Weekend Planner: 12 Picks

Learn about Greek culture, check out the Milpitas High marching band's first field show of the season, participate in an animal blessing ceremony and more–without leaving town.

Where/When: St. James Orthodox Church, Friday, 6-10 p.m., Saturday, 12-10 p.m. and Sunday, 12-8 p.m.

Why go: Entertainment includes live Greek and Middle Eastern folk dancing, music, games and crafts. Children will have a chance to enjoy a romp in a giant inflatable jump house, paint their faces and work on arts and crafts projects. But the main attraction, of course, is the food. Both meat and vegetarian fare will be available along with new and traditional spices and toppings.

Pricing: $2 admission, does not cover cost of food


Where/When: , Friday, 7 p.m.

Why go: On a ranger-led 2.5-mile hike, hear about new discoveries, and gain new insights about the earth’s relationship to its celestial neighbors. Meet at the lawn near the park office by Spring Valley Pond. Bring sturdy hiking shoes and binoculars.

Pricing: Free


Blessing of the Animals

Where/When: , Sunday, 11-11:30 a.m.

Why go: Bring your dogs, cats, hamsters, snake, horses, or a photo of an animal and it will be blessed. Our household, companion, and large animals are an important part of our lives and, for many of us, an important part of our spiritual journey.  

Pricing: Free


Unlimited MMA Anniversary Party

Where/When: , Saturday, 1-4 p.m.

Why go: Celebrate the sixth anniversary of this mixed martial arts center. Watch exhibition fights (kickboxing, jiujitsu). Food available.

Pricing: $10

Where/When: , Saturday, 12-2 p.m.

Why go: The 2011-2012 school year marks 100 years of Girl Scouts in the U.S. Build courage, confidence and character in girls who make the world a better place. Stop by and register your daughters in grades K-12. 

Pricing: Contact Christine Lahann scoutchristine@live.com or 408-806-8464 for details.

Where/When: , Saturday, 6 p.m. BBQ and 7:45 p.m. show

Why go: Catch the first show of the season on the field. The marching band and color guard will perform Veni Vidi Vici: The Life of Julius Caesar in uniform.

Pricing: Free to watch, $2 per BBQ dinner


Where/When: , Saturday, 11 a.m.-4 p.m.

Why go:  Come meet your future dog companion. Features a wide variety of dog breeds and sizes, including beagles, poodles, golden retrievers, terriers, Rottweiler and even Chihuahuas.

Pricing: Free admission


Where/When: , Saturday, 3 p.m.

Why go: The Art of Living Foundation offers free stress release & success workshops for kids ages 8-13 years. These hands on workshops will teach leadership skills, how to get better grades, increase focus, and confidence through specific physical exercises, targeted breathing techniques, dynamic games from across the world and and experiential curricula based on social emotional learning.

Pricing: Free


Outside of Milpitas:

Where/When: Sunnyvale Baylands Park, Registration 7:45-8:45 a.m.

Why go: Raise money for orphanages supported by GiveLight in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Iraq, Haiti, Indonesia and Somalia.

Pricing: $35 on race day for adults; $10 for children


Monster Bacteria & Other Suspicious Critters

Where/When: , Alviso, Saturday, 10 a.m. to noon

Why go: Explore the salt marsh’s hidden habitats. See monster bacteria, some of which love rotten eggs, and some of which make the air we breathe. Join microbial ecologist Dr. Wayne Lanier for a short hike where we will use field microscopes to dive down into a tiny world – an ecology hidden from view. For ages 8 to 80 and beyond! Please call Debra at 408-262-5513 ext. 102 to RSVP.

Pricing: Free


Palo Alto International Film Festival

Where/When: Different locations in Palo Alto, Thursday through Sunday

Why go: Check out new forms of storytelling in film and media, including 20 features, 25 shorts and 30 talks, panels and workshops. Check out the full schedule here.

Price: varies


Where/When: , 10120 N de Anza Blvd, Cupertino, CA. Friday through Sunday, 5 p.m. start on Friday and 11 a.m. start on the weekend. 

Why go: The Cupertino Carnival is a three-day festival featuring live music, entertainment, real amusement rides, jump houses/inflatables, games for kids of all ages, arts and crafts, karaoke, a wide variety of food and more. Don't miss the fall family fun this weekend! 

Pricing: Free


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