Captain Josh Waldman has steered vessels over more than 35,000 miles of international ocean, but as the head of Captain San Francisco, he sticks to the homier waters of San Francisco Bay and coastal California. In luxurious sailing yachts outfitted with bunks and lounge areas, he leads chartered voyages for special events, private parties, and whales too lazy to swim their daily commute. The multitalented captain keeps his yacht in tip-top condition with his own maintenance expertise and can converse with both Spanish- and English-speaking customers.
Fewer than five years after its San Francisco debut, the Snowbomb Ski and Snowboard Festival has exploded into a multivenue event, affording NorCal-powder addicts ample opportunity to get in on a weekend of discounted winter gear and giving VIPs chances to sample locally produced beer and wine. Representatives from resorts command mountains of swag and offer tips about their slopes’ terrain and local yeti dialects. Dozens of exhibitors also show off their goods—not just winter-sports outfitters but also car companies, local restaurants, and national chains.
A 9-foot statue of Willie Mays looms over fans at the entrance to AT&T Park, the home of the San Francisco Giants since 2000. Along with the team’s many other Hall of Fame inductees, Mays is part of a team heritage that spans more than a century and has garnered 21 National League pennants, six World Series championships, and the most overall victories by a franchise in baseball history. Up to 41,503 fans cheer on the Giants as they swing for the tides, splashing home runs into the waters of McCovey Cove. On the field, players dig their cleats into the kentucky bluegrass blend and slide on the crushed-volcanic-rock infield, dodging the gloves of tagging basemen and onyx claws of lava worms.
A lifetime of tennis has carried instructor Cliff McClain across the country—from Petaluma, California, where he was ranked #1 on the Casa Grande High School tennis team, to North Carolina State, where he played while studying. During lessons, the net specialist carefully assesses individual skills and works to improve existing form. Practical application begins as students field backhand and forehand shots from Cliff, who monitors each movement with a professional eye and provides feedback throughout each lesson, helping students learn to return balls quickly and consistently without having to swap brains with a labrador.
Before she founded her eponymous ballroom school, Rhona Pick represented the United States at world dance championships in Berlin and London at famed venues such as Royal Albert Hall. Although she has since retired from dancing competitively, she culls from her experience to manage her school in accordance with the framed Code of Ethics that hangs on the office door. The code mandates that each teacher on her team holds professional teaching qualifications, a standard that guarantees the quality of the school’s private and group classes, in styles that range from salsa to tango and swing. Instructors can also choreograph wedding dances, ensuring that couples don’t have to spend their reception’s first song hiding in the supply closet.
The third annual Ceramics Annual of America expo takes over Festival Hall in San Francisco, bringing with it thousands of visitors and a diverse array of ceramics. Dozens of featured artists—who hail from California as well as from farther-flung locales such as Mexico and Italy—offer professional insight via artist-panel discussions and display their wares at personal kiosks. These works range from decorative statues and figures to functional pottery, conceptual art, and recreations of King Tut’s favorite dish set.