SS Jeremiah O’Brien Liberty Ship Museum
San Francisco, CA 94113
The entire family will enjoy a visit to this 70-year-old WWII Liberty ship on Pier 45. One of only two remaining fully functional Liberty ships of the 2,710 that were built and launched during WWII, the SS Jeremiah O’Brien is technology from 1943. The O’Brien is distinctive for being “the last unaltered Liberty ship and remains historically accurate.” This foremost San Francisco attraction is a living museum and is on the National Register of Historic Places and a bona fide National Historic Landmark. The ship is a movie star too, as the film “Titanic” engine room scenes were filmed on this ship. This non-profit historic monument runs on steam, but is powered by volunteers. Come out during Labor Day and enjoy some patriotic history.
Shakespeare In The Park
Presidio San Francisco
Between Graham St. and Keyes Ave.
San Francisco, CA 94129
Head on over to the Presidio for a free Shakespeare in the Park experience, a perennially popular event. This year’s presentation is “Macbeth” and is sure to be a fun and painless way to introduce the kids to the bard, a title usually conferred on great poets of his time. The sets, costumes and live stage theatrics will delight the kids as it has impressed audiences for the last 31 seasons. With its suspenseful plot, exciting witchcraft scenes and swordplay antics, Macbeth is one of Shakespeare’s most memorable plays. The show is totally free and plays weekends and Labor Day Monday through September 15, 2013 at 2 p.m.
Butterflies & Blooms
San Francisco Conservatory of Flowers
100 John F. Kennedy Drive
San Francisco, CA 94118
The Conservatory of Flowers is a distinctive living museum, bursting with life, color, fragrance and unparalleled beauty. Butterflies & Blooms is a rare exhibit that allows visitors to get eye to eye with a butterfly — and kids always seem to be fascinated with butterflies. This exhibit gives children and adults alike the opportunity to see a dazzling array of hundreds of butterflies in San Francisco’s beloved greenhouse. More than “20 species of colorful North American butterflies” delight the eye and impress the senses, including monarchs, Western swallowtails, red admirals and more, plus several striking giant moths, such as the cecropia moth, make an appearance. The entire family will be amazed at the sheer amount of fun and educational information they come away with from this unique exhibit. It is available through October 20, 2013.
Bay Bridge Celebration
Bring the kids to celebrate the long-awaited opening of The New Bay Bridge after California’s 20-year effort to retrofit all bridges throughout the state. This effort has been the single largest public infrastructure project in California’s history and The New Bay Bridge is the final and largest project of all. You and the kids are invited to celebrate with thousands from all over the Bay Area for this historic event. Be sure to participate in bike, run and walk events on this all-American holiday weekend. Visit the website to sign up for the Bay Bridge bike, run or walk events; you will receive information on specific dates as it is made available to the public.
California Academy of Sciences
Golden Gate Park
55 Music Concourse Drive
San Francisco, CA 94118
The California Academy of Sciences is always an excellent choice for kids and their families to discover science, learn tons and have fun together. The museum’s Labor Day schedule begins with the Little Learner’s Lab at the Naturalist Center (sign up required), geared to the young scientist-in-training. The full day includes a not-to-be-missed planetarium show and more opportunities than you will have time to explore in this state-of-the-art science facility that draws visitors from around the world. Visit the website for complete information and to plan your family visit.
Melanie Graysmith is a writer, artist and educator based in San Francisco. She writes on adult education, art and lifestyle topics, and enjoys writing short stories and poetry. She is also a member of an independent filmmaking group. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.