Here’s Cinespia’s Schedule of Films Screening at Hollywood Forever in September

August 16, 2018 by Karin E. Baker
Cinespia at Hollywood Forever

Cinespia at Hollywood Forever. Image via Cinespia.

The movie-viewing experience that set the stage for now-ubiquitous outdoor film-watching in L.A., Cinespia has announced its September 2018 schedule, with an array of classic films from the ’60s, ’70s, ’80s, and ’90s screening at Hollywood Forever Cemetery.

These screenings are sponsored by Amazon Studios. Check out the complete September schedule below.

Saturday, September 1: Beverly Hills Cop (1984)

See Eddie Murphy at the height of his career in this hilarious 1980s comedy about a smartass Detroit police officer who goes to Beverly Hills to investigate his friend’s murder.

Sunday, September 2: Now and Then (1995)

Christina Ricci, Thora Birch, Gaby Hoffmann, Melanie Griffith, Demi Moore, Rosie O’Donnell and Rita Wilson star in this coming-of-age story about friendship set in both the ’70s and the ’90s.

Saturday, September 8: Scream (1996)

Smart, funny, and scary, this ’90s horror film transformed the genre while inspiring one of the most popular Halloween costumes of the last two decades. Scream stars Drew Barrymore, Neve Campbell, Skeet Ulrich, Courtney Cox, and David Arquette.

Saturday, September 15: Saturday Night Fever (1977)

Saturday Night Fever is far more than just a disco-era time capsule. John Travolta is seriously magnetic in this tale of a 19-year-old Brooklynite who’s going nowhere… except when he’s on the dance floor. See him show off some seriously amazing moves in this moving coming-of-age story.

Saturday, September 22: Yellow Submarine (1968)

Savor the psychedelic trippiness of the Beatles animated delight, followed by a fireworks spectacular.

Doors for all five films open at 6:15 p.m., with each film beginning at 8:00 p.m. Tickets are $16, and can be purchased online here.

Food, Happenings

The Fields LA is a Brand New Food Hall Adjacient to LAFC’s Stadium

August 13, 2018 by Karin E. Baker
The Fields LA food hall

Photo by Brian Champlin / We Like L.A.

The Fields LA opens this Tuesday, August 14, billing itself as “a stylized urban food hall” as well as a celebration of Los Angeles’ culinary diversity. Situated in Exposition Park next to Banc of California Stadium — the recently opened home to Los Angeles Football Club — The Fields’ main floor will feature nine different vendors offering a variety of cuisines, plus two bars.

Some of the city’s best chefs are part of the culinary team here. Tim Hollingsworth (Otium and Barrel & Ashes) helms C.J. Boyd’s Fried Chicken, which features five different chicken sandwiches and banana pudding. Jason Fullilove drops in a third location of his soul food restaurant Barbara Jean. Other cuisines represented include Chinese-American, Middle Eastern, Italian, and Mexican (a burrito spot, Nayarit-style seafood, and a Mexico City-style taqueria).

The Fields Food Hall

Photo by Brian Champlin / We Like L.A.

Open every day of the year except Christmas, this food hall isn’t just for soccer fans on game day. Developers are betting that the unique offerings, combined with the location (a stone’s throw from the USC campus and the nearby Expo Park Metro station) will make The Fields LA a year-round destination. The pricing —  $10 for a top-quality gourmet chicken sandwich and $7 or $8 for many of the craft beers — is more accessible that you might expect from an operation of this scope. The size — seating for 200 inside and 90 at the outdoor cafe — is ambitious.

During a press preview this past week I sampled some of the many offerings, and left impressed by more than a few standouts: short rib on a bed of smoked hummus dotted with pomegranate seeds at Akko Port; the K-Town chicken sandwich (laden with chili, ginger, cabbage, daikon, and sesame mayo) at C.J. Boyd’s; beef and sweet carrot potstickers and cheese foam oolong tea at Ms. Chi; mac and cheese studded with crawfish at Barbara Jean; tostaditas, heavy with shrimp and octopus, at Coni’Seafood; the birria quesadilla at Burritos La Palma. I also loved the focaccia sandwich with mortadella and parmesan crema at Piccolo Antico Pizzeria Focacceria, a pop-up that will be here for just three months.

The Fields Food Hall

Photo by Brian Champlin / We Like L.A.

The drink menus include a well-curated array of wine, craft beer, and handmade cocktails from Nick Meyer and Julian Cox. The cocktails are exceptional, including two shockingly good frozen concoctions: a Mai Tai and the spicy, tequila-based Poblano Escobar. Also very good: the Strawberry Fields and a margarita, both served on tap. Tin City’s rosé cider is also a singular choice.

The Fields LA food hall

Photo by Brian Champlin / We Like L.A.

The Fields’ second floor, expected to open as soon as September, will be home to Free Play, a new restaurant and bar from Hollingsworth, featuring bar bites, a full bar, live music, a DJ booth and games. The third floor, an expansive rooftop deck with impressive city views, will be available to rent as an event space.

The Fields LA, is located at 3939 S. Figueroa. The food hall will be open daily from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. starting August 14.

Things To Do

25 Fun Things to do For the 4th of July in Los Angeles (2018)

July 2, 2018 by Karin E. Baker
Hollywood Bowl fireworks

Image via LA Phil / Hollywood Bowl

July 4 is almost here! Have you made plans for Wednesday yet? Whether you want to visit an art museum, attend a rooftop barbecue, view an outdoor movie, a traditional fireworks show, or rock out to ’80s icons the Go-Go’s, we’ve got you covered.

Below, check out our quick, easy-to-scan list of 25 fun things to do in Los Angeles on Wednesday, July 4, 2018. Enjoy!

Fourth of July To-dos

1. See world-class fireworks at the Rose Bowl: Americafestnow in its 92nd year, is still going strong. This year’s pre-fireworks entertainment will include a Michael Jackson tribute and a motorcycle stunt show. Check for discounted tickets via Goldstar. 

2. They’ve still got the beat. See one of the greatest bands of the new wave era — L.A.’s own Go-Go’s — as dazzling fireworks set the skies above Hollywood aglow at the Hollywood Bowl’s July 4th Fireworks Spectacular.

3. Merge patriotism with kitschiness at ‘Merica Fest, a day of live music, tacos, and lots of beer at Angel City Brewery in DTLA.

4. Sample beers from 16 different breweries, enter hot dog- and pie-eating contests, dance poolside to live music and watch fireworks at Marina del Rey Hotel’s 4th of July Block Party.

5. Enjoy an old-timey Independence Day in Topanga Canyon at the Theatricum Botanicum’s 4th Annual Independence Day Old Fashioned Barn Dance and Barbecue. The celebration features innocent pleasures from days of yore, like a pie-eating contest, watermelon seed-spitting contest, horseshoes, and more.

6. Rancho Palos Verdes presents the 43rd Annual Independence Day Celebration at the Civic Center from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. featuring arts and crafts booths, carnival rides, games, contests, a petting zoo and a puppet show.

7. Begin Independence Day early (9:30 a.m.) at the 12th Annual Santa Monica 4th of July Parade. While you’re in the Main Street neighborhood, you might want to hit up the special pie and coffee pop up at Sweet Rose Creamery, happening from 8 a.m. to noon.

8. If you’re in the West Valley, you might want to check out the July 4th Fireworks Extravaganza in Woodland Hills’ expansive Warner Ranch Park, featuring food offerings from more than 20 local restaurants and a 15-minute pyrotechnic display.

9. Watch fireworks from a breathtaking 950 feet above at 71Above located in DTLA. Dine on a four-course menu from chef Vartan Abgaryan, at $95 from 6 to 9:30 p.m. (reservations highly suggested) or head to the bar (walk-ins welcome) and cheers to while the LA skyline sparkles.

10. Watch musical performances from former Beach Boy Al Jardine, Ambrosia, Stephen Bishop and more at Music on the Meadows at Terranea Resort in Palos Verdes.

11. Go to Grand Park for a festive afternoon and evening during its 4th of July Block Party. Enjoy live music, dancing, more than 40 food vendors, and a dazzling fireworks show above Downtown Los Angeles.

12. If you’re near Long Beach, head over to the Queen Mary for their All-American Fourth of July Celebration that includes performances from three top tribute bands (paying homage to Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers, Journey and The Eagles), along with family games, arts, crafts, and a big-time fireworks spectacular. Check for discounted tickets via Goldstar.

13. A family-friendly day is awaiting you at the Palos Verdes Estates Old Fashioned Independence Day. Among the day’s highlights: an apple pie contest, face painting, a kid’s bike parade, and a magic show.

14. Attend a poolside soiree at Skybar at the Mondrian in West Hollywood. The Wicked Paradise 4th of July Pool Party and BBQ will include a DJ set from Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs.

15. Reputedly the best fireworks show on the Westside, July 4th at the Marina offers two prime spots in Marina del Rey ideal for watching the show, complete with synchronized music.

16. Visit a museum! Though many L.A. museums are closed on July 4, the Getty Center will be open from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., the Norton Simon Museum will be open from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m., and The Broad will open at 11 a.m. and close at 5 p.m.

17. Grab a picnic and head to East Hollywood to watch fireworks in Barnsdall Park. Set atop a hill, Barnsdall offers great views of multiple fireworks displays. 

18. Hit the Westside and head to Brennan’s 4th of July Backyard Cookout. Play badminton or corn hole, drink cold Tall Boys, and savor burgers, bratwurst, hot dogs and more.

19. Enjoy a rooftop barbecue at the Highlight Room at the DREAM Hollywood Hotel. Hang out by the pool, watch fireworks displays from around the city, and enjoy BBQ meats (or a vegetarian burger), along with tasty sides.

20. Run alongside the beautiful Pacific Ocean during the 5K and Firecracker Dash in Redondo Beach.

21. Brewport in El Segundo is hosting a Backyard BBQ Block Party, with lots of barbecue, beer, and wine for sale.

22. Need something for a party that’s both sweet and patriotic? Head over to Pitchoun in DTLA for a macaron tower in the shape of an American flag, or to the Valerie’s Pie Stand Pop-up at Echo Park’s Valerie Confections for the Stars and Stripes Pie, heaping with fresh strawberries, blueberries, and vanilla cream. 

23. Savor grilled oysters, burgers, and veggies at “lazy French” eatery Melody in Virgil Village, which is throwing a Fourth o’ July BBQ Sparkler from 4 to 10 p.m.

24. Palisades Rocks the Fourth returns for 2018 with music, food trucks, family-friendly activities and a fireworks spectacular, presented by the famed Pyro Spectaculars, at 9 p.m.

25. Your four legged friend can have fun too! The July 4th Dog Parade at Eastview dog park in Rancho Palos Verdes invited pups to dress up for fun and do some good by bringing pet food to donate at local shelters.


The Best Places to Eat in Los Angeles for Father’s Day 2018

June 12, 2018 by Karin E. Baker

Father’s Day is just around the corner, so make sure Dad knows you appreciate him with a special meal this Sunday.

Whether pops likes fine dining or food trucks, Southern cuisine or Japanese robotayaki, baseball or BBQ, we’ve got you covered.

Check out our list below and find a way to celebrate your dad in style for Father’s Day 2018. And don’t forget to make reservations ASAP!

1. Known for its coastal Italian flavors, Cal Mare is a great choice for Father’s Day, with items like Whole Roasted John Dory, Carbonara Pizza and Korumbuta Pork Chop tempting dear old Dad.

2. Burbank’s classic Castaway restaurant, set high atop a hill and boasting great views, has just undergone a major renovation. For Father’s Day, the newly reopened eatery is hosting a Grand Celebration, featuring an elaborate three-course meal for $79 (or $35 for kids), with options like Lobster and Waffles or Seared Tuna Tartine.

3. Does Dad like to check out exotic cars? The Concours d’Elegance, a free event that closed down the 400 block of Rodeo Drive, showcases the best of the world’s best autos. If you’d like to take Dad for a bite before or after, 208 Rodeo, perched above Wilshire Blvd. on the cobblestone streets of Via Rodeo, offers elegant but unpretentious bistro fare, noteworthy cocktails, and great people-watching.

4. For the father who loves baseball and BBQ, head over to Anaheim’s Angel Stadium. This Father’s Day, Dad can play catch in the outfield, crack a bat in the Angels’ batting cages, enjoy a free drink (for 21 and over), engage in a behind-the-scenes stadium tour, and savor a BBQ picnic buffet in the Lexus Diamond Club. Tickets are $90 for adults, $20 for kids 6-12, and free for kids 5 and under.

5. If Dad loves beer, take him to Riverside’s gorgeous Mission Inn. Brunch at this 19th century National Historic Landmark will be extra special this year, with an additional beer-centric menu created in collaboration with So Cal brewery Hangar 24. Options include Pugachev’s Cobra Russian Imperial Stout-infused BBQ pork rib with baked beans and corn on the cob, Hangar 24 Orange Wheat beer-can chicken with warm German potato salad, and beer-infused éclairs.

6. Chef Philip Mack is offering a very special Bull & Oyster Roast at Maple at Descanso Gardens this Father’s Day. The La Cañada Flintridge eatery’s Father’s Day meal reflects Mack’s Maryland roots and passion for soul food, with offerings like the Low Country Boil (with peel and eat shrimp), Cherry-Glazed Pit Ham, Mesquite Grilled Oysters, crab soup, and beignets.

7. Greenbar Distillery in DTLA is hosting an open house and BBQ this Father’s Day, with FREE liquor tastings and BBQ!

8. Boasting a goth-infused decor, Mexican eatery Mi Corazon, located in Silver Lake, is offering 2-for-1 beers on Father’s Day, along with a barrel-aged tequila Old Fashioned for $9, in addition to its regular menu. We suggest ordering the 20-ingredient mole.

9. Savor Southeast Asian flavors with Dad at Bone Kettle in Pasadena, with dishes like Bone Marrow with scallion confit, Crab Lumpia, Garlic Steak Nasi Goreng or Beef Ribs with bone marrow au jus.

10. Santa Monica gastropub The Independence is offering Dad a free drink on his day. On Father’s Day, brunching dads can enjoy a complimentary “Man-mosa” at brunch or a Man-hattan at dinner.

11. If Dad loves Japanese food, take him to Katana in West Hollywood, which recently launched its Sunday-evening Red Sun BBQ Series. The elegant patio set high above the Sunset Strip is the ideal spot for listening to a live DJ while savoring freshly grilled lobster skewers, tacos filled with carnitas or popcorn shrimp, ceviche and sushi rolls.

Celebrating all of the wonderful dads with a colorful buffet! 💛 #HappyFathersDay

A post shared by Mr. C Hotels (@mr.chotels) on

12. Enjoy a poolside cookout at The Restaurant at Mr. C in Beverly Hills. Lunch on the elegant pool deck will include live music, games, grilled burgers and veggies, salmon chicken mattone, Cipriani pastas, housemade desserts, and endless pours of Peroni Nastro Azzurro or house wine. And to top if off, Dad gets his choice of a Cipriani bottled beer or a signature cigar from La Casa Del Tabac to bring home.

13. Bond with Dad over Clint Eastwood and James Bond movies — not to mention dinner — at the Stalking Horse in West L.A. Movies will play from 4 p.m. on, while the burger topped with pork belly, onion rings, bacon-onion relish and arugula is just one of the Dad-centered specials.

14. French bistro Church & State in DTLA’s Arts District will tempt discerning dads with their $45 four-course Father’s Day menu, featuring dishes like Roulade de Porc and Steak Tartare made with grass-fed beef.

15. If Dad loves food trucks, take him to Angel City Brewery‘s Father’s Day Food Truck Festival. Downtown Taco Co. and other food trucks will serve up tasty temptations, the Vignes Rooftop Revival will play gypsy jazz, and an assortment of Angel City’s limited-edition craft beers will help Dad feel both relaxed and appreciated.


Here’s Where to See Free Shakespeare in the Park in L.A. for Summer 2018

June 11, 2018 by Karin E. Baker

Photo via Shakespeare in the Park – Griffith Park on Facebook

“Summer’s lease hath all too short a date,” Shakespeare wrote in his 18th sonnet. Make sure your summer doesn’t pass by too quickly by indulging in one of the many free Shakespeare in the Park performances around Los Angeles.

We’ve compiled a schedule of all of the free and donation-based Shakespeare to be found in the Los Angeles area during the summer of 2018.

While admission is free for any and all, why not leave a few dollars to help continue supporting free Shakespeare in the City of Angel?

Check out the listings below, and enjoy the show!

Shakespeare in the Park

2018 marks the 15th year of the Independent Shakespeare Co. Ten weeks of free Shakespeare will launch on June 30 at the Old Zoo in Griffith Park with A Midsummer Night’s Dream. 

Titus Andronicus then begins on July 28, and both plays run through September 2 at 7 p.m. on Wednesdays-Sundays. Check this link for a detailed schedule. Arrive early to nab a good seat.

Shakespeare by the Sea

Shakespeare By The Sea will once again offer a ten-week program of admission-free performances with two featured productions: The Merry Wives of Windsor and The Winter’s Tale.

Shows will take place at a variety of venues across the Los Angeles area, including stops in Beverly Hills, Long Beach, Hermosa Beach, South Pasadena, Whittier, and an extended run at Point Fermin Park in San Pedro.

The complete schedule is as follows:

June 14: The Merry Wives of Windsor – Point Fermin Park in San Pedro at 8 p.m.

June 15: The Merry Wives of Windsor – Point Fermin Park in San Pedro at 8 p.m.

June 16: The Merry Wives of Windsor – Point Fermin Park in San Pedro at 8 p.m.

June 21: The Winter’s Tale – Point Fermin Park in San Pedro at 8 p.m.

June 22: The Winter’s Tale – Point Fermin Park in San Pedro at 8 p.m.

June 23: The Winter’s Tale – Point Fermin Park in San Pedro at 8 p.m.

June 28: The Merry Wives of Windsor – Point Fermin Park in San Pedro at 8 p.m.

June 29: The Winter’s Tale – Point Fermin Park in San Pedro at 8 p.m.

June 30: The Merry Wives of Windsor – Point Fermin Park in San Pedro at 8 p.m.

July 5: The Winter’s Tale – Point Fermin Park in San Pedro at 8 p.m.

July 6: The Merry Wives of Windsor – Point Fermin Park in San Pedro at 8 p.m.

July 7: The Winter’s Tale – Point Fermin Park in San Pedro at 8 p.m.

July 8: The Merry Wives of Windsor – Hesse Park in Rancho Palos Verdes at 7 p.m.

July 11: The Winter’s Tale – Valley Park in Hermosa Beach at 7 p.m

July 12: The Merry Wives of Windsor – Valley Park in Hermosa Beach at 7 p.m.

July 13: The Winter’s Tale – Monte Verde Park in Lakewood at 7 p.m.

July 14: The Winter’s Tale – Rush Park in Los Alamitos at 7 p.m.

July 18: The Merry Wives of Windsor – Schabarum Regional Park in Rowland Heights at 7 p.m.

July 19: The Winter’s Tale – Garfield Park in South Pasadena at 7 p.m.

July 20: The Merry Wives of Windsor – Marine Mammal Care Center in San Pedro at 7 p.m.

July 21: The Winter’s Tale – Cesar Chavez Park in Long Beach at 7 p.m.

July 22: The Merry Wives of Windsor – Cesar Chavez Park in Long Beach at 7 p.m.

July 25: The Winter’s Tale – La Mirada Regional Park in La Mirada at 7 p.m.

July 26: The Winter’s Tale – Birch Park in Santa Ana at 7 p.m.

July 27: The Winter’s Tale – Wilson Park in Torrance at 7 p.m.

July 28: The Merry Wives of Windsor – Wilson Park in Torrance at 7 p.m.

July 29: The Merry Wives of Windsor – Terreana Resort in Rancho Palos Verdes at 7 p.m.

August 1: The Winter’s Tale – Adventure Park in Whitter at 7 p.m.

August 2: The Merry Wives of Windsor – Garfield Park in South Pasadena at 7 p.m.

August 3:  The Winter’s Tale – Potocki Center for the Arts in Mission Viejo at 7 p.m.

August 4: The Merry Wives of Windsor – Los Encinos State Historic Park in Encino at 7 p.m.

August 5: The Merry Wives of Windsor – Eisenhower Park in Seal Beach at 7 p.m.

August 8: The Merry Wives of Windsor – Soka University in Aliso Viejo at 7 p.m.

August 9: The Merry Wives of Windsor – Roxbury Park in Beverly Hills at 7 p.m.

August 10: The Winter’s Tale – Polliwog Park in Manhattan Beach at 7 p.m.

August 12: The Merry Wives of Windsor – Crown Valley Park in Laguna Niguel at 7 p.m.

August 15: The Winter’s Tale – CSU Dominguez Hills in Carons at 7 p.m.

August 16: The Merry Wives of Windsor – CSU Dominguez Hills in Carons at 7 p.m.

August 17: The Winter’s Tale – Point Fermin Park in San Pedro at 8 p.m.

August 18: The Merry Wives of Windsor – Point Fermin Park in San Pedro at 8 p.m.

Visit the Shakespeare by the Sea calendar page for more details on each of the locations and any changes to the schedule.

Even More Free Summer Shakespeare

Another option for free Shakespeare is at The LA SummerFEST presented by the Santa Clarita Shakespeare Festival.

This year, Othello will be performed on July 21, 23, 28, 30 and August 11-13. Each show begins at 8 p.m. Though admission and parking are free, the group suggests a donation of $10.


Here’s Rooftop Cinema Club’s Schedule for June 2018

June 1, 2018 by Karin E. Baker

Rooftop Cinema Club has announced its schedule for June, with screenings at a new Hollywood rooftop location, in addition to Rooftop Cinema’s other location at LEVEL in Downtown Los Angeles. Both spots will show beloved films four of five evenings every week all summer.

The new Hollywood venue is atop NeueHouse, a recently revamped 1930s building that was home to CBS Radio during the Golden Age of Radio. This Streamline Moderne landmark lends a sense of history to viewing movies in the heart of Hollywood.

Both locations offer under-the-stars moviegoing, with comfortable lounge chairs to kick back in and noise-canceling wireless headsets. Hungry? Both rooftops will offer casual bites, fresh popcorn and other movie snacks, signature cocktails, beer and wine for sale.

The June schedule includes acclaimed recent releases (Black Panther, The Shape of Water, Lady Bird), classics from the Golden Age of Hollywood (Rebel Without a Club, Sunset Boulevard) and a vast selection of crowd-pleasing comedies and dramas (Pulp Fiction, Grease, Mean Girls and much more).

Films begin at 8 p.m., and you must be 18 or over to attend. Ticket prices begin at $17 (plus booking fee) for general lounge seating. If you really love popcorn, lounge seating plus unlimited popcorn begins at $20 (plus booking fees), or get up-close and personal with a loved one in a Rooftop Love Seat. Beginning at $24 per person, plus booking fee, you’ll share a double deckchair, pillow, and bottomless popcorn.

The complete schedule for June is listed below. You can purchase tickets via the official website.

NeueHouse Schedule

  • June 7:  Sunset Boulevard
  • June 8:  Grease
  • June 10: Black Panther
  • June 11: 10 Things I Hate About You
  • June 12: Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
  • June 13: Lady Bird
  • June 14: Pulp Fiction
  • June 16: Mean Girls
  • June 17: Back to the Future Part II
  • June 18: Thief (Violent Streets)
  • June 19: Cinema Paradiso
  • June 20: Rebel Without A Cause
  • June 22: Pretty Woman
  • June 23: The Greatest Showman
  • June 26: Thelma & Louise
  • June 27: Black Panther
  • June 29: Indiana Jones and The Temple of Doom
  • June 30: The Bodyguard

LEVEL Schedule

  • June 1:  Coming to America
  • June 2:  The Greatest Showman
  • June 5:  Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy
  • June 6:  Ghostbusters
  • June 7:  Reservoir Dogs
  • June 8:  Cruel Intentions
  • June 9:  Moonlight
  • June 12: Lost in Translation
  • June 13: The Shawshank Redemption
  • June 14: Romeo + Juliet
  • June 15: Black Panther
  • June 16: The Shape of Water
  • June 19: Dazed and Confused
  • June 20: The Fifth Element
  • June 21:  Selena
  • June 22:  Top Gun
  • June 23:  Baby Driver
  • June 26:  Lady Bird
  • June 27:  Mulholland Drive
  • June 28:  The Notebook
  • June 29:  The Big Lebowski
  • June 30:  Mean Girls

Here’s the Schedule for KCRW’s Free Summer Nights Events for 2018

May 31, 2018 by Karin E. Baker
Chinatown Summer Nights 2013

Chinatown Summer Nights 2013. Credit: Eric Chan via flickr cc

With summer less than a month away, you’ll want to start making plans — fortunately, Los Angeles offers lots of great free events all summer long. One of the best options is KCRW’s Summer Nights, with a whole slew of outdoor music events throughout summer 2018.This year’s edition of KCRW’s Summer Nights begins on June 2. Now in its ninth year, Summer Nights offers dozens of fun, free, all-ages outdoor music shows over the course of the summer throughout the greater Los Angeles area, with venues as far north as Santa Barbara (at the Museum of Contemporary Art).

There’s a new first-time venue for Summer Nights this time around: KCRW’s new home base, located at Santa Monica College’s new Center for Media and Design. See below for the list of every KCRW Summer Nights show and get ready to celebrate our beautiful summer nights!

Saturday, June 2, 7:30 p.m. – One Colorado Old Pasadena: Pinky Pinky + KCRW DJ Dan Wilcox

Saturday, June 16, 7:30 p.m. – One Colorado Old Pasadena: shey baba + KCRW DJ Chris Douridas

Saturday, June 30, 8:00 p.m. – Chinatown: KCRW DJs Liza Richardson + Garth Trinidad

Thursday, July 5, 7:00 p.m. – Museum of Contemporary Art Santa Barbara: KCRW DJ Aaron Byrd

Thursday, July 12, 6:30 p.m. – Hammer Museum: Still Woozy, Neil Frances + KCRW DJ Jeremy Sole

Saturday, July 14, 6:00 p.m. – California African American Museum: KCRW DJs Aaron Byrd + Garth Trinidad

Thursday, July 19, 6:30 p.m. – Hammer Museum: Kauf, Sam Evian + KCRW DJ Valida

Thursday, July 26, 6:30 p.m. – Hammer Museum: Cut Chemist + KCRW DJ Anthony Valadez

Friday, July 27, 5:30 p.m. – Metro Arts Presents at Union Station: KCRW DJs Travis Holcombe + Jason Bentley

Saturday, July 28, 8:00 p.m. – Chinatown: KCRW DJs Mathieu Schreyer + Anthony Valadez

Saturday, August 4, Time TBA – KCRW HQ @ Santa Monica College’s CMD Campus: Talent TBA

Thursday, August 2, 7:00 p.m. – Museum of Contemporary Art Santa Barbara: KCRW DJ Marion Hodges

Friday, August 3, 5:30 p.m. – Metro Arts Presents at Union Station: KCRW DJs Anne Litt + Dan Wilcox

Friday, August 10, 5:30 p.m. – Metro Arts Presents at Union Station: KCRW DJs Raul Campos + Anthony Valadez

Saturday, August 11, Time TBA – KCRW HQ @ Santa Monica College’s CMD Campus: Talent TBA

Saturday, August 18, Time TBA – KCRW HQ @ Santa Monica College’s CMD Campus: Talent TBA

Saturday, August 25, 8:00 p.m. – Chinatown: KCRW DJs Raul Campos + Jason Bentley

Thursday, September 6, 7:00 p.m. – Museum of Contemporary Art Santa Barbara: KCRW DJ Travis Holcombe

For more information, visit KCRW’s official website.

Cool Spots, Happenings

This Bioluminescent Algae Pool Art Installation Is Coming to a Secret Location in L.A.

May 24, 2018 by Karin E. Baker
Night Life LA: Bioluminiscent Wading Pool

Night Life LA: Bioluminiscent Wading Pool. Photo credit: Emily Topper

Angelenos will have the chance to marvel at the beauty of bioluminescent plankton after a hike by the light of the moon when Night Life LA, an immersive outdoor art installation, comes to a secret location in Northeast Los Angeles.

Taking place over three nights — from May 31 to June 2 — this free event is produced by the anonymous artists who created the much-ballyhooed Griffith Park Teahouse, Lost and Found LA and Petal Drop 01 and 02.

The adventure begins with a moonlit hike. Small groups will then enter an ethereal environment highlighted by a magical wading pool aglow in bioluminescent blue plankton. These living lights are expected to respond to human movement, creating an otherworldly type of communication between hominids and microorganisms.

A team of marine biologists has worked with the artists for the last two years on cultivating this bioluminescence. Viewing this glowing plankton in the ocean is not a common occurrence in L.A. — though it’s sometimes present here, light pollution usually makes it difficult to see.

Interested in attending? Visitors will be admitted between 8 p.m. and 2 a.m., and the exact location will be shared before the event. A limited number of free, timed-entry tickets will be available via a lottery system on May 25.  You can also call (323) 905-4574 for ticketing info.


Silver Lake’s FREE Outdoor Summer Movie Series is Back in June (And Here’s the Complete Schedule for 2018)

May 23, 2018 by Karin E. Baker
silver lake picture show

Photo Credit: Silver Lake Picture Show

Get ready… for even more free outdoor movies to check out this summer! The Silver Lake Picture Show has announced its 2018 schedule of crowd-pleasing movies to be screened every other Thursday at Sunset Triangle Plaza through mid-September.

Now in its seventh season, The Silver Lake Picture Show is a community-oriented event, taking place across from Sunset Junction, that unites socialization with appreciation for movies and music.

From the recent (Get Out, the winner of the 2017 Oscar for Best Screenplay) to the romantic (Dirty Dancing) to the suspenseful (Jaws) to uproarious comedies like Mrs. Doubtfire and Sister Act, the SLPS is offering up some great choices this summer.

Before each feature film, enjoy a DJ set or live music from local bands, along with short films from Los Angeles-area filmmakers. These screenings always attract at least 600 people so you’ll want to arrive early to nab a prime viewing spot. Feel free to bring your own seating (high-back chairs should sit in the back) and a picnic.

Each event begins at 7:30 p.m. and will end around 11 p.m. Check out the complete 2018 schedule for the Silver Lake Picture Show below:

June 21Dirty Dancing (Emile Ardolino, 1987)

July 5:  Jaws (Steven Spielberg, 1975)

July 19: Mrs. Doubtfire (Chris Columbus, 1993)

August 2: Remember the Titans (Boaz Yakin, 2000)

August 16: Sister Act (Emile Ardolino, 1992)

August 30: Get Out (Jordan Peele, 2017)

September 13: Rush Hour (Brett Ratner, 1998)

For more information, visit


Free Summer Films at LA Plaza de Cultura y Artes Are Back Starting in June

May 16, 2018 by Karin E. Baker
By Ken Lund from Reno, Nevada, USA - LA Plaza de Cultura y Artes, Los Angeles, California, CC BY-SA 2.0,

LA Plaza de Cultura y Artes. Photo by Ken Lund via flickr cc

Another summer of free movie screenings is just around the corner at LA Plaza de Cultura y Artes. On June 30 LA Plaza launches the return of its annual free summer film series with a screening of Up in Smoke.

LA Plaza’s summer film series will feature five Latino-themed films over five months, one each month, concluding on October 20. Films will be accompanied by cast appearances offering meet and greet opportunities, live music, and other on-site activities and/or exhibitions.

All series events are free to the public and seating is available on a first-come, first-served basis. Guests are welcome to bring lawn chairs or blankets. Each screening will feature live music, along with food and beverages for sale. Doors for each film open at 6 p.m., except for October 20, when doors open at 5 p.m.

Check out the complete schedule of films below.

Saturday, June 30: Up in Smok(1978)

Up in Smoke, starring Cheech and Chong, is a picaresque stoner comedy whose dialogue has inspired the work of Quentin Tarantino. Martin Scorsese is such a fan of the cult classic, he cast the duo in his film After Hours.

Saturday, July 28: Walkout (2006)

Directed by Edward James Olmos and starring Alexa Vega, Walkout is based on the true story of a student walkout in East L.A. back in 1968 after a group of high-schoolers tire of inferior school conditions.

Saturday, September 21: Variedades on Olvera Street (2016)

Music, spoken word, theater, comedy and art converge to tell the story behind the oldest street in Los Angeles. Loosely based on early 20th-century Mexican vaudeville shows, this documentary includes Latina punk rock icon Alice Bag. A live musical performance from La Victoria will proceed the show.

Saturday, September 29: Born in East L.A. (1987)

A Mexican-American native of Los Angeles is mistaken for an undocumented immigrant and deported to Mexico in this comedy starring Cheech Marin.

Saturday, October 20: Machete (2010)

Directed by Robert Rodriguez, Machete stars Danny Trejo as a former Mexican Federale (and major badass) now living in Texas. After a ruthless drug lord (played by Steven Seagal) kills Machete’s wife, Machete seeks vengeance by any means necessary. Machete also stars Robert De Niro as a ruthless politician, along with Jessica Alba.  (Note that this movie is rated R)



Here’s the June Lineup of Cinespia Screenings at Hollywood Forever

May 9, 2018 by Karin E. Baker
Hollywood Forever Cemetery Sunset

Photo credit: Kelly Lee Barrett ©

As one of the most beloved of all summer activities for Angelenos, Cinespia lures moviegoers, picnic baskets in hand, to Hollywood Forever Cemetery for screenings of films classic, cult, and modern.

Sponsored by Amazon Studios, Cinespia has returned for its 17th summer season, with five great classics scheduled for June. Check out the complete schedule below.

Saturday, June 2: Spirited Away (2001)

In this animated feature, a ten-year-old girl and her parents stop at what appears to be an abandoned theme park. After her parents are transformed into pigs, young Chihiro must learn to deal with this mysterious world ruled by gods, spirits, and witches so she can save her family. Spirited Away is Japan’s highest-grossing movie of all time.

Saturday, June 9: To Wong Foo (1995)

In honor of Pride Weekend, see Patrick Swayze, Wesley Snipes, and John Leguizamo as NYC drag queens on a road trip whose car breaks down in a small midwestern town. The glamorous escapades also include RuPaul, Robin Williams, and Lady Bunny.

Saturday, June 16: Alien (1979)

Ridley Scott’s masterpiece of suspense stars Sigourney Weaver, who kicks some serious extraterrestrial ass when confronted with hostile alien life forms.

Saturday, June 23: Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)

In his first cinematic adventure, intrepid archaeologist Indiana Jones deals with peril at every turn and fights off Nazis while on a quest for the Ark of the Covenant.

Saturday, June 30: Vertigo (1958)

A beautiful icy blonde (Kim Novak), a detective (played by Jimmy Stewart) laden with issues both vertiginous and psychosexual, and 1950s San Francisco converge in this noir-ish thriller widely regarded as the masterwork of Alfred Hitchcock.

Doors for all five films open at 6:45 p.m., with each film beginning at 8:30 p.m. Tickets are $16, and can be purchased online here.





17 Great Spots for Mother’s Day Brunch in Los Angeles

May 8, 2018 by Karin E. Baker

Mother’s Day 2018 is just around the corner, so why not show mom your appreciation by treating her to brunch?

If you haven’t made reservations, you’ll want to get planning soon. Whether your mother likes Michelin-starred elegance, an elevated outdoor jazz brunch with views of the Hollywood sign, or Japanese food, make it a brunch to remember with the help of our list of 17 great Los Angeles spots for Mother’s Day brunch.

1. Farmhouse (West Hollywood)

Opened just weeks ago at the Beverly Center, Farmhouse showcases “seed-to-plate” cuisine using hyperlocal produce from top farms, along with responsibly sourced fish, meat, and poultry. For Mother’s Day, Farmhouse is offering a $45 prix-fixe brunch menu, with dishes like peas and burrata salad, pork belly eggs benedict, breakfast pizza topped with Fresno chilis, French toast with local bananas, herb and goat cheese omelets, fennel-scented pavlova and rhubarb clafoutis. -> More information

2. Portofino Hotel & Marina (Redondo Beach)

Baleen Kitchen, located at the four-star Portofino Hotel & Marina, is offering a luxe buffet brunch — with marina views — that includes ceviche, cracked crab claws, Asian soba salad, an artisan cheese display, omelet, pasta and Belgian waffle stations, charcuterie and crudité displays, a carving station, and more. Adults are $63, while kids are $39. -> More information

3. Panxa Cocina (Long Beach)

Enjoy the cuisine of New Mexico at Panxa Cocina, which reflects the influences of Chef Arthur Gonzalez, who as a child cooked with his Oaxacan grandmother and later dwelled for years in New Mexico before returning to Los Angeles. Panxa’s Mother’s Day brunch includes Southwestern specialties like New Mexican stacked enchiladas, a hatch chile burger, and blue corn pinon pancakes. You’re more than welcome to bring your canine along — this eatery features a doggy brunch menu as well! -> More information

4. The Ebell of Los Angeles (Mid-Wilshire)

The elegant and historic Ebell, founded over a century ago, is opening its lounge for a Mother’s Day brunch buffet, with choices such as carved roast beef, poached salmon, made-to-order omelets, fresh waffles, and bottomless champagne. Enjoy entertainment from the Y-Huan Zhao string quartet, while the kiddos can marvel at children’s magician extraordinaire The Amazing Dave. Brunch is $60 fro adults, $35 for youths 6-18, and free for kids under 5. -> More information 

5. Celestino Ristorante (Pasadena)

Renowned for its authentic Italian cuisine, Pasadena’s Celestino is offering a four-course, prix-fixe brunch on Mother’s Day for $58. Begin with buffalo mozzarella salad, followed by artichoke ravioli with black truffle sauce or spinach and pea risotto. The main course, grilled salmon with sorelle, will be followed by a special dessert: Torta della Nonna, a pastry topped with pine nuts and filled with rich custard. -> More information

6. Patina (DTLA)

Michelin-starred Patina is housed in Downtown’s iconic Walt Disney Concert Hall. This Mother’s Day, Patina’s special three-course prix-fixe brunch menu ($70 for adults/$35 for children) will feature crudo tostada, buttermilk fried quail jidori chicken, and Scottish smoked salmon. -> More information 

A toast to the holidays from #Filifera #Hollywood.

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7. Filifera (Hollywood)

Take in gorgeous views of the Hollywood Sign and Griffith Observatory at rooftop bar and lounge Filifera, located 22 stories high at the Hollywood Proper Residences. Brunch guests will enjoy a complimentary mimosa and a sweet treat as they savor brunch classics and listen to live jazz. -> More information

8. Avec Nous at Viceroy L’Ermitage (Beverly Hills)

Consider taking Mom to Avec Nous, the beautiful modern update on a timeless French bistro located at the Viceroy L’Ermitage Beverly Hills. Offering a three-course buffet meal on Mother’s Day, guests can savor delicious offerings like braised short rib pappardelle pasta or grilled prawns in sauce vierge with cippolini onions. -> More information

9. ROKU (West Hollywood)

Trendy Japanese restaurant ROKU will feature a special four-course menu just for Mother’s Day. For $55, savor king crab brûlée, ginger-marinated salmon, Ume Matsu sushi with Spicy Tuna Roll, and a mini chocolate volcano. Mothers will receive a complimentary glass of champagne. -> More information 

10. The Mission Inn (Riverside)

The Mission Inn, a beautiful Mission Revival-style hotel dating back to 1876, is a National Historic Landmark renowned for its Sunday brunch. This Mother’s Day, visit the Inn for live music and traditional brunch fare, along with champagne, a mimosa bar, and luxe dishes like crab leg, Norwegian salmon, and scallop ceviche. -> More information

11. OUE Skyspace LA (DTLA)

Looking for Mother’s Day in L.A. with a 360-degree view of the city? Skyspace LA will offer an unlimited brunch at their event space high above the DTLA skyline. The deal ($60 for adults, $30 for kids 5-12) includes an all-you-can-eat buffet, a live string quartet, selfie stations with special Mother’s Day backgrounds, and a large physical Mother’s Day-themed backdrop with floral arrangements. Kids also get unlimited rides on the Skyslide. -> More information

12. Lobby Restaurant at NoMad (DTLA)

Try Mother’s Day brunch at the chic new NoMad Hotel’s Lobby restaurant. Priced at $55 per person, the menu will feature starters like carrot tartare, English pea flatbread, and avocado toast; main dishes such as lemon-poppy pancakes, eggs Benedict with salmon, or fava bean pappardelle; and an ice cream sandwich as a sweet finale. -> More information

13. Gracias Madre (West Hollywood)

Beloved Mexican vegan eatery Gracias Madre is hosting a Mother’s Day brunch, with such specials as cashew ricotta-stuffed French toast with lemon curd and berries or rosemary grilled asparagus with olives and wine reduction. -> More information

14. Jean-Georges at the Waldorf Astoria (Beverly Hills)

Jean-Georges’ luxurious Mother’s Day brunch includes such options as a chilled shellfish platter with kumamoto oysters, king crab and Maine lobster; Pacific snapper with organic potato puree; and lychee rhubarb trifle with almond crumble. Brunch begins at $155 a person. -> More information

15. Rosaliné (West Hollywood)

Ricardo Zarate’s Rosaliné is an especially fitting choice for Mother’s Day, as the renowned Peruvian chef named the eatery after his own mother. Expect dishes inspired by Peruvian flavors, such as quinoa toast with apple ginger tamarind soy dressing; a sweet potato pumpkin beignet with fig chancaca sauce; or the Mamacita Bowl with steak, chicken or mushrooms over brown rice quinoa, huacatay cilantro pesto, and mixed veggies. -> More information

16. Hotel Shangri-La (Santa Monica)

Indulge in a poolside brunch buffet and live music at art deco landmark the Hotel Shangri-La. Culinary options include a carving station, an omelet station, gazpacho shooters, assorted pancakes, pan-seared halibut and more. All moms will receive a complimentary glass of champagne and a rose. -> More information

17. Margo’s (Santa Monica)

This modern Montana Avenue eatery will offer Mother’s Day brunch specials like strawberry French toast and spring vegetable frittata, along with their popular bottomless mimosa brunch. To make things even more special, each mom will receive a free succulent plant to take home! -> More information