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Father's Day: Take Dad on a San Diego maritime tour

June 16, 2011|By Sonja Bjelland | Special to the Los Angeles Times
  • The Star of India is one of many historic ships displayed at the Maritime Museum of San Diego.
The Star of India is one of many historic ships displayed at the Maritime… (Don Bartletti / Los Angeles…)

Finding a Father’s Day outing for Dad beyond taking in a baseball game or hitting the green can leave daughters and sons perplexed. So trying heading a bit south this weekend for a maritime tour of San Diego. Here are some attractions and happenings:

-- The 21st annual San Diego Wooden Boat Festival will take place this weekend about 10 minutes from downtown San Diego on the Point Loma peninsula, which  serves as the hub for much of the city’s sailing industry. 

At the Koehler Kraft boatyard, 2302 Shelter Island Drive, visitors can view dozens of craft of all sizes, including the 1910-vintage, 40-foot schooner Fame; take steamboat rides; and learn traditional maritime skills. The festival hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday.

Info:  Admission $5 adults. $2 ages 6 to 12, free under 6. Proceeds benefit Challenged America, a sailing program for people with disabilities.

 --The Match Race Invitational, organized by the San Diego Yacht Club, will feature pairs of sailboats fighting it out to the finish line. Races will start at noon Saturday and Sunday. Viewing is free.

The contest can be seen up close along Harbor Drive, but depending on the wind, it may be best viewed in the park along Harbor Island Drive. Grab a smoothie and a sandwich from one of the many public delis near the private marinas on the peninsula and take a seat in the grass.

Info: (619) 221-8400. The yacht club is at 1011 Anchorage Lane.

--The Maritime Museum of San Diego displays an array of historic ships, including the Star of India, which dates to the 19th century, as well as exhibits on sailing lore and history. 

Sunday is a special family day at the museum, with free admission for children age 12 and under; kids' crafts from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.; and a cruise on the museum’s 1914 harbor pilot boat (an extra $3 per person). 

As of Wednesday, a four-hour sail on the tall ship Californian was sold out for Sunday, but a few tickets remained for Saturday, the museum's website said. Tickets, which include museum admission, are $42 adults; $34 seniors (age 62 and up), military and students age 7 to 13; $31 for ages 12 and under; lower for members.

Info: (619) 234-9153. The museum is at 1492 North Harbor Drive. General admission is $14 adults; $11 seniors (age 62 and up), active military and students (age 13 to 17); $8 for children 6 to 12 (waived this Sunday); free for ages 5 and under.  Open daily 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. (and until 9 a.m. through Labor Day)

-- The Old Point Loma Lighthouse, standing toward the tip of the peninsula, served as a beacon for ships. Built in 1855, it still provides a look at early life along the California coast.

The small building overlooks the entrance to San Diego Bay from the Pacific Ocean. On a clear day, a climb up the spiral staircase inside provides a view of the San Diego skyline and a high point to watch sailboats racing below. Part of the Cabrillo National Monument, the site includes shoals for discovering sea life.

Info: (619) 557-5450. Admission $5 per vehicle. Open daily 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

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