How is it August already? Where is the summer going? Better not let it pass you by without catching up on some of the great-sounding events planned for this weekend. Such as:
Bands at the Boardwalk: Tonight’s bands at the boardwalk series features Y&T of the hit “Summertime Girls” at 6:30 and 8:30 p.m.
Cabrillo Stage: Cabrillo Stage’s summer performances continue this weekend with showings of “La Cage Aux Folles” (the inspiration for the movie “The Birdcage,”) the Rodgers and Hammerstein classic “Oklahoma,” and “Escaping Queens.”
First Friday: Another First Friday is upon us, with gallery shows and openings planned throughout downtown and beyond, including open studios at the Tannery and live music and art at the Mission Adobe.
Watsonville Wine Festival: The first Watsonville Wine Festival will be held Saturday to showcase a number of wineries in South County. The Santa Cruz Winemaker Studio, located in the industrial park on Hangar Way off Airport Boulevard, is hosting the event from noon to 5 p.m. Tasting tickets are $25 in advance, $30 at the door, and include a souvenir glass and appetizers.
Shakespeare Santa Cruz: The Shakespeare Santa Cruz 2013 season continues this weekend with “The Taming of the Shrew.” Performances will be held Friday at 8 p.m., at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. Saturday and at 2 p.m. Sunday. Tickets can be purchased online here.
Nellie’s Last Act: In conjunction with First Friday, the Claraty Arts Center in Seabright is hosting a big art opening that includes a performance by Coffee Zombie Collective. The centerpiece of the exhibition is Claraty’s first public mural, which tells “the true story of Nell Claraty.” There will also be new works from artists including Gabby Ledesma and Diana Mallett, among others, as well as other bands, food and craft brews. Claraty is located at 1725 Seabright Ave. The fun runs from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Church Street Fair: The annual Church Street Fair returns Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Church Street outside the Santa Cruz Civic Auditorium. The fair is part of the Cabrillo Festival and features plenty of live music and dance, wine, art and food.
Watsonville Strawberry Festival: The city of Watsonville will be celebrating all things strawberry this weekend (Saturday and Sunday) with this free annual festival that’s totally family-friendly.
Santa Cruz County Beer Week: The California Beer Festival organizers are sponsoring Santa Cruz County beer week starting tomorrow. Basically, a number of participants will be running specials throughout the week. It culminates in the California Beer Festival on Aug. 10 in Aptos Village Park. Rumor has it that this year’s judges panel includes KSBW videographer extraordinaire Tom Lopez and Doug Maher, the mastermind behind AJ’s beer selection and one of the friendly faces serving up your brews at Sante Adairius Rustic Ales.
Discovering Mavericks: Filmmaker Joshua Pomer’s documentary “Discovering Mavericks” will screen at the Rio Theater Saturday at 7:30 p.m. The film details how the wave was first discovered and then made into a legend, and documents a number of big wave legends along the way, including Jay Moriarty, the subject of Hollywood’s “Chasing Mavericks.”
Cabrillo Festival: The Cabrillo Festival’s 2013 season kicks off tonight with performances including Derek Bermel’s “Dust Dances” and Christopher Rouse’s “Symphony No. 3″ at the Santa Cruz Civic Auditorium. Other notable performances this weekend include a celebration of the 40th anniversary of the Kronos Quartet (the musicians behind the haunting soundtrack to “Requiem for a Dream” among others) and of course the aforementioned Church Street Fair.
Pop-up Breakfast: The pop-up farmers market breakfast series continues Saturday with a breakfast at the Scotts Valley Farmers Market. Registration is at 9:30 a.m. with breakfast at 10 a.m. Tickets are $30-$32.
Donna the Buffalo: Upstate New York’s bluegrass-inspired folk-roots musicians play a return engagement at Moe’s Alley Saturday. You’ll want to wear your dancing shoes to the show, which starts at 8:30 p.m. – allegedly.
Neil Hamburger: Comedy oddball Neil Hamburger (played by comedien Greg Turkington) returns to the Crepe Place Saturday with his very special brand of stand-up. “But that’s my life!” Show starts at 9 p.m. Tickets are $10 in advance or $12 at the door.