Jack London Square, named for the California author who spent his boyhood on the Oakland waterfront before taking off for the Klondike (his relocated cabin is a local landmark), is Oakland’s vibrant social and historical nucleus, home to dozens of shops, restaurants, retail outlets and inviting lawns where many an event is held. It’s only fitting that a public space named for the author of “Call of the Wild” is dog-friendly, too! There’s always something interesting to see here, from the tall ships in port throughout March to farmers markets, vendor fairs, a dance festival (April 28), outdoor movies and free entertainment taking place throughout spring and summer.
Time your visit right, and you can also participate in a string of dog-centric events scheduled elsewhere around town. Among them:
Growl, Meow and Wine, May 6, is a fundraiser for the East Bay SPCA and takes place at their Oakland facility. Craft beer and wine, light bites and auction items are featured.
Bark at the Park, June 19, at the Oakland-Alameda Coliseum, is a big one, with fans invited to bring their dogs and help cheer on the Oakland Athletics against the Cleveland Indians. Dogs and their people are invited to a pregame party as well as a pup parade on the field, with proceeds benefitting Dogs4Diabetic and the Animal Rescue Foundation.
The East Bay SPCA Adopt-a-thon, July 21, is geared to raise awareness about homeless animals and offers more than 300 adoptable pets to qualified members of the public.
The third annual Dog Days of Summer Festival, Aug. 8, takes place at the Chabot Space & Science Center and features demos, activities and veterinarian talks. You’ll need to sign a waiver if you plan to bring your pup.
Laurel StreetFair, Aug. 11: This booming neighborhood event will fill the streets with thousands of people enjoying music and dance, a huge Kids’ Zone, fashion shows, creative crafts and an impressive array of food vendors. Leashed dogs welcome, but please keep them close by your side.