Eight Cultural Festivals We Love

Bet you haven’t been to all of them
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Hit enough of the city’s cultural celebrations, and you can eat, dance, and sip your way around the world here in Los Angeles, no TSA pat-down required.


All of the articles and photos from our special Immigration Issue are available in the October 2016 issue, on newsstands now.


Italy — Taste of Italy

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There’s no official Little Italy in L.A. anymore, but the Italian American Museum of Los Angeles brings the motherland west each year. In October Italophiles can spend a night swirling a jammy Super Tuscan in one hand and twirling pasta with the other. » Pico House, 424 N. Main St., Los Angeles


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Cambodia — Cambodia Town Film Festival

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Long Beach is home to the nation’s first Cambodia Town and the largest Cambodian population outside of Southeast Asia. Each September this four-day event highlights the Cambodian experience with features, documentaries, and student shorts. » Art Theatre Long Beach, 2025 E. 4th St., Long Beach


India — Festival of Chariots

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More than 40,000 Angelenos turn out for the annual parade in August that reenacts a story from ancient Indian scriptures. The crowd gathers around three chariots swathed in blue, red, and gold fabrics, gripping ropes to pull them through Santa Monica and Venice. » Santa Monica Civic Auditorium, 1855 Main St., Santa Monica


Lebanon — American Lebanese Cultural Festival

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Hookahs, kibbe (fried hand pies stuffed with lamb and pine nuts), and dabke dancing are on tap at Our Lady of Mount Lebanon-Saint Peter Cathedral’s late summer event in Arcadia. Enter the raffle: This year’s grand prize was a 2016 Mercedes-Benz E350. » Santa Anita Park, 285 W. Huntington Dr., Arcadia


Polynesia — Tafesilafa’i Pacific Islander Festival

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Each summer the Samoan faith com-munity brings the heritage of Pacific Islanders to Long Beach. Daredevils can sign up for a workshop where they’ll learn to twirl nifo oti, aka fire knives. » Shoreline Aquatic Park, Aquarium Way, Long Beach


Germany — Oktoberfest

Oktoberfest

Bavarian beer fiends will get their fill of imported brands (Widmer Hefeweizen, Spaten Oktoberfest, Warsteiner Verum) at this month long affair in Pomona, but if suds aren’t your style, there are bratwurst and soft pretzels. Each night an oompah band plays the music heard in German beer halls. » Fairplex, 1101 W. McKinley Ave., Pomona


Greece — L.A. Greek Fest

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Our city also lacks a Greek Town, but Hellenic culture is well repped in Southern California thanks to an abundance of Greek festivals (there are 19 this year). Saint Sophia’s three-day fall bacchanal features lamb-stuffed pitas, baklava, live music, and dancing. » Saint Sophia Cathedral, 1324 Normandie Ave., Los Angeles


Africa — Ankara Festival

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The work of African designers—Ghana’s DPiperTwins, Uganda’s Solome Katongole, Cameroon’s Fantabela— is on display and for sale at this three-day bash in September. » Avalon Hollywood, 1735 Vine St., Los Angeles


This article originally appeared in the October 2016 issue of Los Angeles magazine.

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