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Get away, stay local: a weekend in Uptown

Staycation in Hillcrest, Balboa, North Park and environs.

My best weekend getaway is when I leave my car parked on the street outside my apartment in Hillcrest from 4 p.m. on Friday afternoon til Monday morning at 7:

Jog through Balboa Park.

Friday

Friday afternoon I go for a run with my friend through Balboa Park, past the Museum of Man and the Botanical Gardens and underneath the planes at the Aerospace Museum. I catch the orange winter sunset over the city skyline as I run across the Laurel Street bridge and up Sixth Avenue home to Hillcrest.

I clean up to catch an artsy movie at Hillcrest Landmark Cinema, then a late dinner and dessert across the street at DBar – the cake and shake would be the only thing I eat if the brussels sprouts weren't so delicious. I walk home and fall asleep and wake to the sound of my neighbor's chickens.

At the top of Cowles Mountain.

Saturday

Saturday morning I meet my friend at Bread and Cie for three thick slices of bread from their endless varieties, and we head over to Cowles Mountain for a 30-minute hike with a bunch of our fellow San Diegans and their dogs to catch panoramic views of our city.

One of our busy local street fairs from Adams Avenue Street Fair to Hillcrest Cityfest occupy the afternoon and evening with local vendors, live music, food trucks and amusement rides. If there's not a street fair, I can pop into any local bar or music venue like SodaBar on El Cajon Blvd. or Lestat's on Adams for live music and an even livelier crowd. There's no lack of hip places to eat, from Soda and Swine with meatball sliders and dirty fries (rec'd) to Bronx Pizza for some late slices and New York attitude. I walk four blocks from this busy city street to my neighborhood apartment on a tree-lined quiet street to bed.

Sunday: car still parked.

Sunday

Sunday morning I wander over to the Hillcrest farmers market, where I eat so many samples of fresh produce, cheesecake in a cup, olive oils and hummus that breakfast is unnecessary. I run into my neighbors and people I know everywhere I go on my vacation in this big/small city.

I get home with no traffic on Sunday afternoon to do laundry, sit out on my roof in the warm winter sun, and look down on my car still parked on the street.

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The iconic Hillcrest sign glows above University Ave. traffic at night.  (Reader stock)
The iconic Hillcrest sign glows above University Ave. traffic at night. <em>(Reader stock)</em>

My best weekend getaway is when I leave my car parked on the street outside my apartment in Hillcrest from 4 p.m. on Friday afternoon til Monday morning at 7:

Jog through Balboa Park.

Friday

Friday afternoon I go for a run with my friend through Balboa Park, past the Museum of Man and the Botanical Gardens and underneath the planes at the Aerospace Museum. I catch the orange winter sunset over the city skyline as I run across the Laurel Street bridge and up Sixth Avenue home to Hillcrest.

I clean up to catch an artsy movie at Hillcrest Landmark Cinema, then a late dinner and dessert across the street at DBar – the cake and shake would be the only thing I eat if the brussels sprouts weren't so delicious. I walk home and fall asleep and wake to the sound of my neighbor's chickens.

At the top of Cowles Mountain.

Saturday

Saturday morning I meet my friend at Bread and Cie for three thick slices of bread from their endless varieties, and we head over to Cowles Mountain for a 30-minute hike with a bunch of our fellow San Diegans and their dogs to catch panoramic views of our city.

One of our busy local street fairs from Adams Avenue Street Fair to Hillcrest Cityfest occupy the afternoon and evening with local vendors, live music, food trucks and amusement rides. If there's not a street fair, I can pop into any local bar or music venue like SodaBar on El Cajon Blvd. or Lestat's on Adams for live music and an even livelier crowd. There's no lack of hip places to eat, from Soda and Swine with meatball sliders and dirty fries (rec'd) to Bronx Pizza for some late slices and New York attitude. I walk four blocks from this busy city street to my neighborhood apartment on a tree-lined quiet street to bed.

Sunday: car still parked.

Sunday

Sunday morning I wander over to the Hillcrest farmers market, where I eat so many samples of fresh produce, cheesecake in a cup, olive oils and hummus that breakfast is unnecessary. I run into my neighbors and people I know everywhere I go on my vacation in this big/small city.

I get home with no traffic on Sunday afternoon to do laundry, sit out on my roof in the warm winter sun, and look down on my car still parked on the street.

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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