Holiday Food Truck Festival, Botanic Wonderland, A Christmas Carol and more… Check out the top San Diego weekend events for December 26-29.
Edited by Brooke Knetzger.
Port of San Diego Holiday Bowl Parade
Dec. 26. Don’t miss the scenic streets of downtown San Diego come alive with the Port of San Diego Holiday Bowl Parade presented by Hilton. The exciting event brings together world-class marching bands, magnificent floats, entertaining drill teams and a procession of enormous balloons. Over 100,000 street-side spectators will enjoy the parade along with a nationwide television audience. 3 p.m. holidaybowl.com
Botanic Wonderland: Holiday Nights in the Garden
Dec. 26-29. Don’t miss the last chance to visit Botanic Wonderland! Held in the San Diego Botanic Garden’s brand new Dickinson Family Education Conservatory, this family-friendly festival contains many of the holiday traditions you’ve come to know and love over the years at the Garden, as well as some fantastic new ones! For the first time ever, select areas of Hamilton Children’s Garden and Toni’s Treehouse will be lit up and ready to play in during December evening hours. 5-8:30 p.m. Through December 30. 230 Quail Gardens Drive, Encinitas. sdbdgarden.org
Hornblower’s Champagne Jazz Brunch Cruise
Dec. 29. Enjoy a decadent brunch buffet, free flowing champagne and mimosas, music, sightseeing, and dancing aboard one of Hornblower’s popular cruises. Guests will sail past some of San Diego’s best sights including the Coronado Bay Bridge, the USS Midway Aircraft Carrier Museum, the Star of India and Naval Air Station North Island. See website for pricing and additional information. 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Boarding starts at 10:30 a.m. Pier 1 Hornblower Landing: 1800 N Harbor Dr, San Diego, CA 92101 at Grape Street. Tickets
The Duck Dive
Dec. 31. Come dressed to impress for The Duck Dive’s Roaring 1920s Party in Pacific Beach. Guests can enjoy festive libations and tunes from DJ Jeremiah James beginning at 8 p.m. There will be a costume contest and chance to win $500 cash prizes, a champagne toast and balloon drop at midnight. Pre-event tickets can be purchased for $20 and will be available for sale at the door for $45. 4650 Mission Blvd, Pacific Beach. Tickets
NYE Beachfront Bash
Dec. 31. Feast, drink and dance from beach to rooftop at NYE Beachfront Bash, San Diego’s beachfront party on the Mission Beach boardwalk. NYE Beachfront Bash will offer multiple venues with DJs, live music and a champagne toast for all. Attendees looking to elevate their celebration can head to the new VIP rooftop lounge at Cannonball with DJ sets from Mikeytown from Dive, Souleil and Unitz.com. VIP Passholders have exclusive access to the upscale venue, feast on handcrafted sushi, unlimited drinks featuring the NYE specialty cocktail menu and more! See website for ticket pricing and additional information. Tickets
Viewpoint Brewing Co.
Jan. 1. Start the new year off at Del Mar’s Viewpoint Brewing Co. The restaurant will be serving up its elevated gastropub fare from perfectly cooked eggs benedict and scottish eggs to modern classics like their churro French toast, fried chicken naan mi, and backyard burger. Don’t forget to pair your meal with mimosa flights, hard kombucha on draft and house-brewed craft beer. 2201 San Diguieto Dr, Del Mar. viewpointbrewing.com
Menorah Lighting Ceremony at One Paseo
Dec. 26. In honor of Chanukah, One Paseo will host a Menorah Lighting Ceremony this Thursday. The evening will include a Menorah Lighting with Rabbi Levi Raskin in association with the Chabad Jewish Center of RSF and Chabad of Carmel Valley, as well as Chanukah S’mores, the Herb’n Donuts Truck, live music, face painting, crafts and lots more. Festivities will take place adjacent to One Paseo’s fire pit. All are welcome! 5-7 p.m. 3725 Paseo Place, Del Mar. onepaseo.com
FOOD + DRINK
Gaslamp Breakfast Company
Now Open. The much-awaited second Breakfast Company is now welcoming brunch lovers in the heart of the Gaslamp. Popular menu items include the Mashed Potato Waffles, topped with a mouthwatering cheese sauce, spicy sausage, green onions and eggs, and the Fried Rice Benedict. Veggie-inspired libations are available at the bar, along with crafted espresso drinks, such as the Golden State Latte and the Dirty Beet Latte. Open daily from 7 a.m.–3 p.m. 551 J Street, Gaslamp. breakfast-company.com
Holiday Food Truck Festival
Dec. 28. Celebrate the holidays under Balboa Park’s dazzling holiday light display and decorations. The annual Holiday Food Truck Festival serves up gourmet dishes and desserts each day from 15 top local food trucks. Additional festival highlights include live music, dance performances and fun activities for families. Select museums are open extended hours, while various park organizations and community partners offer hands-on crafts and games in the Plaza de Panama. Visit website to see the full entertainment schedule and food truck roster. Through December 30. Balboa Park, Plaza de Panama. balboaparkconservancy.org
Flamenco Dinner Show at Cafe Sevilla
Dec. 28. Indulge in an authentic 3-course Spanish dinner while watching classically trained flamenco dancers perform this traditional art form! These shows are a sensory indulgence of sight, sound, and taste, leaving guests with a piece of truly Spanish culture. Dinner features Ensalada Sevillana followed by Paella Valenciana. For dessert, choose from Cream Catalana or Lemon Tart. A tapas menu, full bar, eclectic wine list and other menu upgrades are also available for à la carte purchase. $65. 353 Fifth Ave., Gaslamp. Tickets
ARTS + CULTURE
Dec. 28. San Diego Ballet brings America’s favorite holiday event to dazzling life once again at Copley Symphony Hall. The annual production of The Nutcracker features Tchaikovsky’s timeless score and an international cast of more than 100 beautifully costumed dancers. Sugarplum fairies, leaping cossacks and flurries of snowflakes swirl across the Symphony Hall stage, in this magical journey through a young girl’s imagination. Copley Symphony Hall, 750 B St, San Diego. sandiegoballet.org
Festival of Christmas
Through Dec. 29. Head to Lamb’s Players Theatre to catch Festival of Christmas, set in a New York TV studio in 1952 where a live broadcast of a Christmas variety show is thrown into hilarious chaos as a blizzard shuts down the city. The show is a delightful holiday show the entire family will enjoy, filled with seasonal holiday music! 1142 Orange Ave, Coronado, 619.437.6000. lambsplayers.org
A Christmas Carol
Through Dec. 29. Cygnet’s holiday smash hit is back for its sixth season! Bring the family back to enjoy the holiday classic adapted from Charles Dickens’ timeless tale of hope and redemption. This imaginative production features original music, creative stagecraft and puppetry, and live sound effects. Step into a Victorian Christmas card for a unique storytelling experience that is sure to delight the entire family! 4040 Twiggs St, Old Town. cygnettheare.com
Photo credits: One Paseo courtesy Enjet Media. Port of San Diego Holiday Bowl Parade courtesy holidaybowl.com. Botanic Wonderland courtesy San Diego Botanic Garden. Hornblower courtesy Hornblower. Breakfast Company courtesy Alternative Strategies. Holiday Food Truck Festival courtesy Balboa Park Conservancy. Flamenco Dinner courtesy Cafe Sevilla. The Nutcracker courtesy San Diego Ballet. Festival of Christmas courtesy Lamb’s Players Theatre. A Christmas Carol courtesy Cygnet Theatre.