Participant Observation is the Process of Learning by Observing and Participating in Cultural Life
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The San Diego Participant Observer

The City of San Diego is home to one of the most vital and culturally diverse populations to be found anywhere in America. The Participant Observer is a web magazine dedicated to discovering and showcasing the wide variety of culturally interesting events, people, places, and organizations our city has to offer. Our continuously updated Events Calendar provides comprehensive information about current and forthcoming events in San Diego. In addition to covering local events, The Participant Observer publishes features and articles about cultural events and phenomena happening around the world. We urge you to explore the many other resources our site provides.


UPDATE 3/14/19 - Due to the fact that nearly all public events in San Diego have been either canceled or postponed due to necessary precautions to limit the spread of the COVID-19 virus, we will not be updating our events calendar until the public health situation improves. We urge people to limit their contact with other people, wash your hands frequently and pay attention to public health announcements. Take care of yourself and family and be ever mindful of the welfare of others. If we work together (remotely!) we can limit the spread and duration of the Coronavirus. Be well.

ANNOUNCEMENT: Due to the virulent spread COVID-19 virus many organizations have smartly and responsibly canceled their events. We will do our best to flag events that have been canceled but we will not remove the listing because we need to be reminded of the great work these organizations do to make life better for all of us. If you see an event has been canceled by an organization you support, please, please consider making a meaningful donation to that organization. Some organizations depend heavily on ticket sales from events and their canceling events will have a dramatic impact on their ability to continue to do the good works they do. Now is the time for San Diegans to come together (figuratively) and help the organizations that promote greater cross-cultural awareness, understanding and engagement as well as the organizations that provide essential services to our community. Be well, wash your hands, don't touch your face, avoid large crowds and remember even in these times that necessitate social distancing measures, we are all in this together.

Also on this Site...
Your Window to the World
All Articles: Guardian News & Media Ltd 2013-19, New York Times Inc.
Please note: The New York Times permits people to read five articles for month for free.
(Read: 250 times)


Less than one half of all Americans have a passport. People without passports not only can't go to far away places like Asia, Africa, Europe or South America, without a passport you can't even travel to Mexico or Canada. An important step in becoming a global citizen is actually getting out there and experiencing other cultures first hand. Don't limit your options! Passports don't expire for 10 years, think ahead and apply for or renew yours today! The steps to apply for a passport are not as daunting as they may seem. Whether you are looking to apply for a new passport or to renew your current passport, follow the steps in our handy guide!

Compiled by Julie Tran
(Read: 4804 times)


The Center for World Music is a unique nonprofit organization whose mission is to foster awareness and understanding of the world's diverse performing arts and cultures through public performances and teaching. Its primary purpose is to draw public attention to the diversity of the world's performing arts traditions: Asian, African, European, Latin American, and American.

(Read: 19210 times)


Today San Diego's Little Italy is a bustling commercial, dining and entertainment district. But more than a half century ago, it was a largely residential area populated by Italian families, most of which were involved in San Diego's thriving tuna industry. Over the next few decades, Little Italy became a self-contained neighborhood with its own grocery stores, bakeries, restaurants, a Catholic church, an elementary school, a drugstore, and a fire department. Then a half century ago the community was cut in half by the expansion of San Diego's freeway system, devastating a once thriving community. Read about Little Italy's rich past and about local efforts to preserve the neighborhood's unique ethnic character and identity.

By Tony Rocco
(Read: 9203 times)


A stone's throw from the Gaslamp Quarter, on the corner of 3rd Avenue and J Street, lies the San Diego Chinese Historical Museum. The museum offers San Diegans an artifactual, pictorial and interactive look into the history of San Diego's Chinese-American inhabitants. Admission is an affordable $2. The museum features numerous cultural, historical and artistic displays as well as regularly held educational programs for children and adults. For a small extra fee the museum also offers docent-lead tours of the permanent collection and featured exhibits as well as tours of the remnants of San Diego's former Chinatown.

(Read: 9674 times)


Kourosh Taghavi, instrumentalist, vocalist and Persian classical musician boasts a passionate approach to music that has impacted audiences around the world. His collaborative projects with master musicians and local cultural organizations work to fulfill his lifelong dream to promote Persian classical music. More recently, his ongoing efforts with the Center for World Music bring the setar and Iranian culture to San Diego school districts through hands-on instruction in Persian classical music.


By Amanda Kelly
(Read: 10233 times)


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