A colorful Lunar New Year in City Heights!

City Heights is possibly San Diego’s most diverse neighborhood. So it isn’t surprising that people from many walks of life have converged in City Heights for the 2023 SD Lunar New Year Festival!

Today I headed to east San Diego to experience the weekend event. This celebration of Tết is presented by Little Saigon San Diego. It’s free to the public at Officer Jeremy Henwood Memorial Park.

I wandered about looking at traditional displays. I sat down to watch several excellent cultural performances on the big stage. The audience applauded energetically and often.

I read that this popular event is helping to raise funds for the creation of a Boat People Garden mini park, to be built somewhere near the festival site. I attempted to gather information about the coming mini park, but all I could ascertain is a groundbreaking ceremony will take place this Wednesday.

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A big Chinese New Year Festival in Balboa Park!

Tomorrow is Lunar New Year! It will be the Year of the Rabbit. (Which signifies good luck!)

This weekend the 2023 Chinese New Year Festival is being held in Balboa Park at the International Cottages. The event is presented by the House of China.

The festival attracted an absolutely gigantic crowd today. We heard from the stage that attendance this year set a record. The lawn at the International Cottages was jammed with humanity.

There were vendors, Chinese food, and a calligraphy demonstration inside the cottage of the House of China. Lots of kids became super excited after two o’clock when speeches ended and the traditional Lion Dance began!

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Filipino Artists of South Bay exhibition.

An exhibition by Filipino artists who reside in the South Bay is now on display in Chula Vista. Their works can be viewed inside Chula Vista’s two libraries and the City Hall lobby.

Yesterday I enjoyed looking at some of these pieces while visiting the Chula Vista Public Library Civic Center Branch.

I found the artwork on several library walls. Many of the beautiful creations seemed like glimpses of larger stories, emerging from an artist’s memory and heart.

Filipino Artists of South Bay continues through January 2023.

These photos provide an example of what you might see…

Family Dinner, Primo Gallanosa.
the luckiest cat, Nadine Tan Saldaña.
The Kiddos, Vince Alvendia.
Pag-uwi (Returning Home), Clarissa Tong.

Thanks for visiting Cool San Diego Sights!

I post new blogs pretty often. If you like discovering new things, bookmark coolsandiegosights.com and swing on by occasionally!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Filipinos of South Bay Exhibit in Chula Vista.

The current exhibition at the Chula Vista Heritage Museum celebrates the life and history of Filipinos in the South Bay.

Display cases are positively overflowing with photographs and ephemera. Moments large and small are collectively remembered. You see the hopes, struggles, victories, family life. There are memories of community gatherings and festivals.

Words and images tell what it was like as a Filipino to go to school or church, run a business, serve in the military, or work to improve the life of the community. Perhaps you share these experiences.

I peered into the display cases and found so much life.

You can see that life, too, throughout 2023. Visit the Chula Vista Heritage Museum, which is located inside the Chula Vista Public Library Civic Center Branch.

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I post new blogs pretty often. If you like discovering new things, bookmark coolsandiegosights.com and swing on by occasionally!

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A fun harbor tour on both land and sea!

Two tours in one! That’s what it felt like today when I explored San Diego’s harbor on a SEAL Tours boat with wheels!

It was my very first time experiencing one of these unique tours.

Passengers boarded the amphibious SEAL vehicle at Seaport Village and started down Harbor Drive along San Diego’s beautiful Embarcadero. We passed the airport and Spanish Landing and entered Point Loma. All the while, our tour guide (the boat’s first mate), provided a fun and spirited narration. My love of San Diego was renewed once again.

At the Shelter Island boat ramp we seamlessly entered San Diego Bay and headed out across the sparkling water!

Of course there were amazing views of downtown San Diego across the gentle water. And, of course, we had to swing by the bait dock near the entrance to the bay where sea lions entertained kids with their antics.

We saw several Navy facilities and were surprised to learn how super high-tech robot ships are autonomously interdicting drug smugglers. We also saw where the Navy trains sea lions and dolphins to detect underwater objects. And we saw the R/P FLIP, a very long, very strange Scripps research vessel that plunges 90 degrees into the ocean to become a sort of floating tower! There was so much cool stuff to see, I couldn’t begin to describe it all.

The tour was a lot of fun. Our guide, Bret, was a ham and everyone was always smiling and laughing. Personally, I learned quite a lot about my city that I hadn’t known before.

Are you a San Diego resident? This month–January–Old Town Trolley Tours is offering locals free rides. That includes the SEAL Tours, which they operate!

If you do partake of this harbor experience, make sure to bring a jacket. The wind out on the bay can be quite chilly!

Here’s a tiny taste of the experience…

Both the captain and first mate were really nice. As we got started visual aids helped to explain the coming attractions.

Two huge cruise ships were docked on the Embarcadero today.

Passing the beautiful, historic Star of India, world’s oldest active sailing ship.

We’ve arrived at Shelter Island, where we saw many boats moored in America’s Cup Harbor.

About to enter San Diego Bay! How cool is this?

The transition to water is so smooth you hardly notice it.

Another perfect San Diego day.

Hello!

The bait dock had everyone taking a million photos. Those sea lions are digesting their breakfast.

How cute!

A bunch of cormorants were hanging out on this section.

A view of downtown San Diego skyscrapers over the large naval air base on Coronado’s North Island.

That narrow ship on the right operates autonomously. If it detects a drug runner out on the Pacific Ocean, the Coast Guard is notified.

Here’s where sea lions are trained by the U.S. Navy. We learned they are actually a bit more intelligent than dolphins.

Here comes another SEAL Tour! That’s Harbor Island behind it.

Back to land! Before heading again down city streets, our captain checked for seaweed caught in the wheels!

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I post new blogs pretty often. If you like discovering new things, bookmark coolsandiegosights.com and swing on by occasionally!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

More fun pops up at downtown’s Children’s Park!

Oh my goodness! What’s that white tower-like thing? Looks like a tower of fun!

I walked up 1st Avenue beside Children’s Park this morning and peered over the construction fence. Substantial progress has been made in the downtown park’s big redesign and renovation!

Last May I posted photos from Front Street of the wooden play structure under construction. Now every aspect of the new and improved Children’s Park, including its vendor and restroom building, is taking form!

I can’t wait until the project is completed and the fountain is turned back on!

Thanks for visiting Cool San Diego Sights!

I post new blogs pretty often. If you like discovering new things, bookmark coolsandiegosights.com and swing on by occasionally!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Fun photos at the Snapdragon Bowl Bash!

The Holiday Bowl block party in the Gaslamp Quarter (called the Snapdragon Bowl Bash) is happening this evening even as I post these photographs!

I walked down to the Gaslamp before the event officially began at 5 o’clock, and took a couple of easy laps up and down Fifth Avenue. As you can see, there were already lots of families and Oregon and North Carolina college football fans out and about, enjoying all sorts of fun activities!

Enjoy a glimpse of the big party!

Thanks for visiting Cool San Diego Sights!

I post new blogs pretty often. If you like discovering new things, bookmark coolsandiegosights.com and swing on by occasionally!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

A walk on Christmas Day in Balboa Park.

While the rest of the nation was in a deep freeze, our sunny San Diego weather welcomed everyone outdoors on Christmas Day.

Most of the attractions in Balboa Park were closed for the holiday. Museums, cafes, cottages, and historic buildings were locked up tight. But by the afternoon a good crowd filled El Prado, enjoying the beauty of the park, street performers, and sunshine.

I did note the Balboa Park Miniature Railroad was operating, as was the San Diego Zoo.

At two o’clock the free Sunday concert went on as always at the Spreckels Organ Pavilion. Outstanding local organist Russ Peck played a Christmas medley, highlights from The Sound of Music, and assorted Christmas carol favorites. I heard voices in the audience singing along!

Here come a few photographs…

Thanks for visiting Cool San Diego Sights!

I post new blogs pretty often. If you like discovering new things, bookmark coolsandiegosights.com and swing on by occasionally!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

La Mesa to create Downtown Village Sign!

Plans are underway to create a landmark sign in La Mesa’s downtown Village!

La Mesa families are preparing painted tiles that will decorate the columns of the archway sign!

The “La Mesa Village District Sign” will span La Mesa Boulevard at Palm Avenue. It will resemble the distinctive gateway signs in other San Diego neighborhoods and cities in the county.

I knew nothing about this project until I walked past a banner and posters in windows at the intersection where the sign will be erected.

The ongoing “Leave a Legacy Tile” fundraiser will eventually produce a “Community Quilt” installed on the base of each column!

If you’d like to participate, here’s the website!

Thanks for visiting Cool San Diego Sights!

I post new blogs pretty often. If you like discovering new things, bookmark coolsandiegosights.com and swing on by occasionally!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Holiday magic at the Model Railroad Museum!

Need some holiday magic?

It can be found in abundance at the San Diego Model Railroad Museum in Balboa Park!

The huge, detailed train layouts are amazing by themselves, but during the Holiday Season, additional surprises await around the museum!

There are beautiful Christmas trees, a talking, animatronic Santa to excite kids, and tiny holiday scenes placed in several of the scale train layouts.

But by far the most magic can be experienced in the Toy Train Gallery!

In the Toy Train Gallery, young and old gaze wide-eyed at a lively city filled with holiday figures and bright decorations. Trains illuminated with colored Christmas lights pass through happy winter scenes. Snowmen and Christmas trees perch on rooftops. It like a dream world one might see in a snow globe–filled with life and activity!

In addition, the Toy Train Gallery’s walls are filled with holiday artwork that will make old-timers nostalgic for years gone by.

A few photos provide a small taste…

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