King tides at the Hook
(Kevin Painchaud / Lookout Santa Cruz)
City Life

BOLO Best Bets: Ring in 2022 with music, art and king tides

Late news from the Rio Theatre is that the double date of the White Album Ensemble has been postponed, thanks to the virus that shall not be named. Shows for New Year’s Eve, however, are all slated for a go as of Thursday morning. Of course, no one can blame you if you see fit to stay home Friday night, but didn’t we all follow that script last year? It would be great to see crowds come out to support such fine local bands as the Coffis Brothers, the China Cats and the California Honeydrops. As we’ve all come to realize, living in the 2020s is all about balancing safety and living life. Either way, be sure to greet ’22 with someone or doing something that you love. Happy New Year!

— Wallace Baine

See our full BOLO calendar listings for events in Santa Cruz here. And as if that isn’t enough, we have you covered for all the MAJOR events coming up into the next year with Down The Line, a listing assembled by Wallace Baine that’s your key to getting tickets before they sell out.

Now, here’s what Team BOLO thinks you should know for the weekend and beyond:

(Click category headers for full BOLO listings in that category.)


The Coffis Brothers
The Coffis Brothers.

White Album Ensemble — POSTPONED: The Omicron variant has sidetracked a Santa Cruz New Year’s tradition for another year. The dedicated group of local musical adventurers who form the late-Beatles-focused White Album Ensemble have decided to postpone shows planned for Wednesday and Thursday and return “hopefully in a couple of months.” Tickets will be honored for the makeup date, and refunds are available at the point of sale.

California Honeydrops: For the last week of the year, the Oakland-based funk/R&B band the California Honeydrops are the Santa Cruz Honeydrops. The Drops began their three-date swing through the area Wednesday, and have another show at the Felton Music Hall on Thursday, then move to the Catalyst for New Year’s Eve. The Honeydrops are no strangers to Santa Cruz audiences, having visited the area many times over their decade-plus tenure as a band (and a couple of the players have UCSC roots as well). Their brand of high-energy, sassy, muscular funk and soul is really just what we all want to hear as we brace for the new year.

Coffis Brothers/AJ Lee: Moe’s Alley in Santa Cruz will chime in 2022 with a distinctly local celebration, featuring the top-flight folk/rock band that emerged out of the San Lorenzo Valley, the Coffis Brothers. Kellen, Jamie and their bandmates are known for their lovely vocal harmonies and Byrds-like vibe. Also on the bill is the bluegrass combo AJ Lee & Blue Summit, led by longtime Santa Cruzan Lee, who first began performing as a child. She brings her band Blue Summit to an evening of reflection and celebration. Showtime is 9 p.m. and continues until after the ball drops.

China Cats: It’s going to be a Grateful New Year over at Michael’s on Main in Soquel as the popular Dead tribute band China Cats takes the stage to welcome in the new year. The Cats, led by guitarists Matt Hartle and Scott Cooper, have been playing together for more than a decade, and they bring an encyclopaedic knowledge of the Dead’s catalogue to their performances. This is a special dinner-and-a-show evening that begins at 7 p.m. with a meal, and ends after midnight with champagne.

Jackie Greene: The fine Northern California singer-songwriter Jackie Greene has been gigging in Santa Cruz since forever ago, and his local fan base will be out in force to bring in the New Year at a special NYE show at Felton Music Hall. Sir Jackie emerges from the pandemic with a big new show. Opening are the Live Oaks. It all happens at Felton Music Hall. Showtime is 9 p.m.

Acoustic Sunset with Anthony Arya: It’s a brand new year, and Santa Cruz’s talented singer-songwriter Anthony Arya welcomes it at Felton Music Hall with the second show in a series he’s calling “Acoustic Sunset.” Sunday’s show features Arya jamming with local lap-steel maven Patti Maxine and South Bay-based looper and instrumentalist Casey Wickstrom, both frequent collaborators of Arya’s. It’s a mellow evening show, kicking off at 7 p.m.

— Wallace Baine

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Low tide in Pleasure Point
(Kevin Painchaud / Lookout Santa Cruz)

King tides: King tides are unusually low and high tides that occur when the gravitational pull of the sun and moon are in alignment. The three first days of 2022 brings just such an alignment, with the very low tides providing fantastic tide pooling and more beach to walk on. Saturday’s lowest tide will be just after 3:30 p.m., Sunday’s around 4:30 p.m. and Monday’s about 5:15 p.m. As always, no matter the tide, don’t turn your back on the ocean.

Corralitos Farm and Garden Market: With the Westside and Live Oak farmers markets not happening this week due to the holiday, take a Sunday drive to get your fix in Corralitos. This market, small and open-air, features food, produce, and other products from farmers and gardeners who grow within an approximately five-mile radius of Corralitos.

— Max Chun


Jim Phillips' iconic Screaming Hand inside an elevator at the Santa Cruz MAH
(Kevin Painchaud / Lookout Santa Cruz)

Sunday marks the last day for a pair of exhibitions at the Santa Cruz Museum of Art and History: “The Art of the Santa Cruz Speed Wheel,” from the iconic Jim Phillips, and “Ocean of Light: Submergence,” curtainlike strings of LED light, pulsating in color within the black box of the MAH’s windowless Solari Gallery. Check the museum’s website for holiday hours.

Indicators”: Surfing and art slam together for an exhibit at the R. Blitzer Gallery on the Westside of Santa Cruz, featuring the artistic creations of well-known figures in the Santa Cruz surf world, including Stan Welsh, Margitta Dietrick-Welsh, Vince Broglio, Nancy Broglio, Ed Dickie, Tessa Hope Hasty, Dave Anderson, Boogie Bill, Gary Hughes and more. It’s all up at the Blitzer through Jan. 28, at 2801 Mission St., in the old Wrigley Building.

Gifted”: The downtown gallery Curated By the Sea is packing its Front Street space with a wide variety of artworks from more than 30 of the most prominent names on the Santa Cruz art scene, rotating the content regularly throughout the gift-giving season. Curated is open Thursday through Saturday noon-4 p.m., or by appointment, at 703 Front St., Santa Cruz.

— Wallace Baine

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A redwood grove at Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park
(Via Instagram)

Redwood Grove for Kids!: Begin the new year with a nature outing for the whole family. Explore the quintessential redwood forest in Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park and learn some basics about redwood growth, the animals that live in and around our big trees, and all of the ways that redwoods affect the surrounding environment. Meet at the visitors center and remember the $10 vehicle day-use fee.

— Max Chun


A flyer for Greater Purpose Brewing's New Year's Eve comedy show

Greater Purpose Brewing Comedy Night: DNA’s Comedy Lab brings comedians from the Bay Area and beyond to Greater Purpose Brewing each Friday for a weekly showcase. Chad Opitz headlines a full slate for this week’s New Years special, with champagne pilsner and party favors.

Santa Cruz Mountain Brewing Comedy Night: Santa Cruz Mountain Brewing welcomes comedians from the Bay Area and beyond for shows every week. Regulars from The Punch Line San Francisco, Cobb’s Comedy Club, Rooster T. Feathers bring the laughs to the Westside.

— Haneen Zain


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