Skip to Main Content
Menu
Contact Us Search
Parks Title

Events and Activities

mission adobe

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.

25th Anniversary Events- Honoring the Storytellers


Friday, August 5 from 5 pm to 8 pm - First Friday Art Show featuring California Native Basketry
Saturday, August 6 Zanja hike at 9:30 am (see below in August Activities for description of event)
Sept - November - Lecture Series - visit again for details!


July Activities

Junior Rangers
Thursday, July 14 from 11 am to 12:15 pm - Mission Life: The Art of the Missions
Thursday, July 21 from 11 am to 12:15 pm - Age of Sail: Ship Skills
Thursday, July 28 from 11 am to 12:15 pm - Age of Sail: Sailors & Whalers
Each week we explore a topic in Santa Cruz history through games and crafts. This program is designed for kids ages 7 to 12. Space is limited. Register by calling (831) 425-5849.

Junior Rangers gather at more than 70 California State Parks, from the redwood region, to the high Sierra, to the sunny southern California beaches. At your first program you will receive a logbook and badge. For each activity you will earn a stamp in your logbook, and as you go through the program you can earn prizes.

Pop-Up Picnics in the Park
Thursdays from 11:30 am to 1:30 pm

Enjoy a relaxing lunch outdoors at Santa Cruz Mission State Historic Park on Thursdays this summer through August 25. Bring a sack lunch and enjoy the view of downtown Santa Cruz. Food trucks will set up for selected PopUp Picnics in the Park.

Archeology Demonstration
Saturday, July 16 at 1 pm
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. Rain Cancels.

Old-Fashioned Campfire
Friday, July 22 from 5:30 pm to 8 pm
Join us for an evening of stories and songs under the twilight sky. Bring a picnic dinner, lawn chairs or blankets, and tortilla toppings to share! From 5:30 pm to 6:45 pm will be dinner, live music, and tortilla making on the comal. From 6:45 pm to 8 pm will be storytelling and songs around the fire.

Drop In Family Craft – Candle Dipping
Saturday, July 23 from 1 pm to 3:30 pm
Enjoy an informal afternoon at this hidden jewel near downtown Santa Cruz. You can hand-dip a wax candle in our garden courtyard. Rain Cancels.

Guided Adobe Tour
Saturday, July 30 at 11 am
Join us at the Santa Cruz Mission State Historic Park for a guided tour of the oldest building in Santa Cruz. Come learn about the many families who have called this 180-year-old mission adobe their home. Tours are conducted rain or shine.

Mission Building Game
Saturday, July 30 from 2:30 pm to 4 pm
Gather round the table and play a board game set in the 18th century. Spend Spanish real coins and roll the sheep’s knucklebone to determine the fate of your mission. Geared for ages 8 and older. Rain or shine.

August Activities

Junior Rangers
Thursday, August 4 from 11 am to 12:15 pm -
Rancho Life: Californio Kids
Thursday, August 11 from 11 am to 12:15 pm - Rancho Life: Paper Arts
Each week we explore a topic in the history of Santa Cruz through games and crafts. This program is designed for kids ages 7 to 12. Space is limited. Register by calling (831) 425-5849.

Junior Rangers gather at more than 70 California State Parks, from the redwood region, to the high Sierra, to the sunny southern California beaches. At your first program you will receive a logbook and badge. For each activity you will earn a stamp in your logbook, and as you go through the program you can earn prizes.

Zanja Hike: Walk the Path of Early Santa Cruz’s Water History!
Saturday, August 6 at 9:30 am

Trace the course of the old water canal (“zanja”) that was dug to Mission Santa Cruz by Ohlone indigenous people in the late 18th century.  Imagine our city’s landscape as it appeared 200 years ago. Join educator and local history author Dean Silvers on this 2 hour, 2.5 mile gradual downhill trek from Spring Street to the Santa Cruz Mission with views, maps, photos and discussion as we piece together the route of this historic waterway. A map will be provided to each participant. Meet at the Santa Cruz Mission State Historic Park at 9:30 am to carpool. Limited parking is available at the end of Spring Street, where the hike will begin at 10 am. Bring a bag lunch, water, hat and sunglasses, and layers of clothing.

Wool, Spinning, and Weaving at the Santa Cruz Mission
Saturday, August 6 from 1 to 2 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. Rain or Shine.

Guided Adobe Tour at the Santa Cruz Mission
Saturday, August 13 at 1 pm

Join us at the Santa Cruz Mission State Historic Park for a guided tour of the oldest building in Santa Cruz. Come learn about the many families who have called this 180-year-old mission adobe their home. Tours are conducted rain or shine.

Gardens of Time
Sunday, August 14 at 1 pm
Sunday, August 28 at 1 pm

Stroll through history on this 1 hour tour as you visit the various gardens within our courtyard and patio. We can learn a good deal about people who lived here in the past by exploring the plants they used and cultivated. Tour our native plant gardens, demonstration vegetable beds and Victorian “Nearyland”. Take home history in a seed.

Old Fashioned Campfire for the Whole Family at the Mission
Friday, August 19 from 5:30 pm to 8 pm

Join us for an evening of stories and songs under the twilight sky. Bring a picnic dinner, lawn chairs or blankets, and tortilla toppings to share! From 5:30 pm to 6:45 pm will be dinner, live music by special guest Peter Weiss and the Earth Rangers, and tortilla making on the comal. From 6:45 pm to 8 pm we will gather around the campfire for songs, skits, and stories.

Building Methods at the Mission
Saturday, August 20 from 1 pm to 2 pm

Come and see how the oldest building in town was made. 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.