The Bay Area motto has to be “Work Hard, Play Hard!” Between the bevy of incredible tech event opportunities, huge concerts, and entire days devoted to chocolate, beer, and bacon, this city definitely keeps us busy. Join ABCey as we count down on our calendars to the 10 most anticipated SF events!
1. Bacon and Beer Festival | Saturday, August 25th | 2:30 p.m.-5:00 p.m. | 950 Mason Street, San Francisco | As if every day of our lives wasn’t devoted to this classical combo already! We’re gonna keep it simple: bacon vendors, breweries, and tastings. Perfection.
2. Oracle OpenWorld | Sunday, September 22nd- Thursday, September 26th | Moscone Center, San Francisco | Oracle puts on its annual OpenWorld event to showcase any news and products to over 45,000 attendees. Amongst the hundreds of sponsors and exhibitions, customize your experience by choosing events that focus on communications, customer experience, big data, and more! In addition to the networking and learning opportunities, there’s bound to be plenty of fun integrating Oracle Team USA and the America’s Cup!
3. America’s Cup Finals | September 17th-21st | Pier 27/29, San Francisco| Whether you’re a boat racing fanatic or just love the waterfront views, the America’s Cup Finals are a must-see. Cheer on your favorite team before all these beautiful boats leave the bay!
4. TechCrunch’s Distrupt SF | Saturday, September 7th- Wednesday, September 11th | The Concourse at San Francisco Design Center | This tech conference is back with new startups, speakers, and technology to discuss! It kicks off with the much-anticipated hackathon, but the real stars of the show are the startups that have a chance to present their business plans in the Startup Battlefield.
5. Ghirardelli Chocolate Festival | September 14th-15th, 2013 | Ghirardelli Chocolate Company | Celebrate SF’s favorite chocolate company with ice-cream eating contests, chef demos, and tons of chocolate samples! This year, they’ve offered a wine and chocolate pavillion because, well, nothing’s better than chocolate and wine!
6. VM World Defy Convention 2013 | Sunday, August 25th- Thursday, August 29th | VMWorld Campus, San Francisco | VMWorld is all about pinpointing problems in the tech world and teaching you the skills to fix them. Attendees can visit over 350 training sessions, hands-on labs, or the Solutions Exchange to see what other companies are doing or compare notes with IT industry experts.
7. BurningMan | August 26th- September 2nd, 2013 | Black Rock Desert, Nevada | Take a break from the hustle of city life and find yourself in the art-based, self-reliant, and self-defiant community that is BurningMan. At this festival, YOU are the entertainment and play an active role in creating and participating in the events.
8. CloudBeat | Monday, September 9th- Tuesday, September 10th | The Grand Hyatt, San Francisco | Cloud technology has played a huge role in the changing face of technology and startups in the past few years, and attending CloudBeat will keep you on top of all things cloud. Through industry speakers and activities, the event will explore the rise of the cloud enterprise and its integration into the web.
9. Hardly Strictly Bluegrass | October 4th, 2013- October 6th, 2013 | Golden Gate Park| It’s hard to imagine going to a free, non-sponsored event anywhere, but HSB is a musical haven for the Bay Area community. Although it started as a bluegrass festival, the lineup has expanded to include artists like Emmylou Harris, Earl Scruggs, and more!
10. BoxWorks | Sunday, September 15th- Tuesday, September 17th | Hilton San Francisco | Box is sponsoring a two-day event aimed towards what’s possible and what’s next in technology, business, society, and Box itself. Expect visionary speakers, deep conversations, lasting connections, and an “epic after party!”
The art installation by Leo Villareal on the Bay Bridge is absolutely stunning. The thousands of shimmering lights decorating the bridge elevate the Golden Gate’s awkward cousin to the big leagues while adding to the already picturesque skyline across San Francisco Bay. ABCey explores the innovative technology behind Villareal’s masterpiece.
The backstory: Villareal is an accomplished artist whose work spans across America, including the Burningman camp Disorient. Ben Davis, founder of World Pictures Ideas, discovered Villareal’s work at the 2010 Zero1 Biennial in Silicon Valley. As chairman of Illuminate the Arts, Davis recruited the artist to begin the enormous project to adorn the Bay Bridge in light in honor of its 75th birthday.
Villareal used around 25,000 individuall programmed white LED lights to complete his project. Philips Color Kinetics custom made the lights and a complex algorithm to create an ever-changing pattern across the western side of the bridge. The lights are mounted in single strands along the bridge’s cables and use around 150 kilowatt hours during its nightly 7-hour shift. The displays costs around $11,000 per year, or about $4.25 per hour!
The bridge is now not only a bridge, but a contemporary work of art deemed the largest LED sculpture in the world. 50 million people are expected to see the bridge during the art work’s two year lifespan. The Bay Lights are a symbol of the bay area’s world-renoun leadership in the arts, transportation and progress, and, of course, technology.