Fired Up

Marina the Fire-Eating Mermaid will perform at Tiki Oasis, Aug. 18-21. (Photo courtesy Kari Hendler)

Tiki Oasis 11
WHEN: Aug. 18-21
WHERE: Crowne Plaza Hotel, Hotel Circle (Mission Valley)
TICKETS: $10 and up

By Monica Garske

C?lassic hot rods, mai-tais and burlesque babes-it’s the stuff retro dreams are made of, and key components of San Diego’s 11th annual Tiki Oasis.

The summer soiree, to be held at the Crowne Plaza Hotel August 19 to 21 (with a preview party August 18 at the Bali Hai restaurant) takes Hawaiian-shirted attendees back to the 1950s and ‘60s, when tropical cocktails flowed, and exotica music and come-hither pin-up girls set the scene.

The weekend of live music includes rockabilly and rock en español from Big Sandy with Los Straightjackets. And for a tiki tee-hee, check out the comedic flamenco of Marty Lush and His Latin Livers.

This year’s theme is a toast to Latin music, which permeated pop culture in the 1960s, introducing Americans to everything from the Cha Cha and Latin Jazz to Herb Alpert and his Tijuana Brass. ? ?

A bevy of burlesque beauties will gyrate poolside, while a classic car show featuring 25 hot-rods heats up the hotel parking lot. There will also be ukulele jam sessions, live tiki carvings and a samba dance class.

Event founder Otto von Stroheim says the event’s seminars include an “educational” tequila tasting and lessons in mixing-and consuming-rum cocktails.

“It’s the ultimate gathering of the tiki community,” he says.