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Family Guide to the 2014 Dana Point Harbor Festival of Whales

Orca-Whales-Orange-County-Sighting

The Dana Point Festival of Whales is coming this weekend, and offers fun for the entire family. There is so much happening during the two weekends of the event at the Dana Point Harbor, so we created this family guide to help your family get the most out of the event.

Dana-Point-Festival-Whales

 When: March 1-2 and March 8-9

Where: Dana Point Harbor

Parking:
There is 4 hours of free parking in the Harbor lots (the 4 hours will be enforced)
Doheny State Park has all-day parking for $8
25300 Dana Point Harbor Drive, Dana Point

Shuttle:
The Festival has a free shuttle that runs from 10am to 4pm. The shuttle will take your family to all of the events. There is a water taxi available from 10am to 2pm to transport families between Dana Wharf and the Ocean Institute for $3 per person (round trip).

Schedule:
Friday, February 28

  • 6 – 10 PM 12th Annual Ocean Institute Jazz Festival (Ocean Institute)

Saturday, March 1

  • 9:30 AM – 5 PM Dana Point Fine Arts Association Show & Sale (Harbor Walkway near Mariners Village)
  • 10 AM – 4 PM Art in the Park (Island Way and Dana Point Harbor Drive)
  • 10 AM – Noon Festival of Whales Parade (Pacific Coast Hwy.)
  • 10 AM – 2 PM Street Fair (La Plaza)
  • 10 AM – 4 PM So Cal Woodies & Antique & Classic Boat Society (Harbor Walkway)
  • 10 AM – 4 PM Polynesian Connection (Baby Beach & Baby Beach Park)
  • 10 AM – 4 PM Sailing and Paddling Lessons (Westwind Sailing OC Sailing & Event Center)
  • 10 – 11 AM Marine Mammal Lecture Series (Harpoon Henry’s)
  • 10 AM – 10:45 AM Wyland Whale Watching Art Lessons in the Wild (Ocean Adventure Catamaran – Dana Wharf Dock)
  • 12 Noon – 3 PM Harbor Music Series (Harpoon Henry’s Grass Area, Dana Wharf Courtyard, Mariner’s Alley)
  • 12 Noon – 5:45 PM Kids Free Fishing Clinic and Free Fishing Trip (Dana Wharf Docks)
  • 2 PM – 4:30 PM Ocean Institute Whale’s Tale Tallship Sailing Adventure (Ocean Institute)
  • Time TBA based on tides Seashore Interpretive Family Hikev (Tidepools near Ocean Institute)
  • 1:30 PM – 3 PM Lily, a Gray Whale Tribute (24440 Dana Point Harbor Drive, next to Baby Beach)
  • 2 PM Dana Point Historical Society Walking Tour of Town Center (Blue Lantern/PCH)
  • 5:30 PM – 9 PM Polynesian Luau (OC Sailing & Event Center)
  • 5:30 – 10:30 PM 12th Annual Ocean Institute Jazz Festival (Ocean Institute)
  • Dusk Movie in the Park Finding Nemo (Lantern Bay Park)

Sunday, March 2

  • 6:30 AM – 9:30 AM 6th Annual Festival of Whales Grunion Run 10K & 5K Run/Walk and Kids’ 1K Run (Doheny State Beach)
  • 8 AM – 11 AM Whale of a Pancake Breakfast & Raffle with Entertainment (OC Sailing & Event Center)
  • 8 AM – 2:30 PM Whale of a Sand Sculpting Competition (Baby Beach)
  • 9:30 AM – 5 PM Dana Point Fine Arts Association Show & Sale (Harbor Walkway near Mariners Village)
  • 10 AM – 4 PM Art in the Park (Island Way and Dana Point Harbor Drive)
  • 10 AM – 4 PM Sailing and Paddling Lessons (Westwind Sailing OC Sailing & Event Center)
  • 10 AM – 4 PM So Cal Woodies & Antique & Classic Boat Society (Harbor Walkway)
  • 10 AM – 4 PM Kids Adventure Expo (Dick Simon Parking Lot)
  • 10 AM – 10:45 AM Wyland Whale Watching Art Lessons in the Wild (Ocean Adventure Catamaran – Dana Wharf Dock)
  • 10 AM – 11 AM Marine Mammal Lecture Series (Harpoon Henry’s)
  • 11 AM – 4 PM Ocean Awareness Day (Baby Beach Park)
  • 11 AM – 2 PM Whale of a Rubber Ducky Derby (Baby Beach Park)
  • 11:30 AM – 1 PM Diamond Dig (Baby Beach Park)
  • 11:30 AM – 4 PM Whale of a BBQ (Baby Beach Park)
  • 12 Noon – 3 PM Harbor Music Series (Harpoon Henry’s Grass Area, Dana Wharf Courtyard, Mariner’s Alley)
  • 12 Noon – 5:45 PM Kids Free Fishing Clinic and Free Fishing Trip (Dana Wharf Docks)
  • 2 PM Dana Point Historical Society Walking Tour of Town Center (Blue Lantern/PCH)
  • Time TBA based on tides Seashore Interpretive Family Hike (Tidepools near Ocean Institute)
  • 3 – 5:30 PM 12th Annual Ocean Institute Jazz Festival (Ocean Institute)

Friday, March 7

  • 1 PM – 4 PM Dana Point Historical Society Public Reading of Two Years Before the Mast (Headlands Nature Interpretive Center)
  • 7 PM Dana Point Symphony’s Symphony Spectacular (Public Pier Adjacent to the Ocean Institute)

Saturday, March 8

  • 9 AM – 5 PM Dana Point Historical Society Public Reading of Two Years Before the Mast (Headlands Nature Interpretive Center)
  • 9 AM – 3 PM 5th Annual Mickey Munoz Mongoose Cup & BBQ (Baby Beach)
  • 9 AM – 12 Noon Whale of a Beach Cleanup (Doheny State Beach)
  • 9:30 AM – 5 PM Dana Point Fine Arts Association Show & Sale (Harbor Walkway near Mariners Village)
  • 10 AM – 4 PM Art in the Park (Island Way and Dana Point Harbor Drive)
  • 10 AM – 2 PM 3rd Annual Whale of a Clam Chowder Cook Off (Harbor Walkway beginning at Island Way)
  • 10 AM – 11 AM Marine Mammal Lecture Series (Harpoon Henry’s)
  • 10 AM – 4 PM Whale of a Classic Car Display (Harbor Walkway)
  • 10 AM – 4 PM Porsche 356 Club Southern California (Waterfall Park on Dana Point Harbor Drive)
  • 10 AM – 10:45 AM Wyland Whale Watching Art Lessons in the Wild (Ocean Adventure Catamaran – Dana Wharf Dock)
  • 10 AM – 4 PM Sailing and Paddling Lessons (Westwind Sailing OC Sailing & Event Center)
  • 11 AM – 3 PM Movie Viewing Wild Dolphins and Whales of Southern California (Dolphin Deck near Baby Beach)
  • 12 Noon – 3 PM Harbor Music Series (Harpoon Henry’s Grass Area, Dana Wharf Courtyard, Mariner’s Alley)
  • 12 Noon – 5:45 PM Kids Free Fishing Clinic and Free Fishing Trip (Dana Wharf Docks)
  • 12 Noon – 2 PM Captain Dave’s Carnival (Dolphin Deck near Baby Beach)
  • 1:30 PM – 3 PM Lily, a Gray Whale Tribute (24440 Dana Point Harbor Drive, next to Baby Beach)
  • 2 PM – 4:30 PM Ocean Institute Whale’s Tale Tallship Sailing Adventure (Ocean Institute)
  • 2 PM Dana Point Historical Society Walking Tour of Town Center (Blue Lantern/PCH)
  • 3 PM Dana Point Symphony’s Symphony Spectacular (Public Pier Adjacent to the Ocean Institute)
  • Time TBA based on tides Seashore Interpretive Family Hike (Tidepools near Ocean Institute)
  • 7 PM Dana Point Symphony’s Symphony Spectacular (Public Pier Adjacent to the Ocean Institute)

Sunday, March 9

  • 8 AM – Noon Dana Point Historical Society Public Reading of Two Years Before the Mast (Headlands Nature Interpretive Center)
  • 9:30 AM – 5 PM Dana Point Fine Arts Association Show & Sale (Harbor Walkway near Mariners Village)
  • 10 AM – 4 PM Art in the Park (Island Way and Dana Point Harbor Drive)
  • 10 AM – 11 AM Marine Mammal Lecture Series (Harpoon Henry’s)
  • 10 AM – 10:45 AM Wyland Whale Watching Art Lessons in the Wild (Ocean Adventure Catamaran – Dana Wharf Dock)
  • 10 AM – 4 PM Whale of a Classic Car Display (Harbor Walkway)
  • 10 AM – 4 PM Sailing and Paddling Lessons (Westwind Sailing OC Sailing & Event Center)
  • 11 AM – 3 PM Doheny State Beach’s Mobile Marine Mammal Museum (Doheny State Beach’s Visitor Center)
  • 12 Noon – 5 PM Whale of a Concert on the Water, BBQ and Spirits Garden (Baby Beach)
  • 12 Noon – 3 PM Harbor Music Series (Harpoon Henry’s Grass Area, Dana Wharf Courtyard, Mariner’s Alley)
  • 12 Noon – 5:45 PM Kids Free Fishing Clinic and Free Fishing Trip (Dana Wharf Docks)
  • 2 PM Dana Point Historical Society Walking Tour of Town Center (Blue Lantern/PCH)
  • Time TBA based on tides Seashore Interpretive Family Hike (Tidepools near Ocean Institute)

Dana-point-festival-of-whales

Whale Watching:
Dana Wharf Whale Watching is located right in the harbor to take your family to see the whales. There will be a boat leaving every hour from 8am to 4pm during the festival. The tour runs two hours. Adults are $45, Seniors/Military $35, Children (3-12) $25, and children under the age of 2 are complimentary. I recommend purchasing tickets in advance – they do sell out quickly during the festival.

Great Family Events

Wyland Whale Watching Art Lessons in the Wild:
Learn from one of the masters of marine art by joining us for a dockside presentation and art lesson aboard the “Ocean Adventure” Catamaran, via video feed, by renowned environmental artist, Wyland! Guests will learn how Wyland has created some of the most well-known marine wildlife paintings and sculptures of our era. Children can enter their art in an end–of–season contest for the most accurate portrayal of marine mammals to be judged by Wyland. The winning child will receive a framed limited edition signed and numbered giclee on paper of “Tails of Great Whales” a prize valued of over $1000. Other prizes will be announced soon! The price for the art lesson is $5 per child, with all proceeds going to the Wyland Foundation. The mission of Wyland’s foundation is to give both children and adults alike, the tools they need to become more creative, positive and solution oriented through art.

The 1st annual Kids Adventure Expo:
Dick Simon Yachts parking lot from 10am – 4pm Sunday, March 2. Located adjacent to Harpoon Henry’s Restaurant in the OC Dana Point Harbor, this event is a kid–inspired, cell–free zone! Kids are asked to temporarily exchange their cell phone (or electronic game, iPod, etc.) for a FREE water bottle and FREE meal pass to Chick–Fil–A. Disconnecting from electronics for the event allows kids to re–connect with the ocean adventures right here in the Dana Point Harbor. Attendance is FREE and the event is filled with hands–on demonstrations and exhibits featuring ocean and harbor–related activities like Stand Up Paddleboarding, Kayaking, Sportfishing and Okuma Casting Crew, Whale Watching, scuba diving, snorkeling and more!

A giant slide/obstacle course, bungy jump, miniature golf, and laser tag are just some of the additional activities available for a nominal fee – along with the Kona Ice mobile!

As kids have become more connected to technology and the electric outlets it mandates, they have become disconnected from the natural world. Their goal is to introduce kids to a new ocean sport or passion – away from the electronic games and the TV.

Family Sand Castle Contest:
Families can get creative while having fun in the sun working together to create a sand sculpture. Contestants may choose to make sand creations including whales, ocean creatures, pirates and ships, surfing, tropical island themed creations or patriotic emblems.
Dana Point Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) will be hosting a “Whale of a Pancake Breakfast & Raffle with Entertainment” at the OC Sailing and Event Center’s Dana Cove Room during the sculpting competition from 8-11 a.m. Space is limited, and if room is still available, families can register the morning of the event.

Facts, and information provided by Dana Wharf and The Festival of Whales

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One Comment

  1. Thanks for all the great info. My family and I plan to go on Sunday, weather permitting ; )

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