The nights before Christmas

What to do leading up to the big day.

Thursday, December 17: Jingle Bell Kroc
  • Thursday, December 17: Jingle Bell Kroc

Thursday | 17

Past Event

Jingle Bell Kroc

An ice-skating show featuring 140 Kroc Center figure-skaters (members who practice and train at the center) ranging in age from 3 to 71, with everything from little ones performing for the first time to international medalists performing triple jumps. The evening ends with a public ice-skating session. Admission is free with the donation of a new unwrapped toy worth $5 or more, which will go to a child in need this Christmas.

Friday | 18

Past Event

Michael McDonald

Michael McDonald is not a singer. That’s the other guy. He is also not a professional fighter. That’s the other other guy. He’s also not an abusive unemployed alcoholic. That’s some of the rest of the Michael McDonalds out there. You’ve found the one who is best known for his ten years playing freaks on Mad TV.

Saturday | 19

Past Event

Cannon Battles

Experience combat at sea during the age of sail in a live simulated battle. Join the crew in defending your ship, raise the sails, heave the lines, and watch the action. This three-hour battle features booming cannons, close-quarters maneuvers, and a taste of 18th-century maritime life aboard tall ships. In addition, view the Hawaiian Chieftain and the Lady Washington, visiting from Grays Harbor Historical Seaport Authority in Washington. Children 12 & under, $47; adults, $91. Runs Saturdays and Sundays for three weeks (through January 3).

Past Event

Winemakers Seminar: Filtration, Stabilization, and Bottling

  • Saturday, December 19, 2015, 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.
  • Curds and Wine, 7194 Clairemont Mesa Boulevard, San Diego
  • Free

Lum Eisenman, local home winemaking guru, will cover filtration methods, when to filter (or not), the use of stabilizing additives, and methods of filling and finishing the bottles. In association with the San Diego Amateur Winemakers’ Society.

Sunday | 20

Past Event

Miami Dolphins at San Diego Chargers

  • Sunday, November 13, 2016, 1:05 p.m.
  • SDCCU Stadium, 9449 Friars Road, San Diego

The San Diego Chargers take on the Miami Dolphins during the last regular-season home game. Get to the stadium early to check out pre-game festivities. The parking lot will open five hours before kick-off, and Qualcomm Stadium will open its gates 90 minutes before the game.

Past Event

League of Legends Tournament

  • Sunday, December 20, 2015, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.
  • GameSync Gaming Center, 7905 Silverton Avenue #104, San Diego
  • Free

The first 30 registered participants who are present at the start of the event will receive a spot on one of six teams. First place: a League of Legends Riot Points $25 gift card. If you’re into gaming, you’ll appreciate this: GameSync offers average ping times to the NA server of 15 ms, 5v5 capability, and extended weekend hours for late-night pew pew pew-ing.

Monday | 21

Past Event

Poinsettia Bowl Gaslamp March

  • Monday, December 21, 2015, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
  • Gaslamp Quarter, Fifth Avenue, between Broadway and Harbor Drive, San Diego
  • Free

Marching bands, spirit squads, and mascots from the participating universities will parade from each end of Fifth Avenue performing holiday classics, meeting up at Market Street for a battle of the bands. After the dust has settled, bands continue on with their parade. San Diego State Aztecs are still eligible to receive the bowl invitation.

Tuesday | 22

Past Event

King Tide: Photo Op

  • Tuesday, December 22, 2015, noon to midnight
  • California coast

Based on the current warming trend, the Pacific Ocean is predicted to rise on the California coast by about one foot by 2050 and three feet by the year 2100. A three-foot rise in sea level would displace an estimated 480,000 people in California alone. A good way to mark the change is to monitor the king tides, or the highest tides of the year. The California King Tide Photo Initiative is looking for photos anywhere along the California coast during the king tides, December 22 to 24. There are several ways to enter your photos, including Facebook, Flickr, and email. Details at

Wednesday | 23

Past Event

Cowles Mountain Winter Solstice Hike

  • Wednesday, December 23, 2015, 6 a.m. to 8 a.m.
  • Cowles Mountain, Navajo Road and Golfcrest Drive, San Diego
  • Free

At 6 a.m. on the mornings of December 21, 22, and 23, guides will lead experienced hikers up Cowles Mountain. Rather than hit the peak, they’ll go off-trail to visit a Kumeyaay solstice observatory. From this vantage point, the tribe would commemorate the shortest day of the year by watching the sun rise over an outcropping of rock that effectively splits the heavenly body in two. The three-mile hike is rated as difficult.

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