The best things to do this weekend in San Diego: May 18


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Sep 19, 2023

The best things to do this weekend in San Diego: May 18

May is Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month, and there are events

May is Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month, and there are events throughout the county this weekend where San Diegans can celebrate.

There are also community festivals, a brewery's tenth anniversary, an art gallery opening and more. For our top concert picks, go here:


Our choices include bluegrass wiz Billy Strings at SDSU, the Dustin Lothspeich family benefit concert at the Casbah, and the Miles Davis/John Coltrane tribute gig at Dizzy's

Here's your weekend lineup.

Fringe Festival: San Diego International Fringe Festival turns 10 years old this week, with a scaled-down version of the annual indie theater event taking place for the fourth time in Balboa Park, May 18-28. Through May 28. Marie Hitchcock Puppet Theater, 2130 Pan American Road San Diego; Centro Cultural de la Raza, 2004 Park Blvd., San Diego; Les Girls Theater, 3970 Riley St., San Diego. $10 per show. $5 badge fee.


This year's fest return to Balboa Park with 19 shows by local and international artists

"A Midsummer Night's Dream": Grossmont College Theatre Arts presents William Shakespeare's romantic comedy set in an enchanted fairy-filled forest. 7:30 p.m. Thursdays and Fridays; 2 and 7:30 p.m. Saturdays; through May 27. Stagehouse Theatre, 8800 Grossmont College Drive, El Cajon. $10-$16. (619) 644-7234,

SANDAG Bike Anywhere Day: Formerly known as Bike to Work Day, this event asks folks to pledge to travel by bicycle to the beach, school, work or anywhere, enjoying the fresh air while exploring dozens of new bikeways. Check in at one of the event's many pit stops to pick up a free T-shirt while supplies last. 6 to 9 a.m. Thursday 5/18. All over San Diego County. Free.

"Xanadu": San Diego Musical Theatre presents this stage musical parody of the 1980s film about a failed roller-rink proprietor who finds fresh inspiration and love in a Greek muse. 7 p.m. Wednesdays and Thursdays; 8 p.m. Fridays; 3 and 8 p.m. Saturdays; 2 p.m. Sundays. Through June 4. San Diego Musical Theatre, 650 Mercury St., Kearny Mesa. $25-$70. (858) 560-5740.

San Diego River Days: The San Diego River Park Foundation's 20th annual celebration of the San Diego River hosts free family activities, including hikes, clean-ups, nature walks and educational opportunities. Varying times for activities through Sunday. Free.

Region One Arabian Horse Show: Top Arabian and half-Arabian horses will compete for prize money and to qualify for the U.S. National Championship in October in Albuquerque, N.M. Several competitions — Western, English, jumping, trail, dressage, reining — run simultaneously. Watch youth riders, adult amateurs and professionals compete for the title of show champion. Vendors will be offering art, equine tack and training equipment, apparel and horse-themed memorabilia. Children welcome. 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Wednesday 5/17 through May 21; open until 4 p.m. Sundays. Del Mar Fairgrounds, 2260 Jimmy Durante Blvd., Del Mar. Free.

GI Film Festival San Diego: The 2023 GI Film Festival San Diego finishes up its run today and Saturday. Some films were made by veterans, others by filmmakers who aimed to capture their stories. Tonight's films are short subjects: documentaries, narratives and late-night (mature subjects) narratives. Saturday's event, the awards celebration, is already sold out. 5 to 11:30 p.m. Friday. Museum of Photographic Arts, 1649 El Prado, Balboa Park. $10 general admission, $8 military/veteran/student/KPBS supporter.

Madera hosts Duck Pond Wine dinner: Cellars 33, wine consultant Bryan Taylorand Madera Kitchen of Mexico restaurant will host a five-course wine dinner with Cellars 33 wine pairings with dishes including hamachi crudo, mole amarillo with pan-roasted diver scallops and filet mignon steak. 6 p.m. Friday. 1250 S. Santa Fe Ave., Vista. $75. (760) 884-0429. maderakitchenofmexico.comcq

"Murder on the Links": North Coast Repertory Theatre presents the final weekend of Steven Dietz's stage adaptation of an Agatha Christie murder mystery novel. 8 p.m. Friday. 2 and 8 p.m. Saturday. 2 p.m. Sunday. 987 Lomas Santa Fe Drive, Solana Beach. $54-$65. (858) 481-1055.

Lost in Yonkers: Two San Diego theaters will open plays by Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Neil Simon this evening. Scripps Ranch Theatre is staging Simon's "Lost in Yonkers," pictured, a semi-autobiographical family drama set in 1942 Yonkers, N.Y. 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays; 2 p.m. Sundays. Through June 11. Legler-Benbough Theatre, Alliant International University, 9783 Avenue of Nations, San Diego. $15-$42. (858) 395-0573.

Rose & Walsh: Point Loma Playhouse presents "Rose & Walsh," Simon's final play, a romantic comedy about the enduring love story of two aging celebrated writers. 8 p.m. Fridays; 2 and 8 p.m. Saturdays; 3 p.m. Sunday. Through June 4. Point Loma Assembly, 3035 Talbot St., San Diego. $22. (619) 800-5497.

"Pandemusical Diaries": Loud Fridge Theatre Group presents William BJ Robinson's solo musical play inspired by his isolation during the first year of the COVID-19 shutdown. The show premiered at the 2022 San Diego International Fringe Festival. 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday. 2 p.m. Sunday. Westminster Theatre, 3598 Talbot St., San Diego. $20 at the door. loudfridgecom/tpd

"Hay Fever": For its 27th annual Free Classics Series, Coronado Playhouse's presents this witty Noël Coward comedy about a vacationing couple's holiday disrupted by unwanted guests. Opens Friday and runs through June 4. Showtimes, 8 p.m. Thursdays-Saturdays. 2 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. Coronado Playhouse, 1835 Strand Way. Free. Reservations required. (619) 435-4856.

Santa Ysabel Art Festival: This two-day festival will feature exhibits of painting, sculpture, glass and fiber art, jewelry and more, with live music and poetry readings. 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. 30352 Highway 78, Santa Ysabel. (760) 765-1676.

Fiesta del Sol turns 42: This free music festival is in its 42nd year, presented by the Solana Beach Chamber of Commerce and Belly Up Tavern. The event includes a battle of the bands, food, drink and merch vendors, a kids zone and a pancake breakfast (7:30 a.m. Sunday). Free parking and shuttle service at Border and Sierra streets. This year's headliners are The English Beat on Saturday and Iya Terra on Sunday. 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday and 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday. Fletcher Cove, 111 S. Sierra Ave., Solana Beach. Free.

Kiwanis Ocean Beach Kite Festival: Make, decorate and fly your own kite at this colorful annual festival. Get free materials, instructions, and help with kite making. Or bring a kite from home and show it off. Prizes awarded for best-decorated kites. The event includes a carnival, artisans, community booths and food trucks. Sponsored by the Kiwanis Club of Ocean Beach. 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday. Robb Field, 2525 Bacon St., San Diego. Free.

A Night in Africa: This night of culture and music will feature live performances from West African musicians. There will also be music, food and wine a this event. 8 p.m. Saturday. WorldBeat Cultural Center, 2100 Park Ave., San Diego. $20.

Pupapalooza Dog Festival: This festival from Second Chance Beer Company, the award-winning "Seize a Pint, Save a Pup" brewery, will have more than 20 locally owned dog-themed vendors on hand, plus food trucks, live music and adoptable pups from local dog rescue The Animal Pad. Second Chance will release a special beer: Guava Wheat Ale (4.5 percent ABV) on draft and in 16-ounce cans, with proceeds being donated to The Animal Pad. As always, 1 percent of Saturday's sales of Second Chance's core beers Buddy Lager and New Day West Coast IPA will also be donated to dog rescue organizations. 2 to 6 p.m. Saturday. 15378 Avenue of Science, Carmel Mountain. Free; Silver and Gold VIP packages $125 and $150.

Liberty Station Stone Brewing 10th Anniversary: Celebrate 10 years of Stone Brewing in Liberty Station at this event with beer tasting, a battle of the bands, games, tacos, a commemorative glass and other activities. Noon to 3 p.m. Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens, 2816 Historic Decatur Road, San Diego.

America on Main Street: El Cajon celebrates the city's diverse residents with this free, family-friendly event. Enjoy games, rides, crafts, food and drink vendors, live entertainment, a petting zoo and more. New this year is a tasting event, El Cajon's Foodie Fest, which includes all-you-can-eat tastings from 10 to 15 of El Cajon's favorite restaurants. Tickets sold separately. 3 to 8 p.m. Saturday. Downtown El Cajon, East Main Street and Rea Avenue, between Magnolia and Claydelle avenues. Free; Foodie Fest tickets are $15 for ages 7 and older, available at

Asian American Joy: This event will celebrate Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month with a bilingual Filipino storytime with Little Jeepney Books author Joy Francisco, a K-Pop dance workshop, and performances from the UC San Diego's Chinese Dance Association, the Onkur Bangla Language Academy and Samahan Filipino American Performing Arts & Education Center. Noon to 3:30 p.m. North University Community Library, 9920 Judicial Drive, San Diego. Free.

Complexions Contemporary Ballet: Choreographer Dwight Rhoden and Desmond Richardson have collaborated to create a blend of styles that showcase more than a dozen athletic dancers paying tribute to musical icons from Bach to David Bowie. 7:30 p.m. Saturday. San Diego Civic Theatre, 1100 Third Ave., San Diego. $22-$65. (858) 459-3728.

SD Art Advisory gallery opening: A new art gallery will open in Mission Hills with an opening celebration on Saturday. There will be live music, cocktails, hor d’oeuvres and discounts on the art. 6 to 9 p.m. Free. 3977 Falcon St., San Diego.

Asian American & Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month Celebration: See Japanese drummers, and singing and dancing celebrating Chamorro culture at this event. There will also be cultural exhibits and crafts. 2 p.m. Poway Library, 13137 Poway Road. Free.

"All ‘Bout the Blues": The MLK Jr. Choir performs Negro spirituals and gospel music in a fundraising concert. 5 p.m. Saturday. Joan B. Kroc Theatre, 6611 University Ave., $25-$40. [email protected].

San Diego Design Expo: A first-of-its-kind exhibit by more than 30 artisans in the fields of visual art, photography, sculpture, furniture design, home decor and more. Noon to 7 p.m. Saturday. 3446 Hancock St., San Diego. $30.

La Salon de Musiques: "Three Jewish Composers Silenced by Nazi Tyranny" This program will feature works by Felix Mendelssohn, Gustav Mahler & Robert Kahn. 4 p.m. Sunday. La Jolla Woman's Club, 7791 Draper Ave., La Jolla. $45-$95. 2023 Annual Vintners Wine Festival: Enjoy live music and wine from more than 20 participating San Diego County wineries. Tickets include charcuterie and unlimited wine tasting. 1 to 4 p.m. Sunday. Bernardo Winery, 13330 Paseo Del Verano Norte, San Diego, California. $80.

Model Majority - Asian American Comedians show: Mic Drop Comedy will host a show featuring "Southern California's best and brightest Asian and Pacific Islander comedians" in its main room. Doors open at 7 p.m. Mic Drop Comedy, 8878 Clairemont Mesa Blvd. $18.

Craig Robinson: His shows are sold out from Thursday through Saturday, but there's still a chance to see Craig Robinson at American Comedy Co. on Sunday. 7 and 9 p.m. on Sunday. American Comedy Co. 818 Sixth Ave., San Diego.

Escondido Spring Festival: This is an annual festival occurring for decades in downtown Escondido. There will be a beer and wine garden, art, live music, vendors selling gifts and international cuisine and more. 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday. Grand Avenue in downtown Escondido.

Free community day at The New Children's Museum: The museum will offer free admission for an event celebrating the opening of the Barona Student Native Plant Garden Project (‘Iipay Nyechewuue, Our People's Garden). There will be two outdoor art-making workshops, food trucks and ice cream. 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday. The New Children's Museum, 200 West Island Avenue, San Diego. Free.

Free family yoga: Throughout the month of May, families can participate in a free yoga class at One Paseo. The remaining classes will take place on May 21 and May 28. Bring your own mat. 10 to 11 a.m. On the lawn behind Harland Brewing. 3718 Paseo Places, Suite 1300. San Diego.

KidsFest at Petco Park: Families with tickets to the Padres game on Sunday can go early to enjoy inflatables, face painting and other activities two hours before the first pitch. After the game, kids can run the bases. Line up in Gallagher Square at the end of the eighth inning at the top of the ramp by the Toyota Beach on K Street. 1:10 p.m. Gallagher Square at Petco Park, 840 K Street, San Diego.

"Good People": Oceanside Theatre Company presents David Lindsay-Abaire's play about a poor and desperate woman who tracks down an old and successful friend for financial help. Runs through May 28. 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays. 2 p.m. Sundays. Plus some Saturday matinees. Brooks Theater, 217 N. Coast Highway, Oceanside. $35.

San Diego Museum of Art presents ‘O’Keeffe and Moore: Nearly a decade in the making, this groundbreaking San Diego Museum of Art exhibition will showcase more than 120 works by Georgia O’Keeffe and Henry Moore. Open through Aug. 27. 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday-Saturday (closed Wednesdays), noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. San Diego Museum of Art, 1450 El Prado, Balboa Park. Free-$20 for admission. ‘O’Keeffe and Moore’ special exhibit admission is $10 extra for non-members.