this year’s Herring Festival takes the form of a Herring Celebration with Movie and Lunch at the Bay Model. click here for more info

Sausalito Herring Festival

• Live music including sea shanties, local bands, well known musicians
• Herring dishes prepared by award-winning local restaurants
• Information & displays by local environmental organizations
• Exciting Live Auction items & prizes
• Kids area with games and activities
• Local coffee, beer and assorted wines

Every year in late January and early February, the Herring run peaks on the shores of 222726_489878254383180_1516325630_nSausalito. We’re there to celebrate our maritime history, the wonders of nature, the fisheries, and good food.

The gathering features music, entertainment and a variety of signature herring dishes from Sausalito’s top chefs. Celebrating the area’s longstanding commitment to sustainable fishing and maritime culture, the festival showcases one of the world’s culinary delicacies -drawn straight from Richardson Bay. This local urban fishery is the last place in the U.S. with a herring run that can be seen from shore.
This event for the whole family includes a kids’ area and also hosts a variety of environmental and educational information.

2017 Herring Celebration

2016 festival

2015 festival

2014 festival

2013 festival

Why a Herring Festival?
In our mission statement for the Sausalito Community Boating Center we talk – among other things – about educating and engaging the public in our rich maritime history, being an advocate for environmental stewardship, and building waterfront community.  The herring fishery in Richardson Bay is the last commercial fishery left in San Francisco Bay, and one that can often be closely observed from the Sausalito water’s edge.  We’ve developed and continue to host, the popular annual Sausalito Herring Festival as a perfect way to promote an important part of our mission.

As part of the Festival we include the fishery itself, tell spectators about what they see, about the history, and the important process of how we catch and regulate our food.  Some locals remember there used to be a fish dock right here in Sausalito, but now most don’t even know what the fishermen are doing out there.  Many of the fishermen and women travel from afar just for this two month season, then they disappear until next year and we never get to meet them.  Some are local, but their boats are in San Francisco or Napa.  We hope to welcome all the herring fleet again here in Sausalito as part of the Sausalito Herring Festival.
Most Sausalito residents hear the ruckus on the water, birds diving, seals hunting, but what does it all mean?  Modern life severs the connection to nature more and more.  We’d like to connect you back to this aquatic setting, and to encourage everyone to take care of the environment.  We feel its important to know where our food comes from, to be open to new culinary adventures, have all food be sustainable and with a low carbon footprint.  There are numbers of small fish that only get caught to feed the big farmed fish.  How many pound of herring is needed to get one pound of farmed salmon?  Where is the biodiversity going with this practice? Couldn’t we eat a pound of herring instead and help the wild salmon along?  We hope to address some of these questions and more during this event.
We hope by promoting this wonderful little shiny fish and all that goes with it, in a fun-filled and educational event, we will reach a broader audience.
Come join us – bring your family and friends!  Enjoy great food and music while we celebrate this tiny but oh-so-mighty silvery fish!