Arts, Culture & Entertainment District
North Park’s on-going renaissance has been accentuated by a thriving creative element and designation as the region’s artistic hub. In 1998 North Park Main Street declared itself an Arts, Culture & Entertainment District to recognize, celebrate and foster this growing economic and cultural trend. The area’s newly established professional class of artists, designers, musicians, writers and other creative entrepreneurs, combined with a broad array of colorful and imaginative cultural events have transformed North Park into a widely recognized “Creative Community”.North Park’s creative renaissance is punctuated by the juxtaposition of two core values: preservation of the community’s historic character and celebration of its heterogeneous and avant-garde work and life styles. The “authenticity” of the North Park urban village – one of the oldest neighborhoods in San Diego – has served as a magnet to creative types and to businesses poised to provide services to this new demographic profile.
Learn more at the North Park Historical Society.
The Art Scene
Today’s North Park plays host to an ever-increasing array of art galleries and studios, performing arts groups and venues, dance studios, architects and local art projects. A wide range of art-based forums and festivities, many sponsored by North Park Main Street, draw large and enthusiastic crowds from all around the San Diego region.Symbolic of the community’s burgeoning art scene is its performing arts jewel – the Birch North Park Theater – restored to the shimmer of its glory days in the 1920s. Previously home to a movie theater in the early 1970s and a church in the 1980s, the decaying building was eventually bought by the City and converted in 2005 to an intimate, red velvet-seat, live theater and concert venue. The acclaimed historic renovation captured the prestigious San Diego Architectural Foundation Orchid Award. The theater’s grand resurrection created a new home for the San Diego Lyric Opera (relocating from Downtown San Diego), and served as a catalyst for an entire neighborhood’s transformation.Over the past several years a stream of artistic, cultural and entertainment oriented enterprises have poured into North Park – as illustrated by the sampling below.