San Francisco Festivals and Events in May
Mex Am Festival
Showcasing the best of Mexico’s performing arts, culture and ideas, this multidisciplinary festival features performers from various genres as well as presentations from some of the most influential Mexicans in their fields of expertise.
Cinco de Mayo
Valencia Street between 21st and 24th Streets
Family-friendly event celebrating Latino culture; features entertainment on 2 stages, Kids’ Zone, and other activities for the entire family to enjoy.
How Weird Street Faire
Howard and Second Streets
Billed as a “street fair for the 21st century,” the event includes nine stages of music over seven city blocks; food and vendors from around the world, and educational booths.
MAY 6-OCTOBER 28
Yerba Buena Gardens Festival
Yerba Buena Gardens, 415-543-1718
The Yerba Buena Gardens Festival encompasses nearly 100 artistic, cultural and community events from May through October in Yerba Buena Gardens. Events include popular and operatic music series, cultural festivals, dance performances, international music concerts, visual art exhibits, theater and spoken word performances.
SFMade presents a week-long celebration of San Francisco’s vibrant manufacturing sector; discover locally made products, the people who make them and where to buy them.
CAAMFest San Francisco, Berkeley and Oakland, 415-863-0814
CAAMFest is the nation’s largest showcase for new Asian American and Asian films; annually presenting approximately 130 works in San Francisco, Berkeley and Oakland. Since 1982, the festival has been an important launching point for Asian American independent filmmakers as well as a vital source for new Asian cinema.
Best of PlayGround
Potrero Stage, 1695 18th St., 415-992-6677
PlayGround, San Francisco’s incubator for a new generation of playwrights, caps off its season with the Bay Area’s largest celebration of new works for the stage and screen – the annual PlayGround Festival of New Works.
Uncorked – The San Francisco Wine Festival
Ghirardelli Square, 415-775-5500
Enjoy tastings from a variety of Bay Area wineries and experience the ambience of the waterfront and entertainment throughout Ghirardelli Square and along Beach Street.
Spring Wine Pour
Pier 39, 415-705-5500
Head to Pier 39 for an evening of wine, music and fun; enjoy wine tastings, light bites, exclusive discounts and live museum and entertainment from 4-8 p.m. Tickets are $20 (online) and a portion of ticket sales will benefit Aquarium of the Bay’s free conservation education programs. Buy a PIER 39 Attraction Pass.
Bay to Breakers
The Embarcadero to the Great Hwy., 415-231-3130
Since 1912, tens of thousands of people have gathered in San Francisco to see the world's largest footrace unfold as more than 70,000 costume-clad runners and walkers make their way from San Francisco Bay, a few blocks from the Embarcadero, to the Great Highway where the breakers crash onto the Pacific Coast’s Ocean Beach. Find the best areas to stay for Bay to Breakers.
MAY 24-JUNE 3
San Francisco International Arts Festival
Fort Mason Center
Performances by more than 60 theater, dance and music ensembles from the Bay Area and 11 countries unfold in the space of three action packed weeks. The festival features a major arts exhibition as well as multiple educational, residency and outreach activities.
Carnaval San Francisco
Mission District, 415-206-0577
Celebrating its 40th anniversary, this is San Francisco's version of Mardi Gras and one of the largest annual public events in the city. It features exotic Carnaval dancers with a mixture of Latino, jazz, samba, Caribbean influences. Festive parade on Sunday morning draws upon a broad cultural pageantry. Find the best area to stay for San Francisco Carnaval.
MAY 30- JUNE 3
San Francisco Silent Film Festival
Castro Theatre, 415-777-4908
The San Francisco Silent Film Festival presents silent films accompanied by live music. This festival promotes silent film as art and historical record.
MAY 31-JUNE 14
San Francisco Documentary Film Festival (SF DocFest)
Roxie, Brava and Vogue Theaters, 415-662-FEST(3378)
These documentaries, while exploring fun and lighthearted subject matter, often uncover serious truths. Produced by the SF IndieFest