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Listen to Destination East County, also airing on KNSJ radio, by clicking the audio link.

September 10, 2015 (San Diego's East County) -- This week’s Destination East County features a Car-B-Que at Santee Lakes, live musical theatre productions, the Sycuan pow-wow and a bluegrass festival in Santee.

Plus we’ll have a preview of coming attractions including the Julian Music Festival, the opening of the silver anniversary season of the Poway Performing Arts Center featuring Kenny Loggins as well as some major fall festivals including Julian Apple Days, Fall Fest, and of course, Oktoberfest!

So scroll down for all of these events and much, much more.



The Santee Lakes Foundation invites you to enjoy CarBQue at Samtee Lakes—a day of classic cars, bikes, antique tractors and farm equipment plus barbeque food, live entertainment and fun for the entire family. The event takes place on Saturday, October 10 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. For directions to Santee Lakes, you can visit


Visionary Community Theatre and Visionary Youth Theatre of east San Diego present Hairspray at the Performing Arts Center at Point Loma High School (2335 Chatsworth Blvd, San Diego, 92106) on September 10-12 & 17-19 at 7 p.m. Enjoy as the diverse and talented Visionary cast and crew welcome you to the 60’s!

It’s 1962 - the ‘50s are out and change is in the air. Baltimore’s Tracy Turnblad, a big girl with big hair and an even bigger heart, has only one passion - to dance. She wins a spot on the local TV dance program, “The Corny Collins Show” and, overnight, is transformed from outsider to irrepressible teen celebrity. But can a trendsetter in dance and fashion vanquish the program’s reigning princess, win the heart of heartthrob Link Larkin, and integrate a television show without denting her ‘do?

 This production features Matthew Anderson, a physics professor at San Diego State University, as Wilbur Turnblad and Visionary’s own Artistic Director Spencer John Powell as Edna Turnblad.  Tickets are avaliable at: Visionary Community Theater .com


Off Broadway Live in Santee will present “One Hit Wonder”, a dinner theater production about a group that sang other peoples songs, until they had their own hit . . . Just one hit! This story brings to life the music of Neil Diamond, Kenny Rogers, Eddie Rabbit, Dionne Warwick, Roberta Flack, Olivia Newton-John, The Eagles and so many others.

The event includes a fully catered dinner and beverages.  The live combo plays great dinner music, then Bob & Steve, with musical guests, singing the songs of the best singers and songwriters of all time. 

Off Broadway Live is on Cuyamaca Street in Santee – You can see more at:


The Sycuan band of the Kumeyaay nation will host its 26th annual pow-wow September 11-13 at the tribe’s pow-wow grounds, behind the casino on the Sycuan reservation in El Cajon.

Dancers from across the nation will compete for $125,00 in prize money at the pow-wow, which also features  bird-singing and for Native American children, peon games.  Crafts, food and vendors will  be on hand at the pow-wow, which is free and open to the public. For details, see the Sycuan pow-wow page on Facebook.


The twang of banjos and fiddles will again fill the air, while delicious food and beverages fill appetites, at the 6th Annual Santee Bluegrass Festival on Sept. 12 from 5:30 t 9:30 p.m.

The one-night festival is a fundraiser that benefits local teen programs, park improvement projects and the city’s recreation scholarship program that subsidizes fees for less fortunate children, families and seniors. The event takes place at Town Center Community Park East. 

This year’s lineup features two talented bluegrass bands, Box Canyon and High Mountain Road. Admission includes wine and beer sampling plus tastes of food prepared by local restaurants. This event usually sells out quickly, so organizers advise music lovers not to fiddle around! Tickets are available at the City of Santee’s website or at Santee’s City Hall.



The 2015 Julian Music Festival will celebrate its 46th anniversary on September 19 with a diverse line-up of musical acts and a new event beneficiary, the California Wolf Center in Julian.

The festival will take place from 1 to 6:30 p.m on the grounds of the Menghini Winery (1150 Julian Orchards Dr.) in Julian. This year’s festival will feature a varied collection and blends of musical genres, including Latin jazz, adult contemporary, alternative folk, Celtic and more.

For tickets and details, visit


Poway OnStage, the foundation that supports the Poway Performing Arts Center, will present Blue Sky Riders in an acoustic concert to open the center’s Silver Anniversary season.  The show will take stage on Sunday, September 20th at 7 p.m.

Featuring Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter Kenny Loggins and Nashville songsmiths Gary Burr and Georgia Middleman, Blue Sky Riders combine harmonies with elements of country, pop, and Americana.  For tickets and details on the full season lineup, you can go to


As part of Julian’s Apple Days Celebration, a two-day Apple Days Festival will be held September 26 & 27 at Menghini Winery featuring apple displays, music and dancing, an antique tractor display, children’s games and activities, gold panning demonstrations, a beer and wine garden, food and merchandise vendors, contests, and, of course, apple pie. The event runs from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm, both Saturday and Sunday.  The coronation for Mr. and Mrs. Apple Days will be held on Saturday.

The event began back in 1909 with apple ranchers celebrating their harvests. Back then the event included an all-night dance at the Town Hall and trick riding by local horsemen, drawing about 2,000 people. Today,  Julian celebrates its apple season for a full two months, drawing tens of thousands of people with the festivities culminating in the Apple Days Celebration September 26 and 27.  The same weekend you can also enjoy an Oktoberfest in downtown Julian and melodrama performances by Julian’s Doves and Desperados, as well as the Laguna Mountain Rendezvous with historical reenactors just down the hill in Santa Ysabel.  For details you can check visit


Oktoberfest has been a tradition in La Mesa’s downtown village since 1942, drawing over 100,000 attendees in recent years.  This year, the La Mesa Village Merchants Association hosts the Oktoberfest on Saturday and Sunday, October 2 and 3 from 12 noon to 10 p.m. This year's festival goes back to its roots with a focus on German heritage.  The Bavarian Beergarden Band, Alpine Gemutlichkeit Dancers, and the El Cajon German Band highlight the entertainment.  There will be German food including bratwurst and real German beer served up at two beer gardens, plus vendors.  For details you can visit www.


The German American Societies of San Diego will host their traditional Oktoberfest  the first two weekends in October on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays (October 2 - 4 and October 9 – 11 in El CajonYou can enjoy authentic German food and BBQ, a variety of German pastries, and authentic German music. There are also vendor and craft booths as well as a Kids Fun Zone. This annual celebration will be located at the German American Societies’ headquarters at 1017 South Mollison Avenue in El Cajon. For more information, visit


La Mesa’s Chamber of Commerce will present FallFest, a new festival to be held October 16 and 17 at Grossmont Center in La Mesa.  This event features country and rock ‘n’ roll musical artists including Brent Payne, winner of the best country song of the year award at the Hollywood Music Awards in 2012 for his hit single, Now and Forever. He’s nominated again this year for his song, Midnight Prayer.  A beer garden, food and more are also part of the fall festivities at this event.

For more information on FallFest visit

That’s all for this week! You can find details on all of these events and more on our Calendar and in our Festivals and Events section online at

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   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.



Destination East County 9-11-15


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