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California Wine Month

cawineryCelebrate California Wine Month in September with wine-focused events, tastings and festivals at wineries across the state. During this statewide celebration of the Golden State’s rich wine history, you can participate in events from picking and crushing grapes to ViP tours to tastings, concerts, and so much more.

For more information, visit discovercaliforniawines.com/californiawinemonth/

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Desert Tasty Tours

deserttastytours

Taste your way through Palm Desert’s upscale shopping and art district while enjoying an entertaining, cultural and educational journey. Walk away from your adventure with a new found culinary perspective, a satisfied stomach and a local’s knowledge of this fun, interesting and beautiful destination.

A Desert Tasty Tours food tour is a three-hour, guided culinary and cultural stroll along Palm Desert’s El Paseo and Palm Springs’ Palm Canyon Drive. It combines enticing food tastings with historical, architectural and cultural insights from passionate local guides.

These 1.5 mile tours are suitable for all fitness levels and most appropriate for ages 13 and up.

Whether you are a visitor or a lifetime local, our food tour is a fun, casual way to sample the sights, sounds and flavors of Palm Desert and Palm Springs.

For additional details, visit deserttastytours.com

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San Diego Big Bay Whale Festival

San Diego is set to celebrate the incredible phenomenon of the annual California Gray Whale migration as thousands of whales travel along our coastline. The 5th annual Big Bay Whale Festival will spark the interest and imagination of all ages on Saturday, January 26, 2013 from 11:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. at the Port Pavilion on the Broadway Pier in downtown San Diego.

Whale watching has become one of San Diego’s favorite pastimes by boasting an impressive variety of sea life that’s just a short boat ride from downtown San Diego. During the 2012 season, local whale watching companies spotted an impressive variety of sea life including seven different species of whales, including the California Gray Whale, and four species of dolphins. For those interested in learning about whale ecology and conversation, the annual Big Bay Whale Festival provides resources and information about opportunities to see and interact with the many whale and dolphin species found along our coast.

A free community event, the Big Bay Whale Festival will feature over 50 vendors providing giveaways, food and entertainment plus fun activities for the kids including a walk-through whale, a mini-train that the family can ride aboard, a bounce/obstacle course, and a sea life coloring mural.

For additional information, visit: whaledays.com

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Kids Marathon Mile

kidsmarathonmile

The annual Kids Marathon Mile at LEGOLAND California is taking place on the morning of Saturday, January 26, 2013. It’s an opportunity for the entire family to get some exercise and spend a day at LEGOLAND.  Though created for kids ages 12 and under, everyone is welcome to participate. Moms, dads, and big kids are invited to join the fun in this non-competitive 1-mile run/walk through LEGOLAND® California.

Registered participants will receive an event T-shirt and be treated to refreshments, fun activities, entertainment and more!

Participants ages 12 and under ALSO receive:  

  • A FREE 1-Day SEA LIFE™ Hopper ticket to LEGOLAND® California and SEA LIFE™ Aquarium  (An $81 value valid 1/26/13  or 1/27/13 only, for children age 3 to 12.)
  • A shiny finisher’s medal
  • A FREE UltraStar Cinema child’s movie pass and a coupon for a FREE popcorn.
  • 50% off up to two adult 1-Day SEA LIFE™ Hopper tickets to LEGOLAND® California and SEA LIFE™ Aquarium (A $45.50 savings per ticket valid 1/26/13 or 1/27/13 only for ages 13 and above.)
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Garden of Lights 2012

gardenoflights

The San Diego Botanic Garden will be all a-twinkle next weekend when it flips the switch on its annual Garden of Lights celebration. The annual holiday event runs from 5 to 9 p.m. nightly, Saturday through Dec. 30 (closed Christmas Eve and Christmas Day)  features more than 100,000 holiday lights strung through the trees and plants on its 37-acre grounds.

Besides the light display, visitors can roast marshmallows, visit with Santa Claus, tour an exhibit of 50 nutcrackers, shop for poinsettias, and purchase snacks, Mexican food and hot drinks (cocoa for kids, mulled wine for grown-ups). There will also be tables where children make their own take-home holiday crafts.

From Saturday through Dec. 13 and again from Dec. 26-30, there will be a mountain of snow (weather permitting). Children can bring their own sleds or discs. And beginning Dec. 15, visitors can tour the grounds in a wagon pulled by a team of Belgian draft horses. Live entertainment runs from 6 to 8 p.m. nightly, with a different performer almost every night. Scheduled artists include the Carlsbad Caroleers, Raggle Taggle, Mariachi Imperial de San Diego, a Klezmer Holiday Celebration, Rockin’ Cranberries, Con Alma, Tom Gates Duo, CAST Kids and more.

For additional information, visit sdbgarden.org

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Moorten Botanical Garden

Moorten Botanical Garden

The Moorten family, all desert plant specialists, turned their residence estate into a living museum of desert lore. There’s something of interest for everyone with glistening crystals, colorful rocks, ancient fossils, pioneer and gold-mine relics.

Long established in beautiful Palm Springs, California, since 1938, this private arboretum was created to share with everyone the beauty and extraordinary varieties of desert plants from around the world featuring desert trees and cacti from miniatures to giants.

It is a classic collection of more than 3000 varieties of plants designed in concentrated habitats along a natural trail. Also, a special exhibition of quite rare plants called “The World’s First Cactarium”.

The Moorten’s Mediterranean style home, called “Cactus Castle” is in the Palm Grove Oasis, often described as a haven of tranquility. The charm of old Palm Springs. Visit moortengarden.com

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Blue Sky Ecological Reserve

Blue Sky Ecological Reserve

Whether you’re looking to kick start your morning with a hike, walk the dog, unwind after a stressful day, or simply enjoy the great outdoors by immersing yourself in nature, the Blue Sky Ecological Reserve has something for everyone.

As you stand at the trailhead you can’t help but feel you are about to enter a special place. Blue Sky is a 700-acre canyon rich in animals and plants. With Mount Woodson as its backdrop, an easy trail winds its way between coastal sage scrub, oak woodland, and mixed chaparral hillsides.

For a great workout, incredible views of Poway and beyond, and a tranquil setting above the Blue Sky Ecological Reserve, hike through the Reserve and up to Lake Ramona.

Not challenging enough? How about hiking through Blue Sky to the Lake Poway trail and then hiking all the way to the top of Mount Woodson? You’ll be rewarded with even more stunning views of the surrounding area. For more information, visit blueskyreserve.org

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Free Flight Exotic Bird Sanctuary

freeflightlogo

Free Flight Exotic Bird Sanctuary is a great place to spend a few hours handling and learning about parrots. Free Flight’s mission is to inspire wonder and promote knowledge and responsibility for parrots and other exotic species of bird, both captive and wild. Patrons and visitors are provided the unique opportunity to view and handle birds in an open-air park facility. Through these one-on-one encounters, along with guided group tours and educational programs, the resident flock is socially enriched, and bird owners and enthusiasts acquire knowledge and skills they can apply to diverse personal and professional pursuits. Visit freeflightbirds.org for additional information.

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8th Annual Boulevard BOO! Parade & Carnival

boologo

Halloween never looked so good! The Blessed Sacrament Parish School Boulevard BOO! Parade & Carnival, San Diego’s only Halloween Parade, is returning to the College Area on Saturday, October 27th. Join us at this celebration of community spirit and cultural diversity sponsored by Campus Plaza Shopping Center. The fun begins at 10 am with the BOO! parade. Come early and take a front row seat on the Boulevard. The parade starts at 59th street and creeps down El Cajon Boulevard heading east to Aragon Drive.

This year the parade features local celebrity Kimberly King as the Grand Marshal. Come on down and see the march down El Cajon Blvd. with San Diego State University, Ronald McDonald, the Wells Fargo Stage Coach, the spooky Blessed Sacrament Parish School float, Killer Pumpkins and the Ghost Busters riding in Ecto 1.

After the parade the party moves to the BOO! Carnival, located at Clay Park, just one block south of El Cajon Blvd. on Art Street. Enjoy family-friendly fun, great prizes, kids rides, delicious food, craft and merchandise booths and a beer garden from 11 am until 5 pm. Trick-or-Treat in the Haunted Pumpkin Patch, take a swing at Pumpkin Bowling, satisfy your sweet tooth at the Marie Callendar’s Pie-Eating Contest or enter one of the costume con-tests for kids or canines. At the BOO! carnival stage, you can enjoy local bands playing your favorite tunes.

For additional information, visit booparade.com

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Halloween Family Day

halloweenfamilyday

Children 12 and under will be treated to free admission at over a dozen museums at the 4th annual Balboa Park Halloween Family Day on Saturday, October 27, 2012. In addition to free children’s admission with a paid adult, participating museums and cultural attractions will present a spooktacular array of hands-on activities, crafts, costume parades, tours, storytelling and other free goodies from 11 am to 3 pm. Adults also receive discounted admission when they pick up a Stay-for-the-Day Pass, a one-day excursion pass allowing one adult admission to five park museums for a low price of $39.

Among the highlights of this year’s park-wide Halloween Family Day is a doggie costume parade and contest at the Lily Pond, a Great Pumpkin parachute drop at the San Diego Air & Space Museum, a creepy nocturnal Critter Cavern at the Natural History Museum and activities that explore legendary local ghosts at the San Diego History Center. For additional information, balboapark.org

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