50 Days of Summer

Let the season commence—you’ve got things to do
  • 1

    Start stockpilling goo summer Karma at the 22nd Santa Monica Festival, an all-day event that’s high-minded and low-waste (June 1).

  • 2

    Face June gloom head-on by indulging in the dour musings of comedian Marc Maron at the Ice House in Pasadena (June 2).

  • 3

    Know where your next ice cream sandwich is coming from: Start following @Coolhaus truck on Twitter.

  • 4

    The Jubilee Music & Arts Festival downtown has 3 music stages, more than 40 bands and “booze gardens” that flow as late as possible (June 7).

  • 5

    Whee! The Griffith Park merry-go-round just set out the open sign from weekends only to seven days a week.

  • 6

    Throw your routine a curveball at the Japanese American National Museum’s Target Free Family Saturdays.

  • 7

    Samba, rumba, salsa, tango get the spotlight at the Museum of Latin American Art during Cabaret Latino (June 8).

  • 8

    Tee up with a few rounds of putt-putt at Golf N’ Stuff in Ventura, then cool off on the bumper boats nearby.

  • 9

    It’s a foot-stomping good time at the Pacific Asia Museum with a Maori haka warrior dance performance (June 21).

  • 10

    If the only thing you’ve ever surfed is the Web, catch Storm Surfers 3D, a splashy documentary that opens in L.A. at the end of June.

  • 11

    Better than the Discovery Channel, the Kidspace Children’s Museum features a bug fair for hands-on insect interaction (June 29).

  • 12

    The Santa Monica Lawn Bowls Club meets four times a week, with a single month membership for $20.

  • 13

    Backyard gatherings need “good flow.” Assess your patio feng shui before you send out those Evites. (Houzz.com is a good place to start.)

  • 14

    Kid art goes way beyond finger painting at the Pasadena Museum of California Art’s Family Day (June 22).

  • 15

    Light a fire under your outdoor cooking when Los Angeles magazine’s Digest blog kicks off Grilling Week at LAmag.com (June 24).

  • 16

    L.A.’s No. 1 female Roller Derby team, the Derby Dolls, will be cruising for a bruising all summer long.

  • 17

    Wednesday nights at the Academy Theater in Pasadena: Two admissions, two popcorns, two sodas = $10.

  • 18

    It’s 8 a.m.—be the first to get the freshest gills at the San Pedro Fish Market.

  • 19

    In June and July, the Getty Center hosts During Friday Flights which features screenings, DJs, and dance lessons.

  • 20

    Distract yourself from the heat by viewing far-off ice giants in the cool, dark planetarium at Santa Monica College.

  • 21

    For Independence Day fireworks stick with the standbys: Rose Bowl, Hollywood Bowl, and the Burton W Chace Park.

  • 22

    ‘Tis the season for watermelon tours at Tanaka Farms in Irvine—no reservations needed on weekends.

  • 23

    Bastille Day is an excuse to drink wine and watch Pétanque tournaments—happening at the Kenneth Hahn State Recreational Area (July 14).

  • 24

    Looking for a good book? The librarians at the L.A. County public librarypost their fresh lit-picks online.

  • 25

    Follow in the staggering footsteps of Charles Bukowski with Esotouric’s skid row to East Hollywood tour.

  • 26

    Comic-Con happens in San Diego, but Hollywood’s geek-elite can be found at Union Station as they catch the Amtrak train (July 18-21).

  • 27

    Like a brick-and-mortar Etsy, the Renegade Craft Fair is a DIY marketplace at the Los Angeles State Historic Park (July 20-21).

  • 28

    You know what sounds cool right about now? A book titled The Age of Ice. Author J.M. Sidorova will be reading from her novel at Vroman’s (July 30).

  • 29

    If you can’t go on an actual cruise, take a comedic one every other month at Booze Cruise, Nerdmelt’s variety show.

  • 30

    Take a tram ride around the lake and tropical jungles of the Arboretum.

  • 31

    They’re going to need a bigger boat: Giant sea creatures are taking over the world in Pacific Rim, Guillermo del Toro’s new fantasy-horror flick.

  • 32

    Fresh strawberry doughnuts at the Donut Man in Glendora—get ’em while they last.

  • 33

    There’s nothing like (fake) snow on the roof to convince you it’s not hot outside. Order a Shirley Temple at Clearman’s North Woods Inn in San Gabriel.

  • 34

    Time for a staycation: The 626 Night Market is a monthly Asian food lovers’ fest held at the Santa Anita Race Track.

  • 35

    Take a plein air evening stroll along Spring and Main every second Thursday of the month during the Downtown Art Walk.

  • 36

    Pagans unite during the happy hour at Third Wednesday, a block party that takes over downtown Culver City.

  • 37

    Free pipe organ concerts and an ice-cold pew at the First Congregational Church of Los Angeles is a gift from you-know-who.

  • 38

    You think not having A.C. is hard, try being one of the sun-beaten folks featured in The Autry’s “Art of the West,” a contemporary and historical celebration of the frontier as muse.

  • 39

    Dancing Santas and topless aliens—nobody does outdoor concerts like the Flaming Lips, at the Pacific Amphitheatre (July 31).

  • 40

    Each first and third Sunday of August, find music, pulled pork sandwiches, cold beer and kick-ass mules at Adams’ Pack Station in Sierra Madre.

  • 41

    Wake up and smell the coffee, then the roses, at the Los Angeles Flower Mart, when it opens at 6 a.m on Saturdays.

  • 42

    The only thing better than an evening ballgame is one with fireworks—a summer tradition at Dodger Stadium.

  • 43

    All ice-creamed out? Try the Baked Alaska at Wolfgang Puck’s Cut.

  • 44

    Ride summer off into the sunset with an early Hollywood western and catered BBQ at the William S. Hart Museum’s annual Silents Under the Stars (August 17).

  • 45

    Like a Love Boat to San Pedro, Spirit Cruises offers dinner, dancing, and, if you’re lucky, romancing.

  • 46

    A wall of North Pole permafrost awaits at Ecosystems, the California Science Center exhibition.

  • 47

    Have a blast (truly) by indoor skydiving above iFly’s massive fan at Universal CityWalk.

  • 48

    Hear the impromptu jamming at SoundShoppe, a wild concert series at Eagle Rock’s Center for the Arts (August 11).

  • 49

    It’s real-life March of the Penguins at the Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach with black-and-white birds on full display.

  • 50

    Kiss the scorching weather good-bye with the deep-fried goodies at the L.A. County Fair in Pomona, which begins August 30 and continues through September.


This feature originally appeared in the June 2013 issue of Los Angeles magazine