The first day of spring has officially arrived (on March 20, to be exact), and there are many ways to celebrate this weekend.
Here are some of the highlights happening this weekend in and around Santa Cruz:
WHAT: Santa Cruz's own 22-year-old James Durbin, the American Idol star is moving along in his pop career, and he'll perform songs from his Debut album, Memories of a Beautiful Disaster in Santa Cruz.
WHERE: The Catalyst in downtown Santa Cruz.
WHEN: Thursday, March 21. Doors at 7 p.m., Show at 8 p.m.
PRICE: $20 at the door/$100 VIP Meet and Greet
***FRIDAY, MARCH 22:
WHAT: Dance your butt off to Congolese performer, master guitarist and singer Samba Ngo (pronounced en-go) when he returns to Moe's Alley with his full band for a night of fiery Congolese dance music.
WHERE: Moe's Alley in Santa Cruz
WHEN: Friday, March 22. Doors at 8 p.m., Show at 9 p.m.
PRICE: $10 adv/$15 day of.
JAZZ IN THE CELLARS
WHAT: The last of the springtime music series at Bargetto Winery in Soquel. Sip wine among the barrels in the historic cellars, and dance to the lively band Squeezedaddy. Munchies provided by by Erika's Catering.
WHERE: Bargetto Winery in Soquel
WHEN: Friday, March 22 from 6 p.m. - 8 p.m.
PRICE: No cover charge for music.
SANTA CRUZ WARRIORS PLAY IDAHO STAMPEDE
***SATURDAY, MARCH 23:
WHAT: In support of the families of Sgt. Loran "Butch" Baker and Detective Elizabeth Butler, who were both killed on February 26, Simply Hair is holding a fundraiser: Get your hair cut at Simply Hair in Santa Cruz and all proceeds for your $15 cut go to the Police Officers Association Fund.
WHERE: Simply Hair, 713 Carmel St., Santa Cruz.
WHEN: Saturday, March 23, from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. No appointments necessary.
EL TRI and HARAGAN Y CIA
WHAT: Hear Patch's own Brad Kava on the harmonica this Saturday night, as he sits in with the influential Mexican rock band El Tri. The group became the first Mexican rock band with a Gold certified record in 1985 with Simplemente. They've put out 45 albums since they started in 1968. When people call them the Mexican Rolling Stones, singer Alex Lora responds that the Stones are the Mexican El Tri.
HEAR A SAMPLE: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2yDG41qUzFM
WHERE: Fox Theater in Salinas, California.
WHEN: Saturday, March 23. Doors at 8 p.m.
PRICE: $50 HERE.
SANTA CRUZ WARRIORS PLAY TEXAS LEGENDS
***SATURDAY AND SUNDAY:
WHAT: Santa Cruz Bonsai Kai's 25th Annual Exhibition and Show will feature two world renowned demonstrators, Ryan Neil on Saturday, and Katsumi Kinoshita on Sunday. See bonsai trees that club members have been training for 25 years, learn about the art, and enter the raffle to win a bonsai tree created in front of your eyes.
WHERE: The Museum of Art and History in downtown Santa Cruz.
WHEN: 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, March 23rd and 24th. Demonstrations from 2 p.m. - 4p.m. each day.
PRICE: Suggested donation of $5.
SANTA CRUZ KAYAK AND SURF FESTIVAL
WHAT: The 27th Annual Santa Cruz Paddle Fest is the final event in the west coast contest seres Pacific Paddle Surfing Series takes place in Santa Cruz this weekend, and features two contests; the Elite Steamer Lane and the Cowell's Classic contest running concurrently. Paddle surfing, Wave Ski and Surf Kayaking. For more information, visit the Facebook Page.
WHERE: Steamer Lane and Cowell's on West Cliff Drive, Santa Cruz.
WHEN: All day on Saturday AND Sunday. Kick off BBQ on Thursday, March 21.
PRICE: FREE to watch.
RAIN FOREST WEEKEND
WHAT: Learn about California's flourishing Coastal Redwood Forest in the Santa Cruz Mountains.
WHERE: Roaring Camp Railroad, Felton.
WHEN: Saturday, March 23 & Sunday, March 24 from 11 a.m. - 12:30 a.m.
PRICE: $26 adults, $19 children.
WHAT: Guest conductor, Daniel Stewart offers the Santa Cruz audience Transcendence, which features Brahms Second Symphony and the overture to Rossini's The Barber of Seville.
WHERE: Santa Cruz Civic Auditorium in downtown Santa Cruz.
WHEN: Saturday, March 23 at 8 p.m. at the civic. Sunday, March 24 at the Mello Center in Watsonville at 8 p.m.
PRICE: Ticket prices vary depending on your seats. Buy tix here.