The beautiful San Francisco Botanical Garden is open, and entry is free, on Thanksgiving. (Courtesy Saxon Holt)

The beautiful San Francisco Botanical Garden is open, and entry is free, on Thanksgiving. (Courtesy Saxon Holt)

Nov. 23-24: SF Botanical Garden, City Guide Tour, Ghirardelli Square Tree Lighting, Macy’s Tree Lighting

Thursday, Nov. 23

S.F. Botanical Garden: Free admission is offered on Thanksgiving Day at the “living museum,” which has 55 acres of landscaped gardens and open spaces. [7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., 1199 Ninth Ave., Golden Gate Park, S.F.]

S.F. Zoo: Open daily, the park and gardens are home to more than 1,000 exotic, endangered and rescued animals (representing more than 250 species). [10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Sloat Boulvard at Great Highway, S.F.]

Thanksgiving concert and vegetarian dinner: Badarikashrama, a spiritual and cultural center in the East Bay, hosts its annual Thanksgiving gathering, including a concert followed by a vegetarian meal with multicultural dishes. [3 p.m., 15602 Maubert Ave., San Leandro]
Turkey Trot: Registration is officially closed for the 15th annual Thanksgiving Day event, which includes a five-mile Turkey Trail Trot (run), three-mile Pilgrim Promenade (walk) and 100-meter Kid’s Gobbler Chase. [7 a.m., Polo Field, Golden Gate Park, S.F.]

Oakland Turkey Trot: The inaugural 5K run around Lake Merritt benefits the Alameda County Food Bank. [8:30 a.m., Lake Merritt Pergola, 599 El Embarcadero, near Grand and Lakeshore avenues, Oakland]

Japanese Tea Garden: One of The City’s favorite attractions, with a drum bridge, pagodas, stone lanterns, stepping stone paths, native Japanese plants, koi ponds and a zen garden, is open on Thanksgiving. [9 a.m. to 4:45 p.m., Golden Gate Park, 75 Hagiwara Tea Garden Drive, S.F.]

City Guide Tour: “Making Waves on the Waterfront” explores sites along San Francisco’s northern waterfront, where Gold Rush pioneers, labor organizers, entrepreneurs, inventors and architects helped created today’s modern city. [2 p.m., Ferry Building, Market Street and the Embarcadero, S.F.]

Bill Nye: Science Guy: The documentary is a behind-the-scenes portrait of the former TV host who’s on a mission to stop the spread of anti-scientific thinking and propaganda across the world. [2:15, 4:35 and 7:20 p.m., Clay Theatre, 2261 Fillmore St., S.F.]

Friday, Nov. 24

Ghirardelli Square Tree Lighting: The 53rd annual event showcases a 50-foot tree and hosts live music, Santa visits, snow and activities for kids. [4 to 8 p.m., 900 North Point St., S.F.]

Macy’s Tree Lighting: Us the Duo, the cast of San Francisco Playhouse’s “A Christmas Story” and Bay Area choirs perform at the 28th event. [5:30 p.m., Union Square, Powell and Geary streets, S.F.]

Parade of Lights and Winter Wonderland: In its 38th year, the event includes a marketplace with arts and crafts, snow sledding, a tree-lighting ceremony and a 5 p.m. parade. [Noon to 8 p.m., Fourth Street, San Rafael]

Love Is a Dirty Word: Giovanni Adams, who was born gay and queer in Mississippi, wrote and performs in the one-man musical his intimate account of the cost of belonging in America. [8 p.m. Z Below, 470 Florida St., S.F.]
Jim Norton: The New York Times best-selling author and Sirius radio personality comes to town on his “Kneeling Room Only” standup tour. [8 p.m., Herbst Theatre, 401 Van Ness Ave. S.F.]

Pacific Ballet Academy: PBA dancers perform the school’s 27th annual “Nutcracker,” with special,
shorter version for the youngest children in the afternoon.
[Noon, 2 and 6 p.m., Center for the Performing Arts, 500 Castro St., Mountain View]

This Charming Band: The Smiths’ tribute group appears in “Meat Is Murder,” with DJs Omar and Aaron Axelsen of Popscene at DJ Mario Muse. [9 p.m., Rickshaw Stop, 155 Fell St., S.F.]

Alameda South Shore Black Friday: Festivities include carolers, jazz, tree lighting, Santa and ice skating. [10 a.m. to 9 p.m., 523 S. Shore Center West, Alameda]Calendar

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