photo: Poway OnStage/Stunt Dog Experience

An epic stunt dog show paired with a puppy adoption event, Dia de los Muertos celebrations in Escondido and Old Town, Thomas the Train and The Grinch have arrived––this weekend is bursting at the seams with fun events for families. Read on for where to zoom.


Dia de los Muertos Festival at California Center for the Arts Escondido
Celebrate with the community at California Center for the Arts Escondido’s annual three-day Día de los Muertos Festival. Guests are invited to participate by making altars in honor of their loved ones in a special area created by artist Eloy Tarcisio. Enjoy music, art, ballet folklórico, face painting, arts and crafts and more. There will also be a parade, the movie “Coco,” handmade goods and food trucks. Don’t miss the live performance by Las Cafeteras. RSVP here. Fri.-Sun. Event details.

Tamale Festival
The Escondido Tamale Festival is a celebration of Tamales and all the great Latin foods that have become iconic staples of California’s culture. It’s a look back at the history of the Spanish and Mexican settlers who have influenced and contributed so much to our multicultural community and a show of appreciation for the traditions which have so positively affected Escondido. Mark your calendars and come to Escondido in North San Diego County for some traditional fun and the best tamales in Southern California! Traditional, Gourmet, BBQ Smoked, Lobster, Banana Leaf Wrapped, Dulce, Vegetarian, Vegan Tamales and more. Live music with Latin, Folklorico & Aztec Performers. Mariachis, food & craft vendors, food trucks, craft beer & wine garden, Chihuahua costume & best tamale contests, sugar skull crafts, fun for the kids, face painters, raffle prizes. Bonus: California Center for the Arts, free Summer Concert Series finale 4-7p.m., adjacent to the Escondido Tamale Festival. Sat. Event details.

Old Town

Dia de los Muertos in Old Town
This community-wide commemoration, which honors ancestors and other deceased loved ones with special menus, music, dancing and crafts, includes Day of the Dead sugar skull decorating, mask and paper flower making, a giant skeleton puppet and stilt walker, face painting and so much more. Immerse yourself in the culture with live music, dancing, tamale carts, mariachis, authentic food, storytelling––the list goes on and on! Don’t miss this fantastic celebration. Fri.-Sun. Event details.


Day Out With Thomas- Big Adventures Tour
The Day Out With Thomas 2018 Big Adventure Tour is a fun-filled event that provides kids of all ages the opportunity to climb aboard and take a ride with Thomas and Percy as well as participate in tons of Thomas & Friends activities. Advance tickets are recommended. Sat. & Sun. Event details.

Mission Hills

Dr. Dolittle
Experience the magic of musical theater as the talented young actors of the Center Stage Children’s Theater present the classic tale of Dr. Dolittle a wacky, but kind, doctor who can talk to animals. We take the audience on a journey from the small English village of Puddleby-on-the-Marsh to the far corners of the world in search of the legendary Great Pink Sea Snail. Our smallest audience members can sit right at the front, and there are opportunities to meet with the young actors as they come down into the audience after the show. There are shows on Friday November 2nd and 9th at 7pm; Saturday November 3rd and November 10th at 7pm; and shows that are timed for our youngest audience members at 2pm on Sunday November 4th and 11th. This show will charm all ages from 1 to 100. Fri.-Sun. Event details.

Balboa Park

Dr. Seuss’s How the Grinch Stole Christmas!
Dr. Seuss’s How the Grinch Stole Christmas! is a wonderful, whimsical musical based upon the classic Dr. Seuss book. Back for its 21st incredible year, the family favorite features the songs “Santa for a Day,” “You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch,” and “Welcome, Christmas (Fah Who Doraze),” the delightful carol from the popular animated version of How the Grinch Stole Christmas! Celebrate the holidays as the Old Globe Theatre is once again transformed into the snow-covered Whoville, right down to the last can of Who-hash. Sat. & Sun. Event details.


Stunt Dog Experience
Stunt Dog Experience is a one-of-a-kind, interactive, live show that will captivate dog lovers of all ages. Combining human performers with rescue dogs, the show features big air stunts, comedy antics, dancing dogs, athletic feats – all in a safe, humane environment that celebrates mankind’s best friend.  Since 1999 creator Chris Perondi has entertained millions and has produced more than 8,000 live shows in North America. Every show includes interactive crowd participation – it’s not just a show, it’s an experience! Come early for Helen Woodward’s adoptable puppy experience at 1 p.m. and then again at 6 p.m. at the Poway Center for the Performing Arts. A portion of the proceeds from this show will benefit the Helen Woodward Animal Center.  Performances are 11/3/18 at 2 p.m. & 7 p.m. Sat. Event details.


Bike the Coast
This ultra-popular family-friendly bike event on not only includes ocean views, but also multiple routes so families can enter based on fitness level and ability. The 100-mile route is for serious cyclers, while the 7-mile coast along the San Luis Rey bike trail is perfect for first-timers or families with young children. At the end of the course is a food festival complete with live music, delicious local eats and a beer garden for mom and dad. Sat. Event details.


Carlsbad Village Street Faire
Visitors and locals are invited to the nation’s largest one-day street faire in Carlsbad, CA . More than 100,000 people will have the pleasure of exploring the seaside city’s unique artisan offerings, reveling in scrumptious international eats and live entertainment from over 900 vendors. This family-friendly function will feature games, super slides and rock climbing walls for kids, as well as a beer and wine garden—courtesy of Rotary of Carlsbad–for adults. Dogs are welcome. Additionally, The Kiwanis Club of Carlsbad will continue its more than 25-year tradition of hosting a pancake breakfast at the Carlsbad railroad depot from 7 a.m.-noon. Grand Ave. from Carlsbad Blvd. to Jefferson St., and the cross streets in between, will be closed for the event. Complimentary shuttles will run to and from the faire. Shuttles will pick up and drop off at the Poinsettia Coaster Station and the northwest corner of Sears at Westfield Plaza Camino Real. Sun. Event details.

––Beth Shea