The Stern Grove Festival 2018 runs from June 17 to August 19. This is the 81st anniversary in San Francisco. Every Sunday at 2 pm during the summer, you will find a free concert in the park. The show usually lasts two to three hours. The annual summer-long festival takes place in the Sigmund Stern Recreation Grove, a multi-acre green recreational area at 19th Avenue and Sloat Boulevard with expansive lawn and woodland.
Arrive early. Very early: All concerts start at 2 p.m. on Sundays, but most people get there two or even three hours before showtime. Some even enter the park at dawn to stake out the best spots. When the venue reaches capacity, festival organizers stop admitting people. In years past, the entrances have shut as early as 12:30 pm.
Take public transit or an Uber or Lyft. Parking in and around the Stern Grove is extremely limited. There is a bike valet service that opens at 10:00 a.m. and closes one hour after the concert ends. Bikes are not allowed in the Concert Meadow or Esplanade area of Stern Grove.
- June 17: The Big Picnic – Opening Day Benefit and Concert featuring Jeffrey Osborne & Peabo Bryson
- June 24: Ziggy Marley
- July 1: M. Ward with Thao & The Get Down Stay Down
- July 8: Mexican Institute of Sound with Special Guest Ginkgoa
- July 15: Anoushka Shankar, Land of Gold, Han Han
- July 22: San Francisco Symphony with Jayce Ogren, Conductor
- July 29: San Francisco Ballet with Helgi Tomasson, Artistic Director
- August 5: Femi Kuti and The Positive Force, Sol Development
- August 12: Ronnie Spector and the Ronettes
- August 19: The Revolution with the Big Blu Soul Revue
Blanket or Camping Chairs: You won’t find chairs or other seating. Bring something comfortable to sit on. You’ll be able to sprawl out on the lawn, a picnic blanket or a camping chair would make it comfortable for the two to three hours.
Sunscreen: Bring sunscreen. Spending hours outdoors under the sun can lead to sunburns.
Warm Clothing and Comfortable Shoes: SF weather can be unpredictable, wear several layers of clothing. You need comfortable shoes. The concert grove is down a large hill – you need to walk down for the show and up afterward. Skip the high heels.
Food & Drinks: There is a small cafe on site that sells a limited amount of food and beverages. You can also bring along your own and have a nice picnic lunch in the park during the concert. The cafe does not sell alcohol, but the park does allow you to drink beer and wine during the shows in the Concert Meadow and West Meadow.
Other Things to Know
No pets are allowed in this area of the park during the concerts. There are other areas open for pets, but they will not allow any within the concert seating area.
Make sure you keep an eye on your personal items at all times. It gets crowded…
Neither pictures nor video is permitted during the shows.
The playlist FREE via Spotify.