Haunted Happenings This HalloWeekend

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Halloween weekend kicks off tomorrow in San Diego! Still unsure of where to show off your costume? As always, I put off my costume planning until last minute. But for those of you who planned it out right- there are some pretty epic prizes for costume contests out around town that one of you should win! Here are some haunted happenings around San Diego that will surely leave you dying for more!

Downtown 

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Barleymash
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Hard Rock Hotel
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San Diego Zombie Crawl in the Gaslamp
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Pier Pressure Titanic Masquerade
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Haunted Hotel
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House of Blues Halloween Block Party
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Halloweird at Stingaree
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Hillcrest

Uptown
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North Park

West Coast Tavern
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Wang’s
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SoundDiego Live Halloween Bash
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True North
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Pacific Beach

PB Alehouse
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PB Shore Club
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North County

Haunted Harrah’s Casino
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Scream Zone
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I hope this post gives you some good ideas of what to do this weekend. Have an awesome Halloween filled with costumes, fun and thrills! But as always – don’t drink and drive!

7 Fall Activities in San Diego!

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Well, we finally had a fall day here in San Diego. I don’t know about you, but give me a mere 73 degree day with a cloudy morning and I will almost do backflips! I wore a sweater today, as did most of my office, and it is finally feeling like Fall is upon us. Next thing on my agenda is to buy some cute boots!

If a cloudy day didn’t do it for you, here are a few activities around town to get you in the fall spirit:

Julian, CAJust about an hour away lies the gold mining town of Julian. Here you can go apple picking, wine tasting, and peruse through cute shops on Main Street all while feeling the cool crisp mountain air. Be sure to check the weather beforehand to make sure you go on a cool day. if you head up in late November/December, you might even get to see snow!

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Bernardo Winery 37th Annual Fall Craft Fair- October 18-19th -With Christmas being right around the corner, this might be the perfect place to get ahead on Christmas shopping for unique crafts, soaps, foods for family and friends alike! Located at the Bernardo Winery in Rancho Bernardo with over 125 vendors,you can find a present for someone and get in the Fall spirit all at the same time! But if you are out of luck, you can always enjoy some wine tasting at the 100+ year old winery.
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Bates Nut Farm -Throughout the month of October, head up to Bates (near Valley View Casino) for a day at the pumpkin patch. Pick your own pumpkin, look through their store for delicious goodies and crafts, and feed the farm animals. They have plenty of activities on the weekends including a costume contest (for humans and dogs), so check their calendar for more details!
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Watch Football -No sport says “FALL” in America like Football. Check out my NFL football bar guide to cheer on your team all while enjoying sunny San Diego.

To enjoy the more spooky aspect of Fall, here are three places you might want to experience!

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The Haunted Hotel -If you’re into being trapped and scared in narrow corridors and zombie filled rooms, this might be the spot for you. The Haunted Hotel is located near Barleymash in the Gaslamp Quarter. (I will never check this out- so you will have to fill me in on what you think!) It runs through November 1st, so you’ve got a few weeks!

The Haunted Trails -I once attempted to go to this with my best friends in High School, which resulted in me chickening out and ruining it for everyone (which resulted in a long standing inside joke) The Haunted Trail is in Balboa Park and until November 1st also. Enjoy!

The Scream Zone -Ah, yet another event I will not be attending. Located at the Del Mar Fairgrounds, there are multiple “activites” to participate in, including the Zombie Paintball Safari, House of Horror and Haunted Hayride. Be prepared to scream.

Tomato Basil Spaghetti Squash Bake

Last weekend I had the girls over for a girls night. Since I have a serious obsession with fall (despite still being in the 90s here), I wanted to make a fall dish. More specifically, I wanted to try out a spaghetti squash recipe, as that seems to be the big craze these days. In between looking at fall scenes, girls night ideas, and autumn dishes on Pinterest, I found something that piqued my interest: a Tomato Basil Squash Bake. I must say, it was a total hit with my friends and my boyfriend. I had to share this with anyone who is looking to try a little Fall recipe. The best part? Not too many ingredients, and easy to make!! DSC_0753

Tomato Basil Squash Bake

Ingredients 1 medium-sized spaghetti squash 2 large tomatoes (I would recommend using 3 if you like tomatoes) Kosher Salt Garlic Powder Onion Powder 8oz of Fancy shredded Mexican cheese blend Fresh Basil

First you need to cook the squash. I would recommend baking it in the oven, but if you are in a rush, I read you can cook it in the microwave in less than half the time. If you are baking it whole, punch holes in the squash with a fork so it doesn’t burst in the oven. Place on a cookie sheet and bake for an hour at 350 degrees.

Once baked, cut squash in half and let it cool. Once cool, remove the seeds and scrape the contents of the squash with a fork. (This was a new experience for me- and I had no idea how much “spaghetti” would come from just one squash!).

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Good news- the hardest part is over! Spray a 9×11 casserole dish with non-stick spray. Next, place a layer of the squash in the dish, so the bottom is covered. Then evenly distribute the tomato slices on top of the squash, followed by a little kosher salt, garlic & onion powders, and a layer of cheese. Repeat once more with the layer of squash, tomatoes, spices and cheese. For the top layer, add the remainder of the squash, along with the last of the cheese and the spices. Once you are done layering up, its time to pop it in the oven! DSC_0757 Bake in the oven at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Top with fresh basil once complete, and this delicious crowd pleaser is ready to be served! DSC_0763 The next time I make this I plan on using artichokes and possibly chicken, because I am an artichoke fiend! I hope you enjoy this dish, and would love to hear from you! Happy Autumn to all!!

What’s Happening this Weekend – Oct 3rd-5th

We are entering another action packed weekend here in San Diego! Not sure how to spend your glorious days off? Here are the biggest events going on around town. The links to each event are provided in the title.

Miramar Air Show
Friday – Sunday Oct 3-5th 8am-8:45pm

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The Miramar Air Show is the largest Air Show in the United States. Now that is something for San Diego to be proud of! I will be there this weekend, and have always found it to be a great event.  Every year I walk away with a renewed sense of pride for our military. The government cancelled last year due to the furloughs, but it is back in action this year and I am so ready to see the Blue Angels in action! The theme this year is “Celebrating the Marine Air Ground Task Force.” FYI- parking and admission is FREE.

Pacific Beach Fest
Saturday Oct 4th 11am-7pm

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This beach bash is perfect for anyone looking to enjoy all that San Diego beaches have to offer. Featuring a Beach Fish Taco Competition, surf finals, a volleyball tournament, a 5k, and of course, food, you will not run out of things to do at the Pacific Beachfest! Admission is free for this all-out goodbye to summer beach event!

North Park Community Garage Sale
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aturday Oct 4th  8am-12pm

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75 houses around North Park will be participating! You never know- you might stumble across something that could be featured on Antique’s Roadshow!

Eagles Perform at Viejas Arena
Saturday Oct 4th 8pm

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I can almost hear “Hotel California” from here… What a great concert to be at for those lucky ticket holders!

Julian Apple Fest 2014
Saturday Oct 4th 10am-5pm
Sunday    Oct 5 10am-5pm 

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If this doesn’t get you into the Fall spirit, I don’t know what will! This is a two day celebration held at the Menghini Winery that features dancing, games, a beer/wine garden, tons of food, and of course, apples and apple pie. Welcome Fall with open arms in Julian!

Del Mar Taste & Art Stroll
Sunday Oct 5th 10am-5pm

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Held in the heart of Del Mar, it gives you the chance to browse at pieces from local artists, listen to live music, stroll through the community, and taste some delicious bites at participating restaurants. Wash it all down with some beer and wine tastings. Dogs are welcome!

OKTOBERFEST around the County!

With plenty of Oktoberfest activities being thrown around town, there may be a drought in San Diego, but its not in bier! Enjoy!

Oktoberfest in El Cajon
Saturday Oct 4th- 12-10pm
Sunday    Oct 5th 12-9pm

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La Mesa Oktoberfest
Friday Oct      3rd 11am-9pm
Saturday Oct 4th 11am-9pm
Sunday Oct    5th 12-5pm

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Carlsbad Oktoberfest
Saturday Oct 4th 12-10pm

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Ramona Oktoberfest
Saturday Oct 4th – 1pm-10pm

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Have a wonderful weekend, and if you have any events to add, please let me know! :)

The Brunch at Tractor Room

A while back my good friend Mike recommended the Tractor Room in Hillcrest, which is run by the same owners as Hash House. The first time we were introduced to the Hash House was during a “hangover” breakfast in Vegas and we absolutely loved it. Last Saturday my boyfriend and I were craving a unique breakfast and were wanting to try something new, so we headed over to Hillcrest to give the Tractor Room a go. I am so glad we did- thanks Mike!

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If you are looking for ginormous portions, delicious food and amazing presentation, the Tractor Room is definitely the right place for you. It’s a smaller restaurant with an outdoor patio and a dark interior dining room with walls covered with abstract animal heads and tractor memorabilia. “A” for ambience! Along the side of the building, you can grab some free coffee and play an intense round of ping-pong while you wait to be sat! (that’s what we did!)

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As we were deciding what to order, eye-catching meals were passing us left and right. A table to our right ordered the Fried Chicken Waffle Tower and Nutmeg French Toast. I regret not taking a picture of the orders because the presentation was spectacular. Be prepared for a meal AND a show! Brady and I were overwhelmed by the deliciously unique menu items, but finally settled on two, deciding to share a little bit of both. I ordered a variation of the Free Range Wild Boar Hash (except I ordered it as a scramble).

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Note: This photo doesn’t do the proportions justice. The biscuit & honey due were bigger than my fist!

At first I was a little apprehensive about my order, because it was a last minute order and there was no going back. I must say, after taking the first bite of the dish, I was blown away at how delicious it was. The Wild Boar Hash came with potatoes, pancetta cheese, fresh tomatoes and plenty of basil, eggs, wild boar, a delicious biscuit and was garnished with fruit. It was the perfect combination of pancetta, savory boar and egg. Somehow we ended up with a literal skillet of cornbread to top it off. Needless to say, I was happy with my meal for 4.

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Brady ordered the Fresh Ground Lamb Scramble (except as a hash with potatoes.) His dish came with sundried tomatoes, lamb, basil and goat cheese, and was equally as huge as mine. I must say, while I preferred my plate at the restaurant, Brady’s leftovers were tastier later. Our brunch fed us two more times, for lunch and dinner.

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The plates range from $10-$20, so it is a little pricier than your average breakfast place, but the Tractor Room is anything but average. Unless you are the host of Man vs. Food, the portions will leave you with a hearty amount of leftovers. I would recommend sharing meals to keep the tab down, as long as your company wants the same thing as you do! If you need more convincing, head to their Yelp page and check out the photos of their giant chocolate-banana pancakes and dinner options. We had an awesome experience, and I look forward to taking out-of-towners there to show off how San Diego really does brunch. Already been to The Tractor Room? I welcome your recommendations and will keep them in mind the next time that I’m there! Enjoy your weekend everyone!

www.thetractorroom.com

What’s Cookin’ This Weekend in San Diego

We’ve made it: it’s Thursday (Friday’s little brother) and a completely action-packed weekend is upon us. Read on for a rundown of the top events happening in the next few days across San Diego. Foodies- take delight in the fact that 6 out of the 7 listed are food related!!

Hotel Thrillist – Friday Sept 19th- Saturday Sept 20th

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Perhaps the most exciting occasion of the weekend (and probably the month) has arrived. The popular food & travel website Thrillist has chosen San Diego for its weekend long sendoff of summer and they’re throwing it at a hotel that knows how to party: The Hard Rock Hotel.  I know I am excited to be attending – and here’s why:

Friday, Sept 19 7-10pm

Friday night is “Taste of Thrillist,” where the best restaurants of San Diego will showcase a variety of delicious eats. This especially appeals to me (being the foodie that I am) because the food is made up of unique creations developed exclusively for this Thrillist event. Restaurants participating include: The Duck Dive, Salt & Cleaver, Puesto, Donut Bar, the Cravory, Casanova Fish Tacos, Slaters 50/50, Bird Rock Coffee Roasters and unlimited Malibu Rum cocktails and beer from local breweries!

Sounds pretty amazing right?

Saturday, Sept 20 1-5pm
Soak in some warm San Diego sun at the Float rooftop pool while listening to Havana Brown perform live. While doing so, why not indulge in a pig roast and unlimited Malibu drinks?  I think yes! Did I mention they will be serving Nitrogen Oxygen Ice Cream? (not quite sure what this is- but can’t wait to try it!)

Saturday, Sept 20 10pm-2am

What’s a time at Hard Rock without an after party? Dance into the early hours of Sunday morning at the 207 Night Club, complete with celebrity DJs, more Malibu cocktails, and a photobooth!

San Diego Festival of Beer – Friday, Sept 19th
Broadway Pier – 6pm-11pm

Over 60 breweries will be in attendance at the Broadway Pier for the 20th Annual San Diego Festival of Beer this Friday, with a combined 120 brews to choose from. Beer, the San Diego skyline, and eats. Sounds like a beer lovers dream come true!! The best part about this event is that the proceeds go to local cancer charities. Drinking for a cause.

Fleet Week Coronado Speed Festival – Saturday, Sept 20th – Sunday Sept 21st
Coronado – 8am-5pm both days

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Car enthusiasts will surely have a great time in Coronado this weekend, where the Speed Festival will be taking place on base at North Island. This is a unique event that features fast-paced, thrilling auto racing and exhibitions, TEST DRIVES and the West Coast’s only Naval “Open House.” Save $10 if you purchase your tickets online prior to the event!

1st Annual Sriracha Festival – Saturday, Sept 20th
 Liberty Station – 3pm-6pm

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Who doesn’t love Sriracha sauce? This amazing sauce has certainly become very “hot” in the culinary world, and San Diego is hosting its 1st Sriracha Festival with creations from 19 different restaurant’s. Head over to Liberty Station for a three hour session of sriracha bites and sips, and be sure to bring a lot of water- or milk- because you will surely need it!

Ceviche Throwdown – Saturday, Sept 20th
 Pacific Beach – 5pm-8pm

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If you somehow are still hungry, head North to Fat Fish in Pacific Beach for an evening of friendly competition between 8 different chefs variations of ceviche from popular San Diego restaurants. (Hosted drinks from 5-6pm compliments of Pacific Magazine!)

Encinitas Oktoberfest – Sunday, Sept 21st
Encinitas – 10am-6pm

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I have been to many Encinitas Street Fairs, but have yet to check out the Oktoberfest, which I plan on going to this Sunday. Over 200 street vendors, German performances, and of course, Bier!! If you are lucky, you might even be able to catch a little bit of the Chargers-Bills game, and hit the beach, all in one day!

San Diego Restaurant Week – Sunday Sept 21st – Friday Sept 26th

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Last…but certainly not least…. The 10th Annual San Diego Restaurant Week begins this Sunday. Over 180 restaurants around the county have created discounted two and three course meals that showcase their best dishes- all for you to enjoy for the next week. Check out their website for the list of participating restaurants. It is the perfect opportunity for you to try out that excellent place you have always wanted to try, at a special price!!

As you can see, San Diego has a lot to offer this weekend, with an event for just about everyone. Enjoy yourself and let me know what you do!

A SD Bar Guide for Every NFL Fan!

Summer has hit the road and Fall is arriving slowly (or never, as we don’t get much of a season change). With September comes wonderful things….Pumpkin Spice Lattes, sweater weather and…OH! Football! The NFL season is back in action tomorrow for the first Sunday game day, and the fans will be out in full force. But for those who aren’t from San Diego and wanting to watch their home teams- where will you cheer? I know there are a lot of you out there!

I did some snooping to find out the best bars to head to to watch your specific team and came up with this “work in progress” list. Sadly, I couldn’t find any places for nine teams. If you know of any bars that I should add or that I have missed, please email me at sipsavorseesd@gmail.com. Your fellow fans and I will be eternally grateful for your contribution to this list! Hope you feel right at home cheering for your team!

 

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San Diego Chargers
Do I really have to spell this out for you?
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Denver Broncos
Chief’s Burgers and Brew- Solana Beach (I’ve been here- they have a row of Broncos bleachers in the bar!)
Guava Beach – Pacific Beach
Truckstop – Pacific Beach

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Kansas City Chiefs
Kansas City BBQ - Downtown San Diego
The Boardwalk – Mission Beach

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Oakland Raiders
Buffalo Wild Wings – Chula Vista
Kristys MVP – Point Loma

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Baltimore Ravens

Dirty Birds – Pacific Beach

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Cincinnati Bengals

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Cleveland Browns
Elbow Room – Clairemont

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Pittsburgh Steelers
Bubs- Pacific Beach

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Houston Texans

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Indianapolis Colts
Morena Club – Linda Vista

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Jacksonville Jaguars
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Tennessee Titans
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Buffalo Bills

PB Alehouse – Pacific Beach
East Village Tavern and Bowl -East Village Downtown (owned by an East Auroran!)

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Miami Dolphins
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New England Patriots
The Tipsy Crow- Gaslamp

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New York Jets
Henry’s Pub – Gaslamp
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Chicago Bears
710 Beach Club – Pacific Beach
Rosie O’Grady’s – Normal Heights

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Detriot Lions
The Dog – Pacific Beach (no website)

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Green Bay Packers

The Wood – Pacific Beach
Red’s Saloon – Pacific Beach
Tiny’s – Ocean Beach

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Minnesota Vikings
Guava Beach-  Pacific Beach

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Atlanta Falcons
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Carolina Panthers
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New Orleans Saints
Kristys MVP – Point Loma

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Tampa Bay Buccaneers
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Dallas Cowboys
El Cajon Grand – El Cajon
San Diego Skybox – Clairemont
Truckstop - Pacific Beach

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New York Giants
U31 – North Park
Knotty Barrel – San Diego

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Philadelphia Eagles

Avenue – Pacific Beach

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Washington Redskins
Winston’s Beach Club – Ocean Beach

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Arizona Cardinals
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San Francisco 49ers
U31 – North Park
Typhoon Saloon – Pacific Beach

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Seattle Seahawks

Thruster’s Lounge – Pacific Beach

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St. Louis Rams
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I wanted to compile this list to help those who aren’t native to San Diego find bars to feel at home while cheering for their teams. People are often shocked to hear that I actually grew up in San Diego because it is pretty rare to find a native San Diegan. My parents moved from Buffalo, NY, to San Diego after they got married, and many of my friends and coworkers have moved here from other states and other cities. My boyfriend Brady is from good old Minnesota (you can read about my adventure in Minnesota here!). Sorry San Diego, I hate to say it, but I am more of a Bills fan than a Chargers fan. But it’s okay, I am not much of a football fan anyway.

I look forward to any feedback – or suggestions of other bars- that you might have. Enjoy Fall and the NFL season with a beer in hand surrounded by your fellow fanatics and most importantly, feel at home wherever you cheer!