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SF’s Massive Carnaval Festival & Parade Returns (May 28-29)

200,000 are expected in the Mission for the two-day festival and street fair plus Sunday’s epic grand parade with over 2,000 performers
By - posted 5/27/2022 No Comment

Carnaval is back in San Francisco for 2022! The annual, free, two-day festival and grand parade drawing thousands of attendees and featuring international music, dance, arts & crafts and cuisine — is making a celebratory return in 2022 after a two-year pandemic related hiatus. Although expected to be smaller than pre-covid, organizers are still expecting around 200,000 attendees over the weekend.

  • The two-day festival is 17 blocks of food, music and fun, including six stages with over 50 performers, five DJ block parties.
  • The grand parade covers 20 blocks and features 60+ contingents and about 2,000 performers.

The 44th annual event, themed “Colores de Amor – Inclusivity, Family and Community,” will take place Memorial Day weekend, May 28 and 29, 2022 in San Francisco’s Calle 24 Latino Cultural District. New to this year’s festival is the city’s first-ever community-lead, permitted cannabis garden; a new tech & gaming pavilion, and a LGBTQ dedicated stage.

Throughout the weekend, hundreds of Carnaval San Francisco artists will transform the district into an enormous celebration featuring music, dance, brilliant costumes and delicious food from Brazil, Mexico, Bolivia, Colombia, Trinidad, Tobago, Puerto Rico, Cuba, Nicaragua, Panama, Peru, Guatemala, Africa, Chile, Haiti and more.

44th Annual San Francisco Carnaval & Parade
– Festival: Saturday & Sunday, May 28-29, 2022 | 10 am to 6 pm – Festival Map
– Grand Parade: Sunday, May 29, 2022 | 9:30 am to 2:30pm– starts at 24th & Bryant – Parade Route Map
Harrison Street between 16th and 24th Streets
FREE, but donations accepted

Festival & Street Fair (SATURDAY & SUNDAY)

This year’s Carnaval San Francisco Festival will be held Saturday and Sunday, May 28 and 29 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.  Taking place on Harrison Street between 16th and 24th streets, the festival will feature a rich assortment of food, music, dance, arts, crafts, the new tech and gaming pavilion, the cannabis garden and other fun activities and entertainment on several stages for people of all ages to enjoy.

Grand Parade (9:30a – 2:30p) – SUNDAY

The Grand Parade on Sunday, May 29, begins at 9:30 a.m. with a brilliant procession of contingents, most of which will feature beautifully adorned floats depicting rich multicultural themes and featuring performers who engage and entertain the crowds.  Brazilian-style escola samba schools with up to 300 members dance through the streets in fantastic feathered headdresses or sweeping Bahia skirts, while Caribbean contingents perform the music and dance of the Bahamas, Cuba, Jamaica, Puerto Rico and Trinidad.  Other parade groups include Mexican Aztec performers, traditional African drummers, Polynesian dancers, Japanese drummers, giant puppets and folkloric groups representing Guatemala, Honduras and Bolivia.

  • Parade Route: The Grand Parade will start at the corner of 24th and Bryant streets, proceed west to Mission Street, head north on Mission to 15th Street, turn east on 15th and conclude at South Van Ness.
  • Admission to the festival and parade is FREE.  Grandstand seating for the parade, located on Mission Street between 22ndand 23rd streets, is available for purchase online at www.carnavalsanfrancisco.org.

New for 2022

 The festival’s new cannabis garden, Jardin de Hierba Buena, an oasis within the festival that will stretch 17th and 16th Streets and Treat Avenue, will provide consumers ages 21 and over with a relaxed, Carnaval SF themed lounge environment complete with comfortable space to consume cannabis purchased at the event. Nina Parks of Gift of Doja, whose mission is to  increase access to BIPOC & Equity products, is curating the garden and it will provide access to craft cannabis from Northern California.

The festival’s Tech & Gaming Pavilion, located on Harrison between 19th St West and 18th St Eastwill feature complimentary onsite demonstrations, tutorials, fun interactive coding and gaming activities, networking opportunities and more, courtesy of  Latinx in Gaming and local organizations Dev/MissionGameheads and Mission Bit. 

The LGBTQI+ dedicated stage and block party will span 18th Street between Harrison and Folsom streets. Sponsored by San Francisco’s most celebrated gay bar, El Rio; cannabis breeder Powerzzzup; and Gilead Sciences, the area will feature a glittering lineup of San Francisco’s fiercest queer artists. Performances and other fun activities will take place from 12:00 pm-6:00 pm.

LGBTQI+ Stage – Saturday

12:00 pm – Per Sia & Jaylyn with DJ Per Sia

1:00 pm – Lambert Live Singing
1:30 pm – DJ Chulita Vinyl Club
3:00 pm – Poetry by Flavia
3:15 pm – Jota Mercury
3:30 pm – DJ Olga T
4:30 pm  – Capoeira Dance Troupe
4:45 pm – Dulce de Leche
5:00 pm – DJ Oscar

LGBTQI+ Stage – Sunday
12:00 –  Sia & Jaylyn Welcome with DJ Per Sia
12:45 pm – Flavia
1:00 pm – La Coqui
2:30 pm – DJ Frida
4:00 pm – Mz. Love’O
4:30 pm – Carnaval SF Royalty: Black Opal & Mama Dora
4:45 pm – El / La Para Trans Latinas
5:00 pm –  DJ Brown Amy

The event’s 2022 theme, “Colores de Amor: Inclusivity, Family and Community” was chosen to highlight care, love and support for a community that has seen challenges and met them, particularly during the pandemic.