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Things To Do

21 Fun Things to do This Week in L.A. [9-27-2021 to 10-1-2021]

September 27, 2021 by Brian Champlin and Christina Champlin
Photo via the Long Beach Convention and Visitors Bureau

There’s always lots to do in Los Angeles, and per usual we’re here with a bi-weekly (Monday and Thursday) rundown of the best of what’s happening in the city and county.

This week, from Sep. 27 to Oct. 1, features POW! WOW! Long Beach, dine L.A., National Silent Movie Day, Creep LA, Boo at the Zoo, the Highland Park Indie Film Festival, and more!

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Monday / Throughout the Week

1. Icons of Darkness -> Opening at Hollywood and Highland on Sep. 27, the new Icons of Darkness exhibit promises hundreds of rare props, costumes, effects and other film-used items, all pulled from privately-owned collections of authentic sci-fi, fantasy, and horror film memorabilia. Think T-Rex heads from Jurassic Park, original helmets from Star Wars, a screen-used Xenomorph creature costume from Aliens, or wands used in the Harry Potter series… you get the idea. Adult tickets are $30. Get more info here.

2. Dine Alhambra -> Dine Alhambra Restaurant Week returns starting this Friday with special deals at 15 select restaurants in Downtown Alhambra. Prix-fixe lunch and dinner menus range from $15 to $50. Runs from Sep. 24 to Oct 1. More info here.

Tuesday

3. POW! WOW! Long Beach -> POW! WOW!, a week-long festival of street art, murals, and events, is back in Long Beach from Sep 28 to Oct. 5. Visitors can scout for the newly installed murals and art works around Downtown LB, or take part in related programming including a pop-up shop on Tuesday, an artist-led bike tour on Friday, a beach party on Saturday, and Yoga sessions on Sunday. Get more info about the full slate of programming here.

4. Night Train to the Cinema ->  Now through Oct. 1, American Cinematheque is presenting a series of classic films where the drama revolves around railway transportation. Screenings take place at either the Aero Theater in Santa Monica, or the Los Feliz 3 on Vermont Ave. The concluding week of screenings, all at the Los Feliz 3, are as follows: Emperor of the North on Tuesday, The General on Wednesday, then finally Runaway Train and The Trans-Europ-Express on Friday. Tickets are $13 per screening. More info here.

5. The Enigmatist -> If you have an addiction to solving puzzles, then you might want to check out The Enigmatist, an in-person experience created by New York Times crossword wizard David Kwong. Running from Sep. 14 to Oct. 30 at The Geffen Playhouse. Tickets start at $30. More info here.

Wednesday

5. National Silent Film Day -> To mark the first ever National Silent Movie Day on Sep. 29, the Hollywood Heritage Museum will formally dedicate a new mural and plaque at Chaplin Keaton Lloyd Alley (1640 Cahuenga Blvd). As part of the celebration, a special presentation will screen in the monitors in the windows of the Dash building at 6363 Hollywood Blvd. on Sep. 28 & 29. Visitors can view this installation and use a QR code to download a short tour of filming locations around the alley. Separately, the UCLA Film & Television Archive will screen a trio of newly restored Harold Lloyd shorts for free online starting this Wednesday, and available to view through Oct. 13.

6. L.A. Culture Shake-Up -> This Wednesday, Zócalo Public Square comes to Helms Bakery District in Culver City for special discussion event on the current state of cultural leadership in Los Angeles, and how emerging leaders will shape the years to come. Speakers include California African American Museum executive director Cameron Shaw, Inner-City Arts president and CEO Shelby Williams-González, and MAK Center for Art and Architecture director Jia Yi Gu. Architecture and Design Journalist Frances Anderton moderates. More info here.

7. Ssssensational Ssssnakes -> Kidspace Museum in Pasadena has a new interactive exhibit that gives children a chance to get up close and personal with a few reptile ambassadors while getting unique insights into what about makes snakes so special. Access to Ssssensational Ssssnakes is provided with regular admission, which is $14.95 per person. Museum hours are Tuesday-Sunday, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The exhibit runs through Oct. 31. More info here.

Thursday

8. Creep LA -> JFI Productions’ Creep LA has been a mainstay of local immersive horror shows since debuting in 2015, and this year’s edition promises a more intimate experience. Starting Sep. 30, Creep takes over The Ghost Light venue inside the Three Clubs bar in Hollywood, only allowing six guests in per performance, according to Scare Zone. Shows runs during timed blocks on select dates from through Oct. 31. Tickets are $95 per performance, plus service fees. More info here.

10. Halloween Horror Nights -> Universal Studios Hollywood brings their annual terror attraction back starting on Sep 9. This year’s edition includes the return of the “Terror Tram,” featuring “The Ultimate Purge,” along with a maze based on “Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers.” GA tickets range between $69-$99, depending on the date of attendance. More info here.

11. Pay-What-You-Will at USC PAM -> Tickets the to USC Pacific Asia Museum are only $10, but if that’s still too much keep in mind that every Thursday is a pay-what-you-will day. Now through Oct. 3, visitors still chance to check out Nick Dong’s Divine Immersion exhibition. Advanced reservations required. Get more info on planning a visit here.

Friday

12. Highland Park Independent Film Festival -> This week the The Highland Park Festival returns to the Highland Theater with a two-day event celebrating the best of East L.A. film, art and music. Friday kicks off with a red carpet event, DJ-spun tunes, and a free screening of the documentary Carlos Almaraz Playing With Fire. Saturday continues with a full day of screenings, plus a concurrent fan fest taking place outside the theater featuring music, dancing and live painting by Highland Park artists. Saturday’s entertainment includes a DJ set from 6 to 8 p.m., plus an exhibit of all things Mermaid curated by members of the Arroyo Arts Collective. Get more info on the film festival, including the full lineup of films, here.

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13. Haunt ‘O Ween LA -> Building on last year’s drive-through experience, this year’s Haunt ‘O’ Ween LA at the Westfield Topanga expands into a spooky fun playground of family friendly in-person attractions, including a pumpkin patch, spooky graveyard, trick-or-treating area, food trucks, wine tasting, and more. Runs Oct. 1-31. Tickets are $30 per person on weekdays and $35 on weekends. More info here.

14. Boo at the Zoo -> The Los Angeles Zoo goes wild this October with the return of Boo at the L.A. Zoo, featuring Halloween decor, a spooky stroll with photo ops, an extinct-animal graveyard, and other weird and wacky animal facts and educational opportunities. Weekends include special animal feedings, merry-not-scary entertainment, take-home crafts, and, during the last two weekends in October, trick-or-treat candy stations scattered throughout the Zoo grounds. Runs Oct. 1-31. All activities are included with Zoo admission, which is $22 for adults, and $17 for children 2-12. Tickets are More info here.

15. Los Angeles Haunted Hayride -> After adapting to a drive-thru version last year, the Haunted Hayride is back in Griffith Park for 2021 with in-person activities based around a fictional town named Midnight Falls, circa 1985. In addition to the signature hayride, highlights for this year’s event include a Trick or Treat Maze, the Midnight Mortuary Tour, and the Dead End Diner. Kicks off this Friday, Sep. 24 and runs on select nights through Oct. 31. General Admission tickets are $39.99 (access to all attractions) and if you want to do the hayride only it’ll run you $29.99. Get more info here.

16. It’s Alive! -> Starting Oct. 1, Mary Shelley fans can head to the Mountain View Mausoleum in Altadena for It’s Alive! An Immersive Frankenstein Experience, produced by the Downtown Repertory Theater Company. The show transports guests into the mind of the Frankenstein author while offering audiences the chance to “meet the poets and radicals of Mary’s inner circle” (Shelley famously palled around with Lord Byron and John William Polidori, who is credited with the first published work of modern vampire fiction). General admission tickets are $60, or $55 if you buy at the early bird rate. More info here.

17. Urban Death Tour of Terror -> Zombie Joe’s Underground Theatre’s annual tradition of Urban Death continues with a new series of terrifying vignettes, bookended by walks through a creepy maze. Runs every Friday and Saturday in October start on Oct. 1, and ends with special performances on Oct. 31 and Nov. 1. Tickets are $15 per person. More info here.

18. Beverly Center Pumpkin Patch -> The Beverly Center’s second annual family-friendly pumpkin patch kicks off on Oct. 1. Activities include pumpkin carving demonstrations, live music, photo ops, and of course pumpkins for sale. More info here.

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19. Tristan Eaton at LBMoA -> All At Once: 25 Years of Art & Design showcases a 25-year history of Tristan Eaton’s work, from street art to murals to design projects for Fisher-Price and Kidrobot. The exhibition, on view at the Long Beach Museum of Art, has been extended through Oct. 31. Keep in mind general the $12 general admission is half-off on Fridays, with advanced purchase online using the code FRIDAY50. More info on the exhibition here.

Dining

20. dineL.A. returns with its fall edition of special menus from a number of restaurants at approachable prices. Kicking off on Friday October 1 and running through October 15 the public will be treated to lunch menus starting at just $15 and dinner menus starting at $25. Check out the entire list of participating restaurants on the official dineL.A. page. And our personal menu highlights below.

  • Flavors From Afar -> Flavors From Afar highlights refugee chefs who have migrated here from around the globe. Each month one chef is selected to create a menu of authentic and highly personal recipes from their homeland. For dineL.A. Flavors From Afar is offering an international inspired dinner for two for $65 for dine in or takeout. The three course meal includes your choice of Somali Chicken Fried Rice, Guatemalan Adovato Goat Plate, Afghani Burani Banjan and more. See the full menu here.
  • Pasta|Bar -> One of the best tasting menus in the city can be found at Chef Phillip Frankland Lee and Margarita Kallas-Lee’s Pasta|Bar. For dineL.A. treat yourself to an 11-course tasting menu ($195) inspired by the flavors of California. The intimate experience seats eight guests at a time and diners will get a front row view of the team expertly putting your meal together. See the full menu here
  • Little Llama Peruvian Tacos -> The contemporary Peruvian eatery will offer a $15 three course Taco Party special for lunch and dinner. Available for dine in and take out, the set meal includes fresh made mango salsa with organic blue corn tortilla chips, your choice of two tacos (we suggest the Lomo Saltado taco) and a side of cilantro rice. See the full menu here
  • HiHo Cheese Burger -> All three locations of the popular wagyu burger specialist will have a Pastrami Double Cheeseburger and hand cut fries special for $15. The grass fed and grass finished wagyu here is certified humane and sustainably raised. See the menu here

21. Salt & Straw Halloween Ice Cream Menu -> Salt & Straw launched their annual Ice SCREAM Halloween menu this past Friday with special flavors including Jack o’ Lantern Pumpkin Bread (made of tasty pumpkin bread, and whipped cream cheese) as well as more adventurous creations like the Don Bugito’s Creepy Crawly Critters a matcha ice cream with toffee-brittle mealworms and chocolate crickets. Folks who miss the good old days of trick-o-treating can indulge with a scoop of The Great Candycopia where salted butterscotch ice cream is folded with house made versions of Kit Kats, Reeses, Snickers and Heath Bars. The Ice SCREAM Halloween is available through the end of October.


Any notes or corrections? Want to suggest an event we should add to an upcoming list? Hit us up at tips@welikela.com.

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