San Francisco Festivals and Events in September
Architecture and the City
Sponsored by AIA San Francisco, the largest architectural and design festival in the U.S. includes a series of architectural tours, film screenings, exhibitions, design lectures, home shows and more.
Sausalito Art Festival
Sausalito’s yearly art festival has been showcasing stars from the contemporary art world since 1952. Browse fine art and crafts along the beautiful bay shore.
JLVelo Giro di San Francisco
Levi Strauss Plaza
Featuring more than 800 amateur and pro racers on a course covering northeast San Francisco, Il Giro (Italian for tour) begins at Levi Strauss Plaza and includes a day-long expo and a series of races for all levels and concludes with a pro race at 3 p.m.
San Francisco Opera Opening Gala
War Memorial Opera House, 415-864-3330
The season begins with the annual opening night gala.
San Francisco Fringe Festival
Exit Theatre and other downtown venues,
415-931-1094 (info), 800-965-4827 or 415-673-3847 (tickets)
This annual festival is a marathon of 150 performances by 35-plus theater companies with low price tickets and a wide variety of alternative, classical, comedy, cabaret and new theater open to all performers on a non-curated basis.
Ghirardelli Chocolate Festival
Ghirardelli Square, 415-775-5500
Discover unique chocolate desserts and delicacies from Ghirardelli and beyond at this annual chocolate celebration.
San Francisco Opera in the Park
Sharon Meadow, Golden Gate Park, 415-864-3330
Enjoy this outdoor venue and free admission to an opera concert featuring arias and ensembles by the stars of the San Francisco Opera and the Opera Orchestra.
San Francisco Symphony’s 106th Season Opening Night Gala
Davies Symphony Hall, 415-864-6000 (subscriptions available in March; individual tickets for concerts go on sale in July)
The San Francisco Symphony and Michael Tilson Thomas open the orchestra’s regular season with an opening gala concert.
Sharon Meadow, Golden Gate Park, 415-820-1570
Laugh out loud … it’s the free comedy “concert” featuring 30+ of the U.S.’s and Bay Area’s best comedians.
Big Book Sale
Fort Mason Center
Held at Fort Mason Center’s Festival Pavilion, the Annual Big Book Sale will feature over 500,000 books, DVDs, CDs, books on tape, vinyl and other forms of media in over 100 categories.
Oktoberfest By The Bay
Pier 48 near AT&T Park, 888-746-7522
Bringing Munich’s autumn beer festival to the Bay, Oktoberfest features non-stop singing, dancing, music, German food and beverages.
San Francisco International Dragon Boat Festival
Lake Merritt, Oakland
Nearly 100 dragon boat teams and 2,500 paddlers from across North America will race the 500-meter course; festival also features entertainment and children’s activities.
Bay Area Blues Festival
Two main stages, a merchant marketplace, arts and crafts, gourmet food booths and much more are all a part of this annual homage to San Francisco’s blues roots.
Folsom Street Fair
Folsom Street between Seventh and 12th Streets, 415-777-3247
The “daddy of all leather celebrations,” the Folsom Street Fair is the largest leather, alternative and fetish street fair in the world drawing some 400,000 attendees annually, dressed in leather, rubber, uniforms, drag or very little at all.
Sausalito Floating Homes Tour
Self-guided tours include access to dozens of the most unique homes in the world; docents are onboard to describe Sausalito’s incredible waterfront style and to answer questions.
SEPTEMBER 30-OCTOBER 1
Autumn Moon Festival
Grant Ave. between California and Pacific Streets, 415-982-6306
This event features multicultural entertainment, traditional lion and dragon dances, arts and crafts, lantern village, moon cakes and children's activities.