9/27/19: Weekly Freebies and Deals!

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Woo Hoo! Friday means Freebies and deals! There are a lot more freebies and deals this week. I’m excited to share!

Freebies

Free Magazine Subscriptions

Deals

Harvest Festival Original Art & Craft Show Comes to San Diego this Fall!!

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Showcasing a colossal collection of handmade creations, the Harvest Festival Original Art & Craft Show, comes to three key southland locations this fall with more than 24,000 original works from hundreds of exhibitors nationwide. As an all you can eat buffet for the senses, the artful celebration boasts live entertainment, strolling performers, a Kidzone, demonstrations, contests, and more.

This marks the 47th season for the Harvest Festival, a treasured event recognized as the largest and most prestigious indoor showcase on the west coast. Multi-talented artists & crafters will showcase their originals of stunning jewelry, clothing, specialty foods, photography, oils, hand-turned wood, ceramics, eclectic art pieces, seasonal decor, ornaments, blown glass, and much more. Patrons know with confidence that each of the works is made by hand and selected only after meeting criteria for excellence. Adding to the memories, many of the artists can personalize items for that special touch.

I am so excited to take the family and check out the fun this year! I’ll be posting pics and vids from the event on Instagram and Facebook!

Beyond the hundreds of artists and entertainment, each showcase collaborates with local non-profits to fundraise in support of community programs. General admission tickets are $9, while seniors (62+) and military are $7, youths ages 13-17 are $4, and kids 12 and under are free. Tickets are good for the entire weekend and return visits. Entrance for groups of 10 or more is $5 with advance sign up. Information and advance tickets are available here or call 925/ 392-7300.

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Del Mar Fairgrounds: October 11-13 (Hours: Friday 10am-5pm; Saturday 10am-6pm; Sunday 10am-5pm)
2260 Jimmy Durante Blvd., Del Mar, CA 92014

SAVE $2 at Del Mar Harvest Festival Original Art & Craft Show – SAVE $2 with this coupon on 1 adult, 1 senior or 1 military admission at Del Mar Harvest Festival Original Art & Craft Show from Oct. 11-13, 2019. *This coupon must be presented at entrance, mention US FAMILY GUIDE. It must be downloaded and printed off. It will not be accepted on a mobile device. Thank you in advance for your understanding.

 

 

@usfg

9/21/19- Free Museum Day!

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Museum Day is a one-day event in which participating museums and cultural institutions across the country provide free entry to anyone presenting a Museum Day ticket. Participants are allowed to download one ticket per email address. The ticket provides free general admission on Saturday, September 21, 2019, for two people.

For those of us in San Diego County, there are 37 choices, ranging from The New Children’s Museum downtown to the Museum of Making Music in Carlsbad.  You can find a list of museums near you here.

Now, if you can’t make it out to free museum day, there are museums all over San Diego County that are FREE EVERY DAY!

Flying Leatherneck Aviation Museum 4203 Anderson Ave, San Diego, CA 92145

Barona Cultural Center & Museum 1095 Barona Road, Lakeside, CA 92040

Bonita Museum and Cultural Center 4355 Bonita Road, Bonita, CA 91902

Miniature Engineering Craftsmanship Museum 3190 Lionshead Ave, Carlsbad, CA 92009

The Water Conservation Garden isn’t a museum, but it is free daily and super fun to explore. They also hold cool free events for kids and adults.

The Timken in Balboa Park is free every day. And there are select museums free every Tuesday in Balboa Park.  While you are in Balboa Park, stop by The City’s Botanical Building. It is open every day except Thursday. Admission is always free.

Make it a frugal afternoon by packing your lunch and snacks (don’t forget water- it’s going to be a hot one here in San Diego and most of the southwest next weekend)! I raid our snack cupboard and pack lots of different choices, that way everyone is satisfied.

Talk Back: Which museum in your area are you excited about checking out on 9/21/19?

 

Urbane Cafe: Free lunch for Teachers and Staff (El Cajon and Encinitas Locations)!

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Various Urbane Cafe locations are offering free lunches (sandwich or salad) to teachers and school staff.

Not so small print…
  • Only one meal per ticket
  • Must have Valid Teacher ID
  • No app, phone or online orders
  • Must be present to receive the offer

The El Cajon Location is offering them on 9/17/19 and 9/18/19 at 11am. RSVP here. 

The Encinitas location is offering them on 9/24/19  and 9/26/19 11am-9pm.  RSVP here.

 

 

Please share this post with your friends and family who might benefit! Teachers and school staff work so hard- they deserve a free lunch!

September is Hunger Action Month- San Diego Community Food Share is here to help!

Did you know that September is Hunger Action Month?

Recently I wrote about Porchlight Community Services. This month, they are offering a $5.00 discount on their weekly food share when you mention that you saw this article on my website!

The prices are very reasonable:

Seniors / Individual- $15
Family (Small)- $25
Family (6+)-$35

On average, you will go home with over $100 worth of food each week. And if you have food allergies or a special diet, just let them know and they will be happy to accommodate you as best they can!

In case you were curious, here is a sneak peek of just a few of the types of items they frequently have:

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Cow’s milk, non-dairy milk, eggs, cheese, yogurt, lunch meats, juice, lemonade- WOW! And that is just a small sample, there are fruits, veggies, frozen food, shelf-stable/pantry items, baked goods… You Name It!

To get started, join their Facebook group here.

 

Hiking with The Canyoneers & THE NAT!

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I love exploring nature with the kids. My dad took us on hikes a lot when we were kids and it was a great way to learn more about nature and the history of San Diego.

When THE NAT emailed me this morning to share their free, guided nature hikes, I knew I had to share it with my readers!

Canyoneers are citizen scientists and volunteers who have had comprehensive training by Museum scientists and local experts on the natural history of the region. Check out the full schedule of hikes between now and June 2020, and hit the trails with the Canyoneers! Look for the Canyoneer sign at the designated parking area. We are always hoping to see wildlife. Please leave dogs at home and come enjoy nature.

The Canyoneers offer free, guided hikes on trails throughout San Diego County from September through June. The new season kicks off this Saturday, September 8 with an easy, 1-mile hike on the Kumeyaay Lake Trail at Mission Trails Regional Park, perfect for children, seniors, and birdwatchers. 

In total, the Canyoneers are offering 80 hikes. Most are offered on weekends—with a few midday hikes being offered on select dates—and cover diverse terrain, ranging from the coast to Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, and from the Tijuana Estuary to Palomar Mountain.

  • New hikes in Cleveland National Forest, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, and several other locations including Gremlin Way Trailhead in Dictionary Hill Open Space Preserve. 
  • Once a month, the Canyoneers will lead a mid-week hike to locations that are often crowded on weekends due to limited access. Examples include Equestrian Trail in Elfin Forest Recreational Reserve (November 13) and Luelf Pond Preserve in Ramona (May 12). 
  • The desert hikes that are scheduled on consecutive days allow for camping opportunities, reducing the amount of driving necessary to get to both hikes. The desert at night is a special treat. 
  • Some trails offer shorter hikes with little elevation change—good for younger hikers—and some very flat and paved hikes that are perfect for strollers and anyone with a disability. One example is the Batiquitos Lagoon Gabbiano Trailhead (September 14). 
  • If the weather cooperates, there’s a chance to see waterfalls on Cibbets Flat to Kitchen Creek Falls hike (February 9) and the Green Valley Falls Loop (June 28). Green Valley Falls is an amazing hike and has pools of water that are fun to play in!
  • Hikes in some of the most interesting geological areas in Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, including Fish Creek/Split Mountain (January 4) and Canyon Sin Nombre (February 8)—perfect for slot canyon fans. 

And if you have kids, there is a special program for students and classes too!

“Kids are most inspired by nature when they get outside and experience it for themselves—seeing a Monarch butterfly or a coast live oak in person helps bring to life what they’re learning in the classroom,” said Judy Gradwohl, president and CEO of the San Diego Natural History Museum. 

The program is made possible with support from Subaru of America, who is generously supporting the Canyoneer hiking program for the fourth year in a row.

The Museum aims to serve approximately 550 students this year through the program. Space is limited on the hikes. For more information or to book a hike, visit sdnat.org/schoolnaturehikes or call 619.255.0349. 

If you are looking for books about hiking and exploring the many awesome trails and cool nature spots in San Diego County here are two books I completely recommend!

This is my personal favorite and has TON of kid and family-friendly hikes!

Porchlight Community Services

Screen Shot 2019-08-08 at 11.02.54 PM.pngFor those of you who have read my blog for a while, you know that food insecurity is a cause near and dear to my heart.

In San Diego County, one in seven families experience food insecurity. Food insecurity means you’re not sure where your next healthy, nutritious meal is coming from. It means you probably don’t have extra cans in your cupboard, or that you need to be more than just a little creative when it comes to cooking that a few days before payday.

Food insecurity is an issue that I feel very strongly about. No one should be hungry, and no one should have to eat mass-produced, poorly made, food devoid of nutritional just to fill their belly. Quality, nutritious food should be available to anyone and everyone at an affordable price.

That is one reason I am so excited to share with you today about an awesome organization in Linda Vista called Porchlight Community Services.

Porchlight Community Services is different from a lot of other food organizations in that they are a food rescue organization. They work with produce distributors, grocery stores, and bakery to rescue food that is otherwise destined for the dumpster.

Next time you’re at the grocery store take a look at all the fruit, all the produce, all the baked goods. The likelihood of all of those items will sell before their pull date is slim.

So when items are pulled off the shelf prior to their expiration date, they are frequently thrown in the trash. That trash heads to the landfill. Grocery store, bakeries, food distributors do not compost their unwanted food. Food rescue agencies like Porchlight Community Services pick up the food (that is still good, by the way, pull dates are usually arbitrary, and only affect the appearance of the food, not it’s quality or viability). They then take the food back to their offices where it is gone over to make sure that it is still quality, and edible. And it is been distributed to families who support Porchlight Community Services mission.

Screen Shot 2019-08-08 at 11.14.09 PM.pngProduce that can not be distributed (it’s leftover at the end of the event), is often donated to neighbors with animals, or local animal organizations. Once again, eliminating food waste and helping others,

Some of the companies that donate to Porchlight Community Services include Ralphs, Boudin Bakery, Wal-Mart, Starry Lane Bakery, and California Produce.

Porchlight Community Services is not your average food bank or pull date co-op. There is no minimum or maximum amount of money your family needs to make to participate. Some people who shop at Porchlight do so because they believe in the mission of keeping food out of landfills (like my family- it hurts my heart to see perfectly good food go to waste). Some people go to Porchlight Community Services because they are in need of wholesome nutritious groceries that fit a specialized diet (like Gluten-free or Dairy-free) but can’t afford to shell out money every week or two for the costly groceries at a mainstream grocery store.  Some people are in a tight spot and need to stretch what little money they have until payday.

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An example of past food items available

Distributions are usually held weekly. You can find out about upcoming events here on their website, or follow them on Facebook.

All funds that are raised go towards paying rent and utilities- to keep the Mission of feeding others going. 

If you are interested in helping Porchlight Community Services, they are always looking for volunteers to help unload food as it comes in on distribution days, organize and stock shelves, refrigerators, and freezers.

They also need help volunteering with event prep- setting up tables and bins.

This might be a good opportunity for girl scout troops or other civic organizations! Contact Porchlight Community Services here to find out about more volunteer opportunities.