Things To Do This Labor Day Weekend in L.A. [9-1-2023 to 9-4-2023]

Cloudy Day Santa Monica
Cloudy day in Santa Monica. Photo by Shane via flickr cc

Long weekend means lots to do. So how are you spending your holiday in Los Angeles? We’ve got a few ideas.

For September 1 to 4 in L.A., you’ll find a Festival of Philippine Arts & Culture, a new Jenny Holzer exhibition at Hauser & Wirth, KCRW Summer Nights at Descanso Gardens, the West Adams Jazz & Musical Festival, Americana in the Park in Santa Monica, a Malibu Chili Cook-Off, the Broad Humor Film Festival, and more.


Make Metro Part of Your Weekend

Festival of Philippine Arts & CultureM FA > Levitt Pavillion Los Angeles kicks off the final weekend of its 2023 summer concert schedule with a two-day (Friday and Saturday) festival celebrating the vibrant heritage of the Philippines, and featuring a marketplace made up of Filipino-American owned vendors, plus back-to-back days of performances by a diverse lineup of artists. Free to attend. More info here.

Go Metro: Take the B or D Line to Westlake / MacArthur Park station.

More Things To Do This Weekend

M = Less than .5 miles from an L.A. Metro Station, FA = Free Admission, TP = Top Pick

Shakespeare in The ParkFA > The 2023 season of ISC’s Shakespeare in The Park comes to a conclusion this week, capping off 2-month run with nightly performances of A Midsummer Night’s Dream through Sunday at the Old Zoo in Griffith Park. Registration to attend (free!) is not required, but highly encouraged, as are donations. Each performance begins at 7 p.m. More info here.

Jenny Holzer Exhibition at H&W WeHo FA TP > The new Jenny Holzer exhibition at Hauser & Wirth – West Hollywood is a milestone in Holzer’s career. This will be the artist’s first major Los Angeles exhibition since 2012, offering a merger of art and technology, prompting viewers to ponder art, language, and AI’s evolving role. The exhibit features two robotic vertical LEDs displaying AI-generated texts, challenging authorship in a tech-driven world. It all kicks off with an opening reception this Thursday (6 to 8 p.m.), and officially opens to the public on Friday. Normal gallery hours are Tuesday to Saturday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. It will run through October 21, 2023. More info here.

Cinecon Classic Film Festival -> Starting this Thursday, Cinecon celebrates its 59th year this September. The five-day showcase held at Old Town Music Hall in El Segundo puts the focus on unusual, rarely seen, and otherwise out-of-the-public eye films, with packed slates of screenings interspersed by Q&A programming. A full- festival pass runs $249, or you can grab a day pass starting at $65. Get more info here.

Broad Humor Film Festival -> This Thursday to Sunday, The Broad Humor Film Festival returns with a four-day event featuring a packed slate of comedic shorts, features and web series–all created by women. Special panel discussions and talks fill out the schedule of events. One-day passes start at low as $25, and a full festival pass is $100. Get more info here.

KCRW Summer Nights at Descanso GardensFA TP > KCRW Summer Nights swings over to Descanso Gardens this Friday, offering free admission to the garden plus evening includes sets from KCRW DJs Wyldeflower and Raul Campos, and a drop-in performance by the Bob Baker Marionette Theater puppets. Event starts at 6 p.m. Tickets must be booked in advance. More info here.

Jazz at LACMAFA > Every Friday from April through November, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art showcases some of L.A.’s best jazz musician through an outdoor, evening concert series at Smidt Welcome Plaza. This Labor Day weekend, catch a performance by pianist and multi-instrumentalist Julius Rodriguez. The event is free to attend and runs from 6 to 8 p.m. Seating is first-come, first-served. More info here.

First Fridays in Bixby KnollsFA > Bixby Knolls gets an early start on Latinx American Heritage Month this Friday with a variety of musical performances, including Santa Ana’s own Mariachi Los Santaneros. Plus, expect the usual assortment of art, food deals, and extended hours from businesses along Atlantic Ave. Runs 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. Free to attend. More info here.

Village Well Board Game NightFA > Culver City’s Village Well Books & Coffee hosts a special board game night on the first Friday of every month. The store will stay open late, and you can expect a tavern music soundtrack, a special nighttime drink menu, plus plenty of fellow board game geeks on hand to battle against. Bring your own board games! Runs 7 to 10 p.m. Free to attend. More info here.

Return of the Jedi in Concert -> This Friday and Saturday, experience Star Wars Return of The Jedi at The Hollywood Bowl with an assist from David Newman and the Los Angeles Philharmonic, who will perform John Williams’ iconic score live to picture. Happening Friday and Saturday. Both shows start at 8 p.m. Tickets available for as low as $22. More info here.

West Adams Jazz & Music FestivalFA > The 20th installment of the West Adams Jazz Festival is back for another Labor Day weekend (Friday to Sunday) event all centered near the intersection of 7th Ave and Adams Blvd. Expect back-to-back-to-back nights of live performance, dancing, local vendors, and food trucks. Starts at 6 p.m. each night. Free to attend. More info here.

Malibu Chili Cook-Off -> The Malibu Chili Cook-Off takes place all holiday weekend (September 1-4) and features local restaurants, businesses, artisans, DJs, a beer and wine lounge and, of course, chili. Single-day tickets start at $40 and must be pre-purchased online; on-site sales won’t be available. Carnival ride passes/tickets are sold separately. Proceeds go to support the Boys & Girls Club of Malibu. More info here.

Skybar Pool Parties -> Skybar at Mondrian Los Angeles is gearing up for Labor Day weekend with four days (Friday to Monday) of pool parties. The festivities begin with “Just Ditch Fridays” pool party (free to attend) starting at 1 p.m. On Saturday, Skybar will be hosting the Cafe Mambo Ibiza party in collaboration with Wicked Paradise (free before 3 p.m. $25 after) followed by another pool party on Sunday. To close the weekend with a bang, join Skybar on Monday, September 4, for the Made in Tulum Pool Party (free before 2 p.m. and $25 and up after). 


Cinespia Presents at Hollywood Forever -> Classic film screenings continue at The Hollywood Forever Cemetery in September, with a lineup that includes The Goonies, The Royal Tenenbaums and Scarface. This Saturday, they’ll screen The Devil Wears Prada. Seating is lawn style and tickets run $45 a piece for GA (and yes, parking is extra). Gates open at 6:15, and movie starts at 8 p.m. Get more info here.

Grease at NoHo Summer NightsM FA > The Valley Cultural Foundation’s summer programming series continues at North Hollywood Recreation Center this Saturday with a free screening of Grease. Expect food vendors on-site along with multiple interactive art booths to check out. Movie starts at dusk. More info here.

West Adams Block PartyFA > On Sunday, The West Adams Block Party makes its highly anticipated return this year, uniting the community for a day of entertainment and fun. This free community fest boasts live musical performances, art installations, local businesses, food trucks and a Kid’s Zone. Delicious Pizza will also relaunch their Boomyard Party with a huge line lineup of artists including Arrested Development, D Smoke, Soulection & Friends, and numerous other exciting acts including a surprise appearance from a Hip Hop Legend. More info here.

Americana at the Park M FA TP > Santa Monica’s Americana in the Park series is back for the whole month of September, offering free concerts on Sundays at Gandara Park. Starting things out, alt-country rockers Dead Rock West headline the September 3 event, with on-site food trucks to include Drizzle Funnel Cakes, Messi Burgers, and Salt n Pepper. McCabe’s Guitar will host a special pop-up show too! Each date runs 4 to 7 p.m., and is free to attend. More info here.

Booptown at BoomtownM FA TP > Booptown is a monthly afternoon social and pet adoption event where guests can buy a beer from Boomtown’s ample selection and maybe (just maybe!) find a new best friend in the process. Reps/animals from Best Friends Animal Society, Homeless To Forever Foundation, Itchy’s Rescue, and LA Animal Services will all be in attendance, along with food trucks and special vendors. Runs 1 to 5 p.m. this Sunday. Free to attend. More info here.

Labor Day celebration at Desert 5 Spot -> Join the Labor Day celebration at Desert 5 Spot in Hollywood with “Swimsuits & Cowboy Boots” on Sunday, September 3rd. Explore goods at the Trading Post by Jada & Jon, savor delicious treats at the Cowboy Cookout, and sing along to your favorite country tunes during Cowboy Karaoke. Starts at 2 p.m. More info here.

Dining & Drinking

(picks by Christina Champlin)


The patio at Belle’s Beach House. Photo by Laura Huertas.

Labor Day Luau at Belles Beach House -> The Hawaiian-inspired restaurant is hosting a luau on Monday, September 4, from noon to 6 p.m. on its beach-side patio. The event will feature a special menu of Hawaiian-style dishes and cocktails, accompanied by live DJ music. Guests can savor tropical dishes like Kalua Pork Sliders, Garlic Fried Chicken, Grilled Pork Belly, Huli Huli Chicken and Lomi Lomi Tomato Salad as part of the celebration. More info here.

Labor Day Celebration at Freehand LA -> Downtown LA’s Broken Shaker at Freehand LA is hosting a Labor Day pool party extravaganza in partnership with L.A. Collective. From 3 to 7 p.m., guests can groove to the beats of a rotating lineup of local house DJs while enjoying happy hour specials, including Carne Asada Fries, Chicken Banh Mi, and Fried Mushroom Tacos. Quench your thirst with $12 handcrafted cocktails.

La Lo La Rooftop Labor Day Celebration -> Celebrate Labor Day at the newest rooftop in DTLA. On Monday, September 4, from 12 pm to 8 pm, guests can feast on Chef Isaac Gamboa’s delectable Surf & Turf menu for $65. While you dine, a live DJ will set the mood for dancing against the backdrop of breathtaking 270-degree views, stretching from the Hollywood Hills to downtown LA. More info here

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