Sure the climate is racing toward the 1.5 degrees above pre-industrial levels that portends disaster for our civilization—but it won’t get there this summer. Here are activities that will bring some joy in the face of catastrophe.
Windsor Summer Nights on the Green
A collaboration between the city of Windsor and the Windsor Farmers Market, the Summer Nights on the Green concerts feature a wide variety of acts playing to audiences splayed out across the grass for free concerts and ample food from the market’s vendors. Bands range from R&B, blues, salsa, and of course, soft rock. Thursdays, June 1–Aug. 31, 5–8pm. Music starts at 6pm. Windsor Town Green. Free.
Right-wing hate winning? Nah, never! Have pride, show pride, share pride throughout Sonoma County in June.
Sonoma County Pride spans three days, starting with a movie night and ending with a pool party. Parade in the middle—yes please! Sonoma County Pride Parade starts at 11am on June 3 in Courthouse Square, Santa Rosa. Sonomacountypride.org lists a whole month of activities.
Love Wins in Windsor Pride Festival brings together families and community. The event features music, drag show, street fair and Kids Zone complete with unicorn decoration station! June 10, 2–6pm at the Windsor Town Green. Free.
AVFilm Summer Movie Series
With outdoor screenings in Healdsburg and Cloverdale, the AVFilm Summer Movie Series has a robust lineup of adventure classics, including Star Wars: A New Hope, Zombieland, E.T. and more. The series kicks off with Field of Dreams on June 3 at the Healdsburg Plaza. All screenings are free and start at sunset. For more dates and location, visit avfilmpresents.org.
Beerfest—The Good One
Expect mouth-puckering sour beers, hop bombs, barrel-aged brews and a wide range of other cool libations that make Northern California one of the best beer-producing regions in the world. More than 40 breweries and cideries will be pouring their samples at Beerfest—The Good One on June 10 from 1–4:30pm at the Luther Burbank Center for the Arts, 50 Mark West Springs Rd., Santa Rosa. Tickets start at $50. Proceeds support Face 2 Face, serving those living with HIV.
Discover local makers in the heart of Northern California wine country at the Patchwork Show in Santa Rosa at the historic Old Courthouse Square in downtown. Shop handmade and independent goods from 75+ local makers, crafters and designers. The outdoor event features several DIY craft stations and activities. June 25, 11am–5pm. Old Courthouse Square, Santa Rosa. Free.
The Gathering at Sebastopol Community Cultural Center
Billed as a party, celebration, picnic and concert, The Gathering is a community event grounded in great music. This year features MaMuse, known for engaging sing-alongs, and Fula Brothers, who intertwine melodic grooves and spirited improvisation, playing together as FulaMuse. There will be food, art activities and—hurray!—a puppet show. July 9, 4–9pm. Sebastopol Community Cultural Center, 390 Morris St. $25. Children 12 and under are free.
Taste of Sonoma
Winemakers and owners of Sonoma County’s iconic wineries pour limited production, reserve and award-winning wines at Taste of Sonoma. Add-on tickets will feature limited-availability guided wine talks seminars and garden tours with Kendall-Jackson culinary educators. June 24, 11am–4pm, at Kendall-Jackson Wine Estate & Gardens, 5007 Fulton Rd., Santa Rosa. Tickets start at $180.
Healdsburg Jazz Fest
Highlights of the 25th anniversary Healdsburg Jazz Festival include Grammy winner Samara Joy on Father’s Day and a free Juneteenth Celebration featuring the Charles McPherson Quintet, a gospel choir and live poetry. Concerts are scheduled throughout Healdsburg from June 17–25. More info at healdsburgjazz.org.
Summer Music and Movies on the Square
Music on the Square will bring live music and dancing to Downtown Courthouse Square in Santa Rosa on seven Fridays throughout the summer, featuring local performers who bring a diversity of styles.
Also, Movies on the Square are back this year and better than ever. Four Monday night screenings on a massive LED screen will light up Downtown Courthouse Square as well.
Concerts and movies begin at 6pm. Free. More info at santarosametrochamber.com.
Sonoma Marin Fair—The Fairest in the Land
Nestled at the south end of Sonoma County in Petaluma, just miles from the border with Marin, the Sonoma-Marin Fair features classic fair activities, including concerts free with fair admission. Of special interest are the Livestock and Jr. Horse Show, the Stills Exhibit displaying craftwork from throughout the county, and, of course, the World’s Ugliest Dog pet adoption event. June 21–25, Sonoma-Marin Fairgrounds in Petaluma. Presale Adult tickets: $22, Presale Kid (12 and under): $15.
2023 Sonoma County Fair—Jurassic Jubilee
Every year, the Sonoma County Fair brings attention to local agriculture, arts and crafts. Events include concerts every day during the 10-day event, kids’ entertainment stage, carnival rides and tons of fair food. Fair classics the Hall of Flowers and horse racing awe fairgoers once again. Aug. 3–13. Sonoma County Fairgrounds, 1350 Bennett Valley Rd., Santa Rosa.
Flynn Creek Circus
Featuring wild stunts, hilarious comedy and mind blowing skills, this year’s “Desert Myth” is an acrobatic odyssey. World renowned acrobats thrill audiences with this truly original, awe-inspiring visual roller coaster ride. Kids will remember it into adulthood. A raucous punk rock, “Adults Only” version plays at limited showtimes. Under The Big Top! July 21–23, Luther Burbank Center for the Arts, 50 Mark West Springs Rd., Santa Rosa, and Aug. 3–6, Sebastopol Grange, 6000 Sebastopol Ave. Ticket prices vary by show. flynncreekcircus.com/2023-tickets for more details.
A benefit for Friends of the Petaluma River, Rivertown—known to many Petalumas as the “best day of the year”— brings live music, activities on the water, local food and drink, and breathtaking costumes together for an unforgettable and eco-friendly event. July 22 and 23, noon to 8pm, at Steamer Landing Park, Copeland Street, Petaluma. Two-day passes, $55. Kids $5 per day.
Wine Country Distillery Fest
Wine Country Distillery Festival brings together regional distilleries to celebrate their craft and share their spirits with locals and visitors alike. During the festival, attendees will partake in distilled spirits, craft beverages and local food with live music and more. Aug. 12, noon–4pm. Luther Burbank Center for the Arts, 50 Mark West Springs Rd., Santa Rosa. General Admission tickets are $71, VIP $121. Ages 21+.
Petaluma Music Festival
Local standouts Royal Jelly Jive, King Street Giants and Brothers Comatose, along with international acts like the English Beat, come together for a day in the sun to raise money for music programs in Petaluma schools. Three stages, ample food options, local vendors and beer by Lagunitas and Two Rock. July 29, 11:30am to 9:30pm. Sonoma-Marin Fairgrounds, 175 Fairgrounds Dr., Petaluma. $60, VIP $169.