Hike Austin Creek Park for its sun-drenched hills and unobstructed vistas 


For delicious New Orleans-style dining, lightened with an infusion of fresh Bay Area produce, check out Boxing Room, a new hot spot located in a former factory.


Noting that well-valued wine isn’t necessarily cheap wine, expert Pamela Busch recommends a few good whites that sell for $15 or less.

On the town

Tap notch:
Stepology presents its “2011 Bay Area Rhythm Exchange,” a celebration of tap dance. Bay Area Tap Festival artists, including John Kloss and Channing Cook-Holmes, perform. [8 p.m., Herbst Theatre, 401 Van Ness Ave., S.F.]

New music: Melos Music hosts its 2011 New Music Concert. Musicians from Nonsemble 6 and top institutions play new chamber works by young American composers. [7 p.m., Community Music Center, 544 Capp St., S.F.]

A great hike

Before This Park Goes Dark:
Get to Austin Creek State Park near Guerneville before it closes Sept. 5. Sun-drenched hills, lion’s-mane-colored meadows and unobstructed vistas of multiple ridges are highlights. Combine the Gilliam Creek and Austin Creek trails on a four-mile, round-trip hike. It’s two miles down followed by a flat section along Schoolhouse and Gilliam creeks, canopied by oaks, firs and redwoods. Then ascend a 1.5-mile fire road that tops out near Bullfrog Pond Campground.  [Visit WeekendSherpa.com to sign up for email about getting outdoors in Northern California]


Future opera stars:
The Merola Opera Program hosts its “Merola Grand Finale.” Emerging opera talents appear in an evening of arias and ensembles. [7:30 p.m., War Memorial Opera House, 301 Van Ness Ave., S.F.]


Improv comedy:
The San Francisco Improv Fest celebrates the creativity and energy of improvisational comedy. Saturday’s featured troupes include Leela and Dr. God. [7:30 and 9:30 p.m., Eureka Theatre, 215 Jackson St., S.F.]

Evening with Maher: Comedian, satirist and TV host Bill Maher performs a stand-up concert. [8 p.m., Davies Symphony Hall, 201 Van Ness Ave., S.F.]


Street food:
La Cocina’s San Francisco Street Food Festival features microvendors, restaurant reps, food trucks and special guests. Food purchases cost less than $8. [11 a.m. to 7 p.m., Folsom and 22nd streets and nearby, S.F.]


Outdoor theater:
The San Francisco Mime Troupe presents its summer-in-the-park show, “2012 — The Musical.” The satirical play takes on corporate arts funding. [2 p.m., Washington Square, Union and Stockton streets, S.F.]


Flea market:
The 28th annual Alamo Square Flea Market features vendors, street food and a kids’ area. Vintage items, antiques and crafts are for sale. [9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Scott and Fulton streets and thereabouts, S.F.]


Victorian celebration:
The San Mateo County History Museum hosts “Victorian Days.” Inspired by elegant times, the event features crafts, theater and history groups. [11 a.m. to 4 p.m., 2200 Broadway, Redwood City]


Opera in the grove:
The San Francisco Opera and San Francisco Opera Orchestra present arias and solos at the Stern Grove festival — the event’s final concert of the season. [2 p.m., Sloat Boulevard and 19th Avenue, S.F.]

Wine arts

Wine tasting:
Family Winemakers of California presents “Tasting 2011,” a comprehensive tasting featuring more than 1,000 different wines. More than 325 wineries take part. [3 to 6 p.m., Festival Pavilion, Fort Mason Center, Marina Boulevard and Buchanan Street, S.F.]

A great bike ride

One-hour self-guided loop:
Start at John Muir Drive at the south end of Lake Merced, and follow the path clockwise around to Font Boulevard. Go left on Font, right on Holloway Avenue, left on Corona Street; right on Urbano Drive around Urbano oval, right on Moncada Way, left on Cerritos Avenue, join Winston Drive and cross Junipero Serra Boulevard. Follow Winston into Stonestown and across to Lake Merced Boulevard, then go left to the south end of lake. On the way, check out the giant sundial at west end of Urbano, formerly the Ingleside Race Track. [www.sfbike.org]

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Staff Report

Staff Report

A daily newspaper covering San Francisco, San Mateo County and serving Alameda, Marin and Santa Clara counties.
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