DESTINATION EAST COUNTY: TOP FESTIVALS AND EVENTS APRIL 13-MAY 30

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By Miriam Raftery

April 11, 2018 (San Diego’s East County) - This week’s Destination East County includes a Kidz Danz Company production of The Constitution, a Warbirds Expo at Gillespie Field, Sweet Pea Day at Summers Past Farms, the Jamul Hot Rod and Chili Cook-off, Heritage of the Americas Museum’s anniversary celebration, a harp recital at Mission Trails, the Cajon Classic Cruise season opener in El Cajon, and a Lilac Festival in Wynola.

Plus, we’ll have a preview of coming attractions including a meteor shower watch, a furry friends hike, an antique and crafts show, San Diego Festival Chorus and Orchestra’s spring concert, Lakeside’s Rodeo and Western Days parade, a Spring Garden and Butterfly Festival, the San Diego Chorus and Orchestra’s spring concert, Renaissance music at Mission Trails, outdoor concerts in El Cajon, and winetasting at Vintage Alpine.

So scroll down for all of these events and many more!

KIDZ DANZ KOMPANY PRESENTS “THE CONSTITUTION” APRIL 13 AND 14

Constitution, the dance, is coming to the San Diego Performing Arts Center (4579 Mission Gorge Place) April 13-14 thanks to La Mesa based Kidz Danz Kompany and Visionary Dance Theatre.

This show is about “the Constitution and its impact on our country, from its founding, to its present day, and things such as the 3/5 clause of the constitution which states that African Americans were only 3/5 of a human being.”

For tickets (available online through March 31) and more information, visit http://visionarydancetheatre.org/Visionary/2018-TheConstitution. Tickets will also be available at the box office if not sold out in advance.

WARBIRD EXPO APRIL 14 AT GILLESPIE FIELD

At the Warbird Expo hosted by the Commemorative Air Force at Gillespie Field in El Cajon (on Saturday, April 14th, warbirds, classic aircraft, vintage cars and World War II memorabilia will all be part of a fun-filled day for the whole family.  Gates open at 9 a.m. and the event runs until 4 p.m.

A highlight of the event is the opportunity to take a ride aboard a historic aircraft. If you’re looking for a gift for that special someone or just want a joy ride for yourself, tickets for these flights are available at the event or online at AG1CAF.org.

SWEET PEA DAY AT SUMMERS PAST FARMS APRIL 14 IN FLINN SPRINGS

Summers Past Farms in Flinn Springs, just east of El Cajon, invites you to Sweet Pea Day on Saturday, April 14th from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.  Visit a towering sweet pea maze at this event celebrating the fragrant, old-fashioned flowers in their full glory.

You can preview the maze from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. and cut your own bouquet starting at 11 a.m. until they are gone—which doesn’t take long!

Guests can also enjoy live music with Jim Earp on a shady pavilion, savor snacks at an outdoor coffee bar, or picnic on the grass to round out an idyllic spring day.

For more information, you can visit SummersPastFarms.com.

10TH ANNUAL JAMUL HOT ROD AND CHILI COOK-OFF APRIL 14

The Jamul Kiwanis are revving up for their 10thAnnual Hot Rod and Chili Cook off. The event will be held on April14 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Pio Pico/Thousand Trails, 14615 Otay Lakes Road, Jamul. 

There's something for everyone in the entire family: classic cars, trucks and motorcycles; live entertainment by Roadkill Band and DJ Mr. Bogart.  Best of all, savor the Chili Cook-off and taste the best chili's in East County. 

Other food vendors are serving Mexican food and burgers.  Many other commercial vendors, raffle prizes, silent auction, beer from Ballast Point, Alesmith and Jamul's own Jamul Brewery. There's even a game room and swimming pool for kids.

For more information, go to JamulKiwanis.org or call (619) 993-9904.

HERITAGE OF THE AMERICAS ANNIVERSARY APRIL 14

Heritage of the Americas Museum is celebrating its 25th anniversary with a special event on Saturday, April 14th from 5 to 7 p.m. featuring guest artist Alfredo Rodriguez.

The celebration also features a catered buffet, music, auction, drinks and good times. For more information, visit heritageoftheamericasmuseum.com/.

HEAVENLY MUSIC:  SAN DIEGO HARP SOCIETY TO PERFORM APRIL 15 AT MISSION TRAILS

The San Diego Harp Society will present a free recital on Sunday, April 15th from 3 to 4 p.m. at the Mission Trails Regional Park Visitors Center auditorium featuring exceptional local harp students. 

For more information on this heavenly music performance or other upcoming concerts, visit the Mission Trails Regional Park webpage at www.MTRP.org.

CAJON CLASSIC CRUISE SEASON OPENER APRIL 18

The Cajon Classic Cruise will rev up its season opener on Wedneday, April 18th from 5 to 8 p.m. in downtown El Cajon. 

Thousands of people from across the region come to Cajon Classic Cruise nights each Wednesday, all summer long.

In addition to viewing classic vehicles with a different theme each week, visitors can enjoy musical entertainment at Prescott Promenade on Main Street just east of Magnolia, or arrive early to dine at an outdoor café for a roadside view of the Cajon Classic Cruise.

For more information, you can visit DowntownElCajon.com.

LILAC FESTIVAL CONTINUES EACH WEEKEND IN APRIL

Fort Cross Old Timey Adventures invites you to a Lilac Festival at their site, located on Highway 78 in Santa Ysabel just outside of Julian. The event takes place each Saturday in April from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Festival activities include tours of the lilac groves, a petting zoo, hayride, jug band show, archery, tomahawk throwing and a ghost town slingshot range. Visitors can also paint vases and dip candles to take home, as well as plant seeds and learn about gardening.  For more information, you can visit www.FortCross.com

NOW FOR A PREVIEW OF COMING ATTRACTIONS…

METEOR WATCHING IN LAKESIDE APRIL 21

You're invited to join rangers at Oakoasis County Preserve (12620 Wildcat Canyon Road) in Lakeside to watch a meteor shower on Saturday, April 21 from 2 a.m. to 5 a.m. Yes, you read those times right!  Those wee hours of the morning are when you can see the most shooting stars. So, dress warm, bring a lawn chair and blankets to enjoy nature's fireworks in this very special sky show.  For questions, call the Oakoasis park at (619) 561-0580.

FURRY FRIENDS HIKE AT SANTA YSABEL EAST PRESERVE APRIL 21

A furry friends hike will be held on Saturday, April 21 from 9 a.m. to 12 noon at the Santa Ysabel East County Preserve (500 Farmer Road) in Julian. You can bring your dogs and join other animal lovers for an easy hike to the Santa Ysabel Creek, along with rangers Eric and Doug and their dogs, Leebo and Luke.

Dogs just stay on leashed and be friendly toward others. Be sure to bring water and snacks for you and your pets.  Meet at the Farmer staging area. For more information, call the Santa Ysabel East Preserve park at 760-765-4098 (or visit the event page on  Facebook.)

ANTIQUES AND CRAFT FAIR APRIL 21-22 AT SUMMERS PAST FARMS

An Antiques and Crafts Fair will be held at Summers Past Farms in Flinn Springs on Saturday, April 21st and Sunday, April 22nd from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

You can view works by over 70 craftsman and artisans while shopping for crafts, collectibles, antiques, and garden items. Find details at SummersPastFarms.com.

SAN DIEGO CONCERT BAND ANNOUNCES FREE CONCERTS

The San Diego Concert Band has announced its 29th annual Spring Celebration concert and summer concert series at venues that include East County locations of Kroc Center, Old Poway Park, La Mesa’s Harry Griffen Park, and St. Dunstan’s Episcopal Church in San Carlos, as well as San Diego locations at Civitas Park and the Organ Pavilion in Balboa Park. 

Their first concert, American Salute, will be on April 24 at 7 p.m. at the Joan B. Kroc Theatre on University Avenue, just one block west of La Mesa.

Tickets can be purchased online at www.sandiegoconcertband.com, or at the door if not sold out.

LAKESIDE RODEO APRIL 27-29; WESTERN DAYS PARADE APRIL 28

Yee-ha! Cowboys and cowgals will be saddling up for the 54th annual Lakeside Rodeo on April 27th, 28th and 29th, where you can watch events ranging from bull riding to barrel racing. 

The weekend's festivities also include the Western Days Parade through downtown Lakeside on Saturday, April 28th at 9:30 a.m., with a Western Days breakfast beforehand starting at 7 a.m. at the Lakeside Historical Society.  Find details on all of these events at www.LakesideRodeo.com.

SPRING GARDEN AND BUTTERLY FESTIVAL APRIL 28

The Water Conservation Garden and Heritage of the Americas Museum at Cuyamaca College invite you to the annual Spring Garden and Butterfly Festival on Saturday, April 28th from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Activities at the Garden include buttery pavilion tours and butterfly releases, garden tours, kids’ crafts and story time, a pollinator parade, exhibits, presentations, water-wise gardening information, edible and ornamental plant sales, face painting, animal exhibitors, food trucks and wine tasting.

The museum will host tours and presentations, a five-choices dream drawing, Kumeyaay artifacts and fire-making demonstrations, and more.

For details visit https://TheGarden.org/springfestival

SAN DIEGO FESTIVAL AND CHORUS SPRING CONCERT APRIL 29

The San Diego Festival Chorus and Orchestra will present its spring concert titled “Musical Journeys” on April 29th at 3 p.m. at the College Avenue Baptist Church.

The concert will include John Rutter’s Requiem as well as music from West Side Story and the Wizard of Oz.  For tickets and details, visit www.SanDiegoFestivalChorus.org.

COURTLY NOYSE APRIL 29 AT MISSION TRAILS

Mission Trails Regional Park invites you to a medieval and renaissance concert by Courtly Noyse. The performance will be held on Sunday, April 29 at 3 p.m. in the Visitor Center’s theatre.

For details, you can visit the Mission Trails Regional Park website at www.MTRP.org.

HISTORY ALIVE MAY 3

History Alive continues with historian and ace story teller James Newland, unveiling his new book, Grossmont Hospital: A Legacy of Community Service, with the story in words and pictures. Book signing at H. Lee House, 3205 Olive, Lemon Grove.  For more information, visit http://www.lghistorical.org.

DINNER AND A CONCERT IN EL CAJON STARTS MAY 4

Downtown El Cajon's "Dinner and a Concert" series starts May 4 and continues each Friday night from 6 to 8 p.m. all summer long.  The concerts are held in Prescott Promenade Park on Main Street.  Sully and the Blue-Eyed Soul Band opens the season on May 4. Other concert performers in May are The Jukebox Kings, Stars on the Water, and Fortunate Sun.

Bring a picnic dinner to eat in the park, or you can arrive early to dine at one of the restaurants in downtown El Cajon. 

View the complete Dinner and a Concert lineup at www.DowntownElCajon.com

SAVOR TASTES FROM 40 WINERIES AT VINTAGE ALPINE MAY 6

You’re invited to savor fine wines from over 40 wineries and taste specialty foods from local restaurants at Vintage Alpine, a wine experience in the country.  The event takes place on Sunday, May 6 from 1 to 4 p.m. at Summers Past Farms (15602 Olde Highway 80 in Flinn Springs)—all to benefit the children of San Diego County.

Started in 1990, this event now draws over 500 people and is one of the largest winetasting events in San Diego County. It is organized by the Alpine Kiwanis Foundation.

This event is limited to those 21 and up.  For tickets and details, visit www.VintageAlpine.org.  

ARRIBA! LEMON GROVE LIONS HOSTS SALSA Y SALSA FIESTA MAY 11

The Lemon Grove Lions Club invites you to enjoy salsa tasting plus salsa dancing, Mexican food, music and prizes at their annual Salsa y Salsa Fiesta. The festivities will be held on Friday, May 11 from 6 to 9 p.m. to benefit service projects including support for the Lemon Grove Little League, Girls On The Run at Lemon Grove Schools,  sponsorships to send kids to camp, and the Lion's International Disaster Fund.

The event will be held at the Monte Vistas Village Auditorium (2211 Massachusetts Avenue) in Lemon Grove from 6 to 9 p.m. 

For tickets or to enter the salsa-tasting contest, contact JenniferMendozaLG@gmail.com

FILM NIGHTS IN THE LIBRARY MAY 9, 16, 23, 30

Film Night in the Library returns with one-hour programs in the series, America's Untold Story: Secrets of the Dead.  Who got here before the Pilgrims in 1620? And what was the aftermath? The answers will surprise you. Plus, you'll be home before dark. Lemon Grove Library, 3001 School Lane.  For more information, visit https://www.lghistorical.org/.

That’s all for this week!

If you have an event you’d like added to our calendar, or if you would like to sponsor the Destination East County column on our website, or the Destination East County show on KNSJ Radio, you can contact editor@eastcountymagazine.org.  Destination East County is the most-read feature on our website.

We’ll be back next week with more festivals, events and attractions in San Diego’s East County!