Live music, crawfish and New Orleans culture will spice up San Diego’s Spanish Landing Park this weekend as the Louisiana-themed Gator by the Bay festival sweeps in.
The four-day event takes place Thursday through Sunday on North Harbor Drive – from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Thursday, 3:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. Friday, 10:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Saturday and 10:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. on Sunday, which also happens to be Mother’s Day.
One-day tickets cost between $25 and $40, depending on the day you choose to go. Multi-day passes are also available. Kids age 17 and under get in for free when accompanied by a paid adult.
The lively festival will boast a hefty line-up of blues and jazz music. This year’s long list of participating performers can be seen here.
Food will also take center stage at Gator by the Bay, with “Taste of Louisiana” cooking demonstrations that’ll highlight the secrets of flavorful, hearty Southern cooking. Chefs from the San Diego Mesa College Culinary Arts Department will show attendees how to prepare Etouffee, jambalaya and other Southern specialties.
The festival’s French Quarter Food Court will boil 10,000 pounds of crawfish over the weekend plus other fresh and spicy Louisiana eats such as po’ boys, hot links, gumbo cobbler and gator on a stick, among other things.
Kid-friendly activities will go down at a special spot dubbed the “Castle Lawn,” which includes a hat-making station, face-painting, a mini Mardi Gras parade and lots of music and dancing.
Attendees will also have a chance to learn about Louisiana culture at the Bayou Grove Stage where musicians will share their craft, answer questions about their instruments and recount personal stories of the bayou life.
Finally, the festival’s marketplace will boast many unique vendors selling everything from art, jewelry and clothing to musical instruments and gourmet food products.