Summer is the best time of year to get out of the house, try new things, and see new places. And for seniors who live in the San Francisco Bay Area, there are plenty of great things to do that don't even involve leaving town. Best of all, these activities are free! Check out this list of fun summertime activities for seniors right in the SF Bay Area. If you are a home caregiver, any of these activities can make for a perfect day out with a client.
10 Free Summertime Activities for Seniors in the San Francisco Bay Area
San Francisco has lots of amazing (and free) summer events for people of all ages to enjoy. Whether you're a senior, a home caregiver, or someone with a senior family member or friend, these activities are perfect for enjoying vibrant culture in a senior-friendly way.
1. Visit Stern Grove Festival.
Stern Grove Festival is an organization that puts on concerts all summer long — completely free of charge. As of 2018, the festival is in its 81st season, so it's safe to say that the program has been a hit with San Francisco residents (and, really, what's not to love?). Concerts are every Sunday at 2 P.M. from June 17 to August 19. Check the concert lineup to see which shows you'd like to attend.
2. See a movie and sip wine at the Top of the Mark.
Movie fans (and wine fans) will enjoy the Top of the Mark's free movie and wine night every Tuesday evening. 2018's movie theme is "feel-good comedies," so this event is perfect for people who like to see the lighter side of life. The complimentary wine tasting starts at 5:30 P.M., while the movie itself starts at 7 P.M. Reservations are not required, but it's best to arrive early — this event is first come, first served.
3. Stroll through the UC Berkeley Art Museum.
The UC Berkeley Art Museum is a perfect place to spend a rainy afternoon. Admission is free on the first Thursday of every month. You can explore the galleries at your own pace or take a guided tour of the museum. There are other museums in the San Francisco Bay Area that offer free features and events, as well, such as the complimentary access to the tower at the de Young Museum.
4. Take in the sights and sounds of a farmer's market.
The San Francisco Bay Area has plenty of colorful farmer's markets that you can visit. Several popular ones include the Castro Farmer's Market, the Ferry Plaza Farmer's Market, and the Downtown Berkeley Farmer's Market. Enjoy the fresh air and the lively atmosphere, catch some live music, and — optionally — pick out some fresh fruit or vegetables to take home.
5. Visit the Presidio.
Visiting the Presidio is a great way to enjoy a slice of nature right in San Francisco. This national park, which was once an army post, has it all: museums, walking trails, food vendors, wildlife, and amazing views. Everybody can find something to enjoy about visiting the Presidio, and it's easy to tailor your visit to fit different people's interests and mobility levels. The Presidio is free and open 24 hours a day.
For those who don't mind staying up a little bit late, Presidio Twilight — described as "San Francisco's largest campfire" — can be a fun event. It runs from 5 P.M. to 9 P.M. every Thursday evening. Spread a blanket on the ground, enjoy the warmth of a campfire, and watch the stars come out. There are plenty of food vendors at Presidio Twilight, but this event also gives you the perfect opportunity to enjoy a picnic dinner.
6. Enjoy the Oakland Art Murmur Saturday Stroll.
Anyone who loves local art will enjoy the Oakland Art Murmur Saturday Stroll. Many local art galleries are open between 1 P.M. and 5 P.M. on Saturday afternoons, and you can explore them at your own pace. If you're lucky, you might even stumble upon an artist talk or a film screening — these events are often held on Saturday afternoons.
7. Take a yoga class.
Yoga is good for the body and the soul, and everyone can do it — adapting different poses for different levels of physical ability is a simple matter. The Purusha Seva Project offers free yoga classes for all ages in Golden Gate Park every Saturday from 11:30 A.M. to 12:30 P.M. They also offer free yoga classes for seniors every Tuesday from 3:15 P.M. to 4:15 P.M. Sign up on their website before attending a session to be sure that space is available. Grace Cathedral is another option for free yoga, held every Tuesday evening from 6:15 P.M. to 7:30 P.M. (best to get there by 6:00 P.M. in order to secure a spot).
8. Drive out to a redwood park.
California has numerous redwood state parks whose mission is to protect and celebrate the majestic redwood trees for which California is famous. Many of these state parks offer free parking and admission on the second Saturday of every month. For this activity, planning pays off — you'll need to request your free pass online at least 14 days ahead of time.
9. Take advantage of activities provided by public libraries.
Public library services throughout the San Francisco Bay Area offer numerous summertime activities that are appropriate for people of all ages, including seniors. For example, the San Francisco Main Library offers free movie screenings, family storytimes, and even free basic computer and technology classes. Libraries are always wheelchair accessible and are accommodating for people with disabilities. This makes libraries a good option for seniors who may need certain amenities.
10. Reconnect with nature at the San Francisco Botanical Garden.
For a relaxing day out, visit the San Francisco Botanical Garden, which has more than 8500 different types of plants on display. Admission is always free for San Francisco residents. If you aren't local, you can still visit for free on the second Tuesday of every month. Admission is also free for everyone between 7:30 A.M. and 9 A.M. every day.
BONUS: Go to a coffee tasting at Peet's Coffee.
Coffee is more complex than many people give it credit for, and one great way to explore its different flavors and varieties is to attend a free tasting at Peet's Coffee. Most of these events are held from 11 A.M. to 12 P.M. every Saturday, but check with your local Peet's to confirm this before you go.
Home Care Services in California
Getting out of the house isn't just enjoyable for seniors — it's essential for good mental and physical health. Trying a variety of different activities is a good way for seniors to stay active, happy, and engaged with life. For seniors who have trouble getting out of the house on their own, home care services can be a good solution. Home caregiving professionals are trained to take clients on outings safely, and seniors often enjoy the companionship that a home care service provides. If you think home caregiving may be right for you or a loved one, contact Alegre Home Care!