Fall Activities To-Do in San Diego

Fall is officially here, and no matter the season, it’s always sunny in San Diego, which means there are enough fall-themed activities to celebrate one of the best seasons of the year.

Here’s a list of places to visit and things to do throughout San Diego County this fall. 

Apple picking in Julian

Julian Farm and Orchard in Julian, CA, is open on Saturday and Sunday from September 18 to October 31. Visitors will enjoy the apple orchard, hayrides, cider press, farm animals, ax throwing, shopping, and pumpkin picking. For more information, including admission prices and hours, please visit their website here.

Bates Nut Farm Pumpkin Patch

On the weekends, Bates Nut Farm in Valley Center will have live entertainment, BBQ, Kettle corn, food trucks, rock climbing, hayrides, and more, all running from September 18 to October 31. For admission and more information, please visit their website

Photo Credit: Jeremy Lwanga

Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) Celebrations

Oceanside Dia de Los Muertos Festival
The 20th Annual Oceanside Dia de Los Muertos Festival is scheduled for Sunday, October 24, 2021, from 10 am to 5 pm in Downtown Oceanside. For more information on activities and parking, please visit their website

City Heights Dia de los Muertos

Celebrate the lives of friends and relatives who have passed away the City Heights Dia de Los Muertos. People of all cultures will come together for community altars, face painting, mask making, and prizes for the best Catrina and Catrin contest, plus dancing, singing, and music. For more information on this event, please head to this event page

Carrera de los Muertos San Diego 5k or 10k Run

Looking for a fun run? Look no further. Los Muertos San Diego is a festive and fun 5k run/walk celebrating the Day of the Dead on November 7, 2021. Enjoy a scenic run or walk along the San Diego Bay to celebrate in the park with mariachi, dancers, and comida deliciosa! Join family and friends to remember loved ones who have passed in this rich cultural tradition. You will experience a great sense of community through a bit of exercise, music, dance, face painting, and a lot of fun. Please visit the event page here to purchase tickets and get more information. 

Fall at Balboa Park

Balboa Park will feature a variety of fall activities that are perfect for the family.

  • You can Take A Hike with volunteers from the San Diego Natural History Museum’s Canyoneers. The Canyoneers offer a guided hike in Balboa Park and around the area.
  • Trail of Fears/The Haunted Trail of Balboa Park will have two haunted theme activities to keep you on your toes. One is a mile-long outdoor trail through twisted pines and the other a 3,500 square foot maze. Both will keep you on your toes.
Photo Credit: Ethan Unzicker

Hike to See Fall Colors

Looking to see fall colors around San Diego County? Here’s a list of some great hiking trails to see nature switch to over to fall:

Thunder Ridge and Chimney Flat Loop

19952 State Park Drive, Palomar Mountain, CA

Sunset Trail

Laguna Mountain Recreation Area 10678 Sunrise Hwy Descanso, CA

Volcan Mountain

1209 Farmer Road (at Wynola Road) Julian, CA

Lake Cuyamaca

15027 Highway 79, Julian, CA

Observatory Trail

Cleveland National Forest

35899 Canfield Road, Warner Springs, CA

For more information on the trails above, please visit this website.

Photo Credit: Edgar Soto

Mountain Valley Ranch Pumpkin Patch

Ready to pick out a pumpkin? Let’s go! Mountain Valley Ranch Pumpkin Patch in Ramona is open from September 25 to October 31 from 9 am – 6 pm. The pumpkin patch features a giant corn maze, farm animals, and the ability to launch corn out of a cannon. Yes, please! For all the details, go to their website here.

Oktoberfest in San Diego (21 years and over)

Oktoberfest is a folk festival hosted initially in Munich, Germany. To view location and ticket information, visit their website here.

PB Pumpkin Patch

The PB Pumpkin Patch offers a large variety of pumpkins to choose from and has a free pumpkin carving and painting area. Also, enjoy some free hot apple cider and shaved ice for the little ones. The PB Pumpkin Patch is open from October 1 to October 31 Monday – Friday 10 am to 10 pm, and then Saturday and Sunday 8 am to 10 pm. For more information, please visit their website here.

If you do try some of these fall activities, let me know how it went by sharing your photos with me on socials @MikeStarkCA on Twitter and Instagram 
Written By: Mike Stark | @MikeStarkCA

Etsy out of the Screen

Etsy has expanded far from its frontiers. It went from being an online website where self made artist, and crafters sell their own creations, such as necklaces, unique Disney inspired ear headbands, paintings and much more, to becoming a mobile app, to now something even greater. Etsy served as an inspiration to Stephanie Payan and other artisans to form the SoCal Etsy Guild community.

With the creation of this community they offered an opportunity that went beyond Etsy’s option of buying on the go. The SoCal Etsy Guild made tangible Etsy markets available to the people of California. This markets are made up of local artists and crafters, serving as vendors, that come together to sell their items in person.

SoCal Etsy Guild markets hit San Diego in mid summer of 2017, and within a short period became extremely popular that they can now be found in two locations in San Diego. On the first Saturday of each month the market can be found in Mission Mall in between Michaels, and Nordstrom, while on the third Saturday of each month it is located at Horton Plaza on the waterfront patio.

Instead of browsing online San Diegans can now browse through the rows of stands filled with a variety of the same goods available online, but with less worries. One gets to see the product finished, and in person, leaving no space for weird, and unexpected surprises. Also, customers get to take it with them the moment they pay, no waiting time, and no need to pay a shipping fee. Can’t get any better than that, well no, it does. At this markets, some artists place their items at a lower price with great offers. SoCal Etsy Guild markets rise above expectations when it comes to benefits to the customers, and it’s great. People love to see the products before buying it, and what puts the cherry on top of everything is that one is able to meet the artists in person. Shining light on local artists is amazing, and it’s always great to know who your money is going to. What better way to help our communities than by supporting our local artists, instead of high corporates.

Local Music Faves

Most people discover music through Youtube or Pandora, but I’m here to tell you that great music can be discovered right under our noses, right here in southern Cali. It’s quite gratifying to go to a local show and realize that woah, you actually really like the music being played. Then, you’re at home, on their Facebook page, trying to figure out what song you fell in love with. Let me make it easy for you. Below are my favorite songs from bands that are from SoCal.

Alone Today – Neutral Shirt

A band that just toured across the country, Neutral Shirt got its roots from right here in San Diego. Initially getting their start playing at the Che Cafe, the band has maintained their lo-fi sound — applying their focus on the lyrics. Having an alternative sound, Neutral Shirt’s song Alone Today is perfect for lying in bed staring at the ceiling (which is precisely what I did last night).

I Work For The City – Mandarin Dynasty

Mandarin Dynasty is a band that originally got its foot into the music world by playing shows around San Diego. With it’s high-quality production, the album Perpendicular Crosstalk includes 11 songs that are all equally beautiful. It involves beautiful harmonies, a couple weird (a good type of weird) instruments, and thoughtful and poetic lyrics.

Carey finds herself (with a new fascination) – California’s Bellow

With catchy lyrics, bass-riffs, and beats, California’s Bellow is a Los Angeles based singer. All the songs and lyrics created are credited to Ben Levinson, the main singer and producer.  His music mainly features two fictional(?) characters by the names of Harri and Carey. The song “Carey finds herself” offers ~cool~ synth noises and a bass-riff that you won’t be able to get out of your head!

Condensate – T.Rexico

T.Rexico is a band based out of San Diego (more specifically, Chula Vista). The band includes 3 young pups who are seriously still in high school. Their music involves a heavily reverb-ed guitar and a surf-punk/rock sound. The difference between T.Rexico and the many other surf-punk bands in San Diego is that they have such high skill levels in the individual instruments that they play. They mostly play here in San Diego, so keep an eye out for them! Their live shows are always awesome.

Yuri Yuri Flex (ft. Mangaboy Jun) – Digi-Gurl

For those who are into hip hop, I suggest taking a listen to Digi-Gurl. Also a pretty young pup, his music suggests absolutely nothing about his age. His music radiates a new level of “coolness” that is definitely hard to have. If you’re looking for some fun tracks to blast in your car with your friends, his music is p e r f e c t for it.

That’s all I have for now! Tune in to my music show today at 11 pm!

Ashley Bajet, signing out.

 

Vinyl of the Week – Introduction

I don’t know if you know this, but KCR is kind of a big deal. It’s been around since 1969, and was one of the premiere college radio stations in the nation. In its heyday, roughly 1975-1990, KCR received record service from dozens of major labels, as well as vinyl submissions from countless local bands. The albums would arrive at the station, DJs would listen to them, pick what they liked, and play it on their show. Some of it was music that eventually got picked up by mainstream stations and is still known and loved today, but much of it has faded away, never breaking the college radio circuit or simply going out of style.

When music shifted to primarily digital format, promotional records became promotional CDs. At KCR, like other radio stations, decades of vinyl albums got locked up and forgotten and clunky turntables put in storage to make room for new, more user-friendly methods of playing music on air.

(image via kcralumni.org)

(image via kcralumni.org)

(image via kcralumni.org)

(image via kcralumni.org)

(image via kcralumni.org)

(image via kcralumni.org)

(image via kcralumni.org)

(image via kcralumni.org)

(image via kcralumni.org)

(image via kcralumni.org)

What this means for us at KCR in 2014 is that there are a whole lot of vinyl records stored away, many virtually untouched since the year they were released. And I’ve been possessed by the Spirit of DJs Past to catalogue it all, making me KCR’s Head of Inventory.

There are over 15,000 vinyl albums in the collection. I’ve only scratched the surface cataloging them so far, but I’ve already found so much mind-blowingly amazing music that I can’t bear to keep it to myself. I want to tell you about it! But writing about music is like dancing about architecture, as the saying goes – it’s nearly impossible to evoke the characteristics of one form of art through another. So I’m not gonna try! What I’m gonna do in this weekly column, Vinyl of the Week, is tell you about the neat albums that I find and why they’re so neat. I’m not a critic, I’m just a fan of old music and appreciator of vinyl. You can judge them for yourself – I’ll be linking a recording of each album I write about.

This column will be incredibly biased. I’m picking whatever albums I find and fall in love with to write about, so they’ll be specific to my taste. Lucky for you, I have good taste! Right now I’m mostly into ‘70s and ‘80s punk, so expect a lot of that. Albums that stand out to me from the collection are local records, rare records, valuable records, underrated records, records by bands that only released one album, and records that look particularly beat up (meaning well-loved!). Also, most of the records have comments from KCR DJs written on them from when they were first released. I’ll listen to anything that’s highly praised or fawned over (there were some ‘80s girls with a SERIOUS thing for Nick Cave). Some albums I choose will be somewhat well-known. Others may only have 100 copies in existence. Everything will be good.

I can’t wait to share all this great music with you! Check back every Wednesday for a new post.

Photo by Danielle Quinones

Photo by Danielle Quinones