Maren

About Maren

San Diego raised and New York City educated, I trained as a classical singer before switching to tourism marketing. Now I love telling the world about San Diego's diverse offerings, from live music to live uni. As a friend recently told me, "tough job."

What would you do on your ideal San Diego Day?

For me, a perfect day always involves something I haven't done before. And even though I grew up  in San Diego, there is SO much to do I can usually find a way to make any day ideal. Next on the list is paragliding at Torrey Pines. I also need to meet more people with boats. Anyone?

What is your favorite San Diego outdoor activity?

I am a sucker for street fairs, county fairs, music festivals and block parties. The weather is always nice, the food is always sinful and the people are always interesting. I've been to the San Diego County Fair 3 times already!!!

Do you prefer burgers and beer or linguine and red wine?

Tacos. Why does this question not include tacos? Fish tacos, carne asada, carnitas, shrimp, lobster, chorizo, vegetarian- I don't care. Put it in a corn tortilla and give it to me. Or any creation by the fabulous Jason Knibb over at 9-10 Restaurant in La Jolla.

Latest music purchases for my iPod player are…

Confession: I don't buy! I Pandora. I love everything from Tuvan throat singing to Lady Gaga. But seriously, Mahler's 2nd Symphony. Listen to it. Then we can talk.
Maren

2013 Guide to the Del Mar Races in San Diego

Del Mar Races Trumpeter
Del Mar Races Trumpeter

Here the First Call at Del Mar Races, July 17- September 4, 2013.

Nothing says summer in San Diego quite like the blare of the bugle hailing the first post of Del Mar Thoroughbred Club’s annual summer racing season. This year, opening day’s First Call will be heard on July 17, 2013, and continue to excite those eager to beat the odds on a lucky steed named Ziggy Stardust all the way through September 4, 2013. It’s a San Diego tradition every visitor should experience, and we’re here to help you navigate, whether it’s your first or fiftieth post, where the “surf meets the turf, at ‘ol Del Mar.”

Opening Day at the Del Mar Races, Cool as Ever

A plethora of interesting hats at the Del Mar Races Opening Day

Staying Classy in San Diego at the Del Mar Racetrack.

When the Del Mar Racetrack opened on July 3, 1937, co-founder Bing Crosby was there to take the first ticket. His song, “Where the Surf Meets the Turf,” was written to promote the racetrack, and it seems his particular brand of cool lingers in air every summer in Del Mar. Men and women often don a special fedora or fascinator for their day at the Del Mar races, which serves the dual purpose of sun-protection and playful pageantry. Opening Day’s “One and Only Truly Fabulous Hats Contest” brings out the best of them, with categories including Most Glamorous, Best Fascinator, Best Racing Theme, Funniest or Most Outrageous, and Best Flowers/All Others.

> Find out more about Opening Day at the Del Mar Racetrack

And They’re Off!

Get close and cheer loudly as your horse passes by at the Del Mar Racetrack in San Diego.

Get close and cheer loudly as your horse passes by at the Del Mar Racetrack in San Diego.

So how exactly do you bet on a horse race? For those new to horse race wagering, join the newcomers’ seminar, and pick up a handy wagering menu to learn the ropes. In its simplest form, you guess which horse is going to win (first place), place (second place) and show (third place). After you figure that out, there are multiple “exotic,” or combination, bets, including the Quinella, Trifecta, Superfecta, Rolling Double and Super High Five. Place your bet, hold on to your ticket and make sure to clap, cheer, whistle and cheer your choice to the finish line – I swear it helps.

Full of Free

First post at the Del Mar Racetracks is July 17, 2013 at 2:00 pm.

First post at the Del Mar Racetracks is July 17, 2013 at 2:00 pm.

There is a lot going on at the track. Everything from free coffee and donuts, to free concerts. To make sure you don’t miss out on all of the action, check in with the Event Schedule for dates, times and special events. Here are some general details:

  • Monday and Tuesday: Dark – No Racing
  • Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday: Gates open at 12:00 PM, first post is at 2:00 PM
  • Friday: Gates open at 2:00 PM, first post at 4:00 PM. 4 O’Clock Friday Summer Concert Series

Tickets start at only $6 for stretch run admission.

> Purchase your Del Mar Races’ tickets

Transportation

Del Mar Coaster

Beat the traffic. Take the Coaster from Downtown to the Del Mar Races.

What Bing Crosby sang in 1937 still rings true today. When you want to get to ‘ol Del Mar, you can “take a plane, take a train, take a car.” San Diego is full of different modes of transportation to suit your Del Mar Race experience. The Coaster is an excellent choice for those looking to enjoy a few adult beverages, or those just looking to avoid the regular freeway traffic.

> Directions to Del Mar Racetrack

Do you go to the Del Mar Races? Tell us, what is your favorite thing to do while there?

Maren

A 21 and Up Guide to San Diego Summer

Summer is the perfect time to see why Travel + Leisure voted San Diego the #2 Most Attractive City in the United States, when warm beach weather and sunkissed smiles lend an extra-special glow to the twenty-something social scene. So if you’re looking to mingle, make sure to hit up these great events and establishments for a San Diego summer you won’t forget.

Opening Day at the Del Mar Races

It's time to pull out your favorite fascinator and join the pageantry for opening day at the Del Mar Races, July 17, 2013.

It’s time to pull out your favorite fascinator and join the pageantry for opening day at the Del Mar Races, July 17, 2013.

It’s time to dust off your favorite fascinator and head to opening day of the annual Del Mar Thoroughbred Club Racing Season, beginning July 17. Whether you enter the “One and Only Truly Fabulous Hats Contest” or not, you will be delighted by the opening day pageantry, both on and off the track. If you’re looking for an all-inclusive upgrade to your opening day experience, the Coors Light Opening Day Party includes live music, DJ’s, private trackside area, beer garden and specialty food stands.

Where: Del Mar Racetrack – 2260 Jimmy Durante Blvd, Del Mar, CA 92014
When: July 17 – September 4, 2013
Time: Gates open at 11:30 PM. First race posts at 2:00 PM
Cost: $10-$20
> Find out more about Opening Day at the Del Mar Racetrack

Tailgating at a Polo Game

Polo Match at the San Diego Polo Club

For a different take on the usual tailgate party, check out one of the Sunday polo matches with the San Diego Polo Club.

Your tailgate party doesn’t have to wait for the fall football season. In San Diego, tailgating is more than welcome at your friendly Sunday match at the San Diego Polo Club. The time-honored tradition is one of the best ways to watch the game. And this is no pre-game event…your car pulls right up to the east side of the field so you can sit field-side and watch the game with your picnic! Things allowed: Pop-up tents, umbrellas (it gets hot!), chairs, blankets, food, alcoholic beverages and bocce ball.

Where: 14555 El Camino Real, Rancho Santa Fe, CA 92067
When: Sundays through September 29, 2013
Cost: $12-$300
> Find out more about the San Diego Polo Club

Become a World Champion at the 60th Annual Over the Line Tournament

Over the Line Tournament - A San Diego Summer Tradition

This Summer, take part in a long-standing San Diego tradition: the 60th annual Over the Line Tournament on Fiesta Island in Mission Bay.

Over the Line, a bat and ball game played with 2 teams of 3 players each, is a San Diego original and Southern Californian tradition whose World Championship title is defended passionately by those entering the 60th Annual World Championship Over the Line Tournament in Mission Bay. For two weekends in July, the sands of Fiesta Island are filled from 7:30 AM until sundown with fired-up teams ready to go for the gold while spectators enjoy the camaraderie and competition under the sun.

Where: Fiesta Island, Mission Bay Park
When: July 14-15 and 21-22, 2013
Time: 7:30 AM to 6:00 PM
> Find out more about the 60th Annual World Championship Over the Line Tournament

Making History Fun with Brothels, Bites, and Booze Tour

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=38sJFqOi_Dw]

Join the “Brothels, Bites and Booze” tour with So Diego Tours and you’ll find out how San Diego’s Gaslamp Quarter comes by its reputation as a sophisticated playground of dining, drinking and dancing honestly. “Brothels, Bites and Booze” is one part insightful historical walking tour and one part traveling dinner party that takes you through the Gaslamp’s 19th century beginnings as San Diego’s red-light district while keeping you well fed and watered at some of the Quarter’s best present-day dining establishments.

When: Offered Weekly, Wednesday-Saturday
Time: Tour Hours Vary
Cost: $45
> Find out more about Brothels, Bites and Booze in the Gaslamp Quarter

Choose Your Own Adventure at Stone World Bistro & Gardens Liberty Station

Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens - Bocce Ball

Good Food, Great Beer and Bocce Ball! Do you need anything else?

The newly opened Stone World Bistro & Gardens in Liberty Station has come just in time for summer fun. The palatial choose-your-own-adventure style layout is perfect for any type of gathering, including office happy hours, a buddy’s birthday, a first date or a casual night out looking to meet new friends over a game of bocce ball. The beer is as good as always, the food is delicious and nutritious, the outdoor seating areas (3 in total) include a bocce ball courtyard, seated patio, and grass lawn for lounging and the occasional plane take-off from the nearby San Diego airport is reason enough to raise your glass. Cheers!

Where: Liberty Station – 2816 Historic Decatur Rd. #116 San Diego, CA 92106
> Find out more about Stone World Bistro & Gardens Liberty Station

> Spend your Summer in San Diego

Maren

San Diego’s Outdoor Museums: Architectural Art

See the architectural design of the Salk Institute in La Jolla

The best art isn’t always behind closed doors hanging on a gallery wall in. Sometimes the art IS the wall, and the door and roof for that matter. San Diego’s architectural history is not to be missed and is easily enjoyed during numerous walking tours throughout San Diego’s lovely summer weather. See some of the finest examples of early 20th century Arts and Crafts style in the Banker’s Hill neighborhood, or head up to La Jolla to see the awesome collaboration of science and space at the 1960’s masterpiece, the Salk Institute. And when you want to take a rest inside, make sure to stop by the Museum of Art (a building of Spanish Revival beauty itself) to see the genius of 18th century Roman architect and printmaker, Giambattista Piranesi.

Piranesi, Rome, and the Arts of Design

Piranesi's two-demensional renderings are brought to life at the San Diego Museum of Art.

Piranesi’s two-demensional renderings are brought to life at the San Diego Museum of Art.

The San Diego Museum of Art (SDMart) pays homage to one of Rome’s foremost artistic personalities of the 18th century, Giambattista Piranesi. As a printmaker, architect, antiquarian, art dealer, theorist, and designer, Piranesi’s genius spanned creative forms, which lead the SDMart to pair more than 300 original prints with modern-day interpretations, including the three-dimensional creation of some of Piranesi’s two-dimensional renderings. Those unfamiliar with Piranesi might say the works lie somewhere between the minds of M. C. Escher and Tim Burton for the common ability to meticulously bend reality and fantasy into something simultaneously believable and fantastical.

Where: San Diego Museum of Art – 1450 El Prado, San Diego, CA
When: through July 7, 2013
Cost: $12
> Find out more about  Piranesi, Rome, and the Arts of Design

Salk Institute Architecture Tour

See the architectural design of the Salk Institute in La Jolla

The beautiful marriage of science and architecture at the Salk Institute in La Jolla, San Diego.

The Salk Institute was established din the 1960s by Jonas Salk, M. D., the developer of the polio vaccine. He enlisted world-renowned architect Louis I. Kahn to develop spacious, unobstructed laboratory spaces that could be adapted to the ever-changing needs of science, and Kahn’s influence can be seen in the imaginative use of space and his high regard for natural light. In 1992 the Salk received a 25-Year Award from the American Institute of Architects (AIA) and was featured in the AIA exhibit Structures of Our Time: 31 Buildings That Changed Modern Life.

Where: Salk Institute – 10010 North Torrey Pines Road, La Jolla, CA 92037
When: Weekdays
Time: 12:00 to 1:00 PM
Cost: Free
> Find out more about a Salk Institute Architecture Tour

Urban Orchid Tour: San Diego Architectural Foundation

Vin de Syrah

Vin de Syrah, 2010 Interior Design Orchid Winner, hosts the Urban Orchid Tour reception. Photo courtesy of Vin de Syrah.

The San Diego Architectural Foundation offers geographically segmented, self-paced architectural walking tours around San Diego. First up for the summer is Urban Orchid Tour, on June 16-17, 2013, which will focus on – you guessed it – thoughtful and inspired designs in San Diego’s urban landscape. The tour also kicks off on June 14th with an evening reception at 2010 Interior Design Orchid Winner, Vin de Syrah, where you can mingle with other attendees while sipping on complimentary drink and hors d-oeuvres.

Cost: $30-$75
> Browse the Urban Orchid Tour Schedule

Bankers Hill Historic Walking Tour and Marston House Museum

Marston House

The Marston House Museum is a fine example of the California Arts and Crafts movement. Photo courtesy of sohosandiego.org

Summer hours begin the weekend of June 16 for Save Our Heritage Society’s range of early 20th century home tours in the Banker’s Hill region of San Diego. Visit the Marston House Museum, which stands as one of California’s finest examples of the Arts and Crafts movement, and then take a walking tour of the beautiful, 5-acre estate. Also available on every third Sunday of the month through Labor Day is the Bankers Hill Historic Walking Tour, which meanders through San Diego’s finest residential streets built in the late Victorian era and early 20th century with masterpieces from Irving Gill, William S. Hebbard, and Frank Mead, to name a few.

Cost: $10-$20
> Browse the SOHO Bankers Hill Historic Walking Tour and Marston House Museum Schedule

Do you have any favorite buildings in San Diego deserving of architectural praise?

Maren

Baja-Med Cuisine in South Bay San Diego

South Bay San Diego, located south of downtown San Diego and north of the US/Mexico border, is a cross-border hotspot for the most authentic Mexican and Baja-Med cuisines. TV personalities Andrew Zimmerman and Anthony Bourdain have already lauded the San Diego/Tijuana region’s culinary excellence, and South Bay provides the perfect opportunity for those looking to try the best of the Baja-Med craze without the need of a passport or border waits. Check below for some of the local favorites.

Romesco Baja-Med Bistro

Tapas at Romesco Baja-Med Bistro. Photos courtesy of www.romescomexmed.com

Tapas at Romesco Baja-Med Bistro. Photos courtesy of www.romescomexmed.com.

Javier Placincia, widely known as one of the best Baja-style chefs, has helped put the San Diego/Tijuana region on the culinary map. Anthony Bourdain visited his famous Tijuana restaurant, Mision 19, to experience the Baja-Med craze first hand. The Baja-Med movement uses fresh, local, Mexican ingredients with Mediterranean cooking techniques and ample room for creative, cultural blending. Lucky for us, Placencia serves his famous Baja-Med cuisine stateside at Romesco Baja-Med Bistro. The bistro serves a wide variety of traditional Mexican dishes as well as Spanish Tapas, Italian pastas and a wine list that highlights the best of the Mediterranean, California, and Baja’s famous Guadalupe Valley.

Where: 4346 Bonita Rd., Bonita California, 91902
Phone: 619.475.8627
Website: www.romescomexmed.com

Aqui Es Texcoco

Barbacoa de Borrego at Aqui Es Texcoco. Photo courtesy of Yelper Mikey P.

Barbacoa de Borrego at Aqui Es Texcoco. Photo courtesy of Yelper Mikey P.

Similar to Romesco Baja-Med Bistro, Aqui Es Texcoco started serving its famous Barbacoa de Borrego (slow-roasted lamb) in Tijuana in 1990. Since opening its second location in Chula Vista, visitors to San Diego don’t need to cross the border to experience the most succulent and authentic barbacoa-style lamb and homemade sides.

Where: 1043 Broadway, Chula Vista, CA 91911
Phone: 619.427.4045
Website: www.aquiestexcoco.com

Maye’s Desserts & Bistro

Savory Empanada at Maye's Desserts & Bistro. Photo courtesy of Yelper Misty W.

Savory Empanada at Maye’s Desserts & Bistro. Photo courtesy of Yelper Misty W.

Empanadas, in every flavor you could possibly imagine. That’s what is served at Maye’s Dessert & Bistro. It’s a great idea to start with a few  savory selections, such as Papas con Rajas (potatos, green chile and cheese), Hawaiian Rib and mouthwatering Pollo Chile Verde, but make sure to leave room. True to its name, the dessert empanadas are the real stars of Maye’s. Chocolate Éclair, Nutella, and Banana Cream are just some of the sugary offerings wrapped in perfectly fresh, hot and flakey pastry dough.

Where: 4240-A Bonita Rd., Bonita, CA 91902
Phone: 619.434.8227

> Discover more of San Diego’s South Bay

This is just the beginning of a great culinary adventure in South Bay San Diego. What are your favorite places to dine on authentic Mexican and Baja cuisine in South Bay?

Maren

Sound of Summer: 2013 San Diego Concerts by the Water

San Diego Symphony Summer Pops Concert Series

The sound of San Diego summer arrives with the return of 3 popular outdoor concert series. Don’t miss out on the experience of listening to your favorite bands combined with ocean views and a blanket of San Diego stars during these summer concerts.

Humphreys Concerts by the Bay

Humphreys Concerts by the Bay

Humphreys Concerts by the Bay host a large selection of great shows throughout the summer.

The popular summer concert venue returns with a diverse line up starting on May 26, 2013 with Juanes – Loud and Unplugged Tour. With a different headliner almost every night, don’t miss out on classic act Air Supply and newcomer favorite Carly Rae Jepsen, in this star-packed season, running through the summer months and into the fall.

Where: Humphreys Concerts by the Bay – 2241 Shelter Island Dr, San Diego, CA 92106
> Browse the 2013 Humphreys Concerts by the Bay Schedule

San Diego Symphony Summer Pops

San Diego Symphony Summer Pops pairs music with the beautiful downtown skyline.

San Diego Symphony Summer Pops pairs music with the beautiful downtown skyline.

The Ashford University Summer Pops starts up again on June 27, 2013 with KC and the Sunshine Band at the 6th annual Tux ‘N Tennies Summer Bash kick-off concert. The season continues through Labor Day and features the San Diego Symphony and some of today and yesterday’s greatest pop acts. This year, performers include En Vogue, Amy Grant, Michael Bolton, Ozomatli, Nathan Pacheco, Debbie Gibson, Burt Bacharach and more.

Where: Embarcadero Marina Park South – 206 Marina Park Way, San Diego, CA 92101
> Browse the 2013 San Diego Symphony Summer Pops Schedule

Birch Aquarium at Scripps Green Flash Concert Series

Green Flash Concert Series

The Birch Aquarium at Scripps holds the Green Flash Summer Concert Series atop the cliffs of La Jolla.

Starting May 15, 2013, pair live music with panoramic ocean views atop the cliffs of La Jolla on Birch Aquarium’s outdoor Tide-Pool Plaza. Enjoy music, drinks and food in one of San Diego’s most beautiful settings knowing you are benefiting a good cause. Proceeds from the concert series benefit exhibits and educational programming at Birch Aquarium at Scripps.

Where: Birch Aquarium at Scripps – 2300 Expedition Way, La Jolla, CA 92093
> Browse the 2013 Green Flash Concert Series Schedule

> Listen to even more live concerts in San Diego

Which concerts will you be seeing this summer?

Maren

Love, Death and Gossip: San Diego Theatre in May

Shakespeare's R & J at Cygnet Theatre

This May, San Diego’s theatre line-up reads like the cover of a tabloid magazine with the promise of love, death and intrigue. From the fresh retelling of Shakespeare’s classic, Romeo and Juliet, to the stage version of the 1940’s movie, His Girl Friday, May is a great time to get into the gossip and head out to one of San Diego’s top theatres.

Shakespeare’s R & J at Cygnet Theatre

Shakespeare's R & J at Cygnet Theatre

Shakespeare’s famous tragedy of coming of age love, Romeo and Juliet, has been band from a repressive, parochial school for boys, but when four students discover a copy, they find the forbidden text strongly represents their own adolescent passion in this unique “play within a play” version of Romeo and Juliet.

Where: Cygnet Theatre – 4040 Twiggs Street, San Diego, CA 92110
When: May 22 – June 16, 2013
Cost: $19-$54
> Get your tickets to Shakespeare’s R&J

Be a Good Little Widow at the Old Globe Theatre

Be a Good Little Widow at the Old Globe Theatre

What is the right way to grieve? This is the question young wife Melody must face when her husband’s business trip ends tragically in a plane crash. As Melody’s concerns make a drastic switch from which throw pillows look best to how to properly wear black, Be a Good Little Widow takes the audience through a bittersweet look at the sadness and humor that unites of life and death, grief and hope.

Where: The Old Globe Theatre – 1363 Old Globe Way, San Diego, CA 92101
When: May 11 – June 9, 2013
Cost: Tickets start at $29
> Get your tickets to Be a Good Little Widow

His Girl Friday at the La Jolla Playhouse

His Girl Friday at the La Jolla Playhouse

Immortalized by Cary Grant and Rosalind Russell in the 1940 movie of the same name, His Girl Friday is a fast-talking comedy set in a 1939 Chicago press room. Reporter Hildy Johnson is just about to leave the paper for good when her editor/ex-husband tempts her with the scoop of a lifetime. The lure of fame and rekindled romance prove more than she can resist.

Where: La Jolla Playhouse – 2910 La Jolla Village Drive, La Jolla, CA 92037
When: May 28 – June 30, 2013
Cost: Tickets start at $15
> Get your tickets to His Girl Friday

> Enjoy more live theatre in San Diego

Where’s your favorite place to catch live theatre in San Diego?

Maren

Celebrate Cinco de Mayo 2013 in San Diego

Mariachis in Old Town
Mariachis in Old Town

Mariachis entertain throughout San Diego this Cinco de Mayo.

More than just tacos and tequila, celebrating Cinco de Mayo in San Diego is full of rich, cultural offerings and fun for the whole family. From the first annual Mariachi Festival to the 30th annual Fiesta Old Town, this fifth of May find yourself the perfect place to celebrate the music, food and fun of the Mexican culture.

Fiesta Old Town Cinco de Mayo

cincodemayo2013

Now celebrating its 30th year, Fiesta Old Town is the largest event of its kind in Southern California. This free, three-day event is fun for the whole family including 3 stages of live entertainment, beer garden, bustling Mercado and interactive activities for the kids. Cruise down low-rider lane to check out custom paint jobs and gravity-defying hydraulics on display. Enjoy a high-end tequila tasting or satisfy your appetite by visiting over 20 restaurants featuring holiday specials.

Where: Old Town San Diego
When: May 3-5, 2013
Cost: Free
> Find out more about Fiesta Old Town Cinco de Mayo

Cultura Urbana Cinco de Mayo

culturaurbana_cinco

This year the craft cocktail crowd has somewhere specific to celebrate Cinco de Mayo. FYC & Twenty Five Stripes present Cultura Urbana Cinco de Mayo in Balboa Park featuring bands, Los Hollywood, Azucar, Sonidero Travesura  and Iabide as well as a host of Djs to spin the day away. Libations provided by the cocktail pros at El Dorado Cocktail Lounge.

Where: El Centro Cultural de la Raza – 2004 Park Blvd, San Diego, CA
When: May 5, 2013
Time: 12:00 to 6:00 PM
Cost: $10 presale. $15 at the door
> Find out more about Cultura Urbana Cinco de Mayo

National City Cinco de Mayo Mariachi Festival

National City Cinco de Mayo Mariachi Festival and Competition

Showcasing Mariachi student groups from the United States and Mexico, this event celebrates San Diego’s heritage through mariachi music and traditional ballet folklórico. Featuring local and national mariachi, the event supports today’s youth in their artistic and educational endeavors.

Where: Pepper Park  – 3299 Tidelands Ave. National City, CA 91950
When: April 27, 2013
Time: 11:00 AM to 5:00 PM
> Find out more about the National City Cinco de Mayo Mariachi Festival

La Colonia Cinco de Mayo

This free, family friendly fiesta in the Solana Beach community features plenty of fun for the kids with live mariachi bands, ballet folklórico, game booths, crafts, piñatas and fun jumps. Alcohol, smoking and pets are not permitted at this event.

Where: La Colonia Park – 715 Valley Avenue, Solana Beach
When: May 4, 2013
Time: 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM
> Find out more about La Colonia Cinco de Mayo

Cinco de Mayo with Bazaar del Mundo

The Bazaar del Mundo Family of restaurants will continue the tradition started in 1983 with Cinco de Mayo celebrations at Casa de Pico in La Mesa, Casa de Bandini in Carlsbad and Casa Guadalajara in Old Town. In addition to margarita and cantina specials, each restaurant will have a host of entertainment including mariachis, troubadours and ballet folklóriko.

When: May 4-5, 2013

What are your plans for Cinco de Mayo in San Diego?

Maren

2013 Tax Day Specials in San Diego

Craft Cocktail at the US Grant Hotel's Grant Grill

Another Tax Day in the bag! Celebrate with one of these great Tax Day deals happening around San Diego:

Grant Grill

Try a signature craft cocktail at the Grant Grill in the US Grant Hotel.

Try a signature craft cocktail at the Grant Grill in the US Grant Hotel.

For the special rate of $4.15 (regularly $12) the Grant Grill at The US Grant Hotel, is debuting their new Raw Cocktail menu featuring new craft cocktails for spring including The New Apple Martini and The Melon Ball. These classic cocktails receive a contemporary spin with fresh, pressed juice of the entire fruit.

The Commons Bar

Celebrate Tax Day at the Commons Bar in the Gaslamp Quarter, San Diego.

Celebrate Tax Day at the Commons Bar in the Gaslamp Quarter, San Diego.

Celebrate Tax Day with no tax! Sales tax, that is. Situated in the heart of San Diego’s Gaslamp Quarter, The Commons Bar will be celebrating Tax Day by offering no sales tax on all purchases made on Monday, April 15th. Try the signature Lemon Pepper or Spicy Ranch wings paired with a draft beer off the new craft beer program from Ballast Point Sculpin IPA to Stone Smoked Porter. Cheers!

Rancho Valencia Resort & Spa

Relax at Rancho Valencia Resort and Spa in San Diego.

Relax at Rancho Valencia Resort and Spa in San Diego.

Take a mini vacation to the recently renovated and celebrated Rancho Valencia Resort & Spa in San Diego and enjoy 15% off BAR rooms as well as 15% off bill in the resort’s brand-new signature Veladora, the new equestrian-themed bar The Pony Room and the award-winning Spa on April 15. This is not valid with any other offers and reservations can be made by calling 866.233.6708.

Where will you be celebrating Tax Day in San Diego?

Maren

The Life Aquatic on San Diego’s Mission Bay

Mission Bay Water Skier and Boat
Mission Bay Water Skier and Boat

Waterskiing on Mission Bay is a popular San Diego activity.

San Diego’s Mission Bay is the largest aquatic park of its kind in the world. Comprised of a 4,600-acre aquatic playground surrounded by 27 miles of meandering shoreline and grassy parks, a day spent on Mission Bay can include an assortment of outdoors water activities, from the active to the relaxing, for everyone from the watersport novice to the experienced professional.

Pick your activity at the Mission Bay Aquatic Center

Mission Bay

San Diego’s Mission Bay is a 4,600-acre aquatic playground perfect for sailing, waterskiing, kayaking and more.

Don’t know exactly what you’re looking for? A great place to start is at the Mission Bay Aquatics Center. Located at the south end of Santa Clara Point, it is located in the center of Mission Bay and boasts a diverse mix of watersports equipment and instruction. Learn how to sail, windsurf, wakeboard, surf, kayak, row, or stand up paddle, through a huge selection of class levels and times. Mission Bay Aquatic Center also has rentals available for those with previous experience on the water.

Where: 1001 Santa Clara Place, Mission Beach, CA 92109
> Find out more about the Mission Bay Aquatic Center

Cruise aboard the Bahia Belle

Bahia Belle on Mission Bay

Relax on a sunset cruise across Mission Bay aboard the Bahia Belle.

If you’d prefer to relax on the water and let someone else take hold of the wheel, the Bahia Belle sunset cruise is what you are looking for. The Bahia Belle is a Mississippi-style sternwheeler that cruises the waters of Mission Bay between the Bahia Resort and its sister property, the Catamaran Resort Hotel and Spa. The evening cruises offer a relaxing evening of cocktails and dancing as you glide seamlessly across the water. Tickets are $10 for adults and $3 for children under 12 years old. Guests at the Catamaran or the Bahia enjoy a complimentary cruise aboard the Bahia Belle.

Where: Bahia Resort Hotel – 998 West Mission Bay Drive, San Diego CA 92109
> Find out more about Sternwheeler Cruises on Mission Bay

Sportfishing Excursions from Mission Bay

Saltwater Sportfishing - Seaforth Boat Rentals

Time for some Saltwater Fishing. Photo courtesy of Seaforth Boat Rentals

Whether you fancy an early AM, twilight or overnight trip, Seaforth Sportfishing offers daily sportsfishing trips that launch from Mission Bay and head out to the Pacific Ocean to try for yellowtail, rockfish, and sculpin. Private charters are also available aboard one of their 16 charter boats.

Where: 1717 Quivira Rd. San Diego, CA 92109
> Find out more about Seaforth Sportfishing

> Discover more of San Diego’s Mission Bay

What’s your favorite thing to do on the waters of Mission Bay?

Maren

All Aboard! Live Music on the San Diego Trolley

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Looking for live music in San Diego? From the famed Belly Up in Solana Beach to the House of Blues in Downtown, San Diego has everything from international headliners to local favorites performing at venues throughout town. See up-and-coming favorites at the Casbah, enjoy an evening of music under the stars at Humphreys Concerts by the Bay, or catch an acoustic show aboard the San Diego Trolley.

[youtube http://youtu.be/3MY108ghf8Q]

You heard right! Breaking through the fourth wall of traditional musician/audience relationships is A Trolley Show, which not only brings bands such as Iration, Youngblood Hawke and The Silent Comedy to perform in the uncontrolled and unregulated performance environment of San Diego’s public transit system, but produces a video of each performance, come what may, to share with the world via the internet.

[youtube http://youtu.be/6ZaMbex0c_E]

While musical busking on public transit has been around as long as the transit systems themselves in cities such as New York City and San Francisco, San Diego’s public transit has a relatively adolescent and undefined performance culture. In this environment, the A Trolley Show removes live music from its culturally accepted place on the stage and brings bands that typically sell out traditional venues to the San Diego Trolley, not to busk, but to perform for an unwitting audience and let the cameras roll. I only hope I can be a pleasantly surprised audience member on my next trolley trip.

> Listen to more Live Music in San Diego

Tell us in the comments below, who would you like to see play aboard the San Diego Trolley?