PGIF: Summer Time and Traveling Is Easy!! Especially when it’s Free!

This summer in Monterey, avoid parking fees, traffic congestion and gas usage by taking the MST Trolley!!!  It’s free and the absolute best way to get around the city of Monterey.  The free MST Trolley operates on a daily basis starting Memorial Day Weekend through Labor Day, 10:00 am to 8:00 pm. The route serves Downtown Monterey, Fisherman’s Wharf, Cannery Row and the Monterey Bay Aquarium. Look for the green MST Trolley signs to board along the route. 

The Pacific Grove Inn is one mile walk away from Cannery row and the Monterey Bay Aquarium.  Guests can choose to stroll along the bike path beside beautiful Monterey Bay or they can choose to wander down Lighthouse Ave where one can find numerous shops, restaurants and antique stores to peruse while heading toward Cannery Row.

Also, sure to check out the following exciting events happening in and around the Monterey/Pacific Grove area for the rest of July and August:

Now – July 28, 2012 – 75th Annual Carmel Bach Festival

Set in the heart of the magnificent Central California coastline, a visit to the Carmel Bach Festival is an experience of beauty in many forms-stunning natural landscapes, historic architecture, breathtaking ocean views, exotic flora, and of course, glorious music-making. Enjoy five-star lodging, award-winning restaurants, champion golf courses, spas, wine tasting, nature hikes, art galleries, and shoppingラplus the world-famous Monterey Bay Aquarium and Cannery Row. World-class music tops off this feast for the senses and the spirit!

July 19, 2012 – July 22, 2012 – Salinas Rodeo at the Salinas Sports Complex

The California Rodeo Association is a not-for-profit organization that strives to preserve and promote the traditions of the California Rodeo Salinas and the West.

July 25, 2012 – July 29, 2012Feast of Lanterns

For over one hundred years the citizens of Pacific Grove have celebrated its history and culture with a summer festival called the Feast of Lanterns. This Festival has evolved over its 100-plus year history from the ceremonial end to the Chautauqua Assembly with a lantern parade to the beach and fireworks over the bay to a multi-cultural community event filled with entertainment. 

July 27, 2012 – July 29, 2012 –  Red Bull United States Grand Prix featuring the MotoGP World Championship

MotoGP is the world’s premier motorcycling championship at the Mazda Raceway in Laguna Seca, with a season of 18 Grand Prix race weekends in 15 countries bringing together the world’s top motorcycle manufacturers like Yamaha, Honda, Suzuki and Ducati – plus an elite list of riders from every corner of the globe.

August 7th from 4pm to 7pm – Old Monterey Farmer’s Market

The Old Monterey Farmers Market, established in 1991, comprises of 3.5 city blocks and runs year-round rain or shine. During the summer it’s the largest gathering of people in Monterey County, attracting more that 10,000 locals and tourists in one location. You can travel the world in just three blocks, finding arts and crafts, handmade jewelry, furniture, clothing, international food, organic produce, flowers, and pastries.

August 13, 2012 – August 19, 2012 – Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance

Each year the Pebble Beach Concours dメElegance welcomes a host of visitors from around the world to its annual celebration of the automobile.

August 17, 2012 – PG Concours Auto Rally

Pacific Grove Youth Action, Inc. (PGYA) is a local non-profit organization which has put on the Pacific Grove Concours Auto Rally since its inception in 1995. Since that time PGYA has assisted the youth of Pacific Grove by sponsoring after school tutoring and programs at the PG Youth Center. Our fund-raising event is the Concours Auto Rally which is held on the Friday afternoon and evening of the Concours weekend.

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PGIF: The Longer You Stay, The Less You Pay!

In the month of March, take advantage of special discounted rates when you extend your stay!  You can put your savings towards a trip to the Aquarium, a day of Whale Watching, a round of Golf or right back into your pocket!  From March 1 – March 31st,  you can benefit from one of the following specials:

Stay 2 Nights – Get 15% Off Your Stay

Stay 3 Nights – Get 20% Off Your Stay

Call us directly at 831-375-2825 to book your stay, or click on the link below!

BOOK NOW

 


$65 Special This Week Only at PGI!

Special $65 rate going out to all our beloved family and friends this week only, Dec 12 – 15th!! 

This stay will include a beautifully decorated historic bedroom with King or Queen sized bed, complimentary wireless internet access, exquisit Gourmet Breakfast cooked to order each morning of your stay, afternoon wine and cheese reception and fresh baked cookies in the evening. 

To take advantage of this special offer, you must call the Inn directly at 831-375-2825 to book your reservation.  Add on any of the following fantastic specials listed below to this incredible offer as well. Simply inquire with our front desk staff at the time of booking!

Special Rate does not include taxes or fees and is based on double occupancy in Standard King or Queen room.  Limited time offer. Available while inventory lasts. 


Monterey Bay Aquarium

Monterey Bay Aquarium

Join us and experience the wonders of ocean life at the Monterey Bay Aquarium.  The living beauty of our ocean planet is on display at the Monterey Bay Aquarium, considered the best in the world!  You’ll explore the hidden universe in Monterey Bay, from shallow tide pools, and lush kelp forests to the vast open ocean.  Changing specials exhibitions feature marine life from around the world.  It’s a place like no other, with a million-gallon indoor ocean, a living kelp forest, jewel-box exhibits that reveal the delicate beauty of colorful sea creatures.  Get close to playful sea otters and delicate jellies, powerful sharks, charming penguins and elusive octopus.  Get in touch with sea life, too, with hands-on exhibits, aquarium adventures and daily programs. Come discover a new world at the Monterey Bay Aquarium!

If you are interested in purchasing our special two-day VIP Access tickets to the Monterey Bay Aquarium for the same price as you would pay for a regular ticket normally, you will have the option to include them at the time of booking your reservation.


Two-Hour Adventure Kayak

Two-Hour Kayak Adventure

Select from one of the following two tours.  Both offered daily year round at 10:00, 12:00 & 2:00.  Be sure to indicate your tour selection and preferred time in your reservation comments.

ELKHORN SLOUGH ADVENTURE TOUR: The 2nd largest estuary in California, this short tour is a perfect, quick getaway for beginners to discover the wonderful sea otters, seals, sea lions and variety of shorebirds. Especially recommended for families with younger children ages 3 and up. Includes sit-on-top double or triple kayaks, wetsuit or paddling jackets and pants, life jackets and all kayak gear.

MONTEREY HARBOR ADVENTURE TOUR: This short tour is a perfect getaway for everyone to discover the Monterey Harbor and beyond! Monterey provides wonderful wildlife experience as you paddle around sea otters, kelp beds, harbor seals, sea lions and shorebirds. No experience required and especially recommended for families with children 3 yrs and up. Includes sit-on-top double or triple kayak, wetsuit, paddling jacket, life jacket and all kayak gear. Wear bathing suit, quick drying clothing, water shoes and hat.

Should you be interested in either of these tours, you will have the option to purchase them at the time of booking your reservation.


Special Occasion Package

Special Occasion Package

Celebrating an anniversary, birthday or simply want to add a special touch to your stay?  Book this package and a beautiful and delectable six-inch cake will be waiting in your room to celebrate your special occasion!  We have six delectable options for you to choose from: 

  • St Michel Mini Cake – Chocolate cake with dark, milk, and white chocolate mousse and Grand Marnier
  • Marquise Mini Cake – Chocolate cake, chocolate truffle cream
  • Fraisier Mini Cake – Vanilla cake, vanilla custard, fresh strawberries
  • Schuss Mini Cake – Lemon cake, raspberry mousse
  • Brazilia Mini Cake – Coffee flavored cake, chocolate mousse
  • White & Dark Covered Chocolate Strawberries

**Reservations for this package are not available for stays within 72 hours, as we must allow time to ensure your cake order be prepared for your arrival.**


Pacific Grove Golf Links

Pacific Grove Golf Links

Since its initial opening in 1932, the Pacific Grove Golf Links has enjoyed a rich and storied history.  The 18-hole layout, with a front nine that offers glimpses of Monterey Bay on fairways framed by Cypress Trees, and an ocean-side back nine cut through windswept dunes reminiscent of a traditional Scottish links, has delighted visitors and locals alike for over 75 years. 

Featuring a newly constructed, award-winning Golf Shop and Clubhouse, the Pacific Grove Golf Links pairs a historical playing experience with a modern twist.  The property, from the course to the Golf Shop to the Point Pinos Grill, encourage guests to “Experience golf as it should be”.  If it’s playing the great game of golf for the first time, or playing as a seasoned tournament player, guests of the Pacific Grove Golf links are sure to find everything they are looking for, and much more.

The Pacific Grove Golf Links is open sun-up to sun-down, seven days a week, 365 days a year.

An option to include a round of golf at the Pacific Grove Golf Links will be available to you at the time of booking your reservation.


Monterey Whale Watching

Monterey Whale Watching

Imagine being within feet of some of the most majestic, graceful, rare animals in the world.  In Monterey Bay you will be given the opportunity to experience sights that will create memories for a lifetime.  Princess Monterey Whale Watching is Monterey Bay’s leading company in narrated ocean and bay tours.  Specializing in natural history and biology of marine wild life; especially whales!  Whale watching tours are approximately 2 1/2 to 3 hours in duration.  Advanced reservations are suggested to secure preferred dates and tour times.<

The option to purchase tickets to join the Princess Monterey Whale Watching experience will be presented to you at the time of booking your reservation.

PGIF: Cocktails, Concerts, and Things That Go Bump in the Night

It’s almost that time of year again. For trick-or-treating, costumes, and things that go bump in the night. For turkey dinners, and early Christmas shopping, and an entire holiday season filled with the brightest of memories. In fact, it’s the right time for anything here in Pacific Grove, and the weekend lineup is as eclectic and far-reaching as the Monterey Peninsula itself. From fall feasts to festive frights, here’s our quick list of a few things you can do in Monterey this Friday to Sunday.

After Hours Too

“The only time to eat diet food is while you’re waiting for the steak to cook,” says Julia Child. And there is no dieting allowed in Monterey this weekend! There are several culinary options to choose from:

Third Annual Monterey Bay Restaurant Week, October 20-27
A whole week exclusively for Monterey Bay restaurants! Cuisine in Monterey is top of the line all year long, but this week you’ll get a chance to taste the very best of what the Peninsula has to offer through a selection of prix fixe menus at some of the area’s finest: Andre’s Bouchée Bistro, Carmel Food Company, 1833 Restaurant, and The Fish Hopper to name just a few (check out our Fish Hopper review!). Top chefs bring together the freshest local seafood and produce prepared a la Monterey just for you. Take a look at menus and make reservations at the Monterey Bay Restaurant Week website.

Monterey Tequila and Mezcal Expo, October 22, Portola Plaza Hotel & Spa, Monterey
If you want to know about spirits, there’s a whole expo dedicated to a couple of the world’s most popular. Find out everything you’ve always wanted to know about Tequila at the Tequila 101 presentation, then get some samples at a special tasting. There’s also a salsa dance performance, music, and a silent auction to benefit the Salinas Jaycees Children’s Shopping Tour for underprivileged children.

Salinas Valley Food & Wine, October 22, Salinas
More in Salinas! A collection of the best local food, wine, and friends, brought together on 200 block Main Street in Oldtown.

Halloween Fun

Here in Monterey, we believe Halloween should be safe and FUN! There’s no limit to activities for the whole family:

Haunted Mirror Maze, October 21-22; 28-31
Meander your way through Monterey Mirror Maze, weekends through the end of October. But watch out—it’s haunted! Try their Lazer Maze Challenge or throw on a pair of Kaleidoscope glasses for even more thrills. Check out the videos on their website!

October 22
Halloween/Ghost Tours, Point Sur Lightstation. Experience the lighthouses of Point Sur at sunset for some eerie entertainment—a unique Halloween tour with ghost stories, a ‘paranormal investigator,’ and refreshments. All you need is a sense of fun…and a little courage.

Howl-O-Ween Safari, Wild Things, Salinas. A great choice for younger children and anyone who prefers their Halloween a little more cuddly and a little less scary. Wild Things, a company that provides humanely trained animals for film, productions, and education, is opening up their ‘jungle’ for Howl-O-Ween flashlight tours with a Halloween show, costume contest, Nocturnal Safari, and Trick-or-Treating. Come meet the real creatures of the night!

Fun Fall Days continue this Saturday at Earthbound Farms in Carmel. A host of fun activities for everyone! Check out what they have going on year-round.

October 22-23
A few other fall-themed events you might want to stop by are the Monterey Bay FallFest Arts and Crafts Faire, Custom House Plaza, Monterey State Historic Park, and the Monterey Fall Home Show at Monterey County Fairgrounds, providing everything you need to build and furnish your home for the holidays.

*Mark your calendars now for October 29: the 95th Annual Carmel-By-the-Sea Birthday Celebration & Halloween Parade!

Sunset Spectaculars

There are so many things going on at the Sunset Center this weekend, it merited a special mention all of its own. Here’s something fun you can do every day this weekend:

Friday, October 21
With a name like Mangia del’ Arte, you know it has to be good. It’s an evening of cirque, dance, fine Italian food, and magic at Sunset Center’s Studio 105. Ringmaster Jeff Raz (star of over 500 performances for Cirque du Soleil’s Corteo) has teamed up with magician Calvin Kai Ku for breathtaking acrobatics and magic, while choreographer Tandy Beal directs the cornucopia of visual delights.

Saturday, October 22
Hey Teacher, leave us kids alone! No, it’s not a back-to-school classroom rebellion. It’s the Pink Floyd Concert Experience, what the San Francisco Chronicles calls, ‘One of the best Pink Floyd shows we’ve seen!’ Starring House of Floyd, this live recreation of a real Pink Floyd show is complete with laser lights and a mix of the hits, both old and new, including ‘The Wall’ and ‘Dark Side of the Moon.’ You might even hear some tunes you’ve never heard before!

Sunday, October 23
Lisztomania! Presented by the Monterey Symphony with conductor Max Bragado-Darman and pianist Zhengyu Chen. The best of the best.

Magic, memories, and a little mystery…there’s so much to do here this Halloween and beyond. So what are you afraid of? Come visit us! Here’s wishing you a season as colorful as the leaves outside your window, and a happy and safe Halloween. We hope you’ll stop by before the year is out! Our door is always open and our light is always on.

Fun. Fantastic. Fall.

Watermelon to pumpkin pie. Sandals to sweaters. Rolex Monterey Motorsports to Porsche Rennsport. As we fall deeper into a clear, crisp autumn, you might find yourself craving some fall fun. So whether you’re out for a nice steaming cup of hot chocolate, a hay ride round the pumpkin patch, or a seat right by the track, Monterey knows how to do each season in style. Here are a few highlights…

Big Dreams, Big Screen
If you love art, film, music, and celebrities all in one fantastic place, come to the Carmel Art & Film Festival, now to October 16. This week the dreamlike city by the sea is proud to host a ‘Kaleidoscope of Ideas,’ showcasing a variety of mediums in a display of extraordinary talent. Check out our blog post for more info!

Porsche Plus
There’s never a dull moment at the Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. This week the world-famous track will honor one of the most prized cars of our time, the Porsche, at the Porsche Rennsport Reunion IV, October 14-16. Fans will have the chance to meet 50 top Porsche drivers, get autographs, and see almost 1,000 Porsches on display. The reunion is only every three years, so you won’t want to miss it this time! Two bonuses: an exclusive viewing point usually off-limits to the public, and this year’s co-Grand Marshals Jerry Seinfeld, comedian and Porsche enthusiast extraordinaire, and legendary engineer Norbert Singer. Double bonus: If you’re looking for more Porsche action, stop by the Porsche Race Car Classic on October 16 at Carmel’s Quail Lodge Resort and Golf Club.

Just for (Fall) Fun
Monterey has plenty going on for families!

Saturday, October 15
Fall Festival, The Farm in Salinas Valley,with hayrides, pumpkin races, a scarecrow contest, and a puppet show.

Fun Fall Days, Earthbound Organic Farm in Carmel, offering squash and seed tasting, cornhusk doll making, pumpkin poles, pumpkin carving demonstrations, games, and crafts.

Sunday, October 16
Fiesta del Mar, Monterey Bay Aquarium.
It’s ocean conservation and a cultural celebration in one for this fun annual event. Live music, Aztec Dancers, crafts, bilingual feeding shows, and all the marvels of the Monterey Bay Aquarium—plus a brand new Great White Shark exhibit. This little guy looks pretty happy in his new home.…you might even see him smile.

Grateful Life Festival, Monterey County Fairgrounds. Open-air concert with Cedar-N-Sage and Cecil Allen (Clay).

Eat, Drink, and Be Marina
Here’s a great chance to sink into coastal life and get to know our neighbor, the city of Marina. You’re invited to ‘Fall into Flavors’ at the 7th Annual International Flavors of Marina on October 13. Sample over 20 of the best local wineries and eateries, and a little bit of life on the bay at The Dunes on Monterey Bay, a new Catalyst Project community planned for completion by 2020. The new development is across from Fort Ord Dunes State Park, the area’s newest park, and will focus on sustainability and community growth. It’s set to have a regional light rail, biking and hiking trails, shopping, and new affordable housing by Pulte Homes and Shea Homes. Enjoy the local flavors and maybe even find your own dream house by the sea.

‘Fast Planes and Hot Cars…’ That’s what the Marina Air Faire is all about this Saturday, October 15. The annual fair gives you nonstop great times from 10am to 4pm: Wine Tasting from Hahn Estates, Scheid Vineyards, and more, an art show and sale, classic car show, aircraft display, silent auction, Community Chili Challenge, even plane rides. And the profits will go to local charity.

Swiss Miss Bliss
Chocolate tastes better on the bay. On the Hot Chocolate Sunset Cruise with Elkhorn Slough Safari, you can enjoy a brilliant coastal sunset while warming up with some hot cocoa in Elkhorn Slough, one of the best viewing places for local wildlife. This is a special tour available only in the fall! Elkhorn Slough Safari is also setting out on a Sea Otter Focus Tour Sunday, October 16, where you can talk with experts and spend quality time with this amazing (endangered) species.

Deep Blue Sea…
Closer to home, there will be a lecture here at the Pacific Grove Museum of Natural History: ‘Green Seas, Blue Seas—Conveying Science, Conservation and History through Public Art,’ with Frank Schwing, Senior Policy Analyst with the National Oceans Council.

The weekend is almost here! From race cars to art and film, there is a Kaleidoscope of Ideas to choose from. And a trip to Monterey might be the best idea yet.

Latest Review of Pacific Grove Inn

We are always glad to make new friends! The latest review of our B&B is by Jen of The Mom Reviews, and she had some lovely things to say about her stay. Here’s a quick clip…

Living on the central coast, there are many wonderful places to stay.  About an hour south of home, you can be in the seaside town of Pacific Grove where the accommodations move from hotels/resorts to quaint bed and breakfast cottages and boutique-style hotels that make you feel like you are home yet away from home.  Recently, we stayed at the Pacific Grove Inn, a combination boutique hotel with the intimacy of a bed and breakfast. [Read more…]

To read the whole review, click here. Many thanks again to Jen for visiting us!

PGIF: October Fests and Columbus Day Weekend

October. A time for pumpkins, festivals, Fleet Week, theater, beer, and celebrating the fall, our nation…and especially California. Here’s our quick list of just a few ways you can enjoy Columbus Day weekend 2011:

Further Back
It was around this time many years ago that Monterey housed the debates that have led California to where we are today: Statehood. Now you can see how it all began at the Monterey History Fest this weekend, October 8–9, at the Custom House Plaza and other venues around Monterey. It’s a fun way to dig deep into the richness of Monterey’s heritage, with historical reenactments, musket and cannon firing demonstrations, a Native American puppet show children will love, and Civil War encampments—plus a military camp of the California Historical Artillery Society, the largest mounted artillery group in the US. There will also be a special commemoration of the 162nd Anniversary of California’s Constitution Day, scripted from actual state records. Come be a part of history!

Further On
Grateful Dead founding members Phil Lesh and Bob Weir are coming to the area with their band ‘Further,’ on tour now. And Monterey is throwing a festival just for them! The Further Festival at the Monterey County Fairgrounds, October 7–8, will feature an outstanding lineup of musicians, including Jeff Chimenti, John Kadlecik, Joe Russo, Sunshine Becker, and Jeff Pehrson, as Further lights up the Peninsula with their signature jams and stellar style.

Pure Jade
The 20th Annual Big Sur Jade Festival kicks off this Friday, October 7–9, at the Pacific Valley School across Highway 1 in Big Sur. Peruse long tables covered with the precious stone and enjoy live music, good food, and lectures and demonstrations including how to carve a jade bangle. One of the world’s largest shows of its kind, the three-day event is perfect for craft-makers, collectors, hobbyists…just about anyone.

Photo by Digital Sophia

Footloose and Fancy Fare
If you’re in the mood for something sweet and savory with a little ’80s panache, try a Taste of Carmel, one of the top wine and dine events in the area, Thursday, October 6, at the historic Carmel Mission. Sample a variety of flavors from some of the best local restaurants and wineries—Cantinetta Luca, Merlot Bistro, Lula’s Chocolates, Morgan Winery, and Chateau Julien, to name just a few. You’re also invited to wear your ’80s best for this year’s theme, ‘Footloose and Fancy Fare,’ with a DJ and dance party.

Mini Mention
They may be small, but they are mighty: miniature ships at the Society of Miniature Ship Collectors Meeting, Northern California chapter, October 8 at the Portola Hotel & Spa, Monterey. Hundreds of models will be displayed, drawing exhibitors and visitors from all over the world. You might even see some Naval ships passing through the area, part of San Francisco’s Fleet Week.

Weekend Shorts
There are too many events to list this weekend! Here are a few more you might enjoy:

October 7
First Fridays Art Walk, downtown Salinas. A great way to observe California Arts Day!

Robinson Jeffers Fall Festival, Robinson Jeffers Tor House, Carmel. The festival runs Friday to Sunday with poetry readings, lectures, and an Annual Jeffers Poetry Walk on Carmel River Beach.

October 8
Beerfest at Monterey Plaza Hotel & Spa, Cannery Row, Monterey. Beer and live music, Octoberfest style.

Photo Safari, Elkhorn Slough, Moss Landing. Beginner to advanced photographer, anyone can join this fun cruise through some of the most beautiful scenery in the area, taking photos of the wildlife and making memories for a lifetime.

October 9
First Annual Monterey Beer Garden, Memory Gardens, downtown Monterey. Hosted by Peter B’s Brewpub of the Portola Hotel & Spa, the evening offers over a dozen brews, BBQ, and some great fall fun.

October 7-9
Romeo & Juliet, Outdoor Forest Theater, Carmel. A classic, right here in Monterey.

There’s no wrong way to celebrate Columbus Day weekend. We hope you celebrate with us!

PGIF: Of Butterflies and Bazaars

It’s one of the highlights of the season this weekend: Pacific Grove’s annual Butterfly Parade and Bazaar, and the Historic Homes Tour. Thousands of locals and visitors flock to Lighthouse Avenue and beyond to celebrate the future and embrace the past. Here’s a look at some of the most fun things to do in Monterey this weekend as September flutters away into a brilliant October.

Butterflies in the City

Known as ‘Butterfly Town, USA,’ each year Pacific Grove welcomes the ‘king’ of butterflies, the Monarch, to its coastal havens and mild winters. This October marks more than 70 years of a well-loved community tradition, with the colorful Butterfly Parade and Bazaar, Saturday, October 1. Children dress up as butterflies, otters, pioneers, and more, parading through the streets of Pacific Grove to Robert Down Elementary School for the festive Butterfly Bazaar, with carnival games, a raffle, and a bake sale. Don’t miss the celebration! And watch out for ‘Butterfly Crossing’ signs.

Step into the Past

Another date to put on your calendar this coming weekend is the 42nd Annual Historic Home Tour, Sunday, October 2. It’s your chance to ask questions, look inside, and discover all the Victorian charm of Pacific Grove’s historic buildings, bed & breakfasts, churches, and houses. We hope you stop by and see us!

Celebrating Our Heritage

Both of these fun community events are part of the Pacific Grove Chautauqua Days, Friday to Sunday, a tradition begun at Pacific Grove’s birth in the late 1800s and continued today throughout the city—at Chautauqua Hall, the public library, the Pacific Grove Museum of Natural History, local schools, and more. The focus is on all that makes our city great, from its people to its products, who we are to what we do. To list just a few of the things you can do this weekend, there is a Monterey County Artist studio tour at Pacific Grove Art Center on September 30, as well as a dance jam at Chautauqua Hall; a lecture, ‘Your Inner Butterfly: The Power of Words to Change Our World,’ and ‘The Itty Bitty Variety Show’ at the Pacific Grove Public Library on October 1; and a historic walking tour downtown on October 2. Check out the Pacific Grove Official Visitors Guide for more info.

Born to Be Wild

If you own a Harley, there’s definitely one place you need to be this weekend: the 2011 California State H.O.G. Rally at the Monterey County Fairgrounds and Monterey County Harley-Davidson dealership, now to October 1. A special occasion just for HOGS (Harley Owners Group members), the rally kicks off with an opening ceremony and continues through Saturday with scenic rides all over the peninsula (including Hollister, Big Sur, Carmel, and Santa Cruz), finishing up with a homestyle BBQ chicken and tri-tip dinner before closing ceremonies. Come take a ride through the place where it all began.

Art

Whether in the adobes or on the wharf, wherever you go in Monterey you will find creative minds of every kind. This fall is the first ever Art in the Adobes in Old Monterey, September 30 to October 2. A combination of rarely-seen early California art and Monterey’s classic adobes and fairy-tale gardens, you won’t want to miss a tour of these ‘Hidden Treasures from Old Monterey,’ the theme for this year’s kickoff. Venues include the beautiful Cooper-Molera adobe, the Monterey Museum of Art, and the Stevenson House, where Robert Louis Stevenson once stayed as Monterey inspired one of his greatest works, Treasure Island. There’s also fun for kids at the Monterey Museum of Art’s family activities day, October 1 at Elkins Park. Learn how to make some favorite Victorian crafts such as leaf rubbings, treasure boxes, and designs made from seeds and dried beans.

Another gathering for art-lovers is Art on the Wharf on Old Fisherman’s Wharf, October 1. The Wharf will showcase a full range of artistic abilities—painting, music, pottery, photography, performing arts, chalk art—and show visitors and aspiring young artists that anything, even beach debris, can become a masterpiece with a creative outlook and a splash of inspiration.

Strolling downtown in a vibrant Butterfly Parade, touring historic avenues, uncovering hidden treasures—come join us in celebrating our roots as a community while appreciating all that makes us proud to live in Monterey, and especially Pacific Grove. We would love to welcome you to our beautiful city!

Pizza secrets, and a concert with the Bacons

How about a hand-crafted pizza tomorrow, Thursday, 9/29, in Carmel? Make a lunch date at Cantinetta Luca, voted ‘Best Restaurant in Carmel’ by readers of Monterey County Weekly, for their ‘Pizza Secrets Class.’ You can discover the secrets to great handmade Italian cuisine right in their restaurant. Learn how to make their famous pizzas in a beautiful ‘Californean’ setting, then sit down and enjoy!

And later tomorrow night, at 8pm, enjoy a special concert with the Bacon Brothers, actor Kevin Bacon and film composer Michael Bacon, at the Sunset Center in Carmel. An unforgettable night of what The New Yorker calls ‘sharply executed rock that has a blue-collar, rootsy edge.’ Plus, come early for dinner at Cantinetta Luca and receive a discount off your check…a gourmet deal just for concert-goers!

How about that for a weekend warm-up?

PGIF: Monterey–the Other City that Never Sleeps

After all the bustle and business of last weekend’s world-famous Concours, auctions, and races, you might think the town would take this weekend off.

But not Monterey.

Today is the “Kick-Off Party” of the 10th Annual Sand City West End Celebration, jumpstarting the three-day festival of live music, art, cuisine, and any number of Monterey’s top creative talent. Join in tonight’s party with live entertainment from Blues master Chris Cain, Red Beans & Rice (voted best local band in Monterey for 11 years in a row), and John “Broadway” Tucker (winner of the Monterey Bay Blues Festival’s Mobay Award), plus a special performance by the Monterey Bay Blues Festival’s Blues in the School Honor Band.

The celebration sets up a great lineup of musicians every year, drawing such acts as last year’s Los Lobos (the Grammy award-winning band you may know best from their hit cover of Ritchie Valens’ ‘La Bamba’). Some of 2011’s artists include Honeymoon, Jackie Greene, and Matt Masih and the Messengers.

With the many exhibitions, vendors, music, sculptures, and paintings, there’s plenty for everyone here this weekend. Plus, it’s easy being green at the festival’s ‘Green Scene,’ where you can find out more about raw cuisine, green living, and environmental health.

Saturday, August 27

If you missed any of last week’s festivities, the car shows continue! Tomorrow is the 7th Annual Mopars by the Bay Car Show at Monterey State Historic Park. In case you’re wondering, Mopar is short for Motor Parts, a term coined by Chrysler in the 1920s, which has come to describe any member of the Chrysler family, including Dodge, Plymouth and Jeep. It’s a whole day of entertainment, raffles, and awards, all free to the public.

Science rocks in Monterey! It’s Science Saturday at the Pacific Grove Museum of Natural History. This month’s feature is Rocks and Minerals, with lots of activities to help you explore nature’s geological secrets right here in our own back yard of Pacific Grove.

‘Shop for a Cause’ this Saturday, and treat yourself at Macy’s and macys.com to support the community! All proceeds go to the Marina Foundation, which grants scholarships and funds to residents, education programs, and organizations that enrich our area. You’ll also get the chance to win a $500 Macy’s gift card. This is Macy’s sixth nationwide event, which has raised more than $38 million for charities.

Sunday, August 28

The Marina Certified Farmers Market continues this Sunday, with a special addition: an Otter Day event, celebrating the return of Cal State Monterey Bay’s student Otters. The day is packed with fun activities—a scavenger hunt, healthy cooking workshops with Kari Bernardi and Dale Presson, a fashion show, drawings, live music and a DJ…plus the market’s weekly display of organic produce, crafts, and more.

‘Today’s the day the Teddy Bears have their picnic…’ MY Museum (Monterey Youth Museum) is hosting a Teddy Bear Picnic for children 5 and under, with games, snacks, and songs. And don’t forget to bring the guest of honor—your favorite bear.

One of the best parts of the weekend is Sunday Brunch! Try something new at the annual Jewish Food Festival and Crafts Faire in Carmel, this Sunday starting at 10:30am. Explore Jewish delicacies from challah bread and latkes to blintzes and strudel, plus watch a reenactment of a spirited Jewish wedding, shop from an assortment of fine Israeli and American crafts, and dance along to traditional Klezmer music.

And as a special sneak preview, there’s plenty of fun scheduled for the Monterey County Fair, starting next Tuesday, August 31–September 5. Stop by the website to buy tickets and find listings of all the fantastic upcoming events and sponsors for 2011!

Talk about things to do in Monterey! With this much to do and more year round, Monterey may well be the other city that never sleeps. The laid-back ease of coastal life combined with an exciting social calendar and the unique seaside charm of Monterey make the Peninsula a treasure for travelers and locals alike. We look forward to welcoming you!

Running Events: Music, Music, Music!

Concerts in Carmel: Fridays at Carmel Plaza
Annie the Musical: Weekends through September 25 at the Outdoor Forest Theater in Carmel.
Music on the Mall: Del Monte Shopping Center. Saturdays in August. This Saturday is the last one, so hurry if you want to catch some great music and shopping this summer!
Monterey Plaza Hotel and Spa concert series: Fridays at the Monterey Plaza Hotel.
Sunday Music by the River: Every Sunday from 1-5pm at the Big Sur River Inn.
Evenings by the Bay + Aquarium Sleepover: Saturdays and Sundays through September 4.

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