Ways to Celebrate International Women’s Day in the Bay Area

Not only is March Women’s History Month, but on March 8, we celebrate International Women’s Day, a day established over a century ago to honor the achievements of women and to promote gender equality around the world.

This year’s theme is #BreaktheBias; raising awareness on bias, stereotypes and discrimination in the struggle for women’s equality. By highlighting this theme, International Women’s Day states that “celebrating women’s achievements and increasing visibility, while calling out inequality, is key.”

To inspire you, we rounded-up features that celebrate exceptional women, plus we’re sharing ways to celebrate and honor the day (and month), around the Bay Area and at home.


March 5: International Women’s Day Theme Event at the Alice Collective, Oakland

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Oakland’s Alice Collective celebrates the #BreaktheBias theme, continuing their work to support and uplift small businesses for a gender equal world. Come support local makers and creators and enjoy good food, music and drinks. You can also join a morning walk before the event with Compassion in Oakland from 10-11 a.m. at the Pacific Renaissance Plaza.

1-4p.m., March 5. The Alice Collective, 272 14th St. Oakland

March 8: International Women’s Day Sail on San Francisco Bay

Join the annual sail in celebration of International Women’s Day aboard a reconstructed tall ship, the Schooner Freda B, and learn a bit about prominent women in Bay Area history, including Sally Stanford, Janis Joplin, Lotta Crabtree and Julia Morgan. Board in Sausalito to see the Bay’s iconic sights from the deck of an elegant, traditionally-rigged sailboat.

9:45 a.m.-12:30 p.m. March 8. $99, vaccination proof, masks and reservations required. Schooner Freda B, Sausalito Yacht Harbor, Slip 465, Sausalito. 415-331-0444. 

March 8: Golden Thread’s What Do The Women Say? 2022

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In celebration of International Women’s Day, Golden Thread’s What Do the Women Say? returns to the Brava Theater. This year’s program will be presented in a hybrid format with artists appearing in-person and virtually. The event showcases the work of multi-generational MENA women artists who are making home away from home, featuring a poetry reading by award-winning Lebanese poet Zeina Hashem Beck, a dramatic reading by Palestinian actor and playwright Hend Ayoub from her one woman show Home?, a performance by Yemeni song writer and oud artist Layle Omeran accompanied by cellist and composer Crystal Pascucci, an excerpt from the documentary film by Iranian filmmaker Sabereh Kashi Home Yet Far Away, and a sneak peek into the rehearsal studio of Palestinian dancer Leila Awadallah. Raeshma Razvi and Madeleine Rostami of the Shahrazad Squad will engage pre-show audiences with their 1001 Nights-inspired “Conversation Cards,” facilitating the informal sharing of bite-sized stories with other attendees, starting at 7:00 pm in person and 7:30 pm online. Following the presentations, Executive Artistic Director Sahar Assaf will be joined by Afghan writer, speaker and consultant Humaira Ghilzai to facilitate a conversation between the participating artists and the audience.

Brava Theater Center, 2781 24th Street, San Francisco. Tickets are $15-$50. No one will be turned away for lack of funds.

All Month

Run: 2022 International Women’s Day 1M, 5K, 10K Runs

Get out and celebrate being a women and/or celebrate all of the amazing women in your life. This is a 1M, 5K, 10K, 13.1, 26.2 virtual run (or walk) to celebrate International Women’s Day. You choose which distance you want to complete and time yourself — just complete your race any time in March 2022. Entrants will receive a beautiful medal that features a quote from Dr. Mae Jemison, the first African-American female astronaut. 15% of each registration fee will go to Dress for Success.

$18, including medal, bib. Sign up at virtualrunevents.com

Watch: PBS’s Women’s History Month Coverage

This month, tune into KQED to watch new documentaries that tell the stories of women fighting for change in male-dominated worlds. The Academy Award-nominated Writing with Fire follows an all-female newspaper in India; The Conductor chronicles the pioneering Marin Alsop, the only woman music director to ever lead any of America’s top orchestras; Bring Her Home shows a quest by three Indigenous women to bring attention to and honor missing and murdered Indigenous women; and Betty White: First Lady of Television gives a definitive look at the late Betty White’s life and careerLearn more.

Be Inspired: 9 Inspiring Women to Celebrate on International Women’s Day (and Every Day!)

These are the women in politics, journalism, Hollywood, and sports continually inspire us year after year. Read more.

Read: Women’s History Month – 8 Nonfiction Books That Highlight Awesome Women

Women are often left out of history books, but fortunately there are plenty of quality books that cover a variety of areas that women have been pioneering. Whether it is science or sports or civil rights, women are on the front lines and making a difference in this world. Here are eight books to read this month. Read more.

Watch: ‘The Women Who Made Us Who We Are’: The Power of Your Family Stories

Noyes Family Webinar
Noyes Family Members. From top left; Willie Griswold, Virginia Blankenbaker, Emma V.R. Noyes, Susan B. Noyes, Betsy Murphy.

Although male figures dominate history books, ask anyone about the family leaders who helped them grow into successful adults, and chances are you’ll hear about women. Grandmothers, moms, older sisters and aunts inspire young people to grow, achieve and help others.

This is especially true in the family of Make It Better Media Group founder Susan Noyes. She recently sat down for a virtual Fireside Chat, “The Power of Your Family Stories: Be Inspired By Three Generations,” with four family members. Watch the recording here.

Watch: Helping Women Achieve Their Most Important Financial Goals

women in finance

Women as a group face many financial challenges. They earn less on average during our careers compared to men, and compound that shortcoming by investing less. All of these shortfalls send us into retirement with significantly smaller nest eggs than men have — yet we live longer, meaning we actually need more savings to cover our living expenses and medical care in later years. As grim as all this sounds, financial advisor Helen Abe knows women don’t have to accept being limited by circumstances. She knows this because of her mother, an immigrant who earned just pennies for every piece of cloth she sewed together in a Chinatown sweatshop.

Watch her Fireside Chat with Make It Better Founder and Chief Visionary Officer Susan Noyes to learn more.

Be Inspired: Women at the Top of Their Game Share Their Best Tips for Success in Work and Life

Women on the Rise panel
Photos by Elliot Mandel

In late 2019, at one of our last in-person events before the pandemic, we gathered at Rise Interactive for a celebration of “Women on the Rise” and our Most Most Powerful Women list. Over 130 guests raised a glass of rosé to toast to inspiring females as a panel of influential CEOs, founders, and directors shared their career wisdom with the group.

If you are looking to grow your career or your own business, here is some valuable wisdom from women who are truly at the top of their game, having made bold moves and learned valuable lessons along the way. Read more.

Want more? Watch our 2021 Virtual Women on the Rise Webinar with Cheryl Berman, Erin Clifford, Zoe Elton, Nurit Raphael, Kathy Roeser and Megan Gailey here.

Support Other Women: Why Investing in Women is a Smart Business Move

Gender Lens Investing: Doing Well by Doing Good

As investors review their portfolios for new sources of growth, one area gaining the attention of policy leaders and corporate executives is the economic potential of investing in women. According to Women as a Force for Economic Change, a UBS CIO Wealth Management Research report published in October 2016, just half of the world’s women are gainfully employed, compared to 75 percent of men. This gap has narrowed in many countries in recent decades, but considerable disparities still exist. Read more.

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