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Events and Activities

All events and activities are FREE, and are made possible by Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks and California State Parks.

For more information about events and activities please call the Santa Cruz Mission at (831) 425-5849. All programs meet at the Santa Cruz Mission, located on School Street off of Mission Street and Emmet Street in Santa Cruz.


Santa Cruz Mission Summer Archaeology Project
Mondays from June 26 through August 21 from 10 am to 2 pm
Join Santa Clara University in partnership with California State Parks in gaining hands on experience in treatment and identifying archeological artifacts. Volunteers are needed to sort and process artifacts from the 2-year archaeological excavation at the Mission Santa Clara, conducted by Santa Clara University. Volunteers will receive formal lab training and will gain a clear understanding of California Mission life, based upon this latest research. Lab work will occur at the Santa Cruz Mission State Historic Park. For more information, contact Erik Hylkema with the Mission Santa Cruz State Historic Park (831) 425-5849 or email

Archeology Demonstration
Saturday, June 3 at 1pm
How do artifacts give us clues to the past? Follow the archeological process from the dig to the display, and participate in hands-on activities to discover the stories told by the artifacts. Presented in collaboration with the Santa Cruz Archeological Society. Event is free; rain cancels.

Sunday, June 4 1pm to 3:30pm Paper Poppies
Saturday, June 10 from 1pm to 3:30pm Luminaria
Sunday, June 18 1pm to 3:30pm Baskets
Enjoy an informal afternoon at this hidden jewel near downtown Santa Cruz. Create a bouquet of poppies, or fashion a tin lantern. Learn the basics of basket weaving using non-traditional craft materials. Take home a one of a kind basket to hold your treasures.

Junior Rangers
Thursday, June 15 at 11am Foods of Early California
Thursday, June 22 at 11am Mission Strategy Game
Thursday, June 29 at 11 Branding & Leatherwork
Learn to cook traditional foods, play 18th century games, or study the lives of Californio Vaqueros during these 1.15-hour programs at the Santa Cruz Mission State Historic Park. Junior Rangers is a free California State Parks statewide program for kids ages 7 to 12. Receive your logbook and badge, and begin your Junior Ranger journey. Space is limited. To register, or for more information, please call (831) 425-5849.

Wool, Spinning, and Weaving at the Santa Cruz Mission
Saturday, June 17 at 1 pm
How did an isolated settlement clothe the hundreds of people who lived there? Take an in depth look at the cloth industry of Mission Santa Cruz. We will follow the path of wool from the sheep to the shirt. You will have the chance to try your hand at a drop spindle and spin your own wool.

Building Methods
Saturday, June 24 at 1pm
Discover why the oldest building in town is still standing – we will look at the materials used by the Ohlone to build their homes and then at the materials used by the Spanish to build Mission Santa Cruz. You will have the chance to get your hands dirty and make your own mini abode brick.

Old Fashioned Campfire for the Whole Family at the Mission
Friday, June 30 from 5:30 to 8pm
Bring your picnic dinner and lawn chairs. Make a fresh tortilla on the comal as we enjoy live music. Then we’ll gather around the campfire for songs, skits, and stories. What a great way to relax into summer with the best views of Santa Cruz!