My family and I took a day trip to see the Padres game at Petco Park and visit Balboa Park yesterday. The Padres had an impressive day with homers by Chase Headly, Yonder Alonso and Carlos Quentin in a 7-3 victory over the New York Mets. (Here’s a game summary .) The best thing about Petco Park is the family-friendly park area in the outfield, complete with a grassy hill and baseball field for kids. The park seamlessly melts into the surrounding downtown area making it a beautiful sight and my favorite baseball stadium.
We then went to Balboa Park after the game. Balboa Park is a huge park and cultural center with art exhibits, concerts and museums and is next to the San Diego Zoo. It is definitely a must-see for anyone traveling to San Diego and is a mile or two from downtown.
We capped off the day with dinner in Old Town, one of my favorite places in the city. Yeah it’s touristy, but you can get amazing Mexican food and a feel for how California was in the nineteenth century. Exploring Old Town’s Wikipedia page, I discovered:
- San Diego was settled in the 1770s by the Spanish and is the first European settlement in the West Coast,
- Father Junipero Serra started California’s first mission here, and
- When Calif. was admitted to the U.S. in 1850, San Diego had a population of only 650!