Los Angeles provides no limit of things to do, some awesome and some not so awesome. Since time is precious in this fast paced city we curate a list of things to do in Los Angeles for every weekend that’ll help you decide how you want to spend your limited supply of attention (not to mention dollars!).
This weekend in L.A. from Friday, December 13 to Sunday, December 15 features Union Stations Cocoa Concerts, Marina del Rey Holiday Boat Parade, Echo Park Community Parade, a Gremlins Holiday Party, ThriftCon LA, Hanukkah Festival at the Skirball Cultural Center and MUCH more.
Remember you can always go to our L.A. events calendar page to get an updated rundown of what’s happening around the city.
Hope you find the rundown useful and, as always, enjoy your weekend!
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Friday December 13th, 2019
1. Stop by The Hammer for a one-of-a-kind listening session for Black on Both Sides by Yasiin Bey (formerly known as Mos Def). UCLA musicology professor Shana Redmond hosts the event and will be joined by Sohail Daulatzai, film and media studies and African American studies professor at UC Irvine, and comedian Open Mike Eagle. Also appearing will be film and TV music supervisor Morgan Rhodes, co-host of Heat Rocks podcast; and DJ Lynnée Denise. FREE
2. Here and Now transforms it’s space into a holiday bar called Blitzen’s from December 3-31. Get transported to the the North Pole and enjoy 15 festival cocktails, a seasonal food menu with offerings like Christmas poutine, themed entertainment and more.
3. Cirque Dreams Holidaze brings its latest holiday spectacular to the Los Angeles’ Dolby Theatre from December 13-15. Part Broadway musical with a Cirque twist, the show is critically acclaimed and features over 300 stunning costumes, Broadway singers and 20 of the world’s most astonishing acts.
4. Artisanal LA presents The Bunker Hill Holiday Pop Up featuring over 40 indie makers selling everything from gourmet food to jewelry, home goods and even kid friendly gifts.
5. The Los Angeles Arboretum and Botanic Garden presents Moonlight Forest, where crafted lanterns line the garden grounds, some depicting animals, shimmering exotic flowers, and figures from Chinese legends. Happening Wednesdays through Sunday from November 9 through January 12, 2020. Check for discounted tickets before making your purchase. DISCOUNTED (via Goldstar)
6. Union Stations Cocoa Concerts continues with the swinging sounds of the Hi-Fi Honeydrops. Guests will also enjoy a free cocoa bar, Santa selfies, a “Candy Cane Lane,” photo-ops, holiday-themed arts & crafts and more. FREE
7. Shriekfest has teamed up with The Nuart Theater to bring you classic horror films every other month. This month it’s a midnight showing of Friday The 13th.
8. Take a free guided hike at Franklin Canyon during the full moon. December’s full moon is called the Cold Moon and the hikes are family friendly and approximately 2.5 miles No pets are allowed. FREE
9. Dive into the holiday season with a Queen Mary Christmas! The special event will see Christmas spirit lining the famous Long Beach vessel until January 1, 2020. Activities include a 26 feet tall Christmas tree, variety of holiday activities, an outdoor skating rink, live entertainment and much more. Occurring Thursdays through Sundays.
10. The Pack in Hollywood present their monthly show Your Late Night Show Tonight where each month it’s a new talk show with a new host totally produced with the hosts personality in-mind. This month comedian and beauty & self-care comedy podcaster (Natch Beaut) Jackie Johnson will be joined by her guest actress and singer, Gabrielle Ruiz of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend fame.
11. Get up close and personal with sharks at the Aquarium of the Pacific during Shark Lagoon Nights. Guests will have the opportunity to touch bamboo sharks and view large sharks in an after hours setting. FREE
12. The Bai Holiday Ice Rink returns to Pershing Square from Nov. 14, 2019 to Jan. 2, 2020 featuring a 7200 square foot outdoor ice-skating experience. A wide variety of events will take place throughout the duration of the rink.
13. The team behind LA’s award-winning series For The Record has a new production coming to The Wallis’ Bram Goldsmith Theater. Richard Curtis’s Love Actually will be transformed into a one-of-a-kind multimedia screen and stage event starting November 27. The film and live music blend together as the story unfolds throughout the London setting. Performances continue through December 29. Check for discounted tickets before making your purchase. DISCOUNTED (via Goldstar)
14. The Pacific Opera Project presents “La bohème,” or “The Hipsters” December 6-14 at The Ebell Club of Highland Park. Set to current times the show follows the story of several Los Angelenos during a cold SoCal winter as they tackle the city’s housing crises, love, jealousy and more.
Saturday December 14th, 2019
15. Celebrate the magic of the holiday season in Marina del Rey with a full day of events that will have you partying from day to night. From 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Snow Wonder a lively family event will be activated featuring real snow, sledding, arts & crafts and more. Then at 5:55 p.m. fireworks will kick off the 57th annual Marina del Rey Holiday Boat Parade from 6-8 p.m. where beautifully lit-up boats will make their way around the marina in full holiday display. FREE
16. This Saturday there’s a Holiday Craft Party happening at Crafted at the Port of Los Angeles. Workshops will range from $1 to $10 each. Guests will also enjoy shopping from vendors, artisanal snacks and beer from Brouwerij West. Admission into the party is free.
17. The Echo Park Community Parade will include dancers, clubs, vehicles and more parading down Sunset Blvd. between Vin Scully Ave. to Park Ave. the day will also include live music on the main stage. FREE
18. Street Food Cinema and Heritage Square Museum team up for Yuletide Cinemaland. Enjoy a festive outdoor movie screening experience in a Victorian town square surrounded by Christmas carolers, food trucks, a Holiday Light Tunnel, Scrooge’s Dance Hall and more. This week they’ll be screening Elf on Saturday and Jingle All The Way on Sunday.
19. Now in its 25th year, Bergamot Station will host their Holiday Open House featuring work, creations and products designed by the creative community and businesses in the complex. Live entertainment, a holiday pop up market and festive food will also be available. Admission is free and open to the public. FREE
20. The folks over at Cinespia will host a Gremlins Holiday Party at The Palace Theatre. It’s the 35th anniversary of the movie and guests are encouraged to come dressed as their favorite character or in festive holiday garb. The evening will have you enjoying a bar, themed photo-booth and a screening of the cult classic.
21. Japanese Food Lab presents New Year’s Mochi an afternoon workshop dedicated to the sticky pounded rice beloved by Japan called mochi. In this workshop, participants will make and create their own mochi plus taste various types of ozoni (rice cakes) from across Japan.
22. NoMad Los Angeles gets in the holiday spirit with a Holiday Spectacular cocktail pop up every weekend from 5-11 p.m. in the Coffee Bar. Guests will enjoy “Naughty” and “Nice” cocktails from the NoMad team.
23. L.A.’s only live animated comedy show Picture This! is back with a show on Saturday at The Virgil. This Saturday’s lineup features a dozen well known comedians and animators.
UPDATE: The above event was reposted in error, and is NOT taking place this Saturday, Dec. 14. We regret apologize for the error!
24. The annual LA Kings Holiday Ice happening at L.A. LIVE’s Microsoft Square is a daily outdoors holiday skating rink. Open November 30, 2019 through January 12, 2020.
25. Head to Pacific Park on the Santa Monica Pier for the Unique LA Holiday Market and get your holiday shopping done seaside, literally.
26. Grand Park’s Winter Glow is a free night time art experience covering 12 acres of Grand Park in Downtown Los Angeles and the newly renovated Music Center Plaza. Whimsical artistic projections and light displays will illuminate paths and play off of the park’s most iconic elements. The holiday-inspired event will run nightly from Dec. 6 to 25. FREE
27. CAGES is a brand new pop-rock musical from duo Woolf and the Wondershow that pushes the boundaries of what can be done on stage using elements of performance, projection, and sound. Shows run through Dec. 21.
28. The Magical Chinese Lantern Festival returns to Fairplex starting Nov. 21 with a new theme for 2019-2020: Blooming Seasons. This year’s festival offers lantern displays as large as 30-feet high and 85-feet wide, highlighted by a 100-yard-long breathtaking Ceramic Chinese Dragon. Check for discounted tickets before making your purchase. DISCOUNTED (via Goldstar)
29. The 73rd Annual Naples Island Holiday Boat Parade comes to Long Beach on Saturday with an entertaining display of boats in all shapes and sizes. This year’s theme is “Christmas Under The Sea.” FREE
30. Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza’s annual Winter Wonderland will include music performances, sledding and snowman building with real snow, holiday crafts, treats and more. FREE
31. Corey Helford Gallery’s sixth annual Art Collector Starter Kit group show opens this Saturday with affordable 12” x 12” works from 100 top New Contemporary artists, giving new art collectors and enthusiasts a chance to buy an original piece from artists. The show will be on view through January 18, 2020.
32. Hera Collective Holiday Marketplace returns for a day of shopping at Ruby Street in Highland Park highlighting talented female makers in Los Angeles. 10% of all ticket sales will be donated to Santé D’Or Foundation.
33. Since 1969 Bob Baker’s Marionette Theater’s adaptation of the Nutcracker has been warming hearts and delighting kids and adults during the holidays. The show includes over 100 handmade puppets at the Pasadena Playhouse. Running now until December 29.
34. Santee Winter Wonderland is a family friendly event including face painting, arts and crafts, games, food and shopping in the historic fashion district. The event will be held on 11th Street between Santee Street and Maple Avenue. FREE
35. Zombie Joe’s Underground Theatre Group presents an all new holiday-horror-theatre attraction titled Dark Dark Ride Ride Holiday Nightmare. It’s a “wild ride through winter wonderHELL” that takes place Wednesdays through Saturdays from December 4-21.
36. Pasadena Holiday Market returns to the Playhouse District with a curated selection of over 50 makers, DIY programming, holiday music, free photos with Santa, and and more.
Sunday December 15th, 2019
37. ThriftCon LA takes over The Los Angeles Convention Center with over 100 vendors and multiple activations and installations that celebrate vintage and retro culture. Bring five or more pieces of clothing for a donation drive benefitting Union Rescue Mission and Shelter Partnership. In return you’ll receive a free shopping bag (while supplies last).
38. Wallis Annenberg PetSpace will host a Pawliday Market this Sunday that includes a shopping experience, kid-friendly activities, a pet supply drive, and photos with Santa for both humans and canines alike. FREE
39. CAAM Maker Fest welcomes all ages for a day of creating led by local artists. Workshops include embellishing clothing with retro cartoons; making music shakers from recycled materials; and a demonstrate on how to create relief portraits. FREE
40. This Sunday the Hanukkah Festival at the Skirball Cultural Center returns with live musical performances, hands-on art activities, live storytelling special Hanukkah dishes and access to the museums exhibits.
41. The Tonga Hut Tiki Lounge’s 14th Annual Tiki Wonderland returns this Sunday with vendors, art, live music, DJ tunes and delicious tiki libations.
42. Massive foodie market Smorgasburg LA in Downtown Los Angeles is open every Sunday and brings a massive roster of indie food pop ups, merchandise vendors and more at ROW DTLA. This weekend they’ll host the Holiday Record Fair, curated by Beat Swap Meet where over 10,000 items like vintage vinyl, vintage t-shirts, cassettes and CDs will be for sale.
43. Descanso Gardens’ Enchanted Forest of Light returns for another installment with a host of interactive displays and nighttime activities from November 17 through January 5, 2020. Check for discounted tickets before making your purchase. DISCOUNTED (via Goldstar)
44. Head to STEEP in Chinatown for the opening reception for HOME: A Food Photography Exhibit from 4-7 p.m. Curated by Jenni Hwang the show highlights the talented photographers we have in Los Angeles. Works shown will be on sale and proceeds will benefit local Chinatown non-profit Asian Americans for Civil Rights and Equality. STEEP will provide complimentary wine, sparking wine, and tea during the event. RSVP is mandatory. FREE
45. The Holiday Light Festival Train Ride at Griffith Park is a festive one mile ride on the tracks with tens of thousands of lights to get you in the Holiday spirit. Running November 29 through December 30.
46. Cyber Spiritspresented by ULO is an eight-part installation and immersive theater experience that explores the presence of spirits in our digital devices. Part satire, and part social commentary, the colorful and quirky displays strive to make you both and laugh and contemplate. The experience lasts for about 15 minutes and includes plenty of dreamy optical sequences. Happening at ROW DTLA until December. Tickets available here.
47. One of L.A.’s most magical holiday traditions, L.A. Zoo Lights returns November 15, 2019 through January 5, 2020 with thousands upon thousands of LED lights illuminating the zoo. Check for discounted tickets before making your purchase. DISCOUNTED (via Goldstar)
Food Pick for the Week
This week’s pick by Christina Champlin, Co-Founder of We Like L.A.
Post Malone has teamed up with Nashville Hot Chicken legends Howlin Ray’s on a fried chicken sandwich and here’s the best part: no lining up is involved! The sandwich will be available exclusively on Postmates for three days only (December 12-14 from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.) The aptly named Ghost Malone is made with fried boneless chicken breast seasoned country style topped with ghost pepper jack cheese and pickles sandwiched between a butter bun. Ghost peppers are three times spicer than the Habanero pepper so have some water nearby when you sink your teeth into one of these bad boy. The sando comes as a set meal and includes crinkle cut fries and a side of reap-it ranch for $16. For those who don’t like pepper jack cheese or not a fan of Post, The Howlin Classic Set ($16) served with crinkle cut fries and side of comeback sauce will also be available to order.
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