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San Diego’s Quirkiest Summer Festivities

by Angelique Platas

Jan 11, 2020

© Charles Aghoian | Dreamstime

Destinations / North America

Need a break from winter weather? Summer in San Diego, California, is always a nice distraction. Plan a warm-weather retreat a little earlier than usual with this list of quirky events.


Cars on Parade

San Diego is known for its diverse culture and colorful personality, and the annual La Vuelta Car Cruise represents both. Select Wednesdays, April 29–Aug. 5, guests and locals flock to Logan Avenue in Barrio Logan to see hundreds of classic cars hitting the streets. With two outdoor stages offering live music, local cuisine lining the streets, Mexican and Chicano art exhibits and goods for sale, this festival has something for everyone. Come for the cars, stay for the food and music and plan for another free event Aug. 22: La Vuelta Summer Festival.


Surfing D.O.G

Maybe you’ve already seen the fun pictures of water dogs surfing, but you can see it happening live during the Imperial Beach Surf Dog Competition in August. Watch as 60 dogs compete in three heats: Weight (small, medium, large and extra-large dogs), Shredder (dogs of all weights competing) and Tandem (dog surfing and dog/human surfing). All proceeds benefit the San Diego Humane Society, so your family can have fun while giving back.


Island Time

Marking the 20th anniversary of Tiki Oasis, this year is a special one for the world’s largest and longest-running tiki festival. Enjoy island music, dancing, fun vendors, a car show, fashion show, art exhibits and masters of their craft giving tutorials on everything from art and architecture to cuisine, cocktails and tiki carving. This five-day event is a must for all ages and will really ease your family into island time.


Dancing in the Streets

Easily the most popular dance event in San Diego, Trolley Dances brings the fun. The San Diego Dance Theater and San Diego Metropolitan Transit System partner for the beloved event, taking participants by way of MTS trolleys to live performances and exciting dances all over the city. The next Trolley Dances event welcomes fall, Sept. 26–27 and Oct. 3–4.


San Diego knows how to party. Shake off the winter weather with a few fun festivities with a sense of community.


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