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14 Things to Do in San Diego This Weekend: Aug. 31–Sept. 3

Enjoy Brazilian festival fun at NTC Park, make wine the old-fashioned way in Julian, and immerse yourself in urban art at ENVZN 2023
Courtesy of Crazy Crow Trading Post

August 29–October 1

The Untitled Unauthorized Hunter S. Thompson Musical

America’s preeminent gonzo journalist, Hunter S. Thompson, was a man who covered everything and everyone—from the Hell’s Angels to former president Richard Nixon—all in the name of counterculture, inspiring generations of writers to pursue their passions by any means necessary. He’s being celebrated with a musical by Joe Iconis, debuting this weekend at the Sheila and Hughes Potiker Theatre. Thompson’s story (complete with his bucket hats, aviator shades, and larger-than-life personality) unfolds on the stage Tuesday through Sunday until October 1. | 2910 La Jolla Village Drive, La Jolla

August 31

Bourbon and Blues

Town & Country Resort’s Arlo hosts a special pairing dinner for bourbon lovers this Thursday from 6 to 9 p.m. Jam to blues music from San Diego’s Whitney Shay Band as you enjoy a delectable menu from chef Josh Mouzakes—expect wagyu steak, seabass, braised pork, and country-baked chicken, plus a selection of Elijah Craig Bourbon with each dish. Tickets for the event are $120 per person. | 500 Hotel Circle North, Mission Valley

Remember When Rock Was Young

Remember When Rock Was Young

Courtesy of Craig A. Meyer

September 1

Remember When Rock Was Young

Elton John may have played his last tour, but that doesn’t mean you have to say “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road” just yet. Actor and singer Craig A. Meyer does a spot-on impression of the British singer as he and The Rocket Band perform Elton’s greatest hits, including“Benny and the Jets” and “Crocodile Rock,” at the Epstein Family Amphitheater at UCSD. In addition to belting out his timeless ballads, Meyer captures the rock legend’s charismatic stage presence and extravagant costumes. | 9500 Gilman Drive, La Jolla

Music at the Marston

Save Our Heritage Organisation (SOHO) hosts three outdoor concerts at Marston House Gardens to raise money for the preservation of the city’s most historic and unique sites. The series kicks off with a performance from musicians Annie Bethancourt, Suzanne Panza, and Lisa Sanders this Friday from 3 to 5 p.m. After a successful run last year, SOHO will once again highlight women singer-songwriters, with folk, country, and blues players set to take the stage through Sept. 29. Attendees are encouraged to bring lawn chairs, blankets, snacks, and drinks, though light refreshments will be available for purchase. Tickets for the concert are $10 for SOHO members and $12 for non-members. | 3525 Seventh Avenue, Balboa Park

Barona Powwow

Barona Powwow

Courtesy of Crazy Crow Trading Post

September 1–3

Barona Powwow

The Barona Band of Mission Indians’ 51st annual powwow is a three-day indigenous cultural celebration at Barona Sports Park. Native American dancers, musicians, and other performers from all over the country show off their skills in a plethora of contests and categories. The weekend’s activities begin Friday night with gourd dancing and regalia-clad performers, and spectators can enjoy hand-drum contests; singing and music; Native American food, arts, and crafts; and handmade jewelry throughout the weekend. | 1095 Barona Road, Lakeside

September 1–October 8


Made famous on Broadway six years before Bob Fosse’s 1972 big-screen adaptation starring Liza Minelli, Cabaret is the latest production at The Old Globe. Beginning its run this Friday, the musical is set in 1931 Berlin as disturbing and destructive Nazi fervor begins to close in. The plot follows nightclub singer Sally Bowles as she navigates the changing times and struggles with the weight of her performances and romantic relationships. Directed by Josh Rhodes, Cabaret commands the stage through October 8. | 1363 Old Globe Way, Balboa Park

Julian Grape Stomp

Julian Grape Stomp

Courtesy of Visit Julian

September 2

Julian Grape Stomp Festa

2023’s Julian Grape Stomp Festa marks the 26th anniversary of the winemaking event that invites attendees to take part in squishing grapes with their feet. From 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Menghini Winery, ticketholders will dance on grapes with delight and enjoy food, shopping, music, cornhole, and a Lucille Ball look-alike contest (which pays tribute to the iconic I Love Lucy grape-stomping episode) with a prize of $100. General admission tickets are $25 and come with a wine glass and one tasting, plus stomping and entertainment, with additional tastings costing $1 each. Children and young adults ages 6 through 20 are $7. | 1150 Julian Orchards Drive, Julian

Rollin’ with the Homies

Organized by San Diego canned-cocktail brand Kové to celebrate the release of its new dragon fruit margarita flavor, Saturday’s summertime event at Mavericks Beach Club gives attendees the chance to enjoy an onsite roller rink. From 12 to 8 p.m., the event will feature funk and disco vinyl DJs and live screen printing from Sunsets & Brain Waves to go along with the sweet skating. Kové’s new flavor, along with a handful of other flavors, will be on draft, and discounted cans of Kové and five-can buckets are available for $7 and $30 respectively. | 860 Garnet Avenue, Pacific Beach

The Alchemist in His Elements

The Alchemist in His Elements by Debby and Larry Kline is on view at ENVSN Urban Art Takeover on Sept. 2. 

Courtesy of Vanguard Culture

ENVZN Urban Art Takeover

The Commercial Street block between The Soap Factory and The War House in Logan Heights will transform into an immersive visual and performing arts space during ENVSN Urban Art Takeover. Various warehouses and industrial spaces will become sites for virtual reality exploration, print-making and screen printing, live music, and exhibitions by several artists from the US-Mexico border region. Additional highlights from ENVZN include multimedia art installations, live dance shows, puppetry and theater on loading docks, and a storage lot fashion show. | Commercial Street, Logan Heights

Brazilian Day Festival

Liberty Station’s NTC Park hosts the Brazilian Day Festival, offering entertainment, merchandise vendors, beer gardens, a kids’ area, and more. Attendees can peruse Brazilian beer, wine, and food while enjoying music and dance performances from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.. $20 general admission passes come with a free book of discounts to use at vendor booths, while VIP tickets are $100 and include four premium drinks and VIP bar access, plus a free Feijoada lunch and exclusive lounge access. Kids 12 and under can enter for free. | 2455 Cushing Road, Point Loma

John Halaka

John Halaka’s Ghosts of Presence-Bodies of Absence. Memory of Memories #7 is on view through Feb. 18, 2024, as part of his exhibition at Oceanside Museum of Art.

Courtesy of Oceanside Museum of Art

September 2–February 18

Listening to the Unheard / Drawing the Unseen: Meditations on Presence and Absence in Native Lands

San Diego visual artist John Halaka’s exhibition will be on display through February 18, 2024, at the Oceanside Museum of Art. The work is a combination of two projects that share a deep focus on indigenous survival and forced displacement. Halaka’s drawings honor Native American, Black, and Palestinian artists and activists, making visible centuries of repression and cultural erasure whilst symbolically reuniting displaced populations with their native land. Halaka’s artistic style includes overlapping drawings and photographs to depict the layered experiences of survivors and victims of settler-colonialism. | 704 Pier View Way, Oceanside

September 3

Tormenta Rey

This free Sunday concert from Friends of the Encinitas Library features music from blues band Tormenta Rey. The group is helmed by lead singer Stephen El Rey, whose hauntingly intimate performances draw inspiration from old-school Sun Records crooners like Roy Orbison and Johnny Cash. | 540 Cornish Drive, Encinitas

Jodeci & SWV

Celebrate summer’s end with an R&B block party featuring classic tunes from ’90s musical legends Jodeci and SWV at the North Island Credit Union Amphitheatre this Sunday. Both groups defined the tail end of the 20th century with their soulful, sensual songs—Jodeci’s “Forever My Lady” and SWV’s “It’s About Time” are milestone R&B projects that have influenced several modern-day musicians. Ticket prices start at $25. | 2050 Entertainment Circle, Chula Vista


Marking 30 years since the release of their Blue Album debut, Weezer continues their “Indie Rock Road Trip” tour with a stop at Gallagher Square this Sunday. In recent years, the nerd-rock icons have begun to venture into different genres, including hard rock and chamber pop, and recorded their own version of iconic songs like Toto’s “Africa” and Metallica’s “Enter Sandman.” Rock group Spoon and garage-punk band White Reaper open this show beginning at 7:15 p.m. | 840 K Street, Downtown

By Ryan Hardison

Ryan Hardison is a freelance arts and entertainment writer and recent graduate of San Diego State. When he's not staring at his laptop, he's likely eating an adobada burrito or getting sunburnt at the beach.

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