Fiesta Begins Tonight in Oceanside
The 79th Mission San Luis Rey Fiesta Days, an annual event to raise funds for the restoration and maintenance of California’s largest mission, begins tonight with festivities that include food, folklorico dancing and carnival rides.
The three-day fiesta, held at the Oceanside mission each year on the third weekend in July, is designed to bring together the traditions of Old California with the multicultural identity of the state today.
Saturday’s events include the Blessing of the Animals at 10 a.m., sky divers an hour later and the Jr. Mr. and Miss Oceanside contest (ages 7-9) at 3 p.m.
On Sunday, activities include an outdoor Mass at 10 a.m., the Oceanside Police Department Canine Show at noon and the Mission San Luis Rey Parish Folklorico Dancers at 3 p.m.
The highlight of the weekend will come at 2 p.m. Sunday with the arrival of Los Caballeros del Camino Real. Father Evan Howard and local dignitaries, including the mayors of Oceanside, Carlsbad and Vista, will be on hand to greet the riders as they arrive from San Diego on horseback--the mode of transportation used by visitors to the mission during Spanish days.
The Mission is situated off California 76. Festival hours are 7 to 11 p.m. today and 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.