DESTINATION EAST COUNTY: TOP FESTIVALS AND EVENTS JUNE 1 - JULY 4

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By Miriam Raftery

May 31, 2018 (San Diego's East County) -- This week’s Destination East County includes the Blue Breeze Band in El Cajon, La Mesa’s Flag Day parade, Our Secret Garden Party at St. Madeleine Sophie’s Center, and the Lego Ninjago movie playing at Stelzer County Park in Lakeside.

Plus we’ll have a preview of coming attractions including Lavender Day at Summers Past Farms, Fido Fest in Santee, a firefighters pancake breakfast in La Mesa, the San Diego Concert Band in La Mesa, a Taste of La Mesa, Art in the Park in La Mesa’s McArthur Park, Santee’s summer concerts, the Jamul Wine Tasting Festival, a historic quilt show, Santee Salutes and Julian’s Fourth of July parade.

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

BLUE BREEZE BAND IN EL CAJON

El Cajon’s Dinner and a Concert series continues on Friday, June 1 with a performance by Blue Breeze Band playing dance and soul music.  The program runs from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Prescott Promenade Park.

Guests can bring a picnic to eat on the lawn or arrive early to dine at one of the local restaurants downtown. For details visit www.DowntownElCajon.com.

LA MESA FLAG DAY PARADE JUNE 2

The City of La Mesa will present a Salute to Old Glory at its annual Flag Day parade on Saturday, June 2nd down La Mesa Boulevard in the La Mesa downtown village.

Pre-parade entertainment includes performances by local middle school bands at 9 a.m., with the parade rolling out at 10 a.m.  This year’s grand marshal will local historian and author Jim Newland.

There will also be a free ice cream social after the parade at La Mesa Blvd. and 4th Street to round out a day of patriotic celebration.

OUR SECRET GARDEN PARTY JUNE 2 AT ST. MADELEINE SOPHIE’S CENTER

St. Madeleine Sophie’s Center (2119 East Madison Ave.) will hold its inaugural Our Secret Garden Party on Saturday, June 2 from 4:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the facility’s beautiful garden and new aquatics center in in El Cajon.

Guests can enjoy wine and beer tasting, catered foods, an arts auction, live entertainment, boutique vendors, visits from fairies in fabulous costumes, sales of student-made artwork and plants from the garden.

Proceeds benefit St. Madeleine Sophie’s Center, a nonprofit that educates and empowers people with developmental disabilities to realize their full potential.

For tickets, visit www.STMSC.org.

NOW PLAYING: MOVIES IN THE PARKS

County Parks and Recreation will present 151 movies in parks across our region all summer long.  Showings start 15 minutes after sunset and movies are rated G through PG-13.

Movies playing at East County locations early in the season include the Lego Ninjago Movie at Stelzer Park in Lakeside (11470 Wildcat Canyon Rd.) on June 2nd.

NOW FOR A PREVIEW OF COMING ATTRACTIONS…

LAVENDER DAY JUNE 9 AT SUMMERS PAST FARMS

Summers Past Farms in Flinn Springs invites you to Lavender Day on Saturday, June 9th from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. to celebrate the fragrance and beauty of lavender.

There will also be an antique and craft fair with over 40 fine craftsmen and expert artisans. You can also shop in the barn for lavender gifts such as lavender soaps, candles and salves, bring home containers of live lavender plants and picnic while listening to talented musician Jim Earp.

Guests are encouraged to wear lavender.  For details, visit www.SummersPastFarms.com.

FIDO FEST JUNE 9 IN SANTEE

The city of Santee is going to the dogs – and invites you to Fido Fest on June 9th from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. The event will be held at Town Center Community Park East (550 Park Center Drive) in Santee.

Fido Fest will feature dog adoptions, exhibitors, giveaways, demonstrations, live entertainment and a silent auction to benefit Dogs on Deployment, which helps deployed military members find volunteers to board their pets while they are away.

There will also be services for pet owners including vaccinations, microchipping, dog licensing, heartworm and flea preventative measures.

Dogs attending must be well behaved and on leashes, current on vaccinations, and ready to have a good time with lots of tail-wagging fun. 

JULIAN DANCE AND BACK COUNTRY BBQ JUNE 9

The Julian Dance and Back Country BBQ will be held June 9th from 12 noon to 9 p.m. at the Menghini Winery in Julian. This outdoor event in its 12th year is the brain-child of the Sons of the American Legion to raise funds for Veterans, kids, local schools and other charitable organizations in the community.

The dance features country music and dancing on a huge floor and stage.  A delicious barbecue is cooked on-site on an open oak flame. There are also separate events for kids.

All in a beautiful mountain setting, the “Dance” is a throwback to a simpler time with twinkly lights and bonfires back-dropped by dark mountain skies. It’s an event where locals and guests from down the hill get together for a great time and raise funds for a great cause.

For tickets and details, visit http://juliandance.org/.

ART IN THE PARK JUNE 10 IN LA MESA

Foothills Art Association invites everyone to enjoy “Art in the Park”,  an art show and sale at MacArthur Park (4975 Memorial Drive) in La Mesa on Sunday, June 10 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.   

Many local artists will be displaying and selling their artwork during a festive day in La Mesa’s newest community park. See the art, listen to the music, bring a picnic lunch, and enjoy a family day at MacArthur Park on the site of a former golf course now dedicated as a public park.

FIREFIGHTERS PANCAKE BREAKFAST JUNE 10 IN LA MESA

On Sunday, June 10, Heartland firefighters of La Mesa will present a pancake breakfast fundraiser at La Mesa Fire Station 11 (8034 Allison Avenue). The event, suitable for all ages, will be held from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Funds from the event will be donated to benefit the Heartland Fire Explorers Program. Tickets can be purchased at the door the day of the breakfast.

This year’s event will feature emergency preparedness training.

SAN DIEGO CONCERT BAND JUNE 10 IN LA MESA

The San Diego Concert Band has announced its 29th annual Spring Celebration concert and summer concert series. The next East County location will be June 10th at 6 p.m. at Harry Griffen Park in La Mesa.

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

TASTE OF LA MESA JUNE 11

The La Mesa Chamber of Commerce will host the 10th annual “Taste of La Mesa” on Monday, June 11th from 5 to 8 p.m. at the La Mesa Community Center.  The event features samples of foods, wines, and beers from dozens of local restaurants, wineries and breweries.

Guests can also mix and mingle with local businesses who have display tables for attendees to visit.

For tickets and details, you can visit www.LaMesaChamber.com.

SANTEE’S SUMMER CONCERT SERIES OPENS JUNE 14

Santee’s summer concert series opens June 14th and continues on Thursday nights all summer long at Town Center Community Park East (550 Park Center Drive) in Santee.

Most concerts run from 6:30 to 8 p.m., but several special events start earlier.

The June lineup includes the Cadillacs on June 14 playing vintage classic rock and roll plus a car show starting at 6:30. On June 21st, the fun starts at 5:30 with country night, and on June 28th, Upstream will perform reggae music starting at 6:30 p.m.

For a full lineup of concerts and other Santee happenings, visit the City of Santee’s website calendar (http://cityofsanteeca.gov/home/showdocument?id=15579).

JAMUL WINE TASTING FESTIVAL JUNE 30

The Jamul Wine Tasting Festival on June 30th from 6 to 9 p.m. will feature wines from many top local wineries as well as foods prepared by local chefs and restaurants. This year, the event will take place at the grove at D&S Farms, home to Granite Lion Cellars winery. There will also be live music, a silent auction, and presentations by wine industry professionals. 

All proceeds will benefit Jamul’s St. Pius X parish improvements and youth programs. For tickets, visit St.PiusXJamul.com. This event is limited to those age 21 and up.

JULIAN QUILT SHOW JUNE 29-JULY 4

For 27 years, the Julian Woman’s Club Heritage Quilt has showcased the talents of local quilters. This year’s show will feature newly made and heirloom quilts on display. The show runs from June 29th to July 4th in the Julian Town Hall upstairs from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

You can vote for your favorite quilt, purchase quilts and hear from quilting expert and author Eleanor Burns. 

SANTEE SALUTES: PATRIOT FUN AND FIREWORKS JULY 4

The City of Santee will present Santee Salutes, featuring all-American fun and fireworks on July 4th from 2:30 to 10 p.m.  The festivities take place at Town Center Community Park East (550 Park Center Drive) in Santee.

Activities include a kids’ fun zone, live music by the 80z All Stars, a patriotic ceremony at 6 p.m. and a spectacular fireworks display at 9 p.m.  There will also be food available for purchase.  A shuttle service will be provided from the Costco parking lot in Santee.

JULIAN’S STAR-SPANGLED JULY 4TH PARADE

This year Julian’s 4th of July parade has the theme, “Julian’s Star Spangled 4th”, a salute to the men and women who made our country great, both domestically and militarily.

For more than twenty years, Julian residents, their friends and parade lovers from all over have lined up at on the town’s main street to wave their flags, cheer the marching bands, salute the Marine Color Guard, and carry a giant American Flag down the thoroughfare. Bands include a bag pipe band, Dixieland jazz, mariachi music and the Gold Drum and Bugle Corps.

Antique cars, vintage tractors, belly dancers, World War 2 Submariners, and several comedy entries will also appear. The parade kicks off at noon down Julian’s Main Street.  But be sure to arrive early, since Main Street shuts down starting at 9 a.m.

Pre-parade events include two flyovers by vintage aircraft at 10 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. There will also be gunfights with Julian Doves and Desperados and patriotic music at 10 a.m. and 11:45 a.m. in front of the old brick bank on Main Street.  After the parade, there will be a barbecue, music and dancing at the American Legion and a historic quilt show by the Julian Woman’s Club. For more information, check www.VisitJulian.com.

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!