5 Best Things to Do This Week: October 28 – November 3

Hand-picked events and happenings, plus ways to give back.


Kincade Fire: How to Help

Many of us are currently without power and while it is expected to be restored today, the Kincade fire has grown to over 75,000 acres and is only about 15% contained. The hurricane force winds we’ve been experiencing have made an already difficult situation all the more treacherous and approximately 180,000 people have been forced to evacuate as the flames spread — another estimated 1.3 million Bay Area residents are without electricity. Our hearts and thoughts are with everyone affected by this eerily familiar tragedy.

If you are able to, please help. Here is a helpful list for how to do so from our friends at Sonoma Magazine.


The Red Cross

The Red Cross operates a number of evacuation shelters and fire relief efforts throughout Sonoma, Napa and Mendocino counties.

Volunteer: Those interested in volunteering at local evacuation shelters or fire relief sites operated by The Red Cross should register at redcross.org/volunteer. After registration, they will be contacted by The Red Cross and assigned to a site.

Marin Cares

2017 relief efforts from Marin Cares.

Make a donation: To make a donation, visit redcross.org, call 1-800-RED CROSS, or text the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation. You can also send a check to American Red Cross, 5297 Aero Dr, Santa Rosa, CA 95403. The check should be made out to “American Red Cross” with “Kincade fire” noted on the check.

The Volunteer Center of Sonoma County and The Center for Volunteer & Nonprofit Leadership (CVNL)

The Volunteer Center of Sonoma County and the Center for Volunteer & Nonprofit Leadership (CVNL) jointly operate a number of Emergency Volunteer Centers and coordinate help with emergency evacuations. The organizations are currently operating Emergency Volunteer Centers in Napa and Marin counties. In Sonoma County, they operate para-transit services to help move evacuees to safety.

Volunteer: Those interested in volunteering, should sign up through the Volunteer Portal at sonoma.cvnl.org/disaster-response. Needs are currently being assessed for the Kincade fire. Those interested in volunteering at one of the evacuation shelters in Petaluma should email admin@petalumapeople.org, call 707-529-1201, or express interest in person at the Kenilworth Teen Center at 150 Fairgrounds Drive.

The Redwood Empire Food Bank (REFB)

The Redwood Empire Food Bank (REFB) is currently under mandatory evacuation. They expect to return to their regular food distribution schedule on Tuesday, October 29.

Donate food: REFB is currently accepting food donations at their main facility at 3990 Brickway Blvd in Santa Rosa. They also have donation sites in the community, listed below (please call in advance to make sure locations are open and safe as many areas are currently under mandatory evacuation).

  • Oliver’s Cotati 546 E Cotati Ave, Cotati, CA 94931 | (707) 795-9501
  • Healdsburg Golf Club at Tayman Park 927 S. Fitch Mountain Rd, Healdsburg CA 95448 | (707) 434-4275
  • Siduri Wine Bar and Tasting Lounge 241 Healdsburg Ave, Healdsburg CA 95448 | (707) 433-6000
  • Whole Foods Petaluma: 621 E Washington St, Petaluma, CA 94952 | (707) 762-9352
  • The Redwood Club: 719 Southpoint Blvd # A, Petaluma, CA 94954 | (707) 778-8788
  • Grocery Outlet Santa Rosa: 1116 4th St, Santa Rosa, CA 95404 | (707) 566-0530
  • Oliver’s Stony Point: 461 Stony Point Rd, Santa Rosa, CA 95401 | (707) 284-3530
  • Whole Foods Coddingtown: 390 Coddingtown Mall, Santa Rosa, CA 95401 | (707) 542-7411
  • Sonoma YMCA: 1111 College Ave, Santa Rosa, CA 95404 | (707) 545-9622
  • Oliver’s Montecito: 560 Montecito Center, Santa Rosa, CA 95409 | (707) 537-7123
  • Whole Foods Yulupa: 1181 Yulupa Ave, Santa Rosa, CA 95405 | (707) 575-7915
  • Sonoma County Water Agency: 404 Aviation Blvd, Santa Rosa, CA 95403 | (707) 526-5370
  • Gateway Church: 3350 Coffey Ln suite c, Santa Rosa, CA 95403 | (707) 576-0747
  • Whole Foods Sebastopol: 6910 McKinley St, Sebastopol, CA 95472 | (707) 829-9801
  • Oliver’s Windsor: 9230 Old Redwood Hwy, Windsor, CA 95492 | (707) 687-2050

Donate money: “In the coming days, we will be meeting the needs of more than 200,000 of our neighbors. Monetary donations allow us to buy and distribute the type of food most needed,” said a press release from the REFB. Make a donation here.

Volunteer: If you are interested in volunteering — helping out in the REFB kitchen and with food distribution — send an email to volunteers@refb.org.

Photo from 2017 efforts by Marin Cares.

Sonoma Family Meal

Founded by SMI dining editor Heather Irwin, Sonoma Family Meal has served more than 200,000 meals to fire survivors since 2017. The nonprofit is also an emergency disaster response kitchen and is now serving Kincade fire victims and evacuees.

Volunteer and donate: Sonoma Family Meal is currently seeking trained chefs and kitchen helpers as well as people who can move food and pickup supplies and produce. Sign up to volunteer at https://www.sonomafamilymeal.org/volunteer/. Make a donation here.

World Central Kitchen

The World Central Kitchen’s “Chef Relief Team” provides meals to those in need in disaster areas. Chef Tyler Florence’s Kincade fire team served 6000 meals at the Sonoma County Fairgrounds in Santa Rosa on Sunday.

On Twitter, Tyler Florence encourages people wanting to volunteer — especially those with kitchen experience — to send him a direct message. Those interested in volunteering can also register online at https://wck.org/volunteer.


COTS welcomes evacuees to visit their Mary Isaak Center (900 Hopper Street, Petaluma) for showers, laundry, meals and phone charging. All services are free.

The nonprofit is currently seeking the following donations for fire evacuees:

  • Towels and washcloths
  • Shampoo, body wash
  • Bedding/sleeping bags
  • Laundry detergent
  • Toilet paper
  • N95 masks

Volunteer: Regular COTS volunteers are encouraged to help coordinate laundry and showers. Get in touch with the front desk: 707-765-6530 x120.

Petaluma Peoples Services Center

Petaluma Peoples Services Center is a collection of human services programs providing support through, for example, counseling, daily hot meals, rides to the doctor, case management, and financial assistance. Now serving Kincade fire victims.

Make a donation: Those interested in making a donation serving Kincade fire victims can do this online at http://petalumapeople.org/donate and the organization will make “targeted purchases.”

You can also bring items from the list below to Kenilworth Teen Center, 150 Fairgrounds Drive, right next to the library.

New requests:

  • Breathe Right Strips
  • Dayquil
  • Nyquil
  • Mints
  • Gum
  • Chapstick
  • Individually Packaged Snacks
  • Nebulizers
  • Liquid Albuterol
  • Baby Aspirin
  • Aspirin
  • Tylenol

Ongoing needs:

  • Adult Diapers (Extra Large and Large)
  • Gatorade
  • Juice Boxes
  • Drip Coffee
  • Laundry Detergent
  • New Blankets
  • New Pillows
  • Litter Boxes
  • Doggie Bags
  • Hand Warmers
  • Duct Tape
  • Baby Oil
  • New T-shirts, New Underwear, New Socks, Women’s Tank Tops
  • New Towels
  • Ear Plugs
  • Bio Bags
  • Sharp Containers
  • Anything Medical
  • Eye Masks
  • Dog/Cat Leashes

Please do not bring any items that are not on this list.

Volunteer: Those wanting to volunteer can fill out an online application here: https://tinyurl.com/PPSC-volunteer.

Sonoma Valley Veterans Memorial Building, Sonoma

The City of Sonoma is on standby to open the Sonoma Valley Veterans Memorial Building (126 1st St W, Sonoma) as an overnight evacuation center providing shelter services. No donations are needed at this time, according to City Manager Cathy Capriola.

Volunteer: Those interested in volunteering, should visit the Vets Building and leave their names and contact information on a list. They will then be contacted once the center is opened.


The Salvation Army

The Salvation Army is serving three meals a day at five evacuation centers in Napa, San Rafael and Petaluma. 100 percent of donations will go toward Kincade fire relief efforts as the Salvation Army feeds and cares for evacuees and first responders. Make a donation here.

Community Foundation of Sonoma County

The Community Foundation of Sonoma County’s ongoing Resilience Fund continues to accept donations to support the mid- and long-term recovery needs of individuals and families, with particular focus on helping individuals impacted by the fires, healing the long-term effects of trauma, and addressing housing solutions within the county. Make a donation here.

United Way of the Wine Country

United Way has opened the Kincade Fire Emergency Relief & Recovery Fund to help in the relief and recovery efforts post fire. Make a donation here.

Latino Community Foundation

The Latino Community Foundation has reactivated its NorCal Wildfire Relief Fund in response to the Kincade fire. The fund supports nonprofits that include Corazon Healdsburg and Nuestra Comunidad, which are providing essential sheltering and supportive services to Latino immigrants and farmworkers impacted by the fire. Make a donation here.


The UndocuFund for Fire Relief in Sonoma County, managed by Graton Day Labor Center, North Bay Organizing Project, and North Bay Jobs with Justice, is currently raising funds to assist the victims of the Kincade fire. This fund is providing direct funding to undocumented immigrants and their families in Sonoma County to help with fire-related expenses. Make a donation here.

The Mother Hips

The Mother Hips

Halloween Happenings

Halloween falls on a Thursday this year which isn’t ideal, but at least the progress bar of the work week is in one of its final phases. There’s no shortage of festivities and food events taking place in the area on All Hallows Eve (or the day after) — here are some to check out:

Virgin Hotel’s Drag Me To Hell

This hotel-wide takeover party goes from 8:00 p.m. to 2:00 a.m. on October 31 and is hosted in partnership with “A Club Called Rhonda” and beloved SF drag queen Juanita MORE. All 13 floors of the new Virgin Hotel will decked out with Halloween decor, with three stages and other activations in all the restaurants: Commons Club, Upstairs at Commons Club, and the rooftop favorite Everdene. A variety of local DJ’s will set the mood and unlimited passed appetizers will be available throughout the night to accompany a premium open bar with free flowing cocktails and champagne. Drink without abandon and make the night a staycation with special Chamber packages.

Angels and Demons Halloween Bash

The tradition continues at George’s Night Club in San Rafael. Come out for costume contests, buckets of beer on specials, Halloween themed drink specials, angel and demon go go dancers, all set to top 40, house, hip hop and Latin music videos.

Mother Hips Rock ‘n Roll Halloween Bash at Sweetwater

The Bay Area’s own legendary rock band The Mother Hips return with their special annual autumn treat for North Bay audiences with a two-night Halloween run at Sweetwater Music Hall featuring a full-band acoustic show on Wednesday, October 30 and Rock ‘n Roll Halloween Bash on Thursday, October 31. Touring in support of their new studio album, Chorus, The Mother Hips showcase their latest works alongside music from the band’s iconic recording catalog with a no-repeat song set-list over the two nights at Sweetwater Music Hall. Don’t miss the incredible opportunity to see The Mother Hips both acoustically and for a Halloween extravaganza at Sweetwater Music Hall — Halloween costumes are highly encouraged for the October 31 two-set rock ‘n roll show.

Halloween at Toy Soldier

No one said Halloween had to be scary. Come to Toy Soldier dressed in your best (or laziest) Halloween costume and enjoy happy hour from 2:30 p.m. to close (normal happy hour ends at 6:00pm). Dishes include $1 Oysters; Beer Battered Bacon; Deviled Eggs with crisp bacon and pickled jalapeno; Four Cheese Baked Mac & Cheese; and a selection of Sliders and Tacos. Any guests who participate in the Halloween Happy Hour will have the chance to enter a raffle for a complimentary appetizer party for 2 hours (for up to 50 guests) in The Officers Club during the month of November. Three winners will be chosen.

“Totally Rad” ‘80s Halloween party at White Rabbit

Complete with an 80s inspired cocktail menu and décor, revelers at the Cow Hollow can boogie down with breakdancing, moonwalking, air guitar, and costume contests all night long. DJ Shawn Steele will be spinnin’ the sounds of Madonna and Depeche Mode all night, while you relive the days when Juul, Birds, and White Claw didn’t rule the world. Click here for free admission.

Dia de los Muertos at White Rabbit

Celebrate the launch of Jordan Zucker’s new cookbook, “One Dish, Four Seasons” with a Dia de los Muertos-themed book signing. “One Dish – Four Seasons: Food, Wine, and Sound – All Year Round” is a fully immersive experience and seasonal journey. In this family collaboration and labor of love, they take a base recipe and by varying certain ingredients seasonally available, churn out four versions: winter, spring, summer, and fall. 20 dishes x 4 seasons = 80 recipes plus a round of cocktails, which are paired with wine and a music album. There will be tequila specials and a face painter for those that want to get into full spirit with a Sugar Skull look.

Dia de los Muertos at Tin Cactus

Tin Cactus, the newest addition to Belden Place, is beckoning the dead to arise from their graves with happy hour from 2:30 p.m. until close for all guests who come in dressed for the Dia de los Muertos Celebration. Dishes include Chips & Guacamole, an assortment of Tacos, Carnitas Tostadas; and Short Rib Ropa Vieja, Duck Confit and Mushroom Quesadillas. Any guest who dresses the part or has a painted Sugar Skull face will have the chance to enter a raffle for a complimentary appetizer party for 2 hours (for up to 50 guests) at Tin Cactus during the month of November. Three winners will be chosen.

John Lithgow at Marin JCC

Award-winning actor and best-selling author John Lithgow will discuss his life, career and new book DUMPTY: The Age of Trump in Verse in an on-stage conversation with KQED Forum’s Michael Krasny, in association with Copperfield’s Books at the Osher Marin JCC this Thursday. Illustrated from cover to cover with Lithgow’s never-before-seen line drawings, the poems collected in the book draw inspiration from A. A. Milne, Lewis Carroll, Edward Lear, Rodgers and Hammerstein, Mother Goose, and many more. Cost of admission includes a copy of DUMPTY.

Stinson Beach Documentary Film Fest

The 6th Annual Stinson Beach Documentary Film Festival opens November 1 with a gala evening of music and dining at 6 pm followed by the film Echo In The Canyon at 8 p.m. Four other documentaries will be shown Saturday and Sunday evening: The Biggest Little Farm, Toni Morrison: Pieces I Am, Maiden, and Human Nature.

Marin Homeless Aid

Marin Homeless Aid invites you to spend a fun-filled, nostalgic, musically packed evening with live performances from Petty Theft and Super Diamond at their 3rd Annual Concert Solving Homelessness in Marin County. These tribute bands will take you on a musical journey back in time playing the greatest hits from Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers and Neil Diamond. Marin Homeless Aid’s mission is to inspire the people of Marin County to be part of a solution for aiding Marin’s homeless population. That solution begins with providing shelter accommodations for anyone finding themselves living on the streets. This year Marin Homeless Aid is partnering with Ritter Center of San Rafael and will donate ticket proceeds to this vital and responsive community serving organization.

All listings are correct at the time of posting. Please be aware that events may occasionally be canceled or postponed. We always suggest contacting the promoter or venue to confirm details haven’t changed since the of publishing.

Marin Magazine Kasia PawlowskaKasia Pawlowska loves words. A native of Poland, Kasia moved to the States when she was seven. The San Francisco State University creative writing graduate went on to write for publications like the San Francisco Bay Guardian and KQED Arts among others prior to joining the Marin Magazine staff. Topics Kasia has covered include traveltrendsmushroom hunting, an award-winning series on social media addiction, and loads of other random things. When she’s not busy blogging or researching and writing articles, she’s either at home writing postcards and reading or going to shows. Recently, Kasia has been trying to branch out and diversify, ie: use different emojis. Her quest for the perfect chip is a never-ending endeavor.

Categories: Things to Do