Archive for September, 2012

Fall Fun

Wednesday, September 26th, 2012
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Fall means leaves change colors and kids go back to school,

But it also means witches, ghosts, goblins and ghouls


Bats and broomsticks and things that go bump in the night,

It’s costumes and candy and fun and a fright


But Halloween is more than scary things,

It’s friends and family and doorbells to ring


Trick or Treat is heard on that special day

Here’s some Halloween themed events throughout the Bay


The staff at the Portola Hotel & Spa loves Halloween – check out our staff’s favorite picks for a spook-tacular time during your October visit.

Blue Ocean Film Festival

Tuesday, September 11th, 2012
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Photo by Doubilet©

If you are lucky enough to grow up around the ocean you’ll almost certainly develop an appreciation for the great big blue and if your childhood was spent landlocked, chances are that you’ll want to experience as much of the ocean as you can. For all the ocean you can handle, plan on attending the BLUE Ocean Film Festival. The BLUE Ocean Film Festival, September 24-30, 2012, is being held right here in Monterey and is a global film festival and conservation summit for underwater filmmakers and marine researchers. While an “industry” event, it is open to the public and is more than just insiders talking fish. It’s a true celebration of the ocean and all its wonders. Since it is a film festival, there are entries and submissions from all over the world, each showing a new and different perspective. Some of the films are true art and some are more documentary in style, but after you attending just a few minutes of the festival, you will come to appreciate what a wonderful natural treasure you have right in front of you.

The home of this year’s festival is the Portola Hotel & Spa. As Monterey’s first and only LEED®-EB (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Green Building Rating System™  certified hotel, it’s only natural (no pun intended) that they partner with the festival to host some of the events. Selected films then tour the country as part of BLUE On Tour, but nothing is more powerful than watching a submission and then walking outside to look out upon the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary. A truly wonderful experience.

For tickets to the Blue Ocean Film Festival visit

Cherries Jubilee

Thursday, September 6th, 2012
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While Classic Car Week showed of the best of the best in foreign and domestic antique and early model autos, Cherry’s Jubilee brings a decidedly more homegrown flavor to the Central Coast. Dubbed the “biggest oldies party of the year”, the “Cherry’s” as it is fondly referred to, takes place all over the Monterey Peninsula and is a celebration of the restored and supped up American Muscle Cars and Hot Rods made popular in the 1950’s and 60’s.

In its 20th year, the Cherry’s Jubilee is presented by the Salinas Valley Memorial Hospital Foundation and proceeds benefit the hospital itself. The event runs September 12th – 16th and features locations throughout the area including: Cannery Row, Fisherman’s Wharf, Downtown Monterey, Old Town Salinas and a poker run through Pacific Grove, Carmel Valley and Pebble Beach.

What sets the Jubilee apart from some of the other local auto events is the passion and hours of loving restoration the owners have put into their cars. Very few are acquired in mint condition with the majority are painstakingly refurbished from the ground up and are actually driven to and from these “show and shine” events. Even more impressive, is the willingness of the owners to share their tips and stories to fans of their autos.

Cherry’s Jubilee will bring back fond memories of malt shops and car hops and may just remind you of a simpler time. Oh, and the cars are pretty cool to look at too!

2nd Annual Monterey Beer Garden

Tuesday, September 4th, 2012
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There is just something inherently right about enjoying a beer outdoors. Whether it’s on a hot summer day, tailgating at a football game on a crisp autumn afternoon or simply relaxing with friends in the backyard, fresh air and a freshly poured beer go hand in hand. That’s why the return of the Monterey Beer Garden is being met with such anticipation.

The second annual event held on September 22nd from 12pm-4pm at Monterey’s historic Memory Garden at Custom House Plaza is shaping up to be a Who’s Who of the Central Coast Craft Beer scene. With local heavy hitters Peter B’s Brewpub and English Ales leading the way and Seabright Brewing, Rock Bottom Brewing and Hollister Hills Brewery among the 11 participants, attendees are sure to get a sense of the skill and imagination of our local brewers.

Sponsored by the Portola Hotel & Spa, The Offset Project, The Monterey County Weekly and Peter B’s Brewpub, the event features unlimited beer tasting, BBQ and live music from local favorite Cheeky Spanks with proceeds of the event benefiting local environmental non-profit, Save Our Shores. And if that was not enough, Save Our Shores will also be raffling off a number of great prizes.

Tickets for the event are still available and can be purchased online at . Raffle tickets are sold separately at the door.

Good Friends, Good Cheer, Good Time, Great Beer!