There's so much to do this weekend in Monterey County that it is impossible to do it all!
Humpback tail, Monterey Bay, California, by Michael Rymer
If you like watching animals of any type, Monterey County is the place to be this weekend. As we reported earlier this week, hundreds of whales are still crowding Monterey Bay. They're so plentiful, in fact, that they've been spotted from Point Lobos, Carmel Beach, Point Pinos and Lover's Point. Prefer feats of an equestrian nature? Head over to the California Rodeo Salinas, where riders will show off skills in cattle roping, bareback riding and more. If you prefer your four-legged animals in a more manageable size, you can watch dogs show off their gymnastic skills at Agility on the Greens at Quail Lodge. And if you're looking for music to soothe the savage beast, the Carmel Bach Festival kicks off this Saturday.
Allergic to fur and frightened of sea life that's bigger than you are? No worries - we've got plenty of things for you to do, too.
This week's biggest event is the landmark 100th California Rodeo Salinas at the Salinas Sports Complex. Today, watch the Mini Parade on North Main Street at 3pm, see kids compete in the Stick Horse Race on the rodeo track at 4:30pm, and watch the Grand Entry at 6pm. Throughout the evening catch roughstock and timed events like bareback riding, bull riding, tie-down roping, steer wrestling, and more. Daily tickets run $13-$20 ($7 for children under 12) and can be purchased at the official California Rodeo Salinas ticketing site.
Show off your sportbike and admire some of the best motorcycles in Monterey County at Sportbike Night in Oldtown Salinas. There's vendors, a raffle benefiting local charities, and more. 6pm-8pm, 153 Main St., Salinas. Free parking for motorcycles.
Central Coast jazz favorite Roger Eddy plays at Jazz on the Plaza at Carmel Plaza. Enjoy great wine alongside food from Bistro Beaujolais. 5pm-7pm, Carmel Plaza at Ocean Avenue and Mission Street, Carmel. $15.
Local punky rockers Ever Resistant sound like a Spanish Ramones. Kavarzee play straight-ahead rock with a psychedelic tinge. Los Tiliches infuse their rock with a tinge of reggae. The three bands play Jose's tonight. 9pm, 638 Wave St., Monterey. $5.
Show off your dog's abilities on track and field, or just watch some amazing canine feats of acrobatics, at Agility on the Greens at Quail Lodge, 8205 Valley Greens Drive, Carmel. Free to attend; parking is $5 per car.
If you're a fan of lavender, don't miss the Lavender Celebration Lunch at Bernardus Lodge. Walk through lavender fields, drink lavender iced tea and lavender lemonade, see how lavender oil is distilled, and enjoy a buffet lunch centered on the herb, alongside Bernardus wines. 11am-2pm, 415 W. Carmel Valley Road, Carmel Valley. $85. Call 831-659-3131 to reserve.
The 100th California Rodeo Salinas continues at the Salinas Sports Complex. Today, watch the Horse Parade downtown on Main Street at 11:30am, watch the Special Buckaroos Rodeo at noon, and watch the Grand Entry and Rodeo starting at 1:15pm. At 7pm, return for the fantastic Centennial Rodeo Music Stampede featuring country legend Dwight Yoakam. Daily Rodeo tickets run $13-$20 ($7 for children under 12); tickets for the Centennial Rodeo Music Stampede are $22 for general admission and $47 for VIP admission. Both can be purchased at the official California Rodeo Salinas ticketing site.
Acclaimed jazz flutist Kenny Stahl performs at "Evenings by the Bay" at the Monterey Bay Aquarium. In addition to the live music, enjoy special programs, wine, and light food. 6-8pm, 886 Cannery Row, Monterey. Included in admission fee.
The Carmel Bach Festival begins tonight. While the main concert, "The Spirit Triumphant," is sold out, there's still free events tonight that are open to all. Put on your best evening wear and celebrate the beginning of the festival with an Opening Night Reception at the Sunset Center Terrace. You'll enjoy performances by both the Youth Chorus and the Festival Brass. 7pm, Sunset Center Terrace, San Carlos St. and 9th Avenue, Carmel-by-the-Sea. Free.
Sarah McCoy and the Zippidy Yeahs bring their Janis-Joplin-meets-Grateful-Dead sound to Bullwacker's. 8:30pm, 653 Cannery Row, Monterey. No cover.
Lava Moon have a Jack-Johnson-meets-Grateful-Dead-meets-ukelele sound. They play Fernwood in Big Sur tonight. 9pm, Highway One, Big Sur. No cover.
Imagine if Ozzy Osbourne decided to start a band influenced by the Dropkick Murphys, and you've got an idea of what Bog Iron sounds like. Catch them tonight at Jose's. 9pm, 638 Wave Street. $5.
Hot Club de Watsonville play sprightly, melodic swing with a gypsy flair. They play London Bridge Pub tonight. 9:30pm, Wharf Number 2, Monterey. No cover.
The canine athletic event Agility on the Greens continues at Quail Lodge in Carmel. 8205 Valley Greens Drive, Carmel. Free to attend; parking is $5 per car.
Enjoy a beautiful, sunny Big Sur Sunday on the porch of the Big Sur River Inn, listening to the jazz of Andrea's Fault. 1pm-5pm, Big Sur River Inn, Highway One in Big Sur. No cover.
The 100th California Rodeo Salinas draws to a conclusion at the Salinas Sports Complex. Attend Cowboy Church Services at 10:30am, see the horse parade downtown at 11:30am, and watch the Grand Entry and Rodeo starting at 1:15pm. Daily tickets run $13-$20 ($7 for children under 12) and can be purchased at the official California Rodeo Salinas ticketing site.
Immerse yourself in two of Bach's greatest works today, as well as a free concert, at the Carmel Bach Festival. The afternoon concert features St. Matthew Passion. It's considered one of the masterpieces of classical composition. David Gordon will explain the background and meaning of the piece in a free talk; then experience the music for yourself in a concert at the Sunset Center Theater. Lecture is at 12:45pm; concert is at 2:30pm. Sunset Center, San Carlos St. and 9th Avenue, Carmel-by-the-Sea. Free. Concert tickets are $48 and $68 and can be purchased at the Carmel Bach Festival website.
For the classical music fan on a budget, there's the free Tower Music concert by the Festival Brass at the Sunset Center Terrace at 1:45pm. Sunset Center Terrace, San Carlos St. and 9th Avenue, Carmel-by-the-Sea. Free.
If you missed him Friday at the Carmel Plaza's Jazz on the Plaza, now's your chance to see Roger Eddy perform live. He appears at the Monterey Bay Aquarium's Evenings by the Bay tonight. In addition to the live music, enjoy special programs, wine, and light food. 6-8pm, 886 Cannery Row, Monterey. Included in admission fee.
The Carmel Bach Festival presents J.S. Bach's "Musical Offering." The music was based around a theme created by Frederick the Great and involves a number of compositional "riddles." It's one of Bach's most intriguing pieces. 9pm, All Saints Church, Dolores St. at 9th St., Carmel. $35; buy tickets at the official Bach Festival website.