If we remain careful and vigilant, the pandemic may be seeing its last stubborn hours, so to speak. Wear your mask when asked, be vaccinated, and we’ll all be okay.
We’ve obviously already started traveling, as you know, and California destinations beckon. Like Oceanside, San Diego’s cozy neighbor to the north.
After ‘The Year That Wasn’t,’ Oceanside’s event calendar is rebounding, with sporting, art and food events this summer and fall. Several popular annual events return, and there are new happenings, such as Oceanside Museum of Art’s inaugural Plein Air Art Festival and makers’ markets, showcasing local goods and artisans.
“Oceanside has waited a long time to be able to welcome our events back safely,” said Leslee Gaul, CEO of Visit Oceanside. “These events perfectly showcase Oceanside’s unique personality, diversity and talents, providing visitors of all ages and interests with unique experiences that you can’t find anywhere else.”
The highlights for 2021 include:
The Oceanside Museum of Art Plein Air Art Festival
Oceanside Museum of Art’s inaugural Plein Air Art Festival is among the most highly anticipated of the summer season. Naturally outdoors and socially distanced, the multi-part event includes a plein air art experience from July 24-31 followed by an extended juried exhibit through October 10. All levels can join in on the fun, which includes a paint out, workshops, artist talks, quick paint, awards celebration and art sale. More information and registration is available at www.oma-online.com/pleinair
Oceanside’s iconic Thursday night Sunset Market is returning just in time for summer visitors. This beloved weekly street fair features eclectic shopping, international food vendors, live entertainment and more spanning four blocks along Pier View Way in the heart of Downtown Oceanside. The ready-to-consume, gourmet street cuisine has become the identity of this outdoor dinner market with favorites that include items such as Nordic planked salmon, Thai burgers with buns made from sweet-pressed rice, west African cuisine and locally made caramels.
Nissan Super Girl Surf Pro
California’s Capital of Surf is ready for summer surf events, which are a highlight of the Oceanside experience. Among the most prominent is the lively Nissan Super Girl Pro, which draws the top names in women’s professional surfing.
The event takes place at the historic Oceanside pier and includes a festival village loaded with female-inspired vendors, activities and amazing entertainment— all celebrating female strength and empowerment. Visitors can catch other fun surf events in Oceanside too including the World Body Surfing Championships, Oceanside Longboard Surfing Club Contest and the US Adaptive Surf Championships.
Ironman 70.3 Oceanside
The Ironman 70.3 Oceanside has been an Oceanside tradition for more than 20 years and is the first race on the North American Ironman circuit. Visitors can marvel at the strength and endurance of participants who revel in competing in the open waters, coastal roadways and rolling hills of beautiful Southern California where the triathlon originated.
Bike the Coast
Bike the Coast is the perfect excuse for putting a pandemic bike purchase to good use. Riders of all levels and ages can participate and select various coastal routes ranging from 100, 50, and 25 miles along historic Highway 101 or the family ride on the San Luis River Trail, which is completely isolated from vehicle traffic. All participants enjoy San Diego’s beautiful coastline and post-race celebration right on the water in Oceanside.
Handcrafted, artisanal goods are the focus of makers’ markets popping up throughout Oceanside. On the third Wednesday of every month, visitors can enjoy live music, local shopping and hand-crafted spirits in the parking lot at Pacific Coast Spirits. The Downtown Makers Market takes place on the third Saturday of each month and is another place to shop local, enjoy live music and experience Oceanside’s authentic vibe.
For more information on Oceanside, visit www.visitoceanside.org.