The Union Street Festival
The kick off to San Francisco Street Festival Season, The Union Street Festival takes place annually on the first weekend in June. Besides being the first festival of the year, it is also one of the largest.
Four blocks of Union Street are shut down for the event from Octavia Street to Fillmore Street to make room for vendor tents, stages, food trucks, carnival rides and more. The festival takes place on the first Saturday and Sunday of June.
Union Street Festival 2023 Details:
Dates and Times:
Saturday, June 3: 11AM to 7PM
Sunday, June 4: 10AM to 6PM
Official Website: https://unionstfestival.com/
Vendor Booths: Throughout the 4 blocks of the festival, dozens of vendor booths will be set up featuring handmade crafts, art, food tastings and more.
Beer Gardens: Several large areas will be fenced off for alcohol sales. The gardens will feature a selection of craft beers, wines and more.
Interactive Paint Wall: Internationally renowned and widely collected Bay Area virtuoso, Richard Art Felix, invites you to an immersive artistic experience. Seize this extraordinary opportunity to contribute to a collective paint wall, leaving an indelible expression of your creativity during the event. Be a part of the art, under the masterful guidance of Felix himself.
DJ Dancepark: The eclectic ensemble known as Dancepark is composed of a fascinating mix of artists, scientists, engineers, and DJs, united by a common ardor for music dissemination and spreading joyous energy. This innovative collective has cultivated a dedicated following around the Bay Area, resonating with their audiences through their immersive performances of house music, melodic house, and deep house. Their creative exuberance propels every beat, earning them a cherished place in the hearts of their listeners.
The 2023 Waiters Race, brought to you by Underwood Wine:
On the cusp of noon, Sunday, June 4th, the intersection of Webster St. and Union St. will transform into a thrilling arena. Brace yourselves as teams, armed with serving trays and drinks, take to the streets to contend for the prestigious title.
This dynamic contest will involve teams of three, who will traverse a distance of 100 feet up and down the street, serving tray in hand. In a riveting relay, each teammate will deftly add an extra drink to their tray. The final segment of this exhilarating race will feature the last relay teammate, balancing three drinks on their serving tray, sprinting towards victory. Prepare to be astounded!
Waiters Race Prizes:
-The coveted 2023 Waiters Race Champion Trophy
-Three Underwood Wine Gift Certificates ($100 each)
-Three Underwood Wine Magnums
-Three Underwood Gift Certificates ($50 each)
-Three Bottles of Underwood Pinot Noir
-One Bottle of Underwood Pinot Gris
-One Bottle of Underwood Pinot Noir
-Some Sweet Underwood Wine Swag
-Entry to the festival is free
-Wines and Craft Beers available in Beer Gardens
-Check out Live Music on two different stages
-Try some amazing local cuisine
-Try and buy a variety of artisan food, art, photography, clothing and more
Getting to Union Street Festival:
Driving and Parking
While it is not recommended, if you choose to drive to the festival, keep in mind that parking will be extremely difficult to find. Look for parking spots to the North and West of Union Street, since there are a lot less businesses and restaurants in the area. In addition to street parking, you can also find some parking garages. The best options would be on Pierce Street (just North of Lombard) or the garage on the corner of Fillmore and Lombard.
If you are in San Francisco:
You can get to the Marina by Uber, Lyft or Public Transportation. The bus lines that will take you to the area will be the 41, 45, 22 or 30. Check the Muni website for details.
If you are coming from the South Bay:
Public transportation options include BART and Caltrain, although you will need to take a bus or an Uber once you arrive in the city. If you take BART, get off at the 16th Street Stop in The Mission. From there, you will be able to take the 22 Muni Bus to the festival. If you take Caltrain, once you arrive in the city, walk to the corner of 4th and Townsend to pick up the 30 Muni Bus, which will drop you off a few blocks from the festival.
If you are coming from the North Bay:
There aren’t really any easy public transportation options from the North Bay, so driving is probably the best option. To get to The Marina, you can take the 101 across the Golden Gate Bridge to Lombard & Fillmore Street.
If you are coming from the East Bay:
You can take BART from the East Bay and exit at the Montgomery Street Station. Once you exit the station, head to the corner of Kearny and Sutter (about 2 blocks away) and take the 30 Muni to the corner of Fillmore and Chestnut. Walk about 4 blocks to Union Street.
Vendors and Entertainment:
Food & Drink at the Union Street Festival:
Mariapilar Ice Creamery
Rock Club Burgers
Treats by the Bay
Lins Dim Sum
Sams Gourmet Jams
The Empanadas King
The chaga company
Sweeter Than Honey Bakery
10th St. Distillery
Alebrijes Oaxacan Kitchen
Rize Up Bakery
Cousins Maine Lobster
Kona Brewing Co
Live Music & Entertainment Lineup:
Victoria George and the High Lonesome
Style by Ilana
Lisa Fleming Ceramics
Made Design Jewelry
Golden Gate Furniture Co.
Milvali Salon & Cosmetics
Amy C Pyles
Little Noses Pet Boutique
Girls Printing House
The Neon Tiger
Happily Everley After
Sustainable for Good
Demby | Co
Petal and Kiln Jewelry Co
Jamila Leilani Designs
Golden Coast Candle Co.
Rare Bird Stereos
Tina Tarnoff Papercut Art & Jewelry
Michael Rohner Art
Fused Glass Creations
CoolGirl Clothes Co.
West Coast Leather
Henna by Ayesha
Melan Made That
Kitchen Witch Design
Double Down Zine
About the Union Street Festival in San Francisco:
The Union Street Festival, celebrated in the charming and historic neighborhood of Cow Hollow in San Francisco, California, is a cherished local tradition that’s undergone significant transformation since its inception. As a community-centric celebration of arts, culture, and cuisine, it serves as a testament to the enduring spirit and camaraderie of the City by the Bay.
The Union Street Festival first graced the streets of San Francisco in 1976. Its initial years saw a small but dedicated group of local artists, craftsmen, and food vendors who took to Union Street to display their work and bring the community together. From the onset, it was clear that the event was more than a mere gathering. It was an opportunity to showcase the creative vibrancy of the area, to support local businesses, and to facilitate neighborly connection.
As word spread about the annual celebration, the Union Street Festival began to draw larger crowds, necessitating its expansion. From its humble beginnings as a local art fair, the festival grew to incorporate a wider range of activities. Live music performances, gourmet food booths, major sponsors, parties and interactive exhibits became common features, reflecting the festival’s mission to cater to diverse tastes and interests.
Today, the Union Street Festival remains one of San Francisco’s largest free events, attracting thousands of attendees over a summer weekend. The festival’s offerings have continued to expand and evolve, including a diverse array of culinary delights, eclectic music performances, and unique craft exhibits. The streets of Cow Hollow come alive with a mix of locals and tourists alike, each basking in the joyous celebration of community spirit.
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