San Mateo County Fair
2495 S. Delaware St.
San Mateo, CA 94403
Date: June 8 through 16
The year 2013 marks the 79th anniversary of the San Mateo County Fair and this year’s theme is Where Tradition Meets Innovation. The fair will run through June 16th and offers fun for the whole family between the carnival rides, 4H booths, petting zoo, games, free concerts and special events. Daily contests will include bubble gum blowing, extreme apple bobbing and a piglet race. In addition to the traditional fair food of funnel cakes and BBQ, there will also be healthier, locally sourced whole food options for sale. Make sure to bring cash for parking, concessions and rides, or make use of one of the on-site ATMs.
Hidden Villa Dad’s Day At The Farm
26870 Moody Road
Los Altos Hills, CA 94022
Open 9 a.m. to dusk the weekend of Father’s Day, Hidden Villa Farm is a non-profit organization devoted to public education, sustainable agriculture and wilderness preservation. The 1,600-acre property offers farm tours, hiking, plant sales, CSA subscriptions, hands-on learning and special events. Bring dad for a full day of fun strolling around the farm or taking a hike along designated trails. Pack a picnic lunch or dinner to enjoy on site. Formalized farm tour reservations are suggested, and there is a $5 parking fee.
Camping At Portola Redwoods State Park
9000 Portola State Park Road
La Honda, CA 94020
Tucked away between the coast and the bustling San Francisco Peninsula, the secluded Portola Redwoods State Park has 18 miles of hiking trails and 53 individual campsites. Bring dad camping for the weekend to get some much-needed relaxation and time out in nature. The area is heavily forested and can get very cool and wet at night, so make sure to pack warm clothes and layers. Trails are relatively easy and appropriate for younger families, but mosquitoes can be thick due to two creeks that run through the park. Bathrooms and showers are on site, and there is no camp store, although firewood is sold in the park office and trail maps are available.
Palo Alto World Music Day
Palo Alto City Hall
University Ave. and King Plaza
Palo Alto, CA 94301
Date: June 16
Palo Alto World Music Day is an international music festival held in the streets of downtown Palo Alto. Actually a world-wide event that began in France in 1982, this year’s World Music Day coincides with Father’s Day. Bring dad downtown to stroll along University Avenue from 3 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. to enjoy a wide variety of music and dancing from a multitude of cultures. All performances are free and open to the public, and will include everything from folk to tango, jazz to opera and rock to classical. See the website for a full list of all scheduled performances.
Hike The Stanford Dish Trail
Stanford Ave. & Junipero Serra Blvd.
Palo Alto, CA 94305
This 150-foot radio telescope is a Stanford campus landmark. Visible from 280, the dish marks the top of a challenging hiking trail open to the public from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily during the month of June. Bring dad along for either the roughly three- or five-mile loops, and enjoy the scenery, wildlife and views of multi-million-dollar homes. Make sure to bring sunscreen and plenty of water on hot days as there is little shade along the loops. Bicycles are not allowed, but the trail is paved and appropriate for strollers. Parking is free, but can be challenging to find, especially on crowded days.
Joanna Metheny is a freelance writer covering all things South Bay. Her work can be found on Examiner.com.