Everything You Can Do in San Diego This Weekend

The beer is flowing and movies are rolling this weekend.

It was close, but we managed to just squeak under the limit of new COVID-19 cases in San Diego this week, with 6.9 new cases per 100K (the limit is 7.0 per 100K), keeping us in the red tier for another week, at least. Wear that mask and socially distance so we don’t slip back into the most restrictive tier again, because we want our restaurants, bars, gyms, theaters, and other businesses to stay open. This weekend, the beer is flowing, the films are rolling, and Farm Aid comes to your living room, for free! We’ve also got a bake sale for charity, pop-up artisan pizza at a golf course, and a vegan breakfast sandwich that gives back to the community. Here’s everything you can eat, drink, and do in San Diego this weekend. 

Binge watch the latest Latino films

Thursday, September 17 - Sunday, September 27
You still have time to catch the 27th annual San Diego Latino Film Festival, a virtual celebration of Latino cinema, arts and culture. View more than 100 films from the United States, Latin America, and Spain -- along with live virtual Q&A sessions with the filmmakers. Purchase tickets for single films or packages of five, festival passes that include 11 films, or an unlimited access VIP pass.
Cost: $9-225

Start (and end) your weekend with beer

Thursday, September 24 - Sunday, September 27
Alesmith Brewing Company
Celebrate the fall season at AleSmith Brewing Company’s Oktoberfest, featuring its special German-style Marzenlager, as well as German cuisine from Currywurst Frankfurt, all in an outdoor biergarten. Grab a $10 stein to remember the occasion or a $15 stein and your choice of AleSchmidt Oktoberfest, Spezial Pils, or Running From Shadows Schwarzbier to fill it with.
Cost: Prices vary

Check out a drive-in movie

Friday, September 25 - Saturday, September 26
Westfield UTC
The San Diego International Film Festival and Westfield UTC’s drive-in movies series continues this weekend with award-winning and classic films in a safely distanced outdoor environment. Guests can purchase tickets starting at just $30/car for general admission. VIP tickets, at $50/car includes priority “seating” and a gift card for any of UTC’s shops or restaurants. Just for fun, all guests get a Westfield gift bag and complimentary all-day parking passes, and several restaurants will offer delicious drive-in specials to enjoy while watching the films. All proceeds will benefit the San Diego Int’l Film Festival’s community programs, including the Focus On Impact Film Tour
Cost: $30-50/car

Grab a better breakfast and do good

Friday, September 25 - Sunday, September 27
East Village
Saturday is Better Breakfast Day, and Spoiled Vegans Cafe is celebrating all weekend long by donating $1 from every one of their best selling “Spoil Yourself” breakfast sandwiches to Alpha Project, which serves 4,000 homeless men, women, and children every day. 
Cost: Prices vary

Pop into brunch (or dinner)

Saturday, September 26
Bankers Hill
Parq West, along with Behind the Scenes and San Diego Bay Wine + Food Festival, is hosting Saturdays on the Patio, a weekly reservation only, outdoor dining brunch and dinner pop-up, now through October 3. This week’s festivities feature a Baja brunch with an incredible three-course meal, bottomless bubbles and mimosas and a live performance from electric violinist Amy Serrano Burcombe and DJ Jenny Pocket. Dinner showcases a curated five-course dinner created by award-winning Chef Aron Schwartz. Reservations are required.
Cost: $49 + tax and gratuity for brunch. $75-$95 + tax and gratuity for dinner

Hops + Harvest
Hops + Harvest

Enjoy a gourmet beer pairing dinner without ever leaving your couch

Saturday, September 26
Societe Brewing Company 
Join the San Diego Brewers Guild and MIHO Catering Co. for Hops + Harvest, a series of food and beer pairing experiences with select San Diego breweries that guests can enjoy in the comfort of their own home. The series runs through November 7, highlighting a local brewery and a new menu every two weeks. This weekend, Societe Brewing Company’s founder Doug Constantiner selects a four-pack of his favorite beers to enjoy with Chef Ryan Bullock’s four-course menu for two. Guests can pick their dinner up from the brewery or have the meal delivered for a small fee. A prerecorded video featuring Chef Ryan and Doug, who will share their thoughts on beer, food, and pairings will be available online. Future breweries, menus, and beer pairings can be viewed online, and vegetarian options are available upon request.
Cost: $65-95 for a four-course dinner for two and a four pack of beer available for pickup, curbside pickup or delivery. Delivery is $10 within 30 miles of the brewery.

Catch a great concert and support family farms

Saturday, September 26
The first Farm Aid concert took place 35 years ago, when Willie Nelson, Neil Young, and John Mellencamp organized it to raise awareness of the loss of family farms and to raise money in support, with Dave Matthews joining the Board of Directors in 2001. Since then, Farm Aid has raised almost $60 million as a nonprofit whose mission is to keep family farmers working their land. This year’s concert will be free and online via live stream in HD at Farm Aid, its YouTube channel, on AXS TV, and on SiriusXM at Willie’s Roadhouse (channel 59) and Dave Matthews Band Radio (channel 30). Besides the founders, this year’s lineup also includes Bonnie Raitt and Boz Scaggs, Jack Johnson, The Record Company, Norah Jones, Edie Brickell with Charlie Sexton, and a whole lot more.
Cost: Free to view, consider donating or buying merch if you’re able.

Friendly Feast
Friendly Feast | Brenda Gonzales

Indulge in decadent pastries and help others

Sunday, September 27
Born and Raised 
Friendly Feast’s 2020 installment of its always-sold-out Bake Sale will be hosted by Born and Raised and stars luscious pastries from six of San Diego’s top bakers -- think champagne peach scones from Vivian Hernandez-Jackson of Azucar or mixed berry Kouign-Amann from  Brenda Gonzalez of Born and Raised. Each box contains six bakery-sized pastries for $35 with proceeds supporting Friendly Feast and Monarch School. Order online and you’ll receive an email with pickup instructions, with your order receiving a special pickup time between 10am and 11:30am to maximize social distancing.
Cost: $35

Eat pizza for a cause

Sunday, September 27
The Loma Club
Join The Loma Club’s Community Pop-Up Sunday, a once a month series that invites especially hard-hit industry peers to take over TLC’s kitchen and beautiful outdoor patio. 100% of proceeds goes directly to the chosen restaurant, with The Loma Club also providing support with staff, a full bar menu, and access to the club’s nine-hole walking course. This Sunday's eatery will be The Pizza Consultant, who will showcase several of their wood-fired, artisan style hand tossed pizzas made fresh to order. 
Cost: Varies

Celebrate San Diego Restaurant Week for a month

Friday, September 18 - Thursday, October 15
Various locations
These restaurants need more than just a week to even begin recouping all the losses the COVID-19 pandemic has caused, so we’ve got a full month of Dine Diego, featuring a diverse lineup of San Diego’s top restaurants showcasing their safe dining options, including in-house, al fresco and to go offerings. Search more than 300 participating restaurants from South Bay to Oceanside and the beach communities to East County by neighborhood, dining options or cuisine for your old favorites or a new hotspot. Adding a fun and competitive element, SDRW is hosting an interactive bingo-style game with the chance to win a luxurious San Diego Staycation package, or Instagram your Dine Diego experience and you might win A Year of Dining -- 52 gift certificates to San Diego restaurants for you to enjoy all year. Social media contest details can be found here
Cost: Prices vary

Register to vote!

Now through November
If you’re not registered to vote, now’s the time to change that. This year, every vote is important. Register online, and if you’re already registered, check to make sure your status is still active here. In California, every registered voter will automatically be sent a mail-in ballot for the November 3 general election, and you won’t even need a stamp to return it. You can also register for permanent vote-by-mail status. To check the status of your mail in ballot, register for automatic email, SMS (text), or voice call notifications about your ballot. Check out other voting information like military and overseas registration, vote by mail best practices and more.

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FYI: We’ve also got you covered with comprehensive guides to NYC, Chicago, LA, SFMiami, DC, Austin, Boston, Denver, Dallas, and Phoenix -- just in case you’re ever out of town.

Mary Beth Abate is a San Diego-based freelance writer by way of Chicago and Los Angeles. Her hobbies include yoga, pickling and fermenting stuff, reading cookbooks, and drinking fabulous gin. Keep up with her experiments @MaryBeth_Abate.