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A green thumbs up for gathering at Cambria

October 15, 2006|Amy Hubbard

Cambria, Calif.

Oct. 21-22: Green thumbs converge on the Central Coast city during the annual Gathering of Gardeners Festival and Symposium. Tree huggers, flower sniffers and others with a fondness for foliage will gather in 5 acres of themed gardens for seminars, a coffee bar and a tea garden, live music, topiary and birdhouse workshops, seminars, free demonstrations, gardening-related vendors and more.

Cambria Pines Lodge and Cambria Nursery and Florist, 2905 Burton Drive. Some materials fees. (805) 927-4747,

Santa Fe, N.M.

Oct. 22-29: Eight days and 80 events make up Santa Fe Design Week, which showcases cutting-edge developments and stellar names from the world of design. An expo, Oct. 27-29 at Museo Cultural, includes custom-made bikes, tips on xeriscaping and feng shui design, even a demonstration of a turbine for hybrid solar-wind technology. Among other highlights: a juried furniture show, a runway fashion show, an interior-design tour of local homes and a five-day tour of northern New Mexico that visits ruins, mission churches, modern structures and more.

Main venue is El Museo Cultural, 1615 Paseo de Peralta, Santa Fe. Most events are free. (505) 438-8735,

San Francisco

Through December: The holiday to-buy list shrinks dramatically with a swing through some of San Francisco's eclectic fairs. Some early shopping opportunities: There's an array of antiques -- porcelain, silver, rugs, glass etc. -- at the Fall Antiques Show, Oct. 26-29 at Fort Mason Center. Also at the center is the Vintage Poster Fair, Oct. 27-29, displaying more than 10,000 original vintage posters from all over the world. Jewelry, paintings, pottery and clothing are among offerings at the Harvest Festival Original Art and Craft Show, Nov. 3-5 at the Concourse Exhibition Center. Dec. 7, Union Square bustles with holiday hubbub during the Union Square Holiday Stroll. Food, entertainment and shopping take center stage, and a silent auction benefits the American Conservatory Theater. If you're more in the mood for chocolate, the place to be is Ghirardelli Square, where Nov. 25 brings the lighting of a gargantuan tree decorated with oversized chocolate bars. There will be musical theater, stilt walkers, puppet shows and caroling, with the tree-lighting at 5:30 p.m., and as many chocolate purchases as your sweet tooth and wallet can stand.

Antiques show: $15, Fort Mason's Festival Pavilion; (415) 989-9019, Poster fair: $12, Landmark Building A, Fort Mason Center; (650) 548-6700, Harvest Festival: $8, Concourse hall, 635 8th St.; (415) 447-3205, Holiday stroll: free, Union Square; (415) 781-7880, Ghirardelli Square: free, 900 N. Point St.; (415) 775-5500.

Las Vegas

Nov. 14-18: Comedians famous, infamous and not famous at all gather for the second year of the Comedy Festival. The fledgling enterprise is partly sponsored by HBO, which puts on the more established U.S. Comedy Arts Festival in Colorado each February. Big names include Chris Rock, who will receive the festival's legacy award, the Comedian. The presentation includes career clips and a Q&A with Rock. Also on the extensive lineup of laugh maestros: Don Rickles, Dane Cook, Kathy Griffin, Mario Cantone, Bob Saget and more. Fresh faces are featured in "Lucky 21," a batch of comedians chosen by comedy clubs across the country.

Caesars Palace, 3570 Las Vegas Blvd. S. Room and show packages, (800) 634-6661; festival info,

-- Amy Hubbard

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