Paintsite Details

Thursday paintsites

Weekend (Saturday) paintsites

General Information

Click on the map link on a paint site address below to go to Google Maps for that paint site location.

Thursday Paintsites

Thursday, August 9: New Almaden Historic District, 21785 Almaden Rd, San Jose 95120 map

New Almaden Historic District is located along Almaden Road between Casa Grande and Almaden Quicksilver CP.  There are many buildings linked to the quicksilver (mercury) mining history dating back to the 1840s including the Carson-Perham house and St. Anthony’s Church.  We will meet in the Almaden Quicksilver CP parking lot.

Directions: From highway 85 take Almaden Expressway South for 4.5 miles to Almaden Road.  Turn right and drive 3 miles along Almaden Road through the town of New Almaden and the County Park parking lot is on the right.

Thursday, August 16: Quail Hollow Ranch CP, 800 Quail Hollow Rd, Felton 95018 map

Link to park website

This park is a 300-acre historic horse ranch and nature preserve, home to 15 habitats.  It has a historic ranch house, visitor center, many trees, horse barns and turnouts, horses, and a pond.  This is a new site for us.  Carpools recommended due to distance from Bay Area.

Directions:  Take Highway 17 toward Santa Cruz. Turn right on Mt. Hermon Road, and follow it until it ends at Graham Hill Road, about 3.5 miles. Turn left on Graham Hill Rd and go 0.3 miles.  Turn left onto E Zayante Rd and go 1.9 miles.  Turn left onto Quail Hollow Road and go about 0.5 miles, and the park entrance is on the right.

Quail Hollow Ranch

Photo by Annie Haines

Thursday, August 23: San Jose History Park, 635 Phelan Ave, San Jose map

This 14-acre site contains 32 original and reproduction homes, businesses, and landmarks, including the Electric Light Tower and Southern Pacific Railroad Steam Locomotive.  Unlike recent previous years, they are now open in the mornings during the summer months.

Directions: From 101 take Story Road west, left on Senter Road, left on Phelan.  From 280 exit at 10th/11th streets, follow signs to Spartan Stadium, left on Phelan.  In both cases follow Phelan Avenue to the parking lot at the end of the street where parking costs $6.

Thursday, August 30: Quarry Lakes Regional Recreation Area, 2100 Isherwood Way, Fremont map

This 471 acre recreation area has 350 acres of water, a group of lakes which used to be quarries in the mid-19th century.  Starting in 1997 the old quarries were converted into an appealing recreation area with grassy lawns and trees overlooking the lakes with the East Bay Hills in the background.  This is a new site to us.

Directions:  From the South Bay, take I-880 north to Fremont, take exit 21 for Decoto Rd/CA-84 W and turn right onto Decoto Rd.  From the Peninsula, cross the Bay on the Dumbarton Bridge (Hwy 84) and continue until 84 becomes Decoto Rd as it crosses I-880.  For all drivers, continue on Decoto Rd for 1 mile, turn right on Paseo Padre Pkwy and go 0.8 miles, turn left onto Isherwood Way and go 0.7 miles and enter the park on the right.  Fee per car is $5.  Once inside the park, turn right into the parking lot near the boat ramp.  Meet in the picnic area near the boat ramp.

Thursday, September 6: Agnews Historic Park, 4030 Lafayette St., Santa Clara 95054 map

This 14.5 acre Historic Park is located on the Oracle Santa Clara campus on property which was the site of the Agnews State Hospital. Four historic buildings within the park are preserved as part of the historic easement. The Auditorium, Mansion, and Clock Tower are set among old elm trees on a shaded grass area.  Meet at the Clock Tower.

Directions: From Bayshore 101 take Montague Expressway East and go 0.9 miles, take the Lafayette St. exit, turn right onto Lafayette and go 0.2 miles, turn right on Palm Dr. where there is street parking.

Thursday, September 13: Palo Alto Baylands Nature Preserve, 2500 Embarcadero Road, Palo Alto map

This is such a great paintsite that we paint here every year. The 1,940-acre Baylands Preserve is one of the largest tracts of undisturbed marshland remaining in the San Francisco Bay.  Across the Bay you can see salt marshes with the East Bay hills beyond, and there are lots of shore birds. The preserve has a substantial resident population of birds as well as being a major migratory stopover on the Pacific Flyway.  Near the remodeled Eco-Center is a small duck pond.

Directions:  From 101 in Palo Alto take the Embarcadero exit going east, turn left where it dead ends.  Continue past the Duck Pond on the left and park in the parking lot on the left just past the Baylands Nature Preserve Ranger Station and before you cross a bridge.  We will meet by the ranger station.

Palo Alto Baylands by Toni Gregorio-Bunch

"Palo Alto Baylands" by Toni Gregorio-Bunch

Thursday, September 20: Hike & Paint or Paintsite at Pigeon Point Lighthouse, 210 Pigeon Point Rd, Pescadero map

For our annual September Santa Cruz paintout our subject will be Pigeon Pt and its 115 ft lighthouse.  The only difference from our usual paintsites (paint 10am-1pm, then eat our bag lunches in the picnic area, then share our artwork) is that artists are asked to bring a dessert to share.

The lighthouse, one of the tallest lighthouses in America, was first put into service in 1872.  Its first-order Fresnel lens which is 16 ft tall and weighs 2000 pounds is now on display in the Fog Signal building.  The lighthouse is still active, now using a Vega Marine Rotating Beacon.  The visitor center is open 10am-4pm.  The coastal areas surrounding the point are rich with life, birds and marine mammals. 

Artists may paint from the lighthouse grounds or get a more distant view from one of several viewing locations about 1 / 2 to 2 miles south along the coast.  We will meet at the lighthouse parking lot at 10 AM, then head off to desired painting location by hiking or in car pools.

Directions:  From the north, drive south on Highway 1 either 21 miles from Highway 92 or 10 miles from Highway 84.  Turn right on Pigeon Point Rd and go 0.2 miles.  From the south, drive north for 27 miles on Highway 1 from Highway 17.  Turn left on Pigeon Point Rd and go 0.2 miles.  Carpools recommended due to distance from Bay Area.

Thursday, September 27, Ainsley House Historical Museum, 300 Grant Street, Campbell 95008 map

Canning industry pioneer, J.C. Ainsley built this Tudor revival house in 1925 at Hamilton and Bascom.  It was moved onto city property and now houses the history museum.  It has a lovely garden.  The historic house museum opens at noon on Thursdays and has admission cost of $8 for adults and $6 for seniors (65+).

Directions: Take Highway 17 South to Hamilton Ave. Exit - turn right onto Hamilton Ave and go 0.2 miles. Turn left on Central Ave and go 0.4 miles. Ainsley House is at end of street where it dead ends at Grant Street.  For parking, turn left on Grant St, turn right on Harrison Ave, and turn right into parking lot with sign for Library and Museum parking.

  Weekend Paintsites  


Saturday, August 18: New Almaden Historic District, Casa Grande 21350 Almaden Road, New Almaden, CA

(San Jose)

Here's your chance to enjoy a Saturday painting one of our most important regional sites.


Casa Grande a beautifully restored mansion, now the Quicksilver Mining Museum.

Directions: From highway 85 take Almaden Expressway South for 4.5 miles to Almaden Road.  Turn right and drive 3 miles along Almaden Road through the town of New Almaden just past the New Almaden post office. Casa Grande is on the left.


Photo credit: Casa Grande by Jane Saltman



 General Information

The usual start time for the paint sites is flexible.  The organizers will be there from around 10:00 a.m. and will always carry cell phones (numbers in Member Directory for Marilyn Perry, Brad Santos, Jane Saltman) if you have trouble locating the group at the site.  Often people stay until early afternoon, having taken a packed lunch to eat at the site.  After lunch we share our paintings and pictures are taken (if desired) for posting on the paintsite blog.

In case of rain or other unforeseen events:  Cancellation will be announced on and on the home page by 8 AM on the day of the event.  Cancellation will also be announced by email to members, but the timing of SCVWS paintsite email cannot be guaranteed.