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Pick Up a New Hobby at Rematch.com

If you’ve ever wanted to pick up a new hobby but balked at the cost of equipment, Rematch Sports has you in mind. The sporting goods consignment store in Russian Hill is stocked with gently used items, from snowboards and wet suits to fishing poles and tennis rackets. Get the gear for a relative bargain and, if you find the sport is not for you, sell it back to them later. 1567 Pacific Ave., 415-830-9470, rematchsports.com

Pooch-Friendly Partying at the Westin

If you're tired of hitting the town sans pooch, here's your chance to paint the town red with Fido in tow. At the Westin St. Francis' "Dogs Days of Summer" on Aug. 26, canines and their owners will be treated like VIPS (Very Important Pets and Persons) in an event benefitting the San Francisco SPCA.

Deal Tracker: Sweet Discounts on Outside Lands Lodging

Need a place to stay for the much-anticipated Outside Lands festival at the end of the month? (Or have friends coming into town for the event and don't feel like putting them up?)

While hotel prices often are significantly jacked up on event weekends--particularly one like Outside Lands that welcomes more than 60,000 attendees--the Kimpton Hotel group is offering a fabulous promotion: 25 percent off its nine city boutique stays and one Silicon Valley property from Aug. 28 through 30 using the code "OLF."

Spend This Weekend By A Pool In Berkeley

Is there anyone else out there who is beginning to find the two-day weekend to be not nearly enough time off? I mean, by the time you do the laundry, go grocery shopping and…poof! Gone! I like the idea of going away for the weekend, but I don’t particularly relish the thought of spending half my time off in trains, planes and automobiles. But I’m also getting sick to death of spending August in the fog belt.

Go Fly a Kite: The Bay's Best Spots

Get outdoors, relive your youth and fly a kite. Here are our favorite Bay Area spots for taking your kite for a spin.

Linda Mar

South of the city in Pacifica is a mostly-empty beach (with plenty of surfer eye candy, an added bonus), proffering a steady offshore breeze and wide open spaces. Parking is convenient, and you can grab a bite to eat at the famed beachside Taco Bell when you're through.

Crissy Field and Marina Green

The Shasta Cascades: An Affordable, Non-Tourist-Infested Getaway

Time: 3 hours
What You Get: Mountains, lakes, waterfalls, volcanoes galore

Get Your Relaxation On In Sierraville

High up in Gold Country, about a half hour from Truckee, lies the little blink-and-you’ll-miss-it town of Sierraville. There’s no grocery store, only one sub-par Mexican joint and another café that’s sometimes open, other times not--and a whole lot of cows.

Escape the Fog and Hide Out at Farmhouse

Summertime, and the living’s foggy. And cold. Or, as one of my SF-born friends likes to say in July, “It’s another beautiful day here in Warsaw.” Raincoats and scarves are fine for work days spent in an office, but the month ahead is the very time of year when the weekend escape becomes crucial to your peace of mind. There is just something primordially wrong with this kind of weather in midsummer, and your middle brain knows it, so before it starts to play all kinds of cruel tricks on you—inexorably forcing you to that fourth margarita, for instance, or urging you into Nordstrom for your third pair of shoes in a week—gas up the car and drive straight up 101 to Forestville.

Full Moon Deals in Monterey

The moon has received no shortage of press in recent weeks. Now, she's even inspiring hotel deals. To celebrate the 40th anniversary of the first lunar landing, which took place yesterday, the newly opened Hotel Abrego has rolled out a monthly "Moon Over Monterey" special through the end of the year.

Get Your Craft On

More than 200 artists from all nooks and crannies of the country will convene at Fort Mason Center Festival Pavilion this weekend for the second annual Renegade Craft Fair to showcase and sell their goods.

Ceramic pottery, linens, clothing, jewelry, homemade bath goods, vintage posters, high-end stationary--the Renegade Craft Fair has it all. There will even be DIY tutorials on tasks like how to fashion old toys into bangles and earrings, and Mozilla Firefox will be on hand to help you create your own custom Web persona.

Plus, there will be a Magnolia Photo Booth on site, and who doesn't love a little posing and picture-taking fun with friends?

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