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Major Events

What's New in San Diego

Find all the major events in San Diego this season.

Global Winter Wonderland | Chinese Lantern Festival | San Diego

Major Events

From Nov. 19, 2017–Jan. 7, 2018, the newly named San Diego County Credit Union Stadium in Mission Valley hosts the first San Diego’s Global Winter Wonderland. This is a multi-cultural celebration centered on large luminescent, hand-crafted lanterns inspired by international architecture such as the Taj Mahal and Eiffel Tower. Nearly 100 artisans will arrive in San Diego to design and sew by hand intricate lantern displays that can reach heights of 20 feet. This is the largest display of traditional Chinese lanterns outside of China. The ticketed festival celebrates holidays around the world, allowing visitors to view the art, create crafts and enjoy international holiday foods from many cultures. San Diego’s Global Winter Wonderland will include acrobatic performers, more than 35 carnival rides, holiday-themed activities, games, shopping, and an interactive craft center for children. Visitors can design their own ornaments, decorate lanterns and participate in a variety of interactive games. Children can also take photos with mascot Penny the Penguin and write letters to Santa Claus when visiting Toyland, Candyland and the North Pole.

On Dec. 1-2, 2017, Balboa Park December Nights celebrates the holiday season as the largest free community festival in San Diego. The event offers foods and crafts from around the world for sale and free music, performances and admission to Balboa Park's diverse museums.

On Dec. 10 and 17, 2017, the Port of San Diego hosts a free San Diego Bay Parade of Lights. This colorfully unique San Diego holiday tradition features more than 100 private boats decorated with holiday lights, sailing along the waters of San Diego Bay.

On Dec. 28, 2017, the Big Bay Balloon Parade along downtown San Diego's waterfront is followed by the San Diego County Credit Union Holiday Bowl at SDCCU Stadium in Mission Valley, featuring college football teams from the Big 10 and Pac-12 Conferences. The exciting gridiron action is augmented by spectacular pregame and halftime pageantry.

During Jan. 21-28, 2018, more than 180 of San Diego's finest restaurants participate in a celebration of the local dining scene with special prix fixed menus for San Diego Restaurant Week.

On Jan. 25-28, 2018, the Farmers Insurance Open annual PGA Tour men’s tournament hosts golf’s biggest stars on the green at the world-famous Torrey Pines Golf Course in La Jolla, home of the 2021 U.S. Open. Visitors hoping to try their hand at the renowned course can enjoy a $12.6 million renovation of the north course, completed in 2016.

Feb. 1-28, 2018, is Macy’s Museum Month, allowing visitors to experience the region’s rich cultural offerings at half-price. Guests can pick up a free San Diego Museum Month Pass at participating Macy’s locations; with the pass, they can receive half-price admission for up to four guests per visit at more than 40 of San Diego’s museums, ranging from art museums to historical sites and interactive science centers.

During Mar. 15-25, 2018, the San Diego Latino Film Festival showcases acclaimed movies by Latinos or about the Latino experience. Held at the AMC 18 Theaters in Fashion Valley and at the Digital Gym Cinema in North Park, the festival includes parties, workshops, art exhibitions and the opportunity to mingle with international movie and television stars. 

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