From trains to creativity to hiking and more, this San Diego weekend is packed with awesome family-friendly events. Head to Liberty Station for KidsFest. Visit the San Diego Model Railroad Museum for “Thomas and Friends” day. Channel your inner westerner for Wild Wild West in Carlsbad. Or go south for Kids in the Kitchen at Olivewood Gardens. Have a great weekend!


San Diego

“Thomas and Friends” Family Day
It’s totally Thomas at the San Diego Model Railroad Museum. Come in character whether it’s a costume, shirt, or pajama we are having a Thomas Train Bash! Jump, wiggle and giggle to a musical performance from Clint Perry and the Boo Hoo Crew, create your own Thomas & Friends puzzles and masks, or be the director of the railway. Sat., 11 a.m. – 3 p.m., San Diego Model Railroad Museum, $8/adults, free/kids 5 and under; All ages. Event details.

Tierra Fest
Enjoy arts and crafts and browse beautiful handmade items by local artisans. Kids can have fun in games and activities in the kids zone. Come early for the Patriot Parade at 10 a.m. and stay for the barbecue dinner from 4 – 9 p.m. and a huge fireworks display until dusk. Sat., 9 a.m. – 3 p.m., Tierrasanta Town Center, Free. All ages. Event details.

KidsFest San Diego is a celebration of the imagination with unique, creative and interactive activities for kids. Bring the kiddos out to build, create, paint, plant, play, dance and much more. Ticket prices are all-inclusive, which means everything inside is included and guaranteed to be fun (including a reusable canvas tote-bag filled with swag). Sat. and Sun., 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. NTC Ingram Plaza, $15/person; $25/family 4-pack; Free/kids 2 and under. All ages. Event details.

Explore Mission Trails Day
Explore Mission Trails Day will take place in several locations in the spectacular nearly 7,000-acre Mission Trails Regional Park. Free activities for all ages and skill levels mainly take place including guided family nature hikes, mountain biking demos, pony rides, live reptile and raptor encounters, dozens of hands-on Discovery Stations, and a climbing wall for children. Sat., 9 a.m. – 2 p.m., Mission Trails Regional Park, Free. All ages. Event details.

North County

Wild Wild West
Dust off your cowboy hat and boots for this annual even featuring live music, a mechanical bull ride, a salsa contest, pony rides and more. Sat., 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. Carrillo Ranch Historic Park, $6/activity bands; $3/salsa tasting. All ages. Event details.

Community Band Festival
This annual festival salutes the Armed Forces with a weekend of patriotic tunes, military and concert bands, music vendors, steam locomotive train rides, and more. Sat. and Sun., 10 a.m. – 8 p.m., Old Poway Park, Free. All ages. Event details.

Escondido Downtown Street Fair
Bring the family to downtown Escondido for hundreds of vendors, multicultural cuisine and family entertainment. Sun., 10 a.m. – 6 p.m., Downtown Escondido, Free. All ages. Event details.

South Bay

Kids in the Kitchen
Little green thumbs will love this mix of gardening and cooking. They’ll enjoy cooking demos, healthy recipes and activities in the Olivewood Garden Children’s Garden. Sat., 1 p.m. – 3 p.m., Olivewood Gardens, Free. Ages 6 – 13. Event details.

Draw Me Into Your Story: Drawing and Narration Workshop

Food, art, and stories! Learn new drawing skills to illustrate a favorite food memory. Drawings will be made on decals that will be transferred to beautiful plates that will be displayed on Mass Creativity Day at The New Children’s Museum. Fri. 1 p.m. – 3 p.m., South Bay Community Services, Free. All ages. Event details.

What are you doing this weekend? Tell us in the comments! 

– Leah R. Singer

Photo courtesy of The Art Pantry