Where to Spend your February in San Diego

| Activities, Entertainment, Special Events

This winter has been one of the coldest in the state’s history. However, in San Diego the sun has not stopped shining. See for yourself by exploring a variety of events throughout the city during the month of February. Whether you want to soak up the sun while whale watching, or enjoy a cold beer in one of San Diego’s many breweries, you are in a for a treat.

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Whale Watching

cabrillo

Photo courtesy of SD Travel Blog

South of Ocean Park Inn, along the coast is one of San Diego’s prime natural landscapes. Traveling to Cabrillo National Park is like transporting back in time to an era of discovery. However, one of the least known facts about Cabrillo is that the month of February is the best time of the year for whale watching. Admission to the park is only $10 per vehicle.

When: All of February

Where: 1800 Cabrillo Memorial Drive, San Diego, CA 92106

 

San Diego Film Week

San Diego Film Weeks

After enjoying the sandy beaches of sunny San Diego,  sit back and relax during San Diego Film Week. More than 100 films will be showcased, including 21 films produced locally, followed by an A-list award ceremony. This an event that you cannot miss.

When: February 10-19

Where: Museum of Photographic Arts + Other Venues around San Diego

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Winter Brew Fest

winterbrewfest

Winter is upon us and that only means one thing. No, not staying warm, Brew Fest! Join other beer enthusiasts in sampling a variety of local artisan beers along with tasty appetizers at Balboa Park! If that is not enough, there will be live music with performances by Sister Speak and Elektric Vodoo. This event is 21+. Tickets start at $40 and can be purchased online or at the event.

When: February 18 (6:00 – 10:00 PM)

Where: Balboa Park, 2131 Pan American Plaza, San Diego, CA 92101

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Gaslamp Quarter Masquerade Parade and Celebration

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Photo courtesy of San Diego Coast Life

San Diego’s annual Mardi Gras celebration returns for the 23rd year in a row. Be a part of one of the largest Mardi Gras celebrations west of New Orleans – in the heart of Downtown San Diego! Enjoy be a parade with floats, stilt walkers, exotic cars, liver music and dancers. This a 21+ event. Tickets start at $35 and can be purchased online.

When: February 28  (5:00 – 11:45 PM)

Where: 5th Ave & Broadway, San Diego, CA 92101

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Monster Jam

Monster Jam

Photo Courtesy of Monster Jam by Eric Stern

Experience the thrill of a lifetime at Monster Jam. Witness high octane machines roar their 2,000 horsepower engines and see them crush vehicles while competing against one another to win the championship title.  Fun for the entire family. Tickets start at $24 and can be purchased online or at the event.

When: February 18  at 7:00 Pm

Where: Petco Park Blvd, San Diego, CA 9210

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Tidepooling Excursion at Birch Aquarium

Families join Birch Aquarium at Scripps naturalists at La Jolla Cove for a tidepooling adventure.

Photo Courtesy of SD Travel Blog

Winter months are the best for exploring tide pools. For this reason, Birch Aquarium has organized a guided tour led by trained naturalists to teach about the marine life that is supported by seasonal tide pools and how people can preserve marine biodiversity. Tickets are $16 and can be purchased online.

When: February 26 from 2:30 PM to 4:30 PM

Where: False Point, Sea Ridge Dr & Linda Way, San Diego, CA 92037

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Hockey Game: San Diego Gulls VS. Rockford IceHogs

gulls

Photo Courtesy of the San Diego Gulls

Gather up the family and head to the ice to watch the San Diego Gulls take on the Rockford IceHogs. The Gulls are currently competing for the Pacific Division title – so games even more exciting. Tickets start at $19 and can be purchased online or at the event.

When: Saturday, Feb. 25 at 7:00 PM                         

Where: 3500 Sports Arena Blvd, San Diego, CA 92110

Ideal San Diego Valentine’s Day Dates

| Activities, Entertainment, Explore San Diego, Only at OPI, Special Events

Will you be in San Diego for Valentine’s Day? How about the weekend before? If so, here are some ideas to inspire your romantic side and maximize your weekend. With incredible weather, even in the winter, and an elevated restaurant scene, you are guaranteed a killer weekend in this city

Go to a Museum

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The month of February is very unique for San Diego – it’s Museum Month. Pick up your museum month pass at any San Diego Macy’s location and gain admission to 40+ San Diego museums at half price. Walk through the Hall of Fishes at the Birch Aquarium at Scripps, admire vintage surfboards at the California Surf Museum, enjoy the peaceful outdoor garden at the San Diego Chinese Historical Museum and explore the modern art at the Museum of Contemporary Art Downtown…and those are just some of your options.

Watch a Movie – Outdoors

Photo Courtesy of The Headquarters at Seaport Village

Whether you have your other half or the whole family with you, head to the Headquarters’ Couartyard (near Seaport Village) to watch Bonnie & Clyde at 6:00 PM on Feb. 14th. Bring blankets, chairs and snacks and enjoy this romantic and mysterious classic under the stars. No need to purchase a ticket, admission is free.

Enjoy a gondola ride through Coronado

Image may contain: one or more people, sky, twilight, outdoor and water

Photo Courtesy of The Gondola Company

Cruise through the Coronado Cays in a gondola, complete with a dessert plate, an ice bucket, wine glasses and blankets. For the romantics, you may reserve a violin player to accompany you. Guests are invited to bring their beverage of choice. Pick up a bottle of bubbly and set sail.

Taste Local Craft Beer & Wine

Photo by Kim Marcelo

As you may know, San Diego is a craft beer capital. However, you may not know that San Diego County is home to more than 100 wineries. No matter your preference, you will find something you and your significant other love with this interactive San Diego winery map and this brewery guide. Our favorite: The Cork and Craft – a delicious restaurant with a unique bonus. It’s the only restaurant in San Diego County with a brewery and winery inside, award-winning Abnormal Beer Co. and Abnormal Wine Co.

Catch a Gull’s Game

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Photo Courtesy of the San Diego Gulls

Only a 15-minute drive or Uber/Lyft from Ocean Park Inn, the San Diego Gulls hockey games are – in our opinion – one of the most fun places to be in the evenings. They’ve already won 18 games this season, be there for the next one. The next two games are Sunday, Feb. 12th and Tuesday, Feb. 14th, and the rest are listed on the schedule.

5 Ways to Celebrate Lunar New Year in San Diego

| Activities, Entertainment

San Diego is home to many diverse cultures and celebrates many holidays. If you are in San Diego in late January or early February, you will have the opportunity to enjoy one of many Lunar New Year and Chinese New Year festivals. This year, 2017, celebrates the year of the rooster – also celebrated in 1993, 1981, 1969, 1957 and so forth every twelve years. The rooster symbolizes punctuality and loyalty. Roosters woke people up far before the alarm clock, making them a very dependable and punctual animal.

From weekend-long events to dumpling-making parties, here is your guide to San Diego’s Lunar New Year events. Happy New Year, or in Chinese, Gung Hay Fat Choy!

The 35th Annual Chinese New Year Fair

Picture

This weekend-long fair happening in San Diego’s historic Chinatown along Third Avenue and J Street downtown will ring in the year of the rooster with dance and cultural performances, traditional Chinese food, a lantern parade and crafts for children. Free admission, more information here.

When: Saturday (2/11) & Sunday (2/12) from 10am – 5pm

Where: Downtown San Diego on Third Avenue and J Street

Make Your Own Dumplings Day

Eat your good luck this new year! On Chinese New Year, the San Diego Chinese Historical Museum downtown is hosting a dumpling-making party. Skilled dumpling makers will provide you the skills and materials to make this essential new year food, symbolizing wealth and longevity. This event is $10 for adults and $5 for members and children under 12. RSVP to info@sdchm.org.

When: Saturday (1/28) 2pm – 4pm

Where: SDCHM Chuang Archive & Learning Center, 541 B Second Avenue, San Diego, CA 92101

Lunar New Year Festival

Postcard Chicken

Firecrackers, dancing, martial arts, painting, a variety of Asian food, carnival rides – what’s not to enjoy? Tickets are $5 for adults and $4 for children. Bonus: Free admission for those born in the year of the rooster or active military personnel in complete uniform (Bring ID). Learn more on their website.

When: Friday (1/20) 5pm – 10pm, Saturday (1/21) & Sunday (1/22) 10am – 10pm

Where: Qualcomm Stadium, 9449 Friars Road, San Diego, CA 92108

Lunar New Year at SeaWorld

Image result for lunar new year at seaworld

You and your palette will be entertained at SeaWorld’s Lunar New Year celebration! With Chinese acrobat shows throughout the day, lion dancers performing on stage and plenty of Asian food choices – it’s bound to be a great day. Event included with park admission – purchase tickets here.

When: January 28 – February 20th, Weekdays 10am – 5pm, Weekends 10am – 6pm

Where: SeaWorld, 500 SeaWorld Drive, San Diego, CA 92109

12th Annual San Diego Tet Festival

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The Tet Festival celebrates the Vietnamese New Year, with concerts, a beer garden, a carvnival and their signature Miss Vietnam San Diego Pageant! Check the Facebook event page for updates.

When: Friday (1/27) 5pm – 10pm, Saturday (1/28) 11am – 10pm, Sunday (1/29) 11am – 6pm

Where: Mira Mesa Community Park, 8575 New Salem Street, San Diego, CA 92126

Abnormal Dinner Series – August 15th, 2016

| Activities, Entertainment, Explore San Diego, Special Events

Will you be staying with us at the Ocean Park Inn in August? Join us at our sister business, The Cork & Craft at Abnormal for the 18th installment of our Abnormal Beer Dinner Series. This event is unique to the San Diego beer scene, come enjoy delicious courses prepared by The Cork & Craft and Ironside Fish & Oyster chefs paired with beers from Abnormal Beer and Mikkeller Brewing.

Event is held at:
The Cork & Craft at Abnormal
16690 Via Tazon
San Diego, CA 92127

ABNORMAL DINNER SERIES NO. 18 | AUGUST

( including tax + gratuity ) 

Monday, August 15th | 6 pm – 9 pm

Join us at The Cork and Craft for the 18th installment of our monthly dinner series. Enjoy an elevated multi-course dinner with carefully selected beer pairings. What makes these dinners “abnormal”? Not only are the pairing menus created just for this one night, but each dish’s flavor components are designed to compliment each beer that it is paired with. We are beyond thrilled to be collaborating with Mikkeller San Diego (their very first beer dinner out here!) and guest chef Jason Mcleod from Ironside Fish & Oyster. Here is a preview of the beer selection:

-Mikkeller SD Saison

-Mikkeller SD Amoeba Brett IPA

-Mikkeller SD Tripel

-Mikkeller SD Rauch Geek Breakfast Stout

-Mikkeller Euro SpontanYuzu

-Mikkeller Euro Bla Spogelse

-Abnormal Beer Co Thumbs Up IIPA

-Abnormal x Mikkeller SD Imperial Coffee Porter

Limited availability. Secure your spot today. Please stay tuned for more details & follow us for fun updates from behind-the-scenes!

Purchase tickets at https://abnormalbeer.co/products/abnormal-dinner-series-event-1. We hope to see you there!

Comic-Con 2016 is coming!

| Activities, Entertainment, Explore San Diego, Special Events

You do not have to have tickets to Comic-Con to enjoy in the festivities, there are tons of activities offered throughout San Diego!

There’s more fun outside Comic-Con International than ever before! In addition to our official programming and event rooms at the Hilton San Diego Bayfront, the Marriott Marquis San Diego Marina, the Manchester Grand Hyatt, the Horton Grand Theatre, and the San Diego Central Library, there are other offsite events to explore. Wear your Comic-Con 2016 badge for access to these events, if space is available!

Comic-Con 2016 Outside Events Map

Numbers on the map correspond with numbers on the list below. Click on the map for a larger view!

1. AMAZON
Harbor Drive

(Next to the 1st Ave. Trolley stop and Harbor Club condos)

Come and immerse yourself in Amazon’s Original Series: The Man in the High Castle and Thunderbirds Are Go.  

Step into the alternate reality of the Amazon Original Series, The Man in the High Castle. Walk amongst authentic costumes, props and set pieces; then go on a mission as one of the main characters in an exclusive 4D virtual reality experience.

Experience the magic behind Amazon’s original series Thunderbirds Are Go, including model sets, life size characters, and behind-the-scenes footage. Take part in International Rescue’s mission and help the Tracy Brothers, Kayo, Brains and Lady Penelope keep San Diego safe!

  • Thursday, July 21 & Friday, July 22: 9:00 AM–7:00 PM
  • Saturday, July 23: 9:00 AM–8:00 PM
  • Sunday, July 24: 9:00 AM–5:00 PM

2. ADULT SWIM ON THE GREEN 

Behind the Convention Center

(Next to the 5th Ave. Pier and Ferry Landing)

Featuring an Adult Swim Carnival Midway, the Meatwad Full Dome Experience, and Nighttime Events.

  • Thursday, July 21 through Sunday, July 24: 11:00 AM–6:00 PM

Nighttime on the Green (with nightly screenings)

  • Thursday through Saturday: 8:00–10:00 PM

Go to adultswimpresents.com for more info.


3. THE COMIC-CON HQ LIVE STAGE
Hilton San Diego Bayfront Promenade Plaza

(Next to Fox Sports Grill)

Comic-Con HQ has landed! Join hosts Alison Haislip & Steve Zaragoza at the Hilton San Diego Bayfront for daily LIVE programming including the biggest names in comics, film, gaming, and pop culture, plus unparalleled access to the latest news from Hall H & beyond, and more con coverage than you can shake a lightsaber at!

  • Thursday, July 21 through Saturday, July 23: 9:30 AM–7:00 PM
  • Sunday, July 24: 9:30 AM–5:00 PM

4. ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY’S CON-X
Embarcadero Marina Park North

(Behind the Convention Center, just steps from Comic-Con)

Entertainment Weekly’s Con-X, taking the fan where you’ve never been before! Featuring: T- Shirt Bar: create custom, limited edition t-shirts. Relax in the beautiful outdoors. Recharge your device at our free charging terminals. Refresh with food and beverage. Con-X concert stage and entertainment zone features exclusive evening concerts and video content.

  • Thursday, July 21 through Saturday, July 23: 10:00 AM–10:00 PM
  • Sunday, July 24: 10:00 AM–4:00 PM

5. FOX TELEVISION
Hilton San Diego Bayfront Lawn

(Opposite Hall H)

Visit the FOX Experience with Son of Zorn and Rocky Horror Picture Show!

Don’t miss the FOX experience—fans will get to enter the world of Son of Zorn, climb a giant rock wall, dive into a huge stunt bag and then see Rocky Horror Picture Show through an immersive virtual reality experience.

  • Thursday, July 21 through Sunday, July 24: 11:00 AM–7:00 PM

6. FX
Hilton San Diego Bayfront Lawn

(Opposite Hall H)

Visit the FXHIBITION at Comic-Con International! Immerse yourself in the world of FX with installations inspired by your favorite series.  Face your fears in the American Horror Story VR Experience, be part of the art in the face swap sculpture garden, recline in our custom chair exhibit, and enjoy free wi-fi, giveaways, and more.

  • Thursday, July 21: 11:00 AM–6:00 PM
  • Friday, July 22 & Saturday, July 23: 10:00 AM–6:00 PM
  • Sunday, July 24: 10:00 AM–4:00 PM

NEW!
7. HBO PRESENTS GAME OF THRONES: THE HALL OF FACES
L Street Fine Art Gallery

(675 L St. Opposite the Omni Hotel front drive)

Visit The Hall of Faces to experience Game of Thrones. The Hall of Faces activation will allow guests to enter the House of Black and White and “Become No One.”

Thursday, July 21 through Saturday, July 23: 11:00 AM–5:00 PM
Sunday, July 24:  10:30 AM–2:00 PM


8. HER UNIVERSE GEEK COUTURE FASHION SHOW
Manchester Grand Hyatt Harbor Ballroom

(2nd Level, Harbor Tower)

The 3rd annual Her Universe Fashion Show & Design Competition with Hot Topic is back! The audience helps decide the winner!

  • Thursday, July 21: 6:00–8:00 PM

9. M·A·C COSMETICS
Children’s Park

(Located across from the Convention Center at the corner of Island Ave. and Front St.)

Experience the M·A·C Star Trek™ collection as M·A·C and Star Trek join forces to deliver exclusive early access to our cosmic collaboration. Jump aboard the transporter to explore strange new worlds in a futuristic photo op and unique immersive experience. Comic-Con International fans are invited to shop the M·A·C Star Trek color collection six weeks early! Arrives in M·A·C Stores and online September 1.

  • Thursday, July 21 through Sunday, July 24: 10:00 AM–7:00 PM

10. NBC
Gaslamp Square, Fifth and Harbor Drive

NBC’s bigger than ever at Comic-Con with three new series! Experience the thrill of time travel with Timeless and take a ride on the time-bending adventure. Discover Emerald City as a new OZ arises and takes over the Tin Fish Restaurant. Don’t forget to get a taste of The Good Place with free frozen yogurt! Rides, photo opportunities, dessert, giveaways, exclusive content and more.

  • Thursday, July 21 & Friday, July 22: 11:00 AM–7:00 PM
  • Saturday, July 23 & Sunday, July 24: 10:00 AM–6:00 PM

11. THE SOUTH PARK 20 EXPERIENCE
MLK Promenade

(Next to the Hilton Gaslamp Hotel)

South Park fans will step into 20 life-size 2D/3D builds of their favorite and most iconic moments at the South Park 20 Interactive Fan Experience. Enjoy a Hulu viewing lounge where you can sit back and watch all episodes of South Park, which are now streaming only on Hulu. Explore the Coon and Friends Experience featuring real-world items from the all-new video game South Park: The Fractured But Whole, sponsored by Ubisoft. Visit the art gallery that celebrates the 20th season by featuring 20 pieces from 20 unique artists curated by world-renowned pop culture artist Ron English. And check out a retrospective gallery featuring original cells from the pilot and much more.

  • Thursday, July 21 through Saturday, July 23: 9:30 AM–7:00 PM
  • Sunday, July 24: 9:30 AM–5:00 PM

12. NEIL DEGRASSE TYSON PRESENTS SPACE ODYSSEY
The Spa at the Hilton Gaslamp Hotel

(Across from the Convention Center)

Neil deGrasse Tyson Presents Space Odyssey headlines a unique exhibition area spotlighting immersive entertainment we like to call “VR Con at Comic-Con.” See the latest in VR, including “The John Wick VR Experience,” “NASA’s Journey to Mars” with additional stellar innovators, and much more!

  • Wednesday, July 20: Media & VIP Preview 3:00–6:00 PM; Open Preview: 6:00–9:00 PM
  • Thursday, July 21 & Friday, July 22: 9:00 AM–8:00 PM
  • Saturday, July 23: 9:00 AM–7:00 PM
  • Sunday, July 24: 9:00 AM–5:00 PM

13. NINTENDO VIDEO GAMING LOUNGE
San Diego Ballroom, Marriott Marquis San Diego Marina

(Lobby Level, North Tower)

Bring your kids to the Marriott Marquis San Diego Marina Hotel from July 21-24 for the ultimate Nintendo playground for families! Your junior gamers can enjoy Nintendo 3DS and Wii U game play, photo opportunities, live competitions, giveaways (while supplies last), and more!

  • Thursday, July 21 through Saturday, July 23: 10:00 AM–7:00 PM
  • Sunday, July 24: 10:00 AM–5:00 PM

14. WARNER BROS.: BATMAN V SUPERMAN FAN EXPERIENCE AT THE OMNI
MLK Promenade

(Southeast of Gaslamp Square Park, behind the Omni Hotel)

Visit Heroes Park at the Omni for the ultimate Batman v Superman fan experience. See the Batmobile along with exclusive giveaways and a daily scavenger hunt.

  • Wednesday, July 20: 4:00–7:00 PM
  • Thursday, July 21 through Saturday, July 23: 9:00 AM–7:00 PM
  • Sunday, July 24: 9:00 AM–4:00 PM