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Balboa Park San Diego, Ca. | Museums, History, Gardens, Tours and more!

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Balboa Park is a
1,200-acre (490 ha) historic urban cultural park in San DiegoCaliforniaUnited States. In
addition to open space areas, natural vegetation zones, green belts, gardens, and
walking paths, it contains museums, several theaters, and the San Diego Zoo. There are
also many recreational facilities and several gift shops and restaurants within
the boundaries of the park. Placed in reserve in 1835, the park’s site is one
of the oldest in the United States dedicated to public recreational use. Balboa
Park is managed and maintained by the Parks and Recreation Department of the
City of San Diego.

Balboa Park hosted the
1915–16 Panama–California Exposition and 1935–36 California Pacific International Exposition, both of which
left architectural landmarks. The park and its historic Exposition buildings
were declared a National Historic Landmark and National Historic Landmark District in 1977, and placed
on the National Register of Historic Places.

The park is essentially
rectangular, bounded by Sixth Avenue to the west, Upas Street to the north,
28th Street to the east, and Russ Boulevard to the south. The rectangle has
been modified by the addition of the Marston Hills natural area in the
northwest corner of the park, while the southwest corner of the rectangle is
occupied by a portion of the Cortez Hill neighborhood
of Downtown San Diego and San Diego High School, both of which are separated from the
park by Interstate 5. Also encroaching on the northern perimeter of
the park is Roosevelt Middle School.

Two north-south
canyons—Cabrillo Canyon and Florida Canyon—traverse the park and separate it
into three mesas. The Sixth Avenue Mesa is a narrow strip bordering Sixth
Avenue on the western edge of the park, which provides areas of passive
recreation, grassy spaces, and tree groves, and a camp for Camp Fire. The Central Mesa is home to much of the park’s
cultural facilities, and includes scout camps, the San Diego Zoo, the Prado,
and Inspiration Point. East Mesa is home to Morley Field and many of the active
recreation facilities in the park.

The park is crossed by
several freeways, which take up a total of 111 acres (0.45 km2)
once designated for parkland. In 1948, State Route 163 was built through Cabrillo Canyon and
under the Cabrillo Bridge. This stretch of road, initially named the
Cabrillo Freeway, has been called one of America’s most beautiful parkways. A
portion of Interstate 5 was built in the park in the 1950s.

By 2001, over 12 million
people visited the park each year.

The Balboa Park Conservancy,
a non-profit group to preserve and promote the park, was proposed in 2009
and was officially launched on September 14, 2010.

On the night between August
11 and 12, 2012, the 100-year-old Lily Pond at Balboa Park was vandalized
overnight. Officials said the water level in the pond was reduced to 2 inches
and a pipe was broken. No fish or turtles were killed, but damage to the
pond and surrounding landscaping was estimated at several thousand dollars. There
had been reports of a “midnight water gun fight” planned for that
night, and a video of such an event was later uploaded to YouTube. In early
2013, work began on repairing the Lily Pond, including removing the fish and
plants to temporary homes, draining the pond, and repairing the concrete
lining. In addition, plumbing repairs were completed, and 27 new plant
platforms were constructed to hold the lilies in place. After the reservoir was
filled with water and the fish were re-introduced, the Lily Pond opened once
again to the public in late February, 2013.

In 2017, the State of
California designated Balboa Park as a cultural district, given its central
role in the culture of San Diego.

As the centennial of the 1915
exposition approached, there was talk of a grand year-long celebration “on
the scale of the 1915 and 1935 fairs”. Organization, Balboa Park
Celebration Inc., was formed in 2011 to organize the nonprofit festivities and
“reintroduce Balboa Park to the world.” However, fundraising faltered
and plans failed to materialize. In March 2014 the nonprofit organization
disbanded, turning over its records and responsibilities to the city less than
a year before the celebrations were supposed to start. Mayor Kevin Faulconer and
City Council President Todd Gloria,
who had been major proponents of a large-scale celebration, expressed
disappointment with the group’s “lack of significant progress achieving
its goals” and said they would work together to “move forward with a
more practical and realistic celebration.” A City Council committee
ordered an audit of the organization’s finances to find out what became of the
$2.8 million in public funds allocated to it by the council.

The 2015
“Celebration” of the Centennial became a grassroots movement with all
the Parks’s institutions celebrating with special exhibits and events. On Dec.
31 Carol Williams, with special guests, ushered in the year with an evening of
music at the Spreckels Organ Pavilion. On Saturday, May 9, The Garden Party of
the Century invited Garden enthusiasts from throughout the county to come enjoy
the park. A floral wagon parade highlighted the event.

For the Centennial the Park’s
Department working together with Friends of Balboa Park created an Adopt-a-Plot
program. Throughout the park various volunteer organizations have adopted
garden areas and have started a transformation to enhance the park’s beauty for
the next 100 years.

In 2016, the Electriquettes
returned to Balboa Park. They had been planned for the Centenniel celebration
and several were on display in 1915, but it took until the Spring of 2016 for
them to return to be driven on the Prado. They are electric-powered wicker
carts which can be rented and driven in the main Prado area of the park.

Balboa Park frequently holds
events throughout its museums, venues, and plazas. These events include free
weekly concerts at the Spreckles Organ Pavilion each Sunday at 2:00 p.m.,
guest speakers, and annual parades, cultural festivals, and fairs. The festival
“December Nights” (originally called “Christmas on the
Prado”) takes place in Balboa Park on the first full weekend in December
each year. EarthFair, described as one of the largest free annual environmental
fairs in the U.S., is held in the park every April. The event celebrates Earth Day, and includes a
parade, musical performances, children’s area, international food, exhibit
booths and information on various topics related to the environment. In 2010,
over 70,000 people attended the fair. The two-day San Diego Pride Festival is
held in the Marston Point area of Balboa Park each July; the 2011 event was
attended by more than 150,000 people. In 2016, WikiConference North America was held at the park. A cherry blossom festival
is also celebrated annually in March in the Japanese Friendship Garden.

Each summer, free outdoor
concerts are performed Monday through Thursday at the Spreckels Organ Pavilion. Free organ concerts are held each
Sunday at 2:00 p.m., year round.

Several races and marathons
include the park in the courses. The Foot Locker Cross Country Championships are held in
Balboa Park annually. First started in 1979, the race is held in Morley Field. Marathons
such as the San Diego Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon and the America’s Finest City Half Marathon, as well as the American Cancer Society “Making Strides Against
Breast Cancer” walk, and the Susan G. Komen “Race for the Cure
and other annual events begin or end in Balboa Park.

Every home — big, small, apartment or vacation
home — gets dirty. And while there’s not just one way to clean your living
space, there is a smarter way to get the job done. Take this guided tour of
your home — from the kitchen and bathroom to the bedroom and living areas — to
learn the basic rules of cleaning as well as some tips and short cuts that will
help you clean thoroughly and efficiently, starting now.
 

In most homes, carpet is by far the biggest dust reservoir.
It’s a huge source of fibers and absorbs dust like a giant sponge. Even the
padding underneath holds dust, which goes airborne with each footstep. Although
ripping out your wall-to-wall carpet may sound radical, it’s the best thing you
can do if you suffer from serious allergies. For how to remove dust from air
the best thing you can do is to replace carpeting with hard floorings like
laminate, wood or tile, and wet mop it regularly (with a microfiber cloth)
instead of sweeping. Sweeping is more likely to stir up dust than to remove it.
Keeping it?

Blankets, pillows, slipcovers, drapes and other textiles not
only trap household dust, but they create it as they shed and disintegrate.
Curtains and drapes, in particular, get dusty because they absorb moisture and
dirt from the outside and act as a landing pad for dust from ceiling fans and air
vents. The best idea for how to clean dust is to buy machine-washable
items and launder them twice a year (OK, at least once). For
non-machine-washable textiles, throw them in the dryer on the air-fluff setting
(no heat) for 20 minutes with a damp towel. The damp towel will attract pet
hair, and the tumbling movement and airflow will remove the smaller particles
for you.

If you have glass shower doors in your bathroom and don’t
keep on top of the cleaning, you can end up with soap scum so tough that it’s
nearly impossible to remove. Here’s how to 
clean your bathroom better — bring out the heavy equipment. Pick up some
polishing compound at a home center or an auto parts store and use an auto
buffer to polish off the offending scum. If you don’t own a buffer, you can buy
one for as little as $20 or borrow one from a gearhead friend. If possible,
remove the doors and take them out to the garage to avoid messing up the
bathroom.

Whether it’s built-up soap scum on the shower walls,
ground-in dirt on the floor tile or dried toothpaste on the vanity top, a Magic
Eraser sponge (or other brands) will make short work of it. Just dampen it and
rub it on the offending mess. In most cases, the mess will come right off.
These sponges are especially useful for removing ground-in dirt from porous
floor tile and getting those pesky nonslip strips in the bottom of your tub
clean. Magic Eraser sponges clean bathroom showers well and are available at
grocery stores, hardware stores and wherever cleaning supplies are sold. Unlike
regular sponges, they wear out pretty fast, so stock up. House cleaning in Balboa is always a real pleasure. The homes are a mix of houses an apartments. We love to house clean in Balboa as the homes are all unique in style and design.