Italian Heritage Parade, Fleet Week Air Show Highlight Weekend Events

Bob Pryor
October 11, 2019 - 2:25 am
A U.S. Navy Blue Angels F/A-18 Hornet piloted by U.S. Marine Corps Major Nathan Miller flies over the San Francisco skyline during a practice flight in Fleet Week 2009.

Justin Sullivan / Staff (Getty Images)

The City By the Bay is the star of the show this week, as two big events bring in the crowds to San Francisco. First, the US Navy caps off Fleet Week events with its big annual air show over the Bay on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday afternoon. On Sunday, North Beachers and others will get to see the 151st Italian Heritage Parade make its way from Fisherman’s Wharf down that long stretch of Columbus Avenue toward Washington Square.

On Saturday, Alameda’s annual Classic Car show returns to Park Street. On the Peninsula, good weather looks to be in store for the two-day San Carlos Art and Wine Faire.

SAN FRANCISCO:

Fri, Oct 11; Sat, Oct 12; Sun, Oct 13 from noon-4pm each day: The US Navy Fleet Week Air Show takes place between the Golden Gate Bridge and Alcatraz, with ticketed seating on the Marina Green at the Fleet Week Festival Center (For everybody else, the show is free). In addition to the US Navy Blue Angels, several other units from different branches of the armed services perform. Muni says a crowd of over 300,000 is expected each day.

From 10am-7pm, Muni’s F Market and Wharves line will be supplemented by shuttle buses running to and from The Ferry Building and Fisherman’s Wharf. 

On Saturday and Sunday, CalTrain, in addition to its regular weekend service, will operate one extra northbound express train, departing from San Jose Diridon Station at 9:41am and arriving at the San Francisco Station at 10:45am. 

Also on Saturday and Sunday, starting at 1pm (due to anticipated heavy congestion), the Powell-Hyde and Powell-Mason cable car lines will be served by buses.

  • Pro tip: Don’t try to view the show from Treasure Island. The Treasure Island Development Authority strongly discourages the general public from visiting the Island during Fleet Week due to ongoing construction activities that will sharply restrict viewing/parking areas and will render roadways into many parking areas inaccessible.

Sun, Oct 13 at 12:30pm: The 151st Italian Heritage Parade roams from Fisherman's Wharf to North Beach. Parade viewing is available throughout the entire route. The parade should last about two-and-a-half hours and 150,000 people are expected. Traffic through the Fisherman’s Wharf and Russian Hill areas will be heavily congested (and don’t forget the Fleet Week Air Show happening today as well!)

Streets on the parade route will have a rolling closure, starting around 12 noon. 

  • Pro tip: If you hop off BART at Embarcadero and take an F Market train or a bus to Fisherman’s Wharf, you can see the parade begin. If you want to avoid the Fleet Week crowds, you can see the parade’s end at Washington Square Park. 

EAST BAY:

Sat, Oct 12 from 10am-4pm: Alameda: The 26th Annual Downtown Alameda Classic Car Show takes place on Park Street. More than 400 classic cars will be on display, along with local deejays spinning classic rock, plus a classic bicycle show, Hot Wheels Racing, Boy Scout Pinewood Derby Track, and a new “EV Alley” for electric vehicles.

  • Pro tip: If you get there early – between 7:30 and 9:30a – you get to hear the cars road their engines as they parade to their places. Plus, it’s easier to wander around and check out everything in the morning hours.
  • Areas and roadways affected: Downtown Alameda all around Park Street will be crowded. This page has good information on Downtown parking.

Good news for BART riders this weekend: BART’s Lafayette-area track rebuilding project will NOT have any impact on BART’s service schedule this weekend.  The next time the schedule will be impacted is next Saturday, October 19 (when there will be single-tracking between Walnut Creek and Orinda resulting in up-to-30-minute delays. 

PENINSULA:

Sat, Oct 12 and Sun, Oct 13 from 10am-6pm: The San Carlos Art and Wine Faire takes place on San Carlos Avenue and Laurel Street. It features 290 artists and crafters, three stages of entertainment, wines and microbrews, specialty food vendors, a Family Fun Zone and classic car show. Organizers say the Faire will not be affected by power outages.

  • Pro tip: As this page notes, you can park for free in the Caltrain lot at El Camino Real and Olive Street. And there’s free shuttle service every 15 minutes from Sutter Health at 301 Industrial Road.

SOUTH BAY:

Sat, Oct 12 and Sun, Oct 13, all day: VTA’s Blue Line 901, which runs between Alum Rock and Santa Teresa, and Green Line 902, between Mountain View and Winchester, will have a bus bridge in place this weekend, in both directions, between the Civic Center and Children’s Discovery Museum/San Fernando light-rail stations. This is due to ongoing light rail rehabilitation work and will involve some delays, so passengers should allow themselves some extra travel time. Full details are available for Lines 901 and 902 at VTA’s website.