La Jolla Playhouse brings Wow to Liberty Station, and Strange Fruit, which fuses theater with the circus, performs free Friday through Sunday. Photo credit: lajollaplayhouse.org

A famed playhouse takes its act to the south this weekend, with so many performers and styles surely even the pickiest observers could find a creation to wow, or even woo them. Meanwhile, San Diego welcomes some of the best Hollywood has to offer.

The La Jolla Playhouse’s Without Walls – or WOW – Festival lands in Liberty Station, continuing Friday through Sunday. Organizers say the entertainment varies from “one-on-one experiences to epic storytelling spectacles.” The productions take place in an area roughly bounded by Truxton and Historic Decatur roads, concentrated between Chauncey and Roosevelt roads. Admission varies, but several productions will be free.

The San Diego International Film Festival offers a full slate of films, including possible Oscar contenders Motherless Brooklyn and Marriage Story. The fest includes panels and special events through Sunday. Among the screening sites are the ArcLight in La Jolla and Theatre Box in the Gaslamp. In addition, Oscar-nominee Laurence Fishburne will be honored Friday with the Gregory Peck Award at the Night of the Stars tribute. Individual film screenings cost $16.

Might a raven be swooping down at you, as you listen to the beat-beat-beat of a tell-tale heart? We certainly hope not, for your sake, but if you like your horror old school, PoeFest in Old Town might be the way to celebrate Halloween. Enjoy stagings of the works of the infamously woebegone Edgar Allan Poe and others at 7 and 8:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday. They also take place Oct. 25-26, and admission costs $20.

Edward Norton directs, writes and stars in “Motherless Brooklyn.” The film screens in San Diego Saturday, so locals can view it in advance of its Nov. 1 official release. Photo credit: Warner Bros., via sdfilmfest.com

If you like your horror extra horrible, how about “Monster Movies for Music” at the North Park Observatory? The event features the Rob Zombie flick, Night of 1000 Corpses, gruesome special-effects makeup – because, Halloween!– and by the way, what is October without a “Thriller” San Diego Flash Mob? Tickets cost $10 for the 5 p.m. Sunday fundraiser, which benefits MusicCares, for musicians in need.

Borrego Springs will kick off the Borrego Days Desert Festival at Christmas Circle Community Park. The event features a parade, music stages, a beer garden and more. Enjoy it all Saturday and Sunday.

Escondido hosts the Grand Avenue Street Fair and Art in the Garden from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. The 30-year-old festival extends from Centre City Parkway to Juniper Street on Grand. In addition, try this cool family feature – interactive booths by the Roynon Museum, EcoVivarium and the San Diego Children’s Discovery Museum. 

Finally, the SaltDog Classic, at Encinitas Community Park from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, will feature live music, a community fest, artists, and of course, local breweries. Because it ain’t a weekend in San Diego without a craft brew, right?

– Staff reports

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