25 Of The Coolest Events Happening In Southern California This Weekend

Delicious Little Tokyo returns to DTLA with cooking demos, workshops, walking tours and, of course, food. (Courtesy of Go Little Tokyo)

Little Tokyo tastes delicious. A Turkish food fest comes to the Valley. A margarita showdown whets your whistle. Two L.A. soccer teams go head-to-head. Alamo Drafthouse finally opens. A new lit fair gets little. If that isn't enough, Sunday is National Ice Cream Day.

FRIDAY, JULY 19 - SATURDAY, JULY 20
4th Annual Delicious Little Tokyo
Various locations — Little Tokyo, downtown L.A.
L.A.'s largest Japanese culinary festival returns with more than 20 events over two days including culinary demos, workshops and food tours. The weekend kicks off with Sake on the Rocks, a 21+ tasting event that benefits the nonprofit Little Tokyo Service Center. Other happenings include a donut tasting with Donatsu (Saturday, 9-10 a.m.),a beer and chicken wing pairing at Far Bar, a food walking tour sponsored by the Little Tokyo Historical Society and a traditional tea ceremony. Advanced registration is recommended for each scheduled activity.
COST: FREE - $150; MORE INFO

FRIDAY, JULY 19 - SUNDAY, JULY 21
The Cinnaverse Experience
1228 3rd St. Promenade, Santa Monica
Do we need a Cinnamon Toast Crunch pop-up? If you really, really, really love the cereal in all its sugary and cinnamon-y goodness, then this multisensory installation is for you. Guests will take in the "aroma of Cinnamist while walking through the Cinna-Swirl Vortex, feel the crunch of the floor beneath them in the Cinna-Crunch Zone, Taste the delicious Cinnamilk in the Cinna-Milk Whirl'd and finally come back to reality." It all ends in a grocery store-themed gift shop, of course.
COST: FREE with RSVP; MORE INFO

FRIDAY, JULY 19; 6:30 p.m.
Summer Friday Drive-In at the Roadium: Selena
The Roadium Open Air Market — 2500 W. Redondo Beach Blvd., Torrance
Pack your friends or family (safely) into your car to watch J-Lo in her breakthrough role as Tejano performer Selena Quintanilla-Pérez, whose life was cut short as her career was on the rise. Food truck fare and movie concessions will be available for purchase at the retro drive-in.
COST: $20 per car; MORE INFO

FRIDAY, JULY 19; 7 p.m.
LA Galaxy v. Los Angeles FC
Dignity Health Sports Park — 18400 Avalon Blvd., Carson
If you caught football (aka soccer) fever during the recent World Cup, watch L.A.'s two professional soccer clubs go head-to-head for the top spot in the Western Conference standings.
COST: Tickets start at $70; MORE INFO

Gyros (jeffreyw/Flickr Creative Commons)

FRIDAY, JULY 19 - SUNDAY, JULY 21
Turkish Food Festival
17330 Gresham St, Northridge
The eighth edition of the fest features Mediterranean and Central Asian dishes including kebabs, gyros, lahmajoon, kofta, salads, desserts and Turkish coffee.
COST: FREE admission; MORE INFO

FRIDAY, JULY 19; 6 a.m.
The Lion King: Special Sunrise Screening
El Capitan Theatre — 6838 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood
Watch the computer-animated musical, directed and produced by Jon Favreau, to see how it compares to the 1994 film. The voice cast in this version includes Donald Glover, Seth Rogen, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Alfre Woodard, Billy Eichner, John Oliver, Beyoncé and James Earl Jones, who reprises his original role as Mufasa. Friday's early bird screening includes a reserved seat, General Mills Breakfast (Cereal & GoGurt), popcorn, a 20-ounce bottled drink and a souvenir drink cup. The Lion King runs at the theater through Sept. 2.
COST: $35; MORE INFO

FRIDAY, JULY 19; 7 p.m.
Femme It Forward
Microsoft Theater — 777 Chick Hearn Court, downtown L.A.
Kick it to night of R&B and pop hits from Brandy, Monica, Ashanti, Keri Hilson, Amerie and Lil' Mo. The show is part of a concert series that trains the spotlight on female performers.
COST: $40 - $125; MORE INFO

FRIDAY, JULY 19 - SUNDAY, JULY 21
Once Upon a... Tarantino
ArcLight Hollywood — 6360 Sunset Blvd., Hollywood
In advance of the nationwide release of Quentin Tarantino's latest film, Once Upon a Time... in Hollywood on July 26, the ArcLight presents a three-day tribute to the director's filmography. It culminates in advance screenings of on Saturday and Sunday at the Cinerama Dome with special guests. This ArcLight will also be decked out with retro décor while offering nostalgic beverages and commemorative keepsakes for sale.
COST: Tickets start at $17; MORE INFO

SATURDAY, JULY 20; 4 - 5:30 p.m.
Late Late Breakfast
Lyric Hyperion Theatre & Cafe — 2106 Hyperion Ave., Silver Lake
Some of L.A.'s best stand-up comics are tested with a series of fast-paced, bizarre challenges while performing their sets.
COST: $5; MORE INFO

A woman reads a book at a bookstore in Bangkok on June 16, 2019. (CANDIDA NG/AFP/Getty Images)

SATURDAY, JULY 20 - SUNDAY, JULY 21; 11 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Lit Lit: The Little Literary Fair
Hauser & Wirth Los Angeles — 901 E. 3rd St., downtown L.A.
The Los Angeles Review of Books and Hauser & Wirth Publishers team up for a two-day book fair that celebrates indie publishers, booksellers, makers and bibliophiles. Vendors from L.A. and beyond (including Angel City Press, Red Hen Press and X Artists' Books) will be on hand to present their works. You can go to signings by John Corbett, Tosh Berman, Senon Williams and Shirley Tse.
COST: FREE admission; MORE INFO

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SATURDAY, JULY 20
To Walk on the Moon: Past, Present, and Future
Griffith Observatory — 2800 E. Observatory Rd., Griffith Park
In the summer of 1969, the Apollo 11 mission was launched into space and Neil Armstrong became the first human to walk on the moon. The observatory honors the 50th anniversary of both events with activities through July 24. The celebration peaks on Saturday with commemorative events and talks all day long. The Stations of the Apollo activity begins at 9:45 a.m. on the lawn, with several talks beginning at 11 a.m. Conspiracy theorists might be most interested in the 1 p.m. talk Man on the Moon: Hoax or No Hoax?
COST: FREE; MORE INFO

SATURDAY, JULY 20; 11 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
A Hidden Repository of Curious Craft
Moryork Gallery — 4959 York Blvd., Highland Park
An Atlas Obscura agent leads a tour of a studio that's filled to the gills with items crafted from recycled materials. Sourced from flea markets, estate sales and the occasional curb, the collection is curated and assembled by craftsman and retired Disney Parks art director Clare Graham. The building itself also has an interesting history. It was originally built as a Safeway grocery store then used as a roller rink and slot car venue. This event is both kid- and dog-friendly, but all humans must have a ticket.
COST: $50; MORE INFO

SATURDAY, JULY 20; 7 - 9 p.m.
California Love: A Hip-Hop History
Annenberg Space for Photography — 2000 Avenue of the Stars, Century City
Kick it old school. KDAY AM DJ Greg Mack, World Class Wreckin' Cru member Lonzo Williams and former RapPages and XXL magazine editor Sheena Lester take part in an evening of storytelling that celebrates SoCal's place in hip-hop history. Author Jeff Chang (Can't Stop, Won't Stop: A History of the Hip-Hop Generation) moderates the conversation.
COST: $12; MORE INFO

Rennie Harris Funkedified is at the Ford this weekend, featuring (L to R) Joshua Culbreath, Marcus Tucker and Andrew Ramsey. (Brian Mangini)

SATURDAY, JULY 20; 8 p.m.
Rennie Harris Funkedified
Ford Theaters — 2580 Cahuenga Blvd. East, Hollywood
We bet you won't stop tapping or at least head bopping to this show, dedicated to funk music and 1970s street dance. Choreographer Rennie Harris and dancers from Rennie Harris Puremovement, the Hood Lockers and L.A.'s own Versa-Style Dance Company perform to a live band playing recognizable tunes by James Brown, George Clinton and the like.
COST: Tickets run $25 - $250 (benefit ticket); MORE INFO

A Buddhist monk holds a frangipani flower, also known as a plumeria, while observing prayers to celebrate Buddha Jayanti (the birth anniversary of Lord Buddha) at the Maha Bodhi Society in Bangalore on May 27, 2010. (DIBYANGSHU SARKAR/AFP/Getty Images)

SATURDAY, JULY 20; 9 a.m. - 2 p.m.
Plumeria Day
Los Angeles County Arboretum & Botanic Garden — 301 N. Baldwin Ave., Arcadia
Plumerias are blooming, and the Arboretum celebrates in the grove on Tallack Knoll. Take a tour, learn at a workshop or expert talk or buy a plant from vendors such as Jungle Jack's Plumeria, Konishi Plumeria, Ou "Rick" Te and Jordan Plumeria. The event is included in admission.
COST: $4 - $9; MORE INFO

A picture taken on February 10, 2015 in Paris shows a bowl of popcorn. (LOIC VENANCE/AFP/Getty Images)

SATURDAY, JULY 20 - WEDNESDAY, JULY 24
Alamo Drafthouse Sneak Peek
Alamo Drafthouse — 700 W. 7th St., Ste. U240, downtown L.A.
The long awaited L.A. outpost of the theater finally opens. Come check it out and enjoy food and non-alcoholic drink specials as you catch sneak peek screenings. For adult beverages, stop by the Video Vortex bar in the lobby. It serves up local brews and rents movies for free.
Cost: Varies; MORE INFO

A bacon taco with a fried egg, McGrath farms baby rapini, aged English coastal cheddar, arbol chile and chives (left) and a sunchoke taco with persimmon, castlevetrano olives, almond chile, scallions and pistachio, both from Guerilla Tacos. (T.Tseng/Flickr Creative Commons)

SATURDAY, JULY 20; 10 p.m. - 2 a.m.
Guerrilla Tacos One Year Anniversary
Guerrilla Tacos — 2000 E. 7th St., downtown L.A.
The party begins in the bar and on the patio, with DJs spinning hip-hop, R&B, soul and funk; $1 asada tacos along with special Rémy Martin cocktails and shots. Watch live painting of a wall mural on Mateo St. and raffles will be held all night long.
Cost: Varies; MORE INFO

A margarita. (Quinn Dombrowski/Flickr Creative Commons)

SATURDAY, JULY 20; 5 - 8 p.m.
Margarita Showdown
Parking lot behind HomeState5609 North Figueroa St., Highland Park
#NationalTequilaDay is July 24, and to celebrate a little early, this new event presents both classic versions and modern renditions of the margarita. Bartenders, restaurants and cocktail experts will help determine who makes the best drink in L.A. Vendors on hand will be serving up margaritas, beer and micheladas, including El Carmen, El Compadre, I Love Micheladas, La Cuevita and Three Weavers Beer. Food trucks and vendors will be onhand, too. DJs spinning music include Stones Throw Records' Peanut Butter Wolf and Fred Armisen. This event is 21+.
COST: Tickets start at $20; MORE INFO

SATURDAY, JULY 20 - SUNDAY, JULY 21; 11 - 8 p.m.
Venice Beach Music Fest 14
Windward Plaza Park — 1 Winward Ave., Venice
This year's arts, music and literary festival celebrates the 50th anniversary of Woodstock, with many of the musical performers paying tribute to peace and love (and other things). Catch performances by Milo Gonzalez, the all-female drum ensemble Adaawe, Jerry Garcia/Merl Saunders tribute Keystone Revisited and the Excitable Boys (a Warren Zevon tribute band). Brian Hassett, author of The Hitchhiker's Guide to Jack Kerouac, teams with George Walker, the original Merry Prankster, to perform a selection from their live show, "Jack & Neal Ride Again."
COST: FREE admission; MORE INFO

Cream in North Hollywood is one of the ice cream shops participating in National Ice Cream Day with a BOGO offer. (Courtesy of Cream)

SUNDAY, JULY 21
National Ice Cream Day
Various locations in Southern California
Do your patriotic duty by eating ice cream on Sunday. A number of retailers are offering promotions and/or special flavors. From Friday through Sunday, Stitch Fix styling service teams with Van Leeuwen to serve up scoops at the L.A. Zoo from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. On Sunday, Smorgasburg L.A. celebrates with extended hours for its Ice Cream Alley. The vendors will stay open on Sundays through Labor Day until 6 p.m., two hours after the rest of the market closes. Cream in NoHo celebrates on Sunday and Monday with a BOGO deal (buy one scoop, get the second free).
COST: Varies; MORE INFO

SUNDAY, JULY 21; 5 - 7p.m.
Strange Cures - Performance, Reading & Signing by Rob Zabrecky
Valley Relics Museum — 7900 Balboa Blvd. Hangar C3 & C4, Van Nuys
Los Angeles magazine's Chris Nichols moderates a presentation with musician and magician Zabrecky (Possum Dixon), who discusses his new memoir, an ode to a forgotten L.A. In it, Zabrecky describes L.A. in the '80s and early '90s as an "alien landscape of raucous underground nightclubs, seedy Hollywood crack dens and low-rent Silver Lake duplexes; and the Valley is a place where errant teens roam free, sans supervision and GPS-tracking cellphones."
COST: $12 admission; MORE INFO

The New Bad Boys of Magic aka Eric Siegel & Dan Donohue perform at Three Clubs this weekend. (Photo: Courtesy of the artists)

SUNDAY, JULY 21; 8 p.m. (7 p.m. for close-up magic and cocktails)
The New Bad Boys of Magic
The Three Clubs — 1123 Vine St., Hollywood
Daniel Donohue and Eric Siegel show off their NSFW comedy and illusions. Arrive early for a drink and close-up magic performed at guests' tables (or barstools). Joining them for fun and tricks is Michael Rayner, a comedian and juggler seen on The Late, Late Show with James Corden, David Letterman and America's Got Talent. The Boys also perform on Aug. 18 and Sept. 15.
COST: $10; MORE INFO

A butternut squash, mushroom and kale taco in Hollywood, Florida. (ygfarmersmarket/Flickr Creative Commons)

SUNDAY, JULY 21; 12 - 6 p.m.
Verano Vegano Vegan Summer Series
Los Amigos Golf Course — 7295 Quill Dr., Downey
Leche Co. brings cruelty-free eats and sustainability to Latinx communities through this food series with more than 30 vendors including L.A. Pierogi, My Vegan Panda and World Wide Tacos. Attendees are encouraged to bring their own cups and food containers to mitigate waste. (Visit the Leche Booth with a personal cup and get $1 off all drinks.) VIP tickets include early entry at 11:30 a.m., a souvenir Leche bottle with free refills and a tote bag. The festival also partners with Jefas Veganas to gather toiletries and essentials for the homeless so bring an item to donate, too.
COST: FREE - $4 (VIP); MORE INFO

SUNDAY, JULY 21; 5 - 6:30 p.m.
Concerts in the Park
Central Park Bandshell — 12045 E. Waterfront Dr., Playa Vista
Enjoy a summer outdoor concert by Queen Nation, which will play Queen's greatest hits. Arrive early as space is limited. Food trucks will be onsite so you can buy snacks and drinks.
COST: FREE admission; MORE INFO


How are you spending your weekend? Let us know on Twitter @christineziemba and @LeoHasACat.