In 1492, Columbus sailed the ocean blue… and today we commemorate his crew’s arrival in the Americas with Columbus Day. This year, Columbus Day falls on Monday, October 14th.
Columbus Day become a federal holiday in 1937. Prior to that, his crew’s voyage had been unofficially celebrated annually with festivals and gatherings. Today, celebration of the holiday is blanketed in controversy. Many people argue that Columbus did not actually ‘discover’ the Americas since there were Native Americans living here before. Others say that his voyage was critical in the development of our government, as it led many Europeans to migrate across the Atlantic. In either case, Columbus Day marks our calendars each year on the second Monday of October. Observance of the holiday varies greatly—most government businesses and some schools are closed.
If you’re lucky enough to have the day off, here are some fun things you can do…
Visit a museum. During the month of October, many museums offer free admission for kids 12 and under when accompanied by an adult. Visit the San Diego Museum Council’s website to see a list of participating museums and print out a free coupon for the kids. Some museums this deal includes are the Birch Aquarium at Scripps, the San Diego Natural History Museum, the San Diego Air and Space Museum, even the San Diego Zoo!
Enjoy a Picnic. Pack a picnic basket full of goodies and head to a nearby park to enjoy a day outdoors. Since football is a quintessential October activity, bring a football along to have fun and get some exercise. Morley Field near Balboa Park, Kate Sessions Park in Pacific Beach, and San Dieguito Park in Del Mar are all great destinations for your day.
Check out Presidio Park. This is where the San Diego Presidio and San Diego Mission were founded. Presidio Park offers scenic views of San Diego and is a great place to take photos and walk around.