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Top November Events in the East Bay

Gourmet East Bay; Goodguys; and more fun events.


Photo by Jessamyn Photography

Food & Drink

Gourmet East Bay
Explore the range of flavors that the East Bay has to offer while giving back to the community at this annual event presented by Diablo in partnership with Broadway Plaza. With tastings from some of the best local restaurants and wineries, along with live music and dancing, this culinary celebration in downtown Walnut Creek is foodie heaven. diablomag.com.


Napa Valley Film Festival
Connoisseurs of independent filmmaking, fine cuisine, and top-shelf wines will find plenty to sample at the Napa Valley Film Festival. The popular event brings movie fans and celebrities to Wine Country for more than 100 screenings, bites from acclaimed chefs, and pours from 150-plus wineries.

This year’s program features up-and-coming Bay Area talent along with appearances by established stars and filmmakers, including Will Ferrell and Nikki Reed.

One East Bay highlight is Quest, a semiautobiographical film written, directed, and coproduced by Berkeley native Santiago Rizzo, and starring Lakeith Stanfield, Lou Diamond Phillips, Betsy Brandt, and Dash Mihok. Pulling elements from Rizzo’s childhood, the film tells the story of a 12-year-old graffiti “addict” and the middle school teacher who inspired him to seek another path.

Other Bay Area offerings include The Spirit and Spirits of Port Costa, a short documentary on the eccentric Contra Costa County town; Casey Beck’s The Act of Being, a topical feature about a Richmond theater director who moderates onstage discussions between police and ex-cons; Hop Dreams, a short that chronicles Oakland-based brewer Melissa Myers making her mark in a male-dominated field; and The Untold Tales of Armistead Maupin, a documentary on the writer of the San Francisco–based Tales of the City. nvff.org. —Randy Myers


Mariinsky Orchestra
One of Russia’s oldest classical music groups, the Mariinsky Orchestra brings its talents to Zellerbach Hall at UC Berkeley, performing selections by some of the country’s greatest modern composers, including Sergei Prokofiev’s Symphony no. 6 and Dmitri Shostakovich’s Symphony no. 9. calperformances.org.


Goodguys 28th Autumn Get-Together
Drive over to the Alameda County Fairgrounds in Pleasanton for this end-of-the-year hot rod extravaganza. Check out more than 2,500 classic and custom cars, and enjoy art exhibits, live music, and driving competitions. good-guys.comShutterstock


Free Movie Night
11/9 The second Thursday of each month, Diablo hosts a free movie at the Orinda Theatre. This month, enjoy Alfred Hitchcock’s mastery of thrills and suspense in the classic film North by Northwest. lamorindatheatres.com.


Smuin Ballet’s The Christmas Ballet
11/17–11/18 Lesher Center for the Arts
presents the annual Smuin Ballet holiday special, celebrating the Christmas season with a dazzling ballet performance. Including both classical and contemporary styles of dance, The Christmas Ballet has something for everyone. smuinballet.org.


Macy’s Tree Lighting Ceremony
11/24 After a long day of Black Friday bargain hunting, take a little time to enjoy the holiday spirit with the lighting of the Christmas tree in San Francisco’s Union Square. The merry event includes live performances as well as a visit from Santa Claus. unionsquareshop.com. —Colin Bean

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