Just because it’s Labor Day weekend—the unofficial end of the summer—it doesn’t mean outdoor fun needs to end. San Diego has its fair share of ways to enjoy the beautiful weather and remaining days of care-free summer living. Head downtown to the annual Festival of the Sail where North Embarcadero turns into a nautical theme park. Check out the amazing hand-made sandcastles (and try your hand at sculpting) at the San Sculpting Challenge. Experience a real PowWow with the Barona tribe. Or have fun at Nighttime Zoo before it wraps up for the summer. Have a great, long weekend!


photo: Maritime Museum of San Diego

San Diego

San Sculpting Challenge
Thousands of people across the U.S. attend this event where they see sculptors build beautiful 3-dimensional works of art. Check out the amazing sculptures while enjoying musicians, singers, dancers, storytellers, circus performers, magicians, the best of the buskers. Activities for kiddos include art projects, sandbox, sand sculpture classes, Bubble Fun ride and more. Fri.-Mon. Event details.

Festival of the Sail
The Maritime Museum of San Diego will transform the North Embarcadero into a nautical theme park for the largest Tall Ship festival on the west coast. More than 20 tall ships and other vessels from around the world will be visiting San Diego. In addition, there will be live entertainment, a petting zoo, vendors, food, cannon battles, cruises on San Diego Bay, and more. Sat.-Mon. Event details.

origami-classes/”>Kawaii Origami Class
Join us for a fun workshop in making origami, kawaii style! Workshop is for all ages and skill levels, you will be provided origami paper. Sat. Event details.

Nighttime Zoo
It’s your last weekend to experience Nighttime Zoo this summer. Enjoy summer fun including: Zoolahoops: interactive hoola-hoop fun for all; toe-tapping tunes from a mariachi band, Rock n Roar, and The Chameleons; Dr. Zoolittle’s Zany Zoo; bouncing Birthday Bash trampoline acrobatics; and the Journey: a spectacular processional of larger-than-life pageantry puppets and stilt walkers. Fri.-Sun. Event details.

East County

46th Annual Barona PowWow
The Barona Band of Mission Indians invites San Diegans to experience Native American culture at the 46th Annual Barona Powwow which will be held on the Barona Indian Reservation at the Barona Sports Park over Labor Day Weekend. This three-day celebration kicks off on Friday with Gourd Dancing and a spectacular Grand Entry of dancers in colorful regalia. It continues throughout the weekend on Saturday and Sunday, making this a weekend of culture immersion. Fri.-Sun. Event details.

South Bay

Passport to the Pacific Featuring Turtle Lagoon
Set a course for adventure! Explore the unique habitats that surround the Pacific Ocean and discover new animals through interactive travel-inspired exhibits. And journey to the new Turtle Lagoon and explore the world of Eastern Pacific green sea turtles! Fri.-Sun. Event details.

Orange County

Author’s Day at Pretend City
Head to Pretend City to enjoy awesome authors read from their books. Listen to Adam T. Newman read How to Catch a Cold; and Gladys Barber reads Rubber Shoes: A Lesson in Gratitude and Pink Fire Trucks. Fri. Event details.

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

– Leah R. Singer