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Celebrate National Women’s Month in California

Celebrate National Women’s Month in California

Explore history and support today’s woman-owned businesses during March and beyond

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Posted 7 months agoby Katrina Hunt

National Women’s Month started out as just one week, back in 1978, and it was an observance of notable women in Sonoma County. By 1987, the concept had expanded both to a full month and the entire nation. Here are some ways to honor women in the Golden State—and to make a great day trip or weekend out of it.

Take in cool exhibits and screenings

Museums and galleries around the state are paying tribute to female movers and shakers throughout March and beyond. At the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures in Los Angeles, this month’s Oscar Sundays film series will feature both Oscar-nominated and Oscar-winning movies written by women, such as When Harry Met Sally and Thelma & Louise. The museum is also offering Rare Takes: The Works of Cecilia Mangini (through March 20), honoring the first woman documentarian in post-war Italy. While you’re at the museum, note the Pillar Campaign, with several literal columns named in honor of women in film, including Rita Moreno, Hattie McDaniel, and Sophia Loren. 

Nearby, see the exhibit Becoming Jane: The Evolution of Dr. Jane Goodall at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County (through April 17).  In Oakland, check out Edith Heath: A Life in Clay at the Oakland Museum of California, which examines the life and work of the ceramics master whose work can be found in many Bay Area homes (through Oct 30). At the San Diego Air & Space Museum, stop by American Women of Flight, which honors icons such as Amelia Earhart, Sally Ride, and the 99s, a nearly century-old association for female aviators (ongoing).

Play outside
Soak up the scenery of San Francisco Bay on the International Women’s Day Sail (March 8) hosted by SF Bay Adventures. The ride out of Sausalito, held on a reconstructed tall ship named the Schooner Freda B., will feature stories about notable women in Bay Area history, such as Janis Joplin and architect Julia Morgan. Or take a walk around one of California’s cooler attractions: the East Bay’s Rosie the Riveter/World War II Home Front National Historical Park. Come on a Friday morning and you can visit with real home front workers who served in WWII.

In the desert, at Rancho Mirage’s Mission Hills Country Club, watch the world’s top women golfers compete for a $5 million purse, plus the Dinah Shore Trophy, at the LPGA’s Chevron Championship (March 28–April 3).

Or plan your own trip with a woman-owned outfitter. Ride a bike around Sonoma County with Ace It! Bike Tours, stopping at wineries and breweries along the way, or ride the Pope Baldwin Bike Path in South Lake Tahoe after picking up your bike of choice at the woman-owned Anderson’s Bicycle Rentals.

Taste, shop, repeat

Woman-owned restaurants, shops, and wineries crisscross the state, and you can celebrate dozens of them in one week in San Luis Obispo County. During the Restaurant Week–style At Her Table (through March 13), join discussions or foraging classes, or just make the most of menu specials at spots such as Jeffry's Wine Country BBQ in Paso Robles, Corazon 805 Tacosin San Luis Obispo, and Bramble Pie Company in Atascadero. In Huntington Beach, you can browse, eat, and take yoga classes from this  curated list of women-owned businesses, including AoSA Coffee, Surf City Skates, and the boutique Model Citizen.  

Finish off the month by going on a serious wine-tasting trip: The four-day Celebration of Women in Wine Tour in Napa Valley (March 30–April 2) includes lodging at the Archer Hotel in Downtown Napa, as well as meet-and-greets and tastings with winemakers, viticulturists, sommeliers, and winery CEOs. Participants include Demeine Estates, Stony Hill Vineyard, and Domaine Carneros.

Another option: Toast the great women in your life at a woman-owned brewery, such as Lost Coast Brewery in Eureka, Fort Point Beer Co. in San Francisco, Sante Adairius Rustic Ales in Capitola, or Crowns & Hops in Inglewood, not far from Downtown Los Angeles’ SoFi Stadium.

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