Angel Island's secluded Perles Beach offers a great weekend escape

Friday night

Food: Satisfying comfort food is on the menu at Cinderella Russian Bakery and Cafe on Balboa Street. Don’t miss the delicious soups and dumplings.

Meet Your Mixologist: Firenze by Night bartender and host Chris Tocchini is happy to serve his longtime North Beach establishment’s clientele, a blend of tourists and regulars.

On the town
Hong Kong films: “Hong Kong Cinema,” a three-day film series presented by the San Francisco Film Society, begins. Opening-night feature: “Merry-Go-Round.” [6:30 to 11:30 p.m., New People Cinema, 1746 Post St., S.F.;]

Art auction: The 2011 “Art for AIDS” auction features more than 160 gallery-quality works of art, plus food and drink. It benefits UCSF’s AIDS Health Project. [6 p.m., Galleria, San Francisco Design Center, 101 Henry Adams St., S.F.]


  • Ferry Plaza Farmers Market top picks
  • Dahlias
  • Cucumbers
  • Fingerling potatoes
  • Flavor Heart pluots
  • Medjool dates
  • Parsley
  • Pawpaws
  • Strawberries


Blues festival: The weekendlong Polk Street Blues Festival features music, merchants, crafts and food. Performers include Curtis Lawson, Sista Monica and Eddie Neon. [10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Polk Street between Jackson and California streets, S.F.]

Contemporary jazz: Acclaimed guitarist Pat Metheny performs at the San Francisco Jazz Festival, appearing with bassist Larry Grenadier. [7 and 9 p.m., Marines’ Memorial Theatre, 609 Sutter St., S.F.]

Literary events

Book sale: The Friends of the San Francisco Public Library’s Big Book Sale continues through Sunday. Books, DVDs, CDs, and other media are available for $4 or less. [10 a.m. to 8 p.m., Festival Pavilion, Fort Mason Center, Marina Boulevard and Buchanan Street, S.F.]


Dance showcase: Dance Brigade presents “Harvest,” a fall choreographer showcase. Featured artists include Chimene Pollard, Mark Foehringer Dance Project and Prima Cristofalo. [8 p.m., Dance Mission, 3316 24th St., S.F.]

Flea market

Antiques and more: Treasure Island Flea offers vintage and collectible items for sale the last weekend of every month. [9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Avenue of the Palms, Treasure Island]


Chinatown festival: The Chinatown Music Festival features a full afternoon of music. Highlights include “Portrait of Sun Yat-sen,” new from Jon Jang and Unbound Chinatown. [1 to 7 p.m., Portsmouth Square, Kearny and Clay streets, S.F.]

Opera simulcast: The San Francisco Opera presents “Opera at the Ballpark,” a free matinee performance of “Turandot,” simulcast live from the opera house. [2 p.m., AT&T Park, 24 Willie Mays Plaza, S.F.; Register:]

Russian quartet: The Rimsky-Korsakov String Quartet, a St. Petersburg-based ensemble versed in the Russian musical repertoire, performs at Grace Cathedral. [3 p.m., 1100 California St., S.F.]

Charity races

Breast-cancer race: Susan G. Komen for the Cure presents its Race for the Cure, benefiting the fight against breast cancer. Race options are a 5K run, 5K walk and 1-mile “fun walk.” [9 a.m., Ferry Building, The Embarcadero and Market Street, S.F.;]

Literary events

Banned books: Jewelle Gomez, Michelle Tea, Rebecca Solnit and other authors read from banned books and discuss the rationale for censorship at a “Banned Books Exposé.” [1 p.m., Main Library, Koret Auditorium, 100 Larkin St., S.F.]

A great excursion

Strand of Perles: Take the ferry to reach this hidden beach in beloved Angel Island State Park. The south-facing Perles Beach is a slice of sun and sand that sees only a handful of people via a 1.5-mile (one-way) walk or bike ride along Perimeter Road. It’s a great place to try and catch the Blue Angels in action! [Visit to sign up for email about getting outdoors in Northern California]

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