Archive for the ‘Country’ Category

8th Annual San Diego Beer Week
November 4-13
San Diego County

This 10-day festival celebrates the prominence of craft beer in San Diego County. During these ten days, restaurants, bars, breweries, and other businesses will host special events and hold special deals all pertaining to craft beer. Check the website for a list of all events and businesses participating in San Diego Beer Week.

Rivertucky 2016 Release
12:00 pm – 10:00 pm, November 8
Inland Empire Brewing Company, Riverside

This Tuesday, Inland Empire Brewing will release their coveted barrel-aged ale. Stop on by and enjoy it at the tasting room, or buy bottles to-go.

37th Annual Ocean Beach Restaurant Walk
5:00 pm – 9:00 pm, November 8
Main Street, Ocean Beach, San Diego

Stroll through historic Ocean Beach and sample food from the local restaurants this Wednesday evening. $25 allows you to sample all the food you can eat from participating businesses while supplies last.

Punk Rock Tuesdays
8:00 pm – 2:00 am, November 8
Blacklight District Lounge, Long Beach

Enjoy a FREE local punk rock show this Tuesday night in Long Beach. No one under 21 may enter.

Avengers Superheroes Half Marathon Weekend
10:00 am – 12:00 am, November 10
5:30 am – 8:00 pm, November 11
5:30 am – 4:00 pm, November 12
5:30 am – 11:30 am, November 13
Disneyland Resort, Anaheim

The Avengers Superheroes Half Marathon returns this weekend with a plethora of things to see and do. Participate in any of the races, check out the health & fitness expo, and stick around for after-parties throughout the weekend. The website has an extensive list of everything going on this weekend, so consult with the website for more details.

Orange County Whisky Fest
6:00 pm – 8:30 pm, November 10
Crevier Classic Cars, Costa Mesa

Sip on fancy cocktails this Thursday night in Costa Mesa. General admission costs $75 and starts at 7pm, while VIP admission costs $100 and starts at 6pm. All attendees receive unlimited food and drinks for the duration of the event while supplies last. No one under 21 may attend.

Downtown Los Angeles Art Walk (Second Thursdays)
6:00 pm – 10:00 pm, November 10
Downtown Los Angeles

This free monthly event takes place over many blocks in Downtown Los Angeles. Many galleries will open late, and some parking lots will contain more art, vendors, food trucks, entertainment, and more. Unless you know business owners, free parking barely exists in Downtown LA, although some meters only operate until 8pm. First-time visitors should attend with someone who has gone here prior.

Pacific Media Expo 2016
12:00 pm – 1:00 am, November 11
9:00 am – 1:00 am, November 12
9:00 am – 7:00 pm, November 13
Pasadena Convention Center, Pasadena

Immerse yourself in Eastern culture at this expo for all things Asian this weekend at the Pasadena Convention Center. At this all-ages expo, attendees will encounter art, music, dance, entertainment, cosplay, fashion, anime, manga, comics, video games, merchandise, accessories, food, drinks, treats, and much more. Adult admission costs $40 for Saturday, $30 for Friday or Sunday, or $65 for the entire weekend. Children 6-12 enter for $30, while children 5 & under enter for free with paid adult admission.

Day ONE: “HA! HA!” Nelson IPA
12:00 pm – 11:00 pm, November 11
El Segundo Brewing, El Segundo

El Segundo Brewing will release a fresh IPA this Friday. Stop on by their tasting room and enjoy it there, or buy some bottles to-go.

Bang Boom Bash
6:00 pm – 12:00 am, November 11
2:00 pm – 12:00 am, November 12
Seaport Marina Hotel, Long Beach

Music, burlesque, and booze all collide in one event this weekend in Long Beach. Admission ranges from $15 to $50 – check the website for prices and what each price gets you. No one under 21 may attend.

Barb Wire Dolls: Live in Laguna Niguel
8:00 pm – 1:00 am, November 11
The Karman Bar, Laguna Niguel

Enjoy a local rock show this Friday night in Laguna Niguel. The cover for this show costs $10. No one under 21 may enter.

Into the Wild Limestone Eco Challenge 12k/20k
7:00 am – 11:00 am, November 12
Limestone Canyon Regional Park, Silverado

Seeking a challenging run through the wilderness? Check out Into The Wild, a 12k/20k course running through trails of rocks, dirt, and more uneven ground. Registration for the 12k costs $60 presale or $65 on the day of the run. Registration for the 20k costs $75 presale or $80 on the day of the run.

Beach Streets: Midtown
10:00 am – 5:00 pm, March 19
Broadway, Long Beach

Long Beach has its own version of a ciclovia where the city officials closes a portion of the city to vehicular traffic to allow pedestrians and bicyclists to freely roam the streets. This Saturday, that will occur down Anaheim Street from Pacific Coast Highway through MacArthur Park. Plan your commute accordingly.

Repticon Los Angeles
9:00 am – 5:00 pm, November 12
10:00 am – 4:00 pm, November 13
OC Fair & Event Center, Costa Mesa

Check out two days of reptiles, amphibians, exotic pets, pet products, seminars, and more this weekend at the OC Fair & Event Center in Costa Mesa. General admission starts at 10am and costs $15 for both days, $10 for one day, or $5 for children. Online-only VIP admission costs $12 for adults or $5 for children, allows admission to both days, and allows entry at 9am on Saturday.

2016 Indio California BBQ State Championship & Festival
10:00 am – 5:00 pm, November 12
The Lights at Indio Golf Course, Indio

Over 100 teams of grill masters will gather from around the country to serve up their finest BBQ and compete for cash, prizes, and titles. Free to attend for all ages, visitors can purchase barbecue samples from any of the participants, as well as food and drinks from other vendors.

Fall 2016 Jackalope Art & Craft Fair – Pasadena
10:00 am – 5:00 pm, November 12-13
Central Park, Pasadena

Free to attend for all ages, this two-day arts & crafts fair will feature local artisans, curators, food trucks, live music, and more.

Barrel-Aged Speedway Stout Release Party
11:00 am – 10:00 pm, November 12
AleSmith Brewing, San Diego

Come taste one of San Diego’s most coveted brews this Saturday at the AleSmith tasting room in San Diego. They will also have a handful of other variations of this brew on tap for you to try.

9th Stone Homebrew Competition & AHA Rally
11:00 am – 2:00 pm, November 12
Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens, Liberty Station, San Diego

Admission to this homebrewing event costs $38, and includes a one-year membership to the American Homebrewers Association, unlimited tastings of this year’s homebrew entries, a souvenir glass, and raffle drawings.

2nd Annual San Diego Sausage & Beer Festival
11:30 am – 4:30 pm, November 12
NTC Liberty Station, San Diego

Sample sausages and beers this Saturday afternoon in San Diego. Tickets cost $65 presale or $85 at the door, and grants you access to unlimited sausage and beer samples while supplies last. No one under 21 may attend.

Salute Beer Festival
11:30 am – 4:30 pm, November 12
Phoenix Club, Anaheim

In honor of Veteran’s Day, drink lots of beer in Anaheim this Saturday afternoon. This beer festival allows you to sample unlimited beers while supplies last, as well as check out a handful of military-themed vendors, selling apparel, accessories, and more. General admission costs $55 and starts at 1pm, while VIP admission costs $75 and starts at 11:30am. Bring cash for food, and dress for warm weather. No one under 21 may attend.

Los Angeles Beer Fest (Fall Edition)
12:00 pm – 4:00 pm, November 12
LA Center Studios, Los Angeles

Everyone’s favorite drunk fest returns to Los Angeles this Saturday. This festival allows attendees to drink unlimited beers while enjoying live music from local bands. Food trucks will sell their delicious foods to hungry guests. General admission costs $40 and starts at 1pm, while VIP admission costs $50 and starts at 12pm. All admission comes with unlimited beer pours, but does not include parking. No one under 21 may attend.

Driftwood Festival
12:00 pm – 9:00 pm, November 12
Doheny State Beach, Dana Point

The organizers behind Orange County Brew Ha Ha bring to you this new festival unlike anything ever before. This festival combines craft beer, wine, food, the beach, and country music all in one location. With over a hundred different beers and wines to sip on, you will not run out of different things to try here. Admission ranges from $49 to $249 – see the website for a breakdown of the prices and what they get you. All guests receive unlimited beer and wine tasters while supplies last. Food comes at cost, so guests should bring extra cash for food here. No one under 21 may attend.

Wiens Brewing 4th Anniversary
12:00 pm – 10:00 pm, November 12
Wiens Brewing, Temecula

Temecula’s Wiens Brewing turns four years old this week, and to celebrate, they will have special beers at their tasting room this Saturday.

Totally 80’s: Packinghouse Brewing’s 6th Anniversary
1:00 pm – 10:00 pm, November 12
Packinghouse Brewing, Riverside

Packinghouse Brewing turns six years old this week, and to celebrate, they will have a free celebration at their tasting room in Riverside this Saturday. Throughout the day, Packinghouse will have live music, special beer releases, and mobile food vendors.

Orange County’s 3rd Annual Beard & Moustache Competition
3:00 pm – 9:00 pm, November 12
The Rinks, Irvine

Movember participants, listen up! Show off your wicked facial hair at this competition for all things hairy this Friday night in Huntington Beach, featuring a handful of categories to enter into to win cash prizes. In addition to the fabulous styles, visitors will find food, a full bar, live music, vendors, and more. Registration costs $15, while spectators may enter for $5.

Foam Glow 5k – San Diego
5:30 pm – 9:30 pm, November 12
Sleep Train Amphitheatre, Chula Vista

Tired of the same 5k run everywhere? If you have had your fill of bubble runs and glow runs, try your hand at the Foam Glow. Participants wear all white and run through colored foam in this nighttime 5k race complete with flashing neon lights and loud dance music. Registration costs $50, and all levels of runners may participate. Space will fill up fast, so register early, and try to carpool to this event.

Art Crawl Experience
6:00 pm – 10:00 pm, November 12
Center Street Promenade, Downtown Anaheim

Downtown Anahiem will see a variety of activities and exhibits this Saturday night. Visitors can expect to find tons of art exhibits, live music, food, food trucks, drinks, yoga, dance, and more. Visitors may park for free in the parking structure located at S Clementine Street and W Oak Street.

Presidential Ska-lection
7:00 pm – 12:00 am, November 12
Out Of The Park Pizza, Anaheim

A free and all-ages local ska show will take place in Anaheim Hills this Saturday night.

Gonzo’s Bday Bash
8:00 pm – 2:00 am, November 12
Characters Sports Bar, Pomona

The owner of Pomona’s Characters Sports Bar will celebrate his birthday this week with some local punk rock Saturday night. The cover for this show costs $13. No one under 21 may enter. Guests can find plenty of free street parking in the area and can avoid paying to park in the adjacent lot.

1st Annual California Vegetarian Food Festival
10:00 am – 5:00 pm, November 13
Raleigh Studios, Hollywood

A vegan vegetarian festival comes to Hollywood this Sunday afternoon, complete with food, seminars, a kids area, live music, fitness activities, and more. General admission costs $30 and grants generic access to the event space. VIP admission costs $50 and provides a goodie bag, a drink ticket, and access to VIP areas. Children under 10 enter for free with a paid adult admission.

17th Annual Japanese Food Festival
11:00 am – 4:00 pm, November 13
Hilton, Universal City

$55 presale or $70 at the door nets you all-you-can-eat admission to this 5-hour Japanese food fest and a goodie bag. Guests will chow down on sushi, ramen, soba noodles, beef bowls, and more, while adults can sip sake, beer, shochu, wine, and more (alcohol not included with admission). During this time, a number of chefs will showcase cooking demos. The parking lot across the street normally costs $5 to park, but sometimes this price changes, so have cash ready.

Patchwork Indie Arts & Crafts Festival
11:00 am – 5:00 pm, November 13
Marine Stadium, Long Beach

This semi-annual arts & crafts fair consists of a series of Sunday fests at different locations: Long Beach, Oakland, and Santa Ana. As with any typical arts & crafts fair, Patchwork will feature many traditional forms of art and merchandise, but also mixes in alternative art – thinking outside the box, or Rebel Art. Featuring clothing, accessories, home goods, jewelry, pet items, and more, this FREE fest caters to a wide & diverse crowd. Food trucks will serve guests during the fest. Always remember to carry cash, since most vendors only accept cash. The surrounding neighborhood contains plenty of free street parking.

I Love Poke Festival
12:00 pm – 3:00 pm, November 13
Hotel Irvine, Irvine

Sample the best in island cuisine at this tasting event this Sunday afternoon in Irvine. Over 20 different chefs/restaurants will attend to serve food samples to attendees, while local chefs will compete in a poke competition, allowing attendees to sample their food too. Tickets to this all-ages tasting event cost $75, which includes unlimited food samples while supplies last. All attendees must take care of their own parking and transportation.

4th Annual Sip’n’Shuck
2:00 pm – 6:00 pm, November 13
The Deck on Laguna Beach, Laguna Beach

Enjoy fresh oysters, live entertainment, champagnes, wines, spirits, and more this Sunday afternoon in Laguna Beach. Admission costs $95 presale or $120 at the door, and provides unlimited food and drinks while supplies last. No one under 21 may attend.

Wild Goose Tavern’s 4th Anniversary Party
3:00 pm – 8:00 pm, November 13
Wild Goose Tavern, Costa Mesa

Wild Goose Tavern turns four years old this weekend, and to celebrate, they will have a party at their place in Costa Mesa this Sunday. During the first hour, guests will receive complimentary appetizers. Throughout the night, they will have a silent auction, raffles, merchandise for sale, and more. A portion of food sales will go towards a charity too. This event has no cover charge – simply show up and have a good time.

Santa Monica 9th Annual Wine & Food Festival
4:00 pm – 7:00 pm, November 13
Museum of Flying, Santa Monica

Enjoy food and wine this Sunday evening in Santa Monica. Admission costs $125 presale or $150 at the door, and provides unlimited samples while supplies last. The venue contains plenty of free parking. No one under 21 may attend.

Choking Victim: Live in Santa Ana
7:00 pm – 12:00 am, November 13
The Observatory, Santa Ana

Legendary punk rock band Choking Victim will reunite for a rare show this Sunday night in Anaheim. Tickets to this all-ages show cost $20. Arrive early to park at the venue’s parking lot for free. Arrive too late, and end up parking in a lot down the street for $10 per vehicle.

Coincidentally landing at the end of American Craft Beer Week, Hangar 24 Brewery celebrated their 6th anniversary with a two-day AirFest and beer festival at Redlands Airport this past weekend. This anniversary celebration took place just across the street from the Hangar 24 tasting room, allowing guests to roam much of the airport grounds to view all the airplanes on exhibit, and check out all the food and beer available. All around the festival area, all of the attractions evenly spread out, from the food vendors to the beer tents to the airplanes on display and more. Throughout the day, live music would occur on the main stage, and various aerial acrobatics would occur overhead, demonstrating cool stunts performed in airplanes.

New this year (or not marketed much last year), AirFest lasted two days, starting on Friday afternoon, and running for most of the day Saturday. Naturally, admission for Saturday cost more than Friday. This year, I attended on the Friday of the celebration; however, I could tell that most of the fun would occur on Saturday. Some of the main attractions that occurred on Saturday for AirFest included the 30+ varieties of beer that they advertised, more varieties of aerial acrobatics, a fireworks show at night, longer hours, and more well-known music acts. On Friday, we only got ten varieties of beer, and besides the anniversary beer, anyone could obtain any of these beers at any time at the tasting room. Although I enjoyed the air shows, they started to get stale halfway through the runs. The night also did not feature any illuminating acts – just a staged airplane stunt. The beers also stopped way earlier than I recall, as beers kept going until after 9pm last year. Everclear also headlined the music on Saturday, whereas JT Hodges headlined the music on Friday. Lastly, Friday just did not have that many people there. Last year, the festival contained tons of people everywhere. Friday felt dead, as if Hangar 24 did not advertise the Friday event. At least Hangar 24 stepped it up with the food and merchandise vendors, now adding 400% more vendors than last year.

As far as the music went, Friday mainly revolved around country music. Country bands like Redneck Rodeo and HER played that beer-drinking music that everyone loves.

Aerial stunts took place throughout the day, giving everyone a reason to not slouch and look up. These pilots always amaze everyone viewing, and serve as great interruptions to groups of people. After a few hours though, most of the stunts start to look the same. Allegedly, Saturday’s stunts featured a lot more danger and variety.

Once all that ended, we got to see some parachuters, and one of them deployed a flag during the national anthem playing on the ground floor.

Some more aerial acrobatics occurred while waiting for the next music act to set up.

Country singer JT Hodges headlined the night with two sets. His sets contained a mix of his own original songs and cover songs. While he performed, little activity occurred elsewhere around the festival, as he captured the attention of nearly everyone present.

As I suggested to everyone I encountered, the sunset out here looks beautiful, and everyone should always seek to capture a great photo of this moment.

Between JT Hodges’ two sets, one final air show took place. Unfortunately, the fireworks show only occurred on Saturday.

I remember having the time of my life at last year’s AirFest. This time, my choice of attending on Friday may have soured my perception of this event, though I cannot say the same for anyone else that attended on Friday only. Perhaps the lack of true content compared to a previous year may have lowered my perception. Perhaps last year’s event went so well that it spoiled me from future events. Since the weekend, I have heard mixed reviews of this and last year’s AirFest. As best as I can say, just like the president, you cannot please everyone. Just do the best you can to inflict the greatest good for the greatest amount of people. Hangar 24 always does their best, but I think at least for the Friday event, it should wither away and leave everything to Saturday.

Las Vegas – The Entertainment Capital of the World. By large a tourist attraction, Las Vegas sees millions of tourists annually. Of all the visitors, what can you expect them to answer as the reason to going to Las Vegas? Clubs? Casinos? Dining? Shows? Marriage? Whatever the reason, travelers often only conceive these main reasons for going. They often lose sight of the less frequent reasons for visiting Las Vegas. Has anyone considered shopping? How about looking around the outskirts of The Strip? Ever consider rock-climbing? Or do you want to check out a music show? I do not refer to the grand shows, like Cirque du Soleil, but the smaller, more intimate music shows. Many people do not consider Las Vegas for doing things small, but when it happens, of course it happens right. Even a small, niche music genre, like punk rock, has found a few places to call home in Sin City. In the case of punk rock, it lives on at the Las Vegas Country Saloon.

Roid Rage

At the Las Vegas Country Saloon on Fremont Street in Downtown Las Vegas, the entrance tells the story of two separate event spaces. Initially, the entrance places guests in the bar & lounge area, typically with a live DJ spinning the newest beats. Beyond a door to the side lies the LVCS music hall, complete with a bar, tables, open space, and the stage. Set up similarly to House of Blues, when no act occupies the stage, tables fill the room for guests to enjoy food & drinks. Show acts here vary in genre, from rap to pop to jazz and more. Invariably, LVCS features a punk rock show monthly, often with local bands as openers to headliners. Some previous headliners include Lower Class Brats and D.I., while some future shows include Angry Samoans and Jodie Foster’s Army (JFA).

Shotguns ‘N Gasoline

Although located in Downtown, LVCS follows standard bar procedures. During special events, no one under 21 may enter. Guests also have to find their own parking – nearby parking structures charge according to the structure owner, but a few streets down enforce street parking meters only until 8pm. Most shows cost a reasonable price, regardless of the headliner. Expect to get in on the day of the show for under $20 for most shows. They even allow reentry as long as you leave the wristband on you. For a venue in Las Vegas, they have the power to charge exorbitant prices to guests and enforce stricter rules, like a dress code. But for remaining lenient on rules and prices as they do, LVCS shines as a venue worth visiting as often as possible. The next time you visit Las Vegas, check out a show or two at the Las Vegas Country Saloon.


The American Wake is an Irish Rock band from Long Beach and Orange County. If you have heard any song from Flogging Molly or The Pogues, then you will know exactly what The American Wake sounds like. The American Wake also has some country and punk rock influences, covering songs like The Devil Went Down to Georgia and Add It Up. For as many original songs as they have, The American Wake will cover songs at their shows, including songs you would not expect like Billie Jean and Livin’ On A Prayer. Most of their covers are faster versions, such as when they play Come On Eileen or Little Lion Man.

The American Wake currently plays at three core locations: Auld Dubliner Long Beach, Gallagher’s Huntington Beach (usually $5 cover), and Silky Sullivans Fountain Valley. Their sets are usually 45 minutes starting at 10pm, 11pm, and 12am. Sets are typically ended with their song “Oh My Guinness!” and their famous Shot Glass of Guinness game. During this song, lead singer Eric Ree calls out to the audience for anyone with a (near) full pint of Guinness to come up to the stage for a chugging contest. There is no actual prize, only pride on the line. Recently, The American Wake has been following “Oh My Guinness!” with covers of The Violent Femmes, either Kiss Off, Add It Up, or Blister In The Sun.

The American Wake @ The Auld Dubliner, Long Beach

The American Wake @ Silky Sullivans

The American Wake plays their greatest show at the annual Orange International Street Fair (OISF) on Labor Day weekend. It is only at the OISF that The American Wake will sell their newest album, sell merchandise in person, and play fest songs that they would not play at their regular shows, such as their version of Seven Drunken Nights. Mandolin player Frank LeBlanc also brings his daughter, who plays the drums as well as drummer Tod Warren does. Their show at the OISF is one for the ages and cannot be missed by anyone who loves music and having a good time. Watch this video of their original song “She Swears Like A Sailor” performed at the OISF (with their former drummer):

To find out where The American Wake will be playing next, like them on Facebook! I promise you a fun time with your friends.

You should not judge a book by its cover. If you do, you may miss these treasures right in the middle of our neighborhoods. Without prior knowledge of what to look for, you may drive right by it. One of Orange County’s most famous restaurants is situated in what appears as an office building from the outside. Once you step inside, a new world unfolds before you… a world known as The Ranch Restaurant & Saloon.

The Ranch Restaurant & Saloon features cuisine from all regions of America. A glance at the menu would give the impression of a steakhouse. Further inspection of the menu reveals that Foie Gras is available as well. Knowing that foie gras will be banned in California soon, I did not hesitate to send the order in.

The Ranch’s Seared Hudson Valley Foie Gras comes with Honeycrisp Apple Bread Pudding, Hen of the Woods Mushrooms, and a Port Compote. For the full flavor rush, get a little of every layer – combine the compote, bread pudding, mushrooms, and foie gras. You can experience this explosion of all the senses working together to create a soothing symphony for $20 at The Ranch Restaurant in Anaheim. Get on over here quick – you only have a few days until it goes away!