The casual observer at the city's waterline can easily pick out swooping sea gulls and a fish-faced pelican or two. But would you know an oystercatcher from a double-crested cormorant? You will if you attend "Birds of the San Francisco Coast," a free, expert-led nature walk that winds through Lincoln Park and Land's End in search of feathery friends. The easy 1-1/2-hour hike begins at 10 a.m. at the Coast Trail trailhead in Lincoln Park, at the large parking lot at the end of El Camino del Mar (off Point Lobos), S.F. Call 621-3260 or visit www.sfneighborhoodparks.org.
-- Joyce Slaton
Yachts on the loose
Don't you miss the good old days of the Reagan era, when pink and green clothes were all the rage? When Sperry Top-Siders were worn with pride, and you and Mimsy would traipse to Newport for a leisurely day on the S.S. Wasp?
Come relive your preppy youth with a day of dry martinis and sweaters tied around the neck at the Il Moro Trophy, the second race of the annual Bay Area Challenge Series. Six restored America's Cup-class boats duke it out on the briny for nautical supremacy, starting at Angel Island and winding through the bay to Sausalito. Katharine Hepburn would have thought it very "yar." The ships set sail at 10 a.m. daily. Viewing areas in San Francisco include the northern end of the Embarcadero and the eastern end of the Presidio. Admission is free; call 289-0401 or visit www.challenge-series.com.
-- Kevin Chanel
Up and At 'Em
It's the best place to see flying elephants outside of a Dumboscreening -- the Berkeley Kite Festival and West Coast Kite Championships are on again, as flyers from around the world descend on the Bay Area for a weekend of sky-borne silk and color. Oooh and ahhh at aerial ballets involving Japanese-style kite battles, kite-powered buggies, and a world-record attempt for the longest stack of kites ever flown. There will also be 20,000 square feet of giant fabric creatures, including geckos, pandas, and, yes, elephants. Kids can try free kite-making and -flying lessons; adults who just wish they were kids can try out the latest advanced designs and go shopping in the giant sales tent. The festival starts at 11 a.m. both days at Cesar E. Chavez Park at the Berkeley Marina, Marina & Spinnaker. Admission is free; call (510) 235-5483 or visit www.highlinekites.com. -- Jack Karp