Now that the North Bay is adding wildfires to it’s 2020 roulette wheel, going outside is not recommended for health reasons even beyond the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, which was already forcing social distancing to become the norm.
Instead of getting out this weekend, try these online events; featuring music, food and poetry offerings streaming on Saturday and Sunday, August 22 and 23.
Virtual Music Festival
For three decades, the town of Cotati has been synonymous with the accordion, thanks to the internationally-known Cotati Accordion Festival that takes place each summer in the town’s Plaza Park. This year’s 30th annual event is not happening in the park for health and safety reasons, though the organizers are pivoting to an online format to present the Cotati Accordion Virtual Festival. The two-day online fest will be free to view, and the lineup includes internationally acclaimed virtuoso musicians such as Cory Pesaturo, Alex Meixner, Pietro Adragna and Gary Blair; all of whom will be performing live alongside streaming chats, interviews, raffles and more on Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 22 and 23, from 11am to 3pm each day. Free, donations accepted. Get the full lineup at cotatifest.com.
Virtual Food & Wine Pairing
People constantly ask Chef Gerard Nebesky, of Gerard’s Paella, how he makes his authentic Mediterranean-inspired dishes. Now, the popular chef and winner of Food Network’s Throwdown with Bobby Flay demonstrates his cooking for curious culinary minds in “A Taste of Spain: Pinot and Paella Virtual Event.” Join Chef Nebesky virtually as he cooks up several delectable offerings at Napa Valley’s Frank Family Vineyard, with wine pairings that bring out the Spanish flavors. The virtual event takes place Saturday, Aug. 22, at 2pm. Register for the event, find recipes and purchase wine to pair at frankfamilyvineyards.com.
Nonprofit organization Food For Thought feeds nearly a thousand people living with HIV, Covid-19 and other serious illnesses in Sonoma County. To do so, the organization depends on community fundraising, though this year’s signature benefit, Our Long Table, was canceled due to the pandemic. In place of the live event, Food For Thought moves to the web for Our Virtual Table, a livestream event featuring music performances, a keynote speaker and a chance to participate in an online auction that is open for bidding now. Our Virtual Table comes together on Sunday, Aug. 23, at 7:30pm. Register online at fftfoodbank.org.
The dedicated team at the Bolinas Museum collects, preserves and displays the art and history of coastal Marin with exhibitions and events that provide cultural enrichment and inspiration for locals and visitors alike. Each summer, the Bolinas Museum hosts a benefit art auction and party to raise funds for their thought-provoking programs and inspiring shows. This summer’s party is going virtual, and the Bolinas Museum’s Art Auction opens online this weekend, featuring works by dozens of artists and experience packages from local restaurants, wineries and more. The online bidding opens on Saturday, Aug. 22, and remains open online until the museum’s virtual live auction on September 12. Register for free at bolinasmuseum.org.
For more than 30 years, the Marin Poetry Center has brought the craft of writing and poetry to the Bay Area with a regular schedule of readings and workshops, and big gatherings like the popular Summer Traveling Show, in which poets perform at venues throughout Marin. This summer, the traveling show could not commence as usual due to sheltering orders, though the Marin Poetry Center used YouTube to broadcast the 2020 Virtual Summer Traveling Show. The virtual series includes eight videos online now, and the show concludes with its final video presented on Sunday, Aug. 23, at marinpoetrycenter.org.