By Miriam Raftery
September 27, 2019 (San Diego’s East County) -- This week’s Destination East County features a bounty of fall festivities, including the season finale of El Cajon’s concert series, Chaldean-American Festival in El Cajon, a Johnny Appleseed celebration in Santa Ysabel, concerts by Grammy Award and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame stars at the Magnolia in El Cajon, and the start of Fall at the Farm harvest activities near Julian as well as a chamber music season launch at Cuyamaca College.
Plus, we have a preview of coming events including Oktoberfests in La Mesa and El Cajon, our own Fall Fiesta in Jamul, the Ramona Air Fair, Kids Care Fest in Lemon Grove, the Jacumba Fall Festival, Julian Autumn Jubilee, Ms. Smarty Plants Goes Batty at the Garden, a Fair Trade gift faire in La Mesa, vocalist Lillian Palmer at the Mission Trails Church, the Borrego Days Desert Festival and parade, Pints 4 the Park in Borrego Springs, a Green Homes Tour, HauntFest and Trunk or Treat in downtown El Cajon.
So scroll down for all of these events and many more!
BEATLES MUSIC FINALE FOR EL CAJON’S CONCERT SEASON SEPT. 27
El Cajon’s Dinner and a Concert series holds its season finale on Friday, September 27th at 6:30 with Back to the Garden’s Beatles Show. You can bring a picnic dinner, or dine early at one of the many restaurants nearby before rocking out to the sounds of the ‘60s.
For full details, visit DowntownElCajon.com.
CHALDEAN-AMERICAN FESTIVAL SEPT. 28-29 IN EL CAJON
The Chaldean community invites you, your family and friends to the 8th annual Chaldean-American festival September 28-29 from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. at Hillsdale Middle School in El Cajon.
This event features a fun weekend of cultural foods, music, dancing, carnival games, rides, inflatables, craft and business booths, raffles and other entertainment.
JOHNNY APPLESEED CELEBRATION SEPT. 28-29
Fort Cross Old Timey Adventures in Santa Ysabel, just outside of Julian, will host an apple days event complete with cider pressing and a Johnny Appleseed celebration on Saturday, September 28th and Sunday, Sept. 29th from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. There are also regular weekend activities later on, from 2 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Reservations are required for this family-fun event, which will include cider pressing and three-man team of apple bobbing on a string, and a country hoedown with jug band participation.. Plus learn about John Chapman, known as Johnny Appleseed.
Regular weekend activities later in the day include a petting zoo, reptile show, archery, tomahawk throwing, a slingshot range and a ghost town to explore.
There is a fee for the activities, and reservations are required for the Johnny Appleseed celebration. You can reserve space and get more information at fortcross.com.
MAGNOLIA CENTER CONCERTS
The Magnolia Center, formerly known as the East County Performing Arts Center, has a full season of stellar entertainment lined up. Concerts coming up soon include the Roy Orbison and Buddy Holly Rock ‘n’ Roll Dream tour featuring holographs of the late great stars on October 1st, famed singer Patti LaBelle on October 3rd, rock and roll hall of famer Dave Mason, a founding member of Traffic and Buffalo Springfield’s Richie Furay on October 9th, and on October 10th, triple Grammy award winner Bruce Hornsby, who formerly performed with the Grateful Dead, and his band,the Noisemakers.
For tickets and the full lineup, visit www.MagnoliaSanDiego.com or the Magnolia on Facebook.
CHAMBER MUSIC SERIES AT CUYAMACA COLLEGE SEPT. 28-JUNE 4
The ECHO Chamber Music Series hosts 14 concerts at Cuyamaca College’s Performing Arts Theatre this season, featuring classical music performers such as Jason Vieaux, Bach Collegium, the Dalí Quartet, members of the San Diego Symphony and other internationally acclaimed musicians who have performed across the globe.
The season opens September 28th and runs through June 4th. Find a full list of performers and ticket information at EchoChamberMusic.org.
FALL AT THE FARM SEPT. 21-OCT. 31
Julian Farm and Orchard invites you to Fall at the Farm, each weekend now through October 31st from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
The fun includes hayrides, apple cider pressing, a pumpkin patch, farm animals, berry and apple picking. You can also see an apple pie making demonstration, or try your hand at archery, candle-dipping or axe-throwing. There’s also a seasonal farm store featuring country wares and more.
You can find more information at JulianMiningCompany.com and click on the U-pick link to find activities at Julian Farm and Orchard, under the same family ownership.
EL CAJON OKTOBERFEST SEPT. 27-OCT. 6
The German-American Club of San Diego hosts its annual Oktoberfest at its headquarters in El Cajon on the last weekend of September and the first weekend of October. The hours are 4 to 10 p.m. on Fridays, 12 noon to 10 p.m. on Saturdays and noon to 9 p.m on Sundays.
The celebration begins with an opening day parade and keg tap, plus crowning of this year’s Oktoberfest Queen on Friday night, September 27th at 6:30 p.m. An authentic band is flown in from Germany for the event, which also features German foods such as bratwurst, ox on a spit, sauerkraut, Bavarian pastries and plenty of German beers.
Find full details at germanclubsandiego.org/.
LA MESA OKTOBERFEST OCTOBER 4-5
You’re invited to don your Lederhosen for the 46th annual La Mesa Oktoberfest, which is gearing up for over 100,000 revelers celebrating German traditions October 4th through 6th.
La Mesa’s Oktoberfest features 3 bier halls including a new Palm Avenue location with flowing pints of craft beer and Oktoberfest games. You can bring your dancing shoes to step lively to traditional German music, non-traditional entertainment, and the chicken dance.
Guests can also savor authentic food, festivities and family-friendly activities such as a German Kinder Karneval complete with Ferris wheel, rock-climbing wall, inflatable slides, interactive art, brat-eating competitions, scavenger hunts and the ever-popular wiener-dachshund races. There will also be over 200 vendor booths with everything from handmade crafts to holiday-themed décor.
For more information, you can visit www.LaMesaOktoberfest.org.
FALL FIESTA OCT. 5 IN JAMUL
East County Magazine and our East County Dining Club invite you to party hearty at our very own Fall Fiesta on Saturday, October 5th from 5 p.m to 8 p.m. at D&S farms, home to Granite Lion Cellars winery in Jamul.
La Loteria de Jamul will provide a catered dinner including chicken poblano or fish in jalapeño/pineapple sauce, plus apple salad, ceviche and more.
We’ll also have live Spanish music by Sergio Tala ranging from flamenco to rhumba, plus wine tasting and prize drawings.
Tickets are available at www.EastCountyMagazine.org/Fall Fiesta, with earlybird discounts for reservations made by September 30th for the October 5th event.
Proceeds benefit East County Media, a nonprofit which supports East County Magazine and the East County Wildfire and Emergency Alerts.
RAMONA AIR FAIR AND FLY-IN OCT. 5
The 24th annual Ramona Air Fair & Fly-in is coming to the County’s Ramona Airport (2926 Montecito Road, Ramona) on Saturday, October 5th from from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
This year’s event will feature displays of airplanes, helicopters, tours of CAL FIRE and U.S. Forest Service firefighting aircraft, rides on tethered hot air balloons and with experimental aircraft (free).
The Ramona Air Fair will also feature meet and greets with the Red Eagles Formation Team, Ramona Rattlers, March Aero Club, and Air Group One. Tours of the airport’s other facilities, including the Classic Rotors Museum and the control tower will be available.
Visitors can also enjoy a classic car show, meet Smokey Bear, relax in the Hangar 24 beer garden, enjoy food from food trucks, and listen to live music performed by country artist “Whiskey Ridge.” An all-day Kids’ Zone will include face painting, balloon making, and piñatas.
KIDS CARE FEST OCTOBER 5 IN LEMON GROVE
Grossmont Healthcare District invites you to Kids Care Fest on Saturday, October 5 from 9 a.m. to 12 noon at the Lemon Grove Recreation Center in Lemon Grove.
The event includes healthy fun for the kid in all of us including fun and active games, plus dental and vision screenings, flu shots and more. For details, visit www.KidsCareFest.org.
JACUMBA FALL FESTIVAL OCT. 5
The Jacumba Community Service District invites you to its Fall Festival on Saturday, Oct. 5th from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Jacumba Community Park (44653 Old Highway 80).
The event features live music, food provided by Jay’s Southern Café, raffles for adults, youths and children, plus vendor booths. All proceeds benefit the community park.
JULIAN AUTUMN JUBILEE EACH WEEKEND IN OCTOBER
Fort Cross Old Timey Adventures will host its Julian Autumn Jubilee each weekend in October. Fort Cross is located on Highway 78 in Santa Ysabel, just outside of Julian. Hours are Saturdays 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sundays 11:15 a.m. to 5 p.m.
All are welcome to enjoy visiting the U-pick pumpkin patch. Additional activities are available for a fee and packages are available. Options include cider pressing and tasting, mini pumpkin painting, a petting zoo, reptile show, hayride, hoedown, candle making, tire swings, archery, tomahawk throwing, and paint balls at the Ghost Town slingshot range.
Guests are welcome to bring a picnic lunch to enjoy with views of Volcan Mountain. You can find more information at www.fortcross.com .
MS.SMARTY-PLANTS GOES BATTY OCT. 12 AT THE GARDEN
Are you ready to have fun and learn about creatures whooo go BOOOO in the night? The Water Conservation Garden at Cuyamaca College invites you to don your Halloween costume for “Ms. Smarty-Plants Goes Batty” on October 12 from 5:30 to 8 p.m.
This event features a Ms. Smarty-Plants™ Show, Trick or Treat Trails, and Creepy Critter Encounters for a SPOOKtcular good time. For tickets visit www.TheGarden.org.
LA MESA FAIR TRADE’S GIFT FAIRE OCT. 13
Just in time for holiday shopping, La Mesa Fair Trade will host a Gift Faire on Sunday, Oct. 13th from 8 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at St. Martin of Tours Parish Hall in La Mesa.
The event features sales of hand-crafted fair trade gifts, home décor, clothing and jewelry through a variety of vendors. There will also be fair trade coffee, teas, ice cream and chocolate to savor.
The goal of fair trade is to assure fair wages to create brighter futures for families in developing countries.
For more information, you can call (619) 466-3241.
VOCALIST LILLIAN PALMER AT MISSION TRAILS CHURCH OCT. 13
Vocalist Lillian Palmer has performed in concert at performing arts centers across our region and at the Old Globe Theatre. Next up, she’ll be singing at Mission Trails Church, located at 4880 Zion Ave. in San Diego near Kaiser Hospital, on Oct. 13th from 3-4 p.m.
She began her vocal study at age 15 beginning with classical music. She then moved on to musical theater and discovered her passion for American popular music. Now she sings jazz, swing, Latin and music from the "Great American Songbook.”
Her concert is part of the Second Sundays concert series held each month at the Mission Trails Church.
BORREGO DAYS DESERT FESTIVAL OCT. 18-20
The 52nd annual Borrego Days Desert Festival in Borrego Springs will be held Friday through Sunday, October 18th through 20th. This year’s theme is “Bloom in Borrego.”
The Borrego Days Parade will roll out at 10 a.m. on Saturday, October 18th, including a multi-plane flyover before the parade begins. The parade itself features floats, Western trick-riding cowboys and their horses, marching bands, plus classic cars with the Borrego Springs queens and princesses.
At Christmas Circle, you can visit booths offering artwork, handmake goods, crafts and foods. There’s also a carnival fun zone for kids and for adults, a beer garden and live music to dance into the sunset and under the clear starry night sky.
For more information, visit https://borregodays.com/.
PINTS 4 THE PARK OCT. 19 IN BORREGO SPRINGS
Anza Borrego Foundation is kicking off the fall season with its fourth annual “Pints 4 the Park” as part of Borrego Days on Saturday, Oct. 19 from 5 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
The event includes tastes from microbreweries, live music and food from Carmelita’s Mexican Grill and Cantina, all to benefit the foundation which supports California’s largest state park, the Anza Borrego Desert State Park.
The event will be held at the Mall in Borrego Springs and tickets are available at www.TheABF.org.
GREEN HOMES TOUR OCT. 19-20
The San Diego Green Building Council, a nonprofit organization promoting sustainable building and community practices in San Diego, will host its 10th annual Green Homes Tour on Saturday, Oct. 19 and Sunday, Oct. 20.
The tour has been expanded this year to two full days, showcasing a diverse collection of the most innovative eco-friendly homes in our region. Saturday will include homes in central San Diego, East County and South County. Sunday will focus on homes in North County.
Find more information at sdgreenhomestour.org/.
HAUNTFEST OCT. 25 IN EL CAJON
HauntFest in downtown El Cajon is expected to draw around 40,000 visitors in Friday, October 25th from 5 to 10 p.m.
The 8th annual HauntFest includes live music on two stages, costume contests on the Main Street stage, expanded carnival rides and games, candy challenge activities, a Kidz Zone, face painting, performances by TNT dancers and the Arts in Motion Crew and Junior Crew. There’s also the St. Madeleine Sophie’s Center Pumpkin Patch, craft and game booths, an LED rock wall, inflatable jumps for kids, showings of the first two Harry Potter movies and more.
Find more haunting details at www.HauntFest.org.
TRUNK OR TREAT OCT. 30 IN EL CAJON
El Cajon’s Classic Cruise Nights ends its season October 30th with Trunk or Treat, including music, treats and a full street closure along Main Street in the heart of downtown El Cajon. For more information, you can visit downtownelcajon.com.
That’s all for this week! You can find details on all of these events and more in the calendar and events section at our website, www.EastCountyMagazine.org.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org. Destination East County is the most-read feature on our website.
We’ll be back soon with more festivals, events and attractions in San Diego’s East County!