DESTINATION EAST COUNTY: TOP FESTIVALS AND EVENTS SEPT. 15-OCT. 24

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East County News Service

September 12, 2017 (San Diego’s East County) --This week’s Destination East County includes the Alley Cat Art Walk in El Cajon, Julian’s Music Festival, a Siren’s Crush concert in El Cajon, the Lemon Grove Lions Salsa Fiesta, Lakeside River Park’s Once in a Blue Moon gala, a Latino Film Festival at Grossmont and Cuyamaca Colleges, and an International Day of Peace rally in La Mesa.

Plus, we’ll have a preview of coming attractions including Julian Apple Days, Apple Tea Time, Bamboozled, Oktoberfests in La Mesa and El Cajon, Laguna Mountain Rendezvous, Kids Care Fest, Haunt Fest on Main, Borrego Days, a Haunted Lodge in El Cajon, a new Halloween Harvest Family Festival on Mt. Helix, and the annual Spooky Campover at Lions, Tigers and Bears in Alpine.

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

THIS WEEK

ALLEY CAT ART WALK SEPT 15 IN EL CAJON

You're invited to the Alley Cat Art Walk on September 15th from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.  Guests can enjoy an evening of art while visiting local galleries, also savoring food and drinks, plus and live bluegrass and jazz music in the alley between Rea Avenue and East Main Street in downtown El Cajon. 

Arts and crafts vendors will have displays and products for sale, and guests can win prizes.  Proceeds benefit St. Madeleine Sophie's Center, which assists developmentally disabled adults.  For more information, you can visit www.stmsc.org.

JULIAN MUSIC FESTIVAL SEPT. 16

The Julian Music Festival celebrates the end of summer on September 16 at the Menghini Winery in Julian from 1 to 7 p.m. The festival features Americana, pop rock, Latin jazz, adult contemporary, folk, Celtic music and more. 

Tickets are required and are available at https://julianmusicfestival.com/.

EL CAJON CONCERTS SEPT. 15-29

El Cajon’s dinner and a concert series continues each Friday night through September at Promenade Park.  You’re invited to bring a picnic dinner, or arrive early and dine at one of downtown El Cajon’s restaurants before enjoy outdoor concerts from 6 to 8 p.m.

Upcoming artists include Siren’s Crush on September 15th, the Petty Breakers on September 22nd, and on September 29th, the season finale with the Mighty Untouchables.

For full details, visit www.DowntownElCajon.com.

LATINO FILM FESTIVAL SEPT. 19-OCT. 10

Grossmont College will host a Latino Film Festival each Tuesday night at 7 p.m. from September 19th through October 19th. The films (free) exploring Latino history will be shown in Building 26, Room 220.  For details, you can check the calendar at www.EastCountyMagazine.org

ONCE IN A BLUE MOON: SEPT. 16 IN LAKESIDE

Lakeside’s River Park Conservancy will present its 11th annual Once in a Blue Moon Gala and Auction at the River Valley Equestrian Center on the evening of September 16th.

You’re invited to help honor partners in conservation and raise funds for science programs for kids. This year’s event includes dinner, an auction and an exhibition polo match.

You can learn more about the Lakeside River Park Conservancy and get tickets for Once in a Blue Moon by clicking the events tab at LakesideRiverPark.org.

LEMON GROVE LIONS SALSA FIESTA SEPT. 16

The Lemon Grove Lions Club is hosting a Salsa y Salsa Fiesta on September 16th from 6 to 9 p.m. to raise money to buy new bleachers for Lemon Grove Little League. The event will be held at the Monte Vista auditorium (2211 Massachusetts Ave.) in Lemon Grove. There will be salsa tasting and salsa dancing, as well as a taco cart, drinks, raffle and silent auction prizes.

Lemon Grove Mayor Pro-Tem Jennifer Mendoza says the bleachers have safety concerns, adding. “Lemon Grove is one of the poorest communities in San Diego. “Our Little League has been here for some 50 years and is showing its age, so our Lions Club adopted it as our project."

The cost is $20 in advance or $25 at the door. Contact jennifermendozalg@gmail.com for tickets or to enter the salsa tasting contest.

INTERNATIONAL DAY OF PEACE SEPT. 17 IN LA MESA

The Interfaith Council of La Mesa invites the public to join millions of people around the world participating in activities to celebrate the United Nations International Day of Peace on September 17th. The La Mesa event will be held starting at 3 p.m. in Aztec Park (7945 Morocco Drive), La Mesa.

A program will feature speakers from various faiths and traditions, as well as music. Over 20 peace-promoting organizations will be represented. Bring a chair or blanket to sit on as you embrace peace with people around the world.

For more information, you can visit www.InterfaithLaMesa.org.

NOW FOR A PREVIEW OF COMING ATTRACTIONS

JULIAN APPLE DAYS FESTIVAL SEPT. 23-24

If you love apples, the Julian Apple Days Festival on September 23rd and 24th is the place to be.  Located at Menghini Winery (1150 Julian Orchards Drive) in historic Julian, the event features Julian’s famous apple pie, gold panning demonstrations, a falconry performance, live music and dancing, an antique tractor display, children’s games and activities, a beer and wine garden, food and merchandise vendors, contests and more.

This festival hearkens back to the early 1900s, when Julian won a prestigious award from an apple growers association and began a fall Apple Day festival. The town now has a two-month-long Apple Days celebration culminating with the Apple Festival and the coronation of Mr. and Mrs. Apple Days.

You can learn more at http://www.VisitJulian.com and click on the calendar of events to find details on the Apple Days Festival and many more fall festivities.

JULIAN APPLE TIME TEA SEPT. 21-25

As the days start to shorten and the mountain air turns nippy, our thoughts drift to warm drinks and apples, and then to Julian.  Now you can indulge during the season with an apple-themed tea at Julian Tea & Cottage Arts.

From September 21st through 25th, they are offering an apple-themed menu highlighting that Julian specialty. Tucked away a block from the busy Main Street in a historical home (at 2124 Third Street), their "special-tea" features Hungarian apple soup, apple themed finger sandwiches, scones with apple butter, an apple dessert, and, of course, fine teas.  Vegetarian and gluten-free options are available with advance notice. 

Seatings are at 11:30 a.m., 1 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. For a menu and reservations, you can visit http://juliantea.com.

BAMBOOZLED: KIDZ DANZ KOMPANY SHOW SEPT. 23-24

Kidz Danz Kompany, the acclaimed children’s dance troupe based in La Mesa, presents “Bamboozled” at the San Diego Performing Arts Center (4579 Mission Gorge Place, San Diego) on September 22nd and 23rd at 7 p.m. 

“Bamboozled” is a celebration of love and all it encompasses, from sorrow and acceptance to family and human friendship.  The show’s numbers range from a celebration of Elton John’s works to Psalms for the Children of Syrian, also including a fast-paced dance titled Tunisian Nights and Shimmy Sam, an upbeat tap number that just may have you dancing in your seats.

For tickets to Bamboozled, you can visit visionarydancetheatre.org.

LA MESA OKTOBERFEST SEPT. 29-OCT. 1

Celebrating its 44th year, the popular La Mesa Oktoberfest will run from Friday, September 29th through Sunday, October 1st bringing three days of “Prost”, or cheer.

 In addition to live German music and other entertainment, many vendors and crafts, you can also enjoy a biergarten serving up German and craft beers, plus new this year, craft cocktails.

For more information, you can visit www.LaMesaOktoberfest.org.

OKTOBERFEST IN EL CAJON SEPT. 29-OCT.1 AND OCT. 6-8

The German America Club of San Diego hosts its annual Oktoberfest at its headquarters (1017 Mollison Ave.) in El Cajon over two weekends, September 29th through October 1st and again October 6th through 8th.

You can feast on authentic German fare, from roast ox on a spit to German pancakes, sauerkraut, and bratwurst. A German band flown in from Bavaria will perform German music ranging from polkas and waltzes to beer drinking songs. You’ll also find vendors selling a variety of crafts.

For details, you can visit http://www.germanclubsandiego.org/.

LAGUNA MOUNTAIN RENDEZVOUS OCTOBER 13-22

Step back in time to a fur trading and colonial camp from the 1700s to 1840s at the Laguna Mountain Rendezvous. This event takes place October 13 through 22 at the Mataguay Scout Reservation in Santa Ysabel.

You can see demonstrations of survival skills such as cooking, archery, tomahawk-throwing, black powder shooting and tool making. For more information, you can visit the Laguna Mountain Rendezvous page on Facebook. (https://www.facebook.com/Laguna-Mountain-Rendezvous-154665167884580/)

KIDS CARE FEST OCTOBER 14 IN LAKESIDE

Grossmont Healthcare District presents Kids Care Fest on Saturday, October 14 from 9 a.m.to 1 p.m. at the Lakeside Rodeo Grounds.  This event will offer potentially life-saving healthcare screenings as well as dental and vision screenings at no cost as well as safety demonstrations, flu shots, blood pressure and cholesterol checks, health information, plus fun activities such as pony rides and a rock-climbing wall.

For details, visit kidscarefest.org

HAUNTFEST ON MAIN OCT. 20

The Sixth Annual “HauntFest on Main” will be held October 20th from 5:00 to 10:00 p.m. in Downtown El Cajon. This fun, family-friendly Halloween-themed event features live music on the Promenade Stage including the Stand-Up Guys from 5 to 7:15 p.m. and the Amazing ‘80s All-Starz from 7:45 to 10 p.m.:

This event also features costume contests on the Main Street stage, carnival rides, crafts, games, car show, a candy trail, kids zone with outdoor movies, face painting, inflatables for kids, pumpkin patch, Ghostbusters and more.  This event is presented by the City of El Cajon and the Downtown El Cajon Business Partners. 

(Admission is free, but some rides will charge a nominal fee.) For more information, you can visit .Hauntfest.org or call (619) 441-1754.

BORREGO DAYS OCT. 21-22

The 52nd Annual Borrego Days Desert Festival kicks off Saturday, October 21 from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. and continues through Sunday, October 22, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.  The Borrego Days Parade steps off at 10 a.m. on Saturday, October 21st along Palm Canyon Drive and Christmas Circle in Borrego Springs, complete with pre-parade flyover, floats, marching bands and trick-riding Western cowboys.

Borrego Days also includes arts and crafts and a carnival fun zone for kids both days, plus live music for dancing under the stars on Saturday night.

For more information, you can visit BorregoDays.com.  

HAUNTED LODGE OCT. 26-31

The El Cajon Elks Lodge 1812 is teaming up with a local Haunted House Production Company “Scareventures” to present a Haunted Lodge for the community in their parking lot from October 26th through 31st. This will be one of the only Haunted Houses in San Diego’s East Count.

The “Haunted Lodge” will feature a maze and four different key scare areas for guests to experience, plus activities and booths.

There will also be early evening hours set aside for children under 12 to experience a less scary version of the haunted lodge that is family friendly for youngsters where they will be treated to Halloween candy from nicer monsters they encounter as a part of their tour through the Lodge maze.

The Elks, who have been serving the community for 60 years, will donate 100% of proceeds from the event for children’s charities. The lodge is located at 1500 East Washington Avenue in EL Cajon. 

You can purchase advance tickets at elcajonelks.com.

HALLOWEEN HARVEST FAMILY FESTIVAL ATOP MT. HELIX OCT. 29

The Mt. Helix Park Foundation and Grossmont Mt Helix Improvement Association (GMIA) are joining together for a fun-filled Halloween Harvest Family Festival at the top of Mt Helix Park for neighborhood families on Sunday, October 29th from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.

A costume parade for kids, live music by Lenny & the Lounge Lizards, plus booths from local businesses offering crafts, games and treats will all be part of this fall festival.

Park at the San Miguel Fire Station on Vivera to take a free shuttle to the top of Mt. Helix.

For more information on the event, visit MtHelixPark.org.

SPOOKY CAMPOVER AT LIONS, TIGERS AND BEARS OCT. 27-28

Lions, Tigers and Bears in Alpine will host its annual Spooky Campover from 3 p.m. Friday October 27 until noon on. October 28. Bring your own pumpkin to carve, food, camping gear and best costume. This event promises "a wild and ghoulish night under the stars with the rescued animals." There will be pumpkin carving, s'mores, campfire songs, a costume contest and animal feedings.

For ticket prices and reservations, visit www.LionsTigersAndBears.org  (or see

https://lionstigersandbears.org/upcoming-events/lions-tigers-bears-spooky-campover/ .) All proceeds benefit the nonprofit facility’s work to rescue exotic animals and provide a permanent home for them.

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.