San Diego’s Busker Festival: One-Of-A-Kind Entertainment

By Nicole Sobel

Buskers at the San Diego Busker festival.
Buskers at the San Diego Busker festival.

“My kids love the wacky characters that do strange things like fit their bodies through a toilet seat, swallow flaming swords or perform backflips on a pogo stick,” says Busker Festival attendee, Jon Bailey. The Seaport Village’s Spring Busker Festival that takes place in San Diego, California every year is a one-of-a-kind two-day festival full of eccentric entertainment, and innovative street performers.

It’s not only located in Seaport Village, which is one of the nicest places to walk around in Southern California, but it’s also an original kind of entertainment for tourists and their families to watch live, unlike any type of show or movie that they’ve ever seen.

What is a Busker?

A busker is a street performer, typically known for their eccentric style of entertainment through unusual daring comedic acts. These types of artists perform around the globe for tips in the streets. San Diego’s beautiful Seaport Village hosts the only busker festival in all of Southern California.

Professionals from across the country come to perform their unique talents such as juggling on unicycles, sword swallowing, knife tricks and out of this world pogo stick moves.

Band playing at Seaport Village's Busker Festival in San Diego
Band playing at Seaport Village’s Busker Festival in San Diego

“I had heard so much about these sword swallowers, people on unicycles while juggling swords and even about this one guy who would staple money all over his body from my friends and co-workers,” said Becca Burnham, who attended the Busker Festival last year.

“It was time I checked it out myself. So I grabbed my roommates and headed down to Seaport Village. Let’s just say we were not disappointed.”

Most visitors and tourists who go to the Busker Festival are just that, not disappointed. It’s the kind of entertainment you don’t see every day. It’s live, it’s real, and it’s fascinating.

Seaport Village
It’s the kind of festival that all types of people go to, and there’s something for everyone. Best of all, it’s free entry and you get to choose which performers you want to tip, or not.“Seaport Village already has so much to do, what with the great shopping, amazing views and good food options – this just makes it even more fun to spend the day there in the sun, watching the buskers do their thing,” says Bailey.

Every year there’s a different lineup, featuring talented buskers from across the country. “I can’t wait to see the acts Seaport Village has lined up this year and to finally get to experience Buskers After Dark,” says Burnham.

This year the Festival is going to run from Saturday April 16th to Sunday April 17th in Seaport Village in the West Plaza Fountain Area & the East Plaza Gazebo.

Silver Statue Juggling Busker at Seaport Village in San Diego
Silver Statue Juggling Busker at Seaport Village in San Diego

The Busker line-up

This year’s line-up ranges from gymnastics and daring and dangerous tricks, to classic clown entertainment. The Twin Tango, which is a Chinese pole act that incorporates the classic theme of love with a hint of clown, mime and dance will be featured.

In the line-up this year, as well as a busker called Juggling Americana, who performs a classical five club juggling act and a musical xylophone act using only a mouth and a ping pong ball, pretty impressive. Also, Stunt Double Circus, made up of four stunt men who perform death-defying acts for all to enjoy, and Mango & Dango, the well-known fire jugglers and stilt walkers will be back this year with a new act which will involve an umbrella ship.

Also on the line-up, the Busker Festival features performers such as Project Dynamite, who is known for executing spellbinding juggling tricks, and Book of Love, who performs the “Book of Love Show,” which incorporates situation comedy with an elegant twist.

Fire swallowing busker at the Seaport Village’s Spring Busker Festival in San Diego
Fire swallowing busker at the Seaport Village’s Spring Busker Festival in San Diego

If you’re looking for something even more daring and creative to watch that combines elements of fire, giant knives and oranges together, you’d want to check out the performance of Circo Express, a juggler extraordinaire who can juggle up to five items at a time, and execute fire stunts and comedy acts involving a unicycle all at the same time. Jimmy Talksalot and a performer referred to as Fantastick Patrick are also on the superstar line-up for 2011.

And if you’re looking to take a break from all the performance and action, Seaport Village is a great place to just kick back and walk around, as well as offering a wide array of shopping and great restaurants to check out.

“Not only did the performances exceed my expectations, it was overall a great day out with friends — soaking up the sun, browsing the shops and at the end of the day enjoying a caramel apple from the Fudge Shop,” says Burnham.
The fun and excitement of the Busker Festival doesn’t stop after the sun goes down though. At night, it’s time for Buskers After Dark, which exposes untamed performances by Buskers and goes late into the night. Buskers After Dark is sponsored by San Diego CityBeat and is provided to entertain guests over 18 years of age with unedited amusement and performances including fire jugglers, comedians, acrobats, beverages and a DJ spinning the hottest new tunes from 6p.m to 10p.m Saturday night. This event is all free entry, which can’t really be beat.

Busker’s After Dark

Busker Festival at Seaport Village promises to deliver a two-day festival that’s unforgettable in terms of original and exciting entertainment and performances. If you’re sick of watching the typical, simple acrobatics and juggling acts you find at Barnum & Bailey or a run of the mill circus, then the Busker’s performances will

surely surprise you. With 10 different performers set to entertain crowds this year, tourists will be sure to leave satisfied with what they’ve seen. The tourists and crowds also play an imperative role this year,

because all who attend will help to determine which performer walks away with this year’s top prize, and a cash award with a paid weekend getaway in San Francisco. So come see what all the talk is about, and judge for yourself at this year’s Busker Festival at Seaport Village in sunny California.

For more information on the Busker Festival, go to this website

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