Head to the waterfront this Friday to enjoy America’s biggest balloon parade! On December 26 at 3pm, the scenic streets of downtown San Diego will come alive for the 2014 Port of San Diego Big Bay Balloon Parade. This annual family-friendly event brings together world class marching bands, beautiful floats, entertaining drill teams, and a procession of enormous balloons – more than any other parade in the country! Over 100,000 street-side spectators are expected to enjoy the parade this year, along with a nationwide television audience.
The parade is just one of many signature events for the National University Holiday Bowl’s bowl-week festival of events; it’s also a fundraising event for the non-profit San Diego Bowl Game Association, which is responsible for some of the nation’s most exciting and entertaining bowl games and festivities (including today’s Poinsettia Bowl!).
The best viewing for the parade is in the grandstand seating near the Maritime Museum, as this is where the marching bands and specialty units will be performing. Anywhere along the route will offer excellent views, though; the parade will officially start at the County Administration Building on Harbor Dr. and then run south on Harbor, ending near Seaport Village. The festivities will begin at 2:45pm in the television area with the finals of the 17th annual Wienerschnitzel Wiener Nationals and the Bumble Bee Seafoods 5K. The parade telecast can be seen locally on Channel 4 San Diego.
Each grandstand ticket is $20 and street-side viewing is free of charge; tickets ordered after December 10th are will-call only. Children 3 & under do not need a ticket if they will be sitting on your lap. Parking is available in one of the many metered or pay parking lots in the downtown area. The best parking lot is at the corner of Pacific Highway
& Broadway. Visit the parade website for ticket ordering and a detailed parade route map.
[images: portofsandiego.org, utsandiego.com]
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