As the celebration of the Vietnamese New Year, Tết gives people the chance to reflect on the year that was, honor ancestors living and dead, and celebrate the hope inherent in the rebirth of spring. The Vietnamese Tet Festival of San Jose brings the holiday to California's shores, inviting guests to broaden their cultural horizons or recapture some memories of home during two days of lively events.
You'll find the traditional firecrackers and lion dances here, along with an áo dài (traditional dress) contest and martial-arts exhibitions. There's also plenty to eat: the festival includes a bánh mì eating contest and a phở challenge, as well as vendors hawking other tasty Vietnamese treats. A portion of the proceeds benefits the Vietnamese Voluntary Foundation, a nonprofit that serves the area's Vietnamese community.
Its name may contain the word "museum," but The Tech Museum of Innovation prefers not to wallow in the past. Since its earliest days in 1978, it has exhibited the timeless principles of science while also celebrating the latest in technological achievement. In doing so, the institution inspires visitors to apply that same spirit of creative problem-solving to all aspects of life.
Size: the mango-and-azure domed building fills 132,000 square feet with hundreds of interactive exhibits and six labs
Hands-On Experiments: ride in a jet-pack chair worthy of NASA, feel what it's like to experience an earthquake, grow jellyfish DNA in a lab, learn about internet security in Cyber Detectives, and use wearable technology that measures physical and emotional states in Body Metrics.
Eye-Catchers: the creations inside Social Robots,
where visitors design and build robots before dressing them up in hats that a human could never pull off
Permanent Mainstay: The Tech Awards Gallery, a showcase of past inventions and inventors from the museum's annual Tech Awards
Don't Miss: The Tech Studio, which offers a behind-the-scenes look at the prototypes and fabrication of upcoming exhibits—and lets visitors be among the first to test them
The first Improv comedy club had virtually nothing to do with comedy. Broadway producer Budd Friedman founded the now legendary franchise in 1963 as an intimate spot for performers to eat, drink coffee, and sing along to piano ditties after their shows. Soon after, the club’s first comedian, Dave Astor, performed on a whim to try out new material. The stand-up set was a hit and led to the venue’s eventual transformation into a full-blown comedy club. New York’s hottest comedians would do nearly anything to be featured on the Improv stage; for instance, it's rumored that Lily Tomlin hijacked a parked limousine in order to make a stunning entrance when first meeting Budd.
As part of the respected chain of Improv comedy clubs—where comedic heavyweights such as Andy Kaufman, Jay Leno, and Jerry Seinfeld first started working the stand-up circuit—San Jose Improv lives up to the reputation set by its preceding locations by hosting a full calendar of well-known comics and promising up-and-comers. Audience members can fuel laughter with pub grub such as buffalo wings and barbecue prime rib sandwiches, all while sipping a cocktail to avoid eye contact with the giant rubber chicken sitting at the next table.
For true movie buffs, Camera Cinemas offers ideal places for catching a flick that's been on their radar. And you need only look into the company's background to see why. It was founded back in 1975 by a trio of aspiring filmmakers who were sick of driving all the way from the South Bay to Berkeley several times a week to see arthouse and independent films. Camera Cinemas quickly established itself as a hub for lovers of independent, underground, international, cult, and classic films.
That tradition continued even as the company expanded to more theaters and added current Hollywood studio releases—some of which are screened in 3D—to their lineups. And its renovated downtown San Jose cinema, in addition to showing movies on three screens, has an onsite Psycho Donuts to serve up snacks and a partnership with an improv company to deliver laughs.
The talented instructors of Nach K Dekh call on years of dance-floor experience to impart the rhythmic gestures, fast footwork, and pulsating energy of Bollywood dance in classes for children, teens, and adults. Weekly classes begin with basic steps, then build on the skills learned in past sessions to help students eventually perform an entire Bollywood number, incorporating lively music and props to entertain the public at a theater or nearby Taj Mahal. Intimate sessions of no more than 12 students allow one-on-one coaching from instructors, helping dancers develop their skills quickly and correctly. For a more sweat-focused session, Nach K Dekh's BollyBurn class challenges participants to high-impact cardio workouts and muscle conditioning set to Bollywood music.
Quickly become a regular at this San Jose tavern — The Blank Club serves a stiff drink.
A full bar is also available to accommodate diners with different drink preferences.
It is not uncommon for The Blank Club to feature live tunes or a DJ.
Dining at The Blank Club comes with dancing and a DJ, so make sure to wear your party shoes.
This bar is very loud, so prepare for a wall of sound.
Those hoping to avoid the weekend rush will do best visiting the bar during the week.
Forget the stuffy formal wear! The Blank Club's business casual dress code sets the tone for ease and enjoyment.
The Blank Club is surrounded by a number of street parking options for patrons.
Sizzling food designed to keep your wallet full. Dining at The Blank Club means you'll be living full and staying rich.