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Our ∼Fin-tastic∼ Guide to SeaWorld San Diego Events in 2021 and Beyond

by Mommy Frog on October 3, 2021 San Diego

Whenever you visit SeaWorld San Diego, chances are there is a fun event hoppening in the park! The SeaWorld San Diego events bring special entertainment, splashing good fun and seasonal food and drink to the aquatic theme park. We frogs love that SeaWorld always gives us a reason to celebrate.

All of the events are included in the cost of admission, although food and beverage (and sometimes special offerings) are extra. (Psst ... you can save money when you purchase discount SeaWorld San Diego tickets and parking through Undercover Tourist, including all-day dining.) If you happen to have a Fun Card or annual pass, the events are included.

SeaWorld San Diego has confirmed the return and dates for some Frog Family favorite events through 2022. It’s frogciting to see SeaWorld continue these events, keeping the entertainment and food new and fresh. Keep hopping back as each event gets closer for the fin-tastic details, specific dates and even menus!

We have frogciting news! There are a few new SeaWorld San Diego events hopping up, including the all-new SeaWorld Howl-O-Scream! We will continue to update this post as dates and details are announced.

SeaWorld Events in 2021

Hip, hop, hooray! SeaWorld has confirmed that these toadally awesome events are returning in 2021. Here's what we have to look forward to, including an all-new drive-thru event to kick off the new year.

SeaWorld Spooktacular — Weekends in Sept. 18 through October 31, 2021

How to Have Spooktacular Halloween Fun at SeaWorld San Diego-Sesame Street characters countdown to Halloween.

SeaWorld Spooktacular takes place on weekends in October. All guests may wear costumes and eat fall treats. Plus tadpoles 12 and under can trick or treat for candy, boogie at special dance parties, meet characters, and decorate Halloween and fall treats. Hop over to our post on all of the Spooktacular fun at SeaWorld San Diego to learn more.

SeaWorld Howl-O-Scream — Select nights Sept. 17 through October 31, 2021

Bring the tadpoles to Halloween Spooktacular during the day and yourself and teens to Howl-O-Scream at night. As huge horror fans of Knott's Scary Farm and Universal Studios Hollywood's Halloween Horror Nights, Leap and I are hopping with excitement for a new SoCal Halloween event.

Here are the scary details for this gory nighttime new event. With three haunted houses, seven scare zones and four roaming haunts, there is no place to hide! You'll also encounter a terrifying dance show, zombie DJs and party zones with sinister cocktails and concoctions at haunted bars. These spirits are restless! Tickets are on sale now. Dates have been added to this popular event. The event kicks off at 7 p.m. and you can enter SeaWorld as early as 5 p.m.

Red, White & Blue Salute — Nov. 1 to 11, 2021

This patriotic event honors our military. Active Duty and veterans and up to three dependents may enjoy complimentary admission to SeaWorld during this limited-time promotion. SeaWorld honors members of the military and veterans during a pre-presentation before the Orca Encounter show.

On select days around Veterans Day, pick up a free Heroes Trail sticker map at one of several booths located in the park. Explore all of the booths to collect up to nine Armed Forces (and other hero) stickers! Mark each location on your map with the correct hero sticker. Once you’ve found them all, bring your completed Heroes Trail map to the SeaWorld Store to collect a special prize!

SeaWorld Christmas Celebration — Nov. 12, 2021, through Jan. 2, 2022

Our ∼Fin-tastic∼ Guide to SeaWorld San Diego Events 2021 - Rudolph and Friends

Ring in the holiday season at SeaWorld San Diego’s Christmas celebration. The park is decorated merrily and “otterly” bright. There are plenty of opportunities for photo-ops, especially in the Tunnel of Light. Meet characters and Santa from a safe distance, enjoy holiday treats and beverages and watch special holiday shows with dolphins and sea lions.

Let's dive into the details and see what 2021 brings, based on scheduled 2020 details (actual activities may vary in 2021):

  • Rudolph's Movie Experience — Introduced in 2020, you can watch a shortened version of the holiday classic with Rudolph's Movie Experience on a 150-foot outdoor screen (after dark).
  • Meet Rudolph and friends
  • Sesame Street Christmas Village — Take physically distant photos with characters in their holiday attire.
  • Santa Presents Christmas Animals Around the World at Nautilus Amphitheater
  • Animal Presentations with a Holiday Twist
  • A 25-foot, sea-themed Christmas tree
  • Tunnel of Lights with over 5,000 music-activated lights
  • Hanukkah Celebration menorah lighting
  • Kwanzaa Festivities
  • Holiday shopping at the Christmas Shoppe, Holly Jolly Marketplace and other stores
  • Amazing animal exhibits

Activities with an additional cost include:

  • Stocking Stuffer Trail — On Saturdays and Sundays, guests 12 and under can collect sweets, toys and other fun finds in a purchased Stocking Stuffer Trail reusable bag from any park store. Kids can take the bags to eight Stocking Stuffer stations to collect the loot through delivery tubes.
  • Christmas Treasure Hunt — Purchase a Christmas Treasure Hunt sticker map and embark on a merry quest to find Santa's gifts for all eight reindeer. Bring your completed map to the SeaWorld Store to collect a gift of your own!
  • Cookies and photos with Santa
  • Holiday cocktails, craft beer, hot chocolate and more
  • Festive entrees and desserts

SeaWorld San Diego Events in 2022

On a recent visit, we noticed the SeaWorld San Diego events signs for 2022! Here's what's in store for 2022.

SeaWord Inside Look —January

This event gives you the chance to meet the SeaWorld team and hear their personal stories about caring for the animals and their life-saving work.

Emperor Coaster Opening — March 2022

SeaWorld has dropped news of this new coaster's opening — March 2022, just in time for spring break. Our tween Tad's happy feet are swinging with frogcitement for this new floorless penguin-themed dive coaster. Emperor is expected to make a splash in 2021. With top speeds over 60 mph and a dive plunge over 150 feet (and over 90 degrees), this is the tallest and fastest dive coaster in California. After all, it makes sense, as the emperor penguin is the tallest of all of the penguins.

Our ∼Fin-tastic∼ Guide to SeaWorld San Diego Events in 2021 and Beyond - Event guide

Seven Seas Food Festival — Select dates March through May 31, 2022

This popular event was extended in 2021 and it looks like we have several months to experience it in 2022! During select Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays in the spring, sample your way around the world with 125 exciting flavors and local and international craft beers. You can even catch live musical performances and Polynesian fire dancing presentations on select days. You can purchase items individually or buy a Food & Beverage Sampler Lanyard.

The two lanyards offer 10 to 15 food or beverage tastings and can help you save money. Pass members get three free bonus items with the 15-item lanyard. You can buy online or in the park. Each punch is good for one food item, brew, wine, cocktail or nonalcoholic beverage.

Our ∼Fin-tastic∼ Guide to SeaWorld San Diego Events in 2021 and Beyond - Woman eating hummus friesEnjoy flavors from:

  • SoCal
  • Mexico
  • Polynesia
  • Italy
  • The Mediterranean
  • France
  • The Caribbean
  • Craft beers from local breweries
  • Beers from featured domestic and international breweries
  • Cocktails from around the world

Pick up the SeaWorld Seven Seas Food Festival event guide and map when you arrive. You can identify gluten-free, vegetarian or vegan items there. Festival foods are available at food booths and select restaurants in addition to normal menu items at restaurants (in case your tadpoles are not feeling too adventurous). The booths open about noon. There are standing and seated tables where you can remove your mask to eat.

Our ∼Fin-tastic∼ Guide to SeaWorld San Diego Events in 2021 and Beyond - Lamb Slider

The festival brings a lot of foodies into the park, which can increase crowds. You'll want to arrive for shows about 30 minutes early to get a seat. If you are visiting during spring break, you may catch fireworks!

Kids' Weekends — (Not yet on the calendar for 2022)

Our ∼Fin-tastic∼ Guide to SeaWorld San Diego Events in 2021 and Beyond-Cookie Monster Greets Guests in Sesame Street Bay of Play

In 2021, Kids' Weekends was a new event that took place on fun-filled Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, from May 7 to June 6. It's not on the events calendar for 2022, so we will leave this here just in case there is a later announcement. For Kids' Weekends, you can bring the tadpoles for some splashin' good fun! Join Elmo, Rosita, Oscar the Grouch, Cookie Monster, Grover for story times, dance parties and more. You could also reserve Brunch with Elmo & Friends from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. at Explorers Café Patio (required an additional fee) in 2021.

Electric Ocean — Mid-June through Labor Day (beginning at 4 p.m.)

Our ∼Fin-tastic∼ Guide to SeaWorld San Diego Events in 2021 and Beyond-Electric Floating Acts Entertain Guests

Come summer, Electric Ocean powers the evening at this family-friendly event. You can immerse yourself in the worlds of light and music with special entertainment and decor, including:

  • Club Sea Glow (New!) — With a DJ and fireworks finale
  • Ignite Fireworks (All-New!) — A fireworks spectacular that brings the brilliant colors of the sea to the skies above the park. Check the park schedule for updates (plus larger shows for 4th of July weekend).
  • Glow Bar (All-New!) — An outdoor lounge for 21+
  • Anemone Avenue — Vibrant inflatable anemones lead the way to Club Sea Glow, Dazzling special effects include projection mapping, RGB Blossoms, haze, bubbles and concert lighting!
  • Moon Jellyfish Canopy (All-New!)
  • Electric Floating Acts (All-New!) — Imaginative characters, artists, acrobats and entertainers roam throughout the park on select dates starting in July.
  • Cirque Neon World (All-New!) — This theatrical production features a mixture of circus skills, dance and athletic stage performance connected with world-beat music, elaborate sets, brilliant costumes and sensational makeup. (Select dates starting in July.)
  • Let's Play Together (All-New!) — During the day, join Elmo, Grover, Abby Cadabby, Rosita and Cookie Monster as they play, sing, and dance while learning about the wonderful things that friends do together.
  • Laser Reef Light Show — A canopy of laser beams submerges guests below in rays of color and a powerful soundtrack.
  • School of Glow — Dancing waves of RGB fish and bubbles that swim along to an electronic playlist.
  • Sea of Life — Glittery fish sculptures located on Dolphin Hill seem to swim through the landscaping. Programmed lights add movement making it seem as if the fish have come to life!

4th of July Weekend 2021

Our ∼Fin-tastic∼ Guide to SeaWorld San Diego Events in 2021 and Beyond-Fireworks over the Penguin Building

Enjoy magnificent fireworks displays and much more.

SeaWorld Craft Beer Festival — Weekends (plus Labor Day) mid- Aug. 14 through mid-Sept. 2022

C'mon get hoppy with over 100 local and domestic brews at the all-new Craft Beer Festival. Pick up a festival sampling lanyard to taste 8 to 12 food items and beverages.

For the remaining SeaWorld San Diego 2022 events, see the remaining 2021 event descriptions above:

  • SeaWorld Spooktacular — Weekends mid-Sept. though Halloween
  • Howl-O-Scream — Select nights mid-Sept. though Halloween
  • Red, White & Blue Salute — Nov. 1 to 11, 2022
  • SeaWorld Christmas Celebration — mid-Nov. 2022 through early Jan. 2023

Keep hopping back for specific dates, details and updates as these events approach. If you are looking to save money on discount SeaWorld San Diego tickets, passes or Fun Cards (for multi-day fun) and even  to save a little green on parking, your favorite froggies are here to help! We also can help you decide where to stay in San Diego and help you hop on a good San Diego hotel deal.

Related: 15 Tips to Maximize Your Time at SeaWorld San Diego

Related: Our Guide to Visiting San Diego with Kids

Hoppy planning!

Keep hopping, Mommy Frog!
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