you meander through the lineup map. It’s a great way to see another side of Napa and catch an act that just may surprise you.

Napa Porchfest 2018

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Nik Wojcik - East Bay Editor

Nik Wojcik - East Bay Editor

Journalist, editor, student, single mom to a pack of wolves, foodie, music lover, resident smart ass, and champion of vulgarity and human kindness.