Brent Bernasconi

Spend Labor Day Weekend on the Embarcadero

Star of India

Cannon battles, monumental sand sculptures, music (some with cannons) and more along the Embarcadero will easily provide enough entertainment for everyone during the 3 day Labor Day weekend. Find out below the great events you don’t want to miss.

Tip: Parking will be difficult along and near the Embarcadero over the weekend. Please consider parking elsewhere, e.g. Old Town or Convention Center, (or just leave the car behind) and taking Public Transportation (Seaport Village and American Plaza Trolley Stops) or the Big Bay Shuttle.

Festival of Sail

Star of India

Already highlighted as one of our top things to do this weekend, the Festival of Sail is the largest tall ship festival on the west coast and should not be missed. Over the course of the weekend, there will be a tall ship cannon battles, children’s petting zoo, treasure-seeking Pirate bay cruises, over 100 arts and craft vendors, food and more.

Dates: Friday-Monday, 8/31 – 9/3, 2012
Cost: $10-$20
> Find Out More About the Festival of Sail

US Sand Sculpting Challenge & 3-D Art Expo

dragon sand castle

Master sand sculptures will find the statue  hidden in a mound sand at the B Street Cruise Ship Terminal Pier  just south of the Festival of Sail. In addition to the sandy works of art, the pier will be full of fun with musicians, singers, dancers, storytellers, circus performers, magicians, the best of the buskers and a kids zone with a huge sandbox, sand sculpture classes and more!

Take public transportation and show your transit pass when buying tickets to save up to $5 on admission.

Dates: Friday-Monday, 8/31 – 9/3, 2012
Cost: $5-$14
> Find Out More About the US Sand Sculpting Challenge & 3-D Art Expo

Summersplash – Reggae on the Bay

On Sunday, spend the evening at the Port Pavilion on Broadway Pier relaxing and dancing while listening to the rhythmic sounds of the ocean and world-class reggae from top artists including Barrington Levy, the Wailers, Midnite, Triston Palma, Pablo Moses, Shoreline Rootz, Piracy, Arise Roots and more.

Date: Sunday, 9/2, 2012
Cost: $55
> Find Out More About Summersplash – Reggae on the Bay

Symphony Pops 1812 Tchaikovsky Spectacular

The San Diego Symphony plans to end summer with a bang during their Summer Pops season-finale 1812 Tchaikovsky Spectacular. The concert will feature bright young cellist, Julian Schwarz, performing Tchaikovsky’s beautiful Rococo Variations and the evening will end with the 1812 Overture featuring the United States Navy Band, cannons and FIREWORKS! This is a great way to end the summer!

Dates: Friday-Sunday, 8/31 – 9/2, 2012
Cost: $18-$76
> Find Out More About the Symphony Pops 1812 Tchaikovsky Spectacular

Looking for more great events in San Diego, check out the Event Calendar.

Katie S.

5/5 Stars for the Easy Star All-Stars

Last night I had the chance to see one of my favorite reggae bands, Easy Star All-Stars, at the Belly Up Tavern in Solana Beach. Known for bringing some of the best reggae acts to San Diego, the Belly Up’s relaxed and intimate atmosphere mixed with superb sound quality is a great pick for seeing any concert. After indulging in a Red Stripe and some soul fries, I was ready to chill out and experience an amazing first set by Australian roots/reggae band Blue King Brown before the main event. 

Best known for their reggae covers of albums by Pink Floyd, Radiohead and The Beatles, the All-Stars quickly won over the audience with their amped up energy, impressive vocal and music talents and uncanny ability to create music from other bands that sounds like it should have been an original reggae song. As a self-proclaimed music snob, I don’t usually throw around phrases like “the best reggae concert I’ve ever seen,” “two thumbs way up,” or “a must-see for any reggae fan”. In fact, Easy Star All-Stars left me completely speechless (a first for me), so instead of explaining how great it was and how superb the San Diego reggae scene is, I thought I’d add a video from their previous Belly Up performance.

Now that I’m back on a reggae kick, I’ve investigated weekly reggae happenings throughout San Diego County so that everyone can get their fill of the chill vibes and irie jams:

  • Canes Bar and Grill – Reggae Sundays featuring local reggae artists. Most Sundays from 4-6 p.m. 
  • RT Longboards Grill – Live reggae with The Devastators every Sunday at 10 p.m.
  • Zen 5 Sushi – Reggae music and delicious sushi all night long.
  • Gallagher’s– Reggae night every Thursday at this Ocean Beach pub.
  • Wavehouse – Laid Back Fridays with rotating reggae groups starting at 6 p.m.