San Diego’s top weekend events: Aug. 12 to 15

The theatrical circus company Troupe Vertigo
The theatrical circus company Troupe Vertigo will perform with the San Diego Symphony on Aug. 13.
(Courtesy San Diego Symphony)

Puppies, Barbie dolls and sandcastles are just some of the things happening in San Diego from Aug. 12-15


Puppies, Barbie dolls and sandcastles are just some of the things happening in San Diego this weekend.

Thursday, Aug. 12

Flicks on the Bricks

Hosted by Athenaeum Music & Arts Library, the annual outdoor film series returns to La Jolla after a yearlong hiatus. This year’s theme is “Best Screwball Sparring Matches,” referencing the light-hearted fights common to 1930s screwball comedy movie genre. Must be 21-and-up to attend. 7:30 p.m. at Athenaeum, 1008 Wall St., La Jolla. Additional screenings will be held on Aug. 19 and 26. General admission tickets are $20 or $54 for the series;

2021 San Diego Music Awards Hip Hop Showcase

Get to know San Diego’s hip hop scene at this showcase that features Bloodstone The Street Preacher, J. Andrew, Cryhmes, K-Rock Tha Phantom, PCH & Evolve One, Cory Blaze, Sloat Dixon, BLV3, Keymon and The Toven. 8:30 p.m. Thursday. Casbah, 2501 Kettner Blvd., Midtown. $6;

‘80s Throwback Thursday

The Gaslamp Quarter is throwin’ it back every Thursday night (themes rotate weekly) with extended happy hour specials and a themed roller-skating session by TikTok’s Sunset Roller Club. Event takes place at Island Avenue between Fourth and Sixth Avenues from 6 to 9 p.m.;

Summer and Songs!

The Village at Pacific Highlands Ranch in Carmel Valley hosts this weekly free concert featuring a diverse lineup of musicians and vocalists (through Aug. 19). This week’s session singer is Lee Coulter. The show is from 6 to 8 p.m. at the outdoor Village Square located between Pacific Standard and Death by Tequila;

Friday, Aug. 13

Paola Villaseñor, known as the artist Panca, working on a colorful mural
Paola Villaseñor, known as the artist Panca, prepares her exhibition for the New Children’s Museum.
(Courtesy of the New Children’s Museum)

Panca’s “El Más Allá”

For her latest installation, “El Más Allá”, Panca (Paola Villaseñor) invents an environment to help children process the effects of the pandemic as well as inspire them to future action. “El Más Allá” is on view from 9 a.m. to noon and from 1 to 4 p.m. Thursdays through Mondays. The New Children’s Museum, 200 West Island Ave., downtown. $10 general admission, free for children under age 1; (619) 233-8792.

Troupe Vertigo

The San Diego Symphony performs together with aerial artists, contortionists and ballet dancers from Troupe Vertigo, a Los Angeles-based circus company. Guest conductor Enrico Lopez-Yañez leads this mesmerizing performance that combines music, theater, dance and awe-inspiring acrobatics. 7:30 p.m. Friday . The Rady Shell at Jacobs Park, 222 Marina Park Way, downtown. $25 to $95; (619) 235-0804.

Attendees at the Sun and Sea Festival in front of a sandcastle
Attendees at the Sun and Sea Festival enjoyed a parade, sandcastle sculptures, music, food and more in Imperial Beach on Saturday, July 13, 2019.
(Rick Nocon/ )

Sandcastle City

While the full-scale IB Sun & Sea Festival won’t be happening year due to COVID-19, the community is invited to see the creation of the the largest sculpture built on Imperial Beach sand, created by award-winning group IB Posse. Construction begins on Friday, with an estimated completion date of Aug. 18. IB Posse will be building 10 a.m. to dusk daily at Portwood Pier Plaza, Seacoast Drive, Imperial Beach. Free;

Saturday, Aug. 14

La Jolla Playhouse Pop-Up WOW Festival

La Jolla Playhouse will return to performances before live audiences for its Pop-Up WOW Festival at Liberty Station. Four free events created by mostly San Diego County theater artists will be presented, including three shows featuring theater, music, song and dance and an interactive caravan theater installation suitable for children of all ages. Lawn performance series begins at 1 and 5 p.m. Saturday; and at noon to 3 p.m. Sunday. (“Optika Piñata” hours: 2 to 4:30 p.m. and 6 to 7:30 p.m. Saturday and 1 to 3 p.m. and 4 to 6 p.m. Sunday. North Promenade (grassy area), Dewey Road, between Truxtun and Historic Decatur Roads, Liberty Station. Free (check latest guidelines for mask requirements);

Director/choreographer Jesca Prudencio presents a new piece at La Jolla Playhouse's Pop-Up WOW Festival.
(Eduardo Contreras/The San Diego Union-Tribune)

AKC Meet the Breeds

The American Kennel Club’s Meet the Breeds event promises to be a weekend filled with dog and family-friendly activities like demonstrations, seminars, interactive experiences and more. Convention begins at 10 a.m. Saturday and Sunday at the San Diego Convention Center, 111 W. Harbor Drive, downtown. $27 (for general admission) to $99 (for VIP);

Fern Street Circus Neighborhood Tour

Fern Street Circus’ annual Neighborhood Tour returns in 2021 to celebrate the “new abnormal” of life after the COVID-19 lockdown. Titled “Come Out! Come Out!” you’ll see performers of all ages showcase a variety of acts, including juggling, clowning, tumbling, contortion and more. The performances happen weekends throughout August — they’re are always free, staged in public parks throughout the city. You’ll also find arts and crafts, food and dance performances by Maraya Performing Arts. 2 p.m. Saturday at Penn Athletic Field, 2555 Dusk Drive in Paradise Hills; 2 p.m. Sunday at Southcrest Recreation Center, 4149 Newton Ave. in Southcrest. Find the complete schedule at

A girl holding up a towel that says Barbie, in front of the beach
You can find retro Barbie merch when the 2021 Barbie Malibu Tour stops in San Diego this weekend.
(Mora Film Co./Mora Film Co.)

The 2021 Barbie Malibu Tour

Is there anyone as carefree and chill as Malibu Barbie? Celebrate her 50th anniversary with 1970s-inspired hoodies, hats, pins and more at The Barbie Pop-Up Truck. You’ll find the truck in all its beachy glory from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday at Fashion Valley (between Bloomingdales and Forever 21).

“Miss You Like Hell” closes
It’s your last chance to see Patio Playhouse’s production of “Miss You Like Hell.” The Quiara Alegría Hudes/Erin McKeown rock musical made its world premiere in 2016 at La Jolla Playhouse and follows the story of an absentee Latina mom Beatriz and her estranged 16-year-old daughter Olivia. Performances are at 8 p.m. Thursdays through Sundays, through Aug. 14. 100 Amphitheater Drive, Escondido. $18-$25. (760) 746-6669,

Glass Spells Album Release Show

San Diego-based synth-pop group Glass Spells will play its official album release show for “Shattered,” the 10-track collection that came out Friday. The 21-and-up show is presented by Disco Goth and Soda Bar. All guests are required to provide vaccination verification or a negative COVID-19 test performed within 72 hours prior to entry. Regardless of vaccination status, attendees must wear a mask when not drinking. 8:30 p.m. at Soda Bar, 3615 El Cajon Blvd., Normal Heights. $12.55;

National Bowling Day at Punch Bowl Social

Grab your “dudes” and celebrate National Bowling Day on Saturday at Punch Bowl Social with $5 bowling (including shoes) until 3 p.m. After a few games, enjoy White Russian drink specials in honor of the cult bowling comedy “The Big Lebowski.” Punch Bowl Social is located at 1485 E St. in East Village. (619) 452-3352;

Sunday, Aug. 15

“American Perspectives IV: The Silver Score”

La Jolla Music Society’s SummerFest continues with plenty of concerts, lectures and open rehearsals. One standout this week includes The Silver Score, a program that highlights music from the movies, including “Psycho” and “Star Wars.” The night also features performances by Balourdet String Quartet and Calder Quartet, as well as composer Aaron Zigman’s world premiere Rhapsody for Cello and Piano performed by Inon Barnatan and Alisa Weilerstein. 3 p.m. Sunday (a pre-concert interview begins at 2 p.m.). The Conrad Prebys Performing Arts Center, 7600 Fay Ave., La Jolla. $45 to $95; (858) 459-3728.

Andrew Polec, top, Tyler Hardwick and Storm Lever lead the cast of the musical "Hair" at The Old Globe this summer.
(Jim Cox Photography)


Get ready for the Summer of Love all over again. The Old Globe officially opens its production of “Hair,” the Grammy-winning beloved rock musical. Performed on an outdoor stage, the show features favorite songs like “Let the Sunshine In” and “Good Morning Starshine.” 8 p.m. Sunday at Lowell Davies Festival Theatre at The Old Globe, Balboa Park. Times and prices vary, find details at