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Fabulous In-Person And Online Events In SoCal For Mother's Day Weekend: May 7 - 9

Jasmine Garden flower shop owner Zohrab Mahdessian shops at the Flower Market in downtown Los Angeles on on May 8, 2020.
AFP via Getty Images)
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Celebrate the mom(s) in your life with tea, tlayudas, chocolate and funnel cakes. Catch a massive mariachi performance. Enjoy a kids sing-along in the park. Watch a screening of the camp classic Mommie Dearest. Explore Iranian cuisine. Check out art installations dedicated to connection and collective wellbeing. Attend NHM’s First Fridays — online.

Friday, May 7; 6 P.M.

First Fridays Connected
Take a deep dive into “Culture x Cuisine" at the Natural History Museum’s monthly series featuring a livestreamed discussion between Kogi’s Roy Choi and Sarah Portnoy, author of Food, Health, and Culture in Latino Los Angeles. It's moderated by Dr. Knatokie Ford. Listen to DJ Sammi G and prep a special cocktail presented by Elle Nucci then enjoy a performance by post-punk trio Automatic.

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poster for Pop Cultured game show with images of hosts and contestants
The livestreamed comedy game show 'Pop Cultured' returns this weekend.
(Courtesy Rushtix)

Saturday, May 8; 9 p.m.

Pop Cultured
The movie-themed game show features three comedians competing in a variety of improvised comedy games. This week’s contestants Jade Catta-Preta (The Soup), Colton Dunn (Superstore) and returning champion Kristen Studard (I Think You Should Leave) are judged by Jimmy Pardo (Never Not Funny). Nicky Urban (America’s Got Talent) hosts the online show.

Saturday, May 8; 5 p.m. PT

The Normal Heart
This star-studded virtual reading of Larry Kramer’s play — about the AIDS crisis in New York City in the 1980s — marks the first time it has been presented since Kramer's death and the first time it stars predominantly BIPOC and LGBTQ actors. Directed by Paris Barclay, the cast includes Sterling K. Brown (This Is Us), Laverne Cox (Orange Is The New Black), Vincent Rodriguez III (Crazy Ex-Girlfriend) and Guillermo Díaz (Scandal). The reading is organized by ONE Archives Foundation and co-presented with the Invisible Histories Project.
COST: $10 - $100; MORE INFO

Five Capitol Steps performers
The political satire group Capitol Steps has been putting the 'mock' in democracy for more than 40 years.
(Courtesy of the Capitol Steps)

Saturday, May 8; 5 p.m. PT

Last Laugh with Elaina Newport
CaltechLive! presents an afternoon with Elaina Newport, a founding member of the longstanding comedy troupe Capitol Steps. She’ll discuss the group’s four decades of political satire with Caltech's public programming director, Michael Alexander, and former KCRW producer Sarah Spitz.

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Saturday, May 8; 10 and 12 p.m. PT

'I Love You Momma': Kids Sing-a-Long
Verdugo Plaza
3326 Verdugo Road, Suite 3326, Glassell Park
Minibop Music presents an interactive, outdoor kids’ sing-a-long event. Families can then spend the day visiting other places in the Plaza including the Lemon Poppy Kitchen (which will provide refreshments for), the Juicy Leaf, Pacific Martial Arts and Nectar Care.
COST: $20 for the entire family; MORE INFO

Saturday, May 8; 11 a.m. PT

Farhang Connect: Psychology of Iranian Cuisine
The Farhang Foundation’s online event examines the role of food in Iranian rituals, holidays, religious ceremonies and culture. Participants discuss eating, various foods and cultural norms.

Rappahannock  Oyster Bar exterior photo
A number of retailers at ROW DTLA are celebrating Mother's Day all weekend long.
(Courtesy of Rappahannock Oyster Bar )

Saturday, May 8 - Sunday, May 9

Mother’s Day Weekend at ROW
777 S. Alameda St., downtown L.A.
The shopping destination goes all out for Mother’s Day weekend with pop-ups, activities and retail specials. The Lenita by Grita Flower Truck Pop-Up visits from 10 a.m to 5 p.m on Saturday, offering hand-tied flower arrangements. On Sunday, Still Life Ceramics hosts an outdoor Pottery in the Park class at 12:30 p.m. All weekend, MOD REF | Common Market offers guests 10% off apparel and hats in-store, plus a free tote bag with any purchase.

Sunday, May 9; 9 a.m. PDT

Mariachi Divas
Vallarta Supermarkets host its a live virtual serenade with the all-female, L.A.-based mariachi ensemble for Mother’s Day. Watch via Facebook LIVE and Instagram IGTV. The show will be rebroadcast on May 10.

Sunday, May 9; 3:30 p.m. PT

Día de las Madres
For even more mariachi music, The Ford takes a look back at some of the best mariachi performances at the venue. Watch Mariachi Ángeles de Pepe Martinez, Jr., Steeven Sandoval, Flor de Toloache, Las Jovencitas, Marisa Ronstadt, Mariachi Femenil Nuevo Tecalitlán, Ballet Folklórico Ollin and Las Colibrí. The presentation premieres on Facebook and YouTube.

two children and an adult in front of Herbie the Love Bug
Exhibitions now open at The Bowers Museum in Santa Ana include 'Inside the Walt Disney Archives: 50 Years of Preserving the Magic.'
(Sam Carter, courtesy of the Bowers Museum)

Sunday, May 9

Bowers Museum
2002 N. Main St., Santa Ana
In honor of Mother’s Day, families can treat mom and grandma to a trip to the museum. They’ll get free general admission and reduced $10 tickets to the exhibition Walt Disney Archives: 50 Years of Preserving the Magic. Advance reservations are strongly advised since the museum continues to run at 50% reduced capacity.
COST: FREE - $25 with reservations; MORE INFO

Sunday, May 9; 7:30 p.m. PT

Spend Mother’s Day with Beth Lapides and her live-streamed alt-comedy show featuring stories, songs and rants from guests Alec Mapa, Judy Gold, Jen Kirkman, Parnesh Cheena, Alex Edelman and Jamie Bridgers. Plus Mitch Kaplan and the band.

Tanya Aguiñiga's 'Nopal,' 2017, is just one of the works currently on view at the Craft Contemporary's group show, 'Making Time.'
(Photo: courtesy of the artist and Volume Gallery, Chicago.)

Sunday, May 9

Craft Contemporary Reopens
5814 Wilshire Blvd., Mid-Wilshire
The museum reopens to the public featuring local artists in three exhibitions. Making Time is a group show featuring Tanya Aguiñiga, Uzumaki Cepeda, Beatriz Cortez, Keiko Fukazawa, Katherine Grey, Gronk, Sherin Guirguis, Betye Saar, Timothy Washington and Ann Weber. Tomoshibi: Glass Works highlights the art of Kazuki Takizawa. Cathy Cooper: Dramatis Personae features pieces that oscillate between sculpture and costume. Sundays are pay-what-you-can. Reservations recommended.
COST: $7 - $9; MORE INFO

Jena Carpenter of Dream World Cirque performs at this year's virtual MOMentum Place.
(Courtesy Theatricum Botanicum)

Sunday, May 9; 2 p.m.

MOMentum Place
Every year on Mother’s Day, Will Geer’s Theatricum Botanicum in Topanga holds a day of performances by aerialists, acrobats, dancers, musicians and other circus performers in its rustic outdoor amphitheater. This year, guests can view the action from home as the event is presented online via Zoom. The show is kid-friendly and full of surprises.
COST: $35 per household; MORE INFO

Sunday, May 9; 2:30 p.m.

Mommie Dearest
The Frida Cinema
305 E. 4th St. #100, Santa Ana
For a little Mother's Day counter-programming, the Frida tradition returns this year in partnership with OC Pride. Watch Christina Crawford suffer an abusive upbringing (“Scrub, Christina!") at the hands of her mother, Joan Crawford, played so well and over-the-top by Faye Dunaway.

Sunday, May 9; noon - 1:30 p.m.

We Rise: We Don’t Have Mother’s Day
L.A. County marks Mental Health Awareness Month with an online workshop that introduces parents to thriving Black trans/nonbinary adults and engages them in discussions that can help parents reduce barriers between them and their Black trans children.

Plan 9 from Outer Space film still
The Ed Wood movie, 'Plan 9 from Outer Space,' gets both a live table read and a screening at the TCM Classic Film Festival.
(Courtesy of the TCM Classic FF)

Through Sunday, May 9

2021 TCM Classic Film Festival
The festival continues screening classic and eclectic films at two virtual venues: the TCM network and HBO Max. The weekend also includes fun programming such as a Plan 9 from Outer Space table read, adapted by Dana Gould and presented by the SF Sketchfest (Saturday at 5 p.m. PT on TCM), followed by a screening of the 1959 film. On Sunday at 4 p.m., watch home movies from AMPAS's archive.

image of Patrick Martinez by neon sculpture
Patrick Martinez is one of the artists taking part in the Art Rise initiative throughout the city.
(Cesar Martinez)

Through Monday, May 31

Art Rise
As part of L.A. County’s We Rise mental health initiative, Art Rise features 18 outdoor art installations and three projects in 14 locations. The works, which focus on collective wellbeing, health and connection, can be found in DTLA, Koreatown, Mid-Wilshire, Leimert Park and South L.A. One of the projects, the large neon installation Only Light Can Do That by artist Patrick Martinez, will begin at dusk on Friday at LA Plaza de Cultura y Artes. Visitors can view the work by walking or driving through downtown L.A.

Asian American families at a picnic
Mabel Hong (second from right, standing) at a Chinese American Citizens Alliance picnic, 1950s.
(The Huntington Library, Art Museum, and Botanical Gardens.)

All month

Asian Pacific American Heritage Month
To learn more about the history of Asian Pacific Americans in L.A., visit the Los Angeles Public Library’s recently released website, Stories and Voices from L.A. Chinatown, which features historic photographs, maps, displays and interviews. There’s an accompanying outdoor exhibition in Chinatown at 942 N. Hill St. The online collection is the first in the series Archive Alive, a new collaboration between The Huntington, the Library Foundation of Los Angeles; and the L.A. Public Library.

Barnsdall Virtual Art Fair May 2021 poster image
Barnsdall Park’s Virtual Art Fair takes place online through July 31.
(Courtesy of Barnsdall Park)

Through Saturday, July 31

Barnsdall Park’s Virtual Art Fair
The park’s popular arts fair is being held online to showcase and support local artists. The three-month event features a range of products for all budgets, including handcrafted jewelry, ceramics, fiber arts, painting, sculpture, drawing, photography, glass, mixed media, prints and cards. All sales will be made directly by the artist.

Outdoor Pick

Baldwin Hills Scenic Overlook Hike
This popular workout spot offers great views of the Hollywood Hills, San Gabriel Mountains and the Pacific Ocean. Choose between a set of stairs that leads right to the top or a 1.25 mile dirt trail with switchbacks — or do half and half. Leave Fido at home, though, as dogs (and bikes) are not allowed on the trail. Parking on nearby side streets is free but at a premium on weekends. There are paid lots at the state park (6300 Hetzler Rd. in Culver City off of Jefferson Blvd.).

TV/Streaming Pick

Street Gang: How We Got to Sesame Street
This documentary takes a look at the beloved children’s TV show, created by artists, writers and educators who were inspired by the activism of the 1960s. Television executive Joan Ganz Cooney and Sesame Workshop co-founder Lloyd Morrisett wanted to harness the power of TV to teach children letters, numbers and life lessons. Director Marilyn Agrelo includes more than 20 interviews with original writers, cast and crew members as well as new behind-the-scenes footage. Street Gang opens on demand on Friday, May 7.

heart shaped chocolate cake
Portillo’s is bringing back its heart-shaped chocolate and lemon cake just in time for Mother's Day.
(Studio Capture Station 1)

Dine and Drink Deals

Here are a few options from restaurants and bars as we work our way back toward normal.

  • With locations in Buena Park and Moreno Valley, Portillo’s brings back its Heart-Shaped Chocolate and Lemon Cakes ($15.99) for a limited time. The Chicago favorite is making the cakes available for delivery or in-store pick-up, May 6 - 9. Portillo’s will donate $5 from each cake purchased (up to $5,000) to No Kid Hungry. Guests can pre-order by calling 866.YUM.BEEF or ordering online.
  • After a year lost to the COVID lockdown, Poncho's Tlayudas has revived its Friday nigh pop-up in South L.A. Want Oaxacan tlayudas, morongo and chorizo y verduras? Head to 4318 Main St., every other Friday night from 4 to 10 p.m.
  • Highland Park Bowl, L.A.’s oldest bowling alley, recently reopened for cocktails, beers and bowling. Reservations for lanes are required, and there’s a maximum of six people per party. Dinner reservations for tables are highly recommended.
  • Cheyenne Brown brings funnel cakes to Compton — and beyond — through her Fun-Diggity Funnel-Cakes home-based business. Order the cakes or deep-fried Oreos for pick up from 222 E. 120th St. or for delivery through Doordash. Brown also sells her mix online to make the cakes at home. (h/t Eater LA)
  • Esther’s Wine Shop & Bar in Santa Monica holds a special Mother’s Day tasting on Sunday from 3 to 9 p.m. for $25 - $28 a person. The tastings include four wines and a mini-cheese pairing.
  • The food truck/stand Hamburguesas Uruapan serves up Mexican burgers (burgers with bacon, sausage, ham, cheese, grilled pineapple) and other treats in Compton (4750 Rosecrans Ave.) from Wednesdays through Sundays.
  • The Tacos El Orgullo stand is now open in Pacoima, serving up tacos, burritos and loaded nachos (and yes, there are Hot Cheetos involved). Follow them on Instagram for their weekly schedule.
  • Old World Huntington Beach (home of the big Oktoberfest celebration) holds a Totally 80s Mothers Day Weekend, May 8 - 9. The weekend features live ‘80s music with a biergarten open on Saturday, and brunch, lunch and an early dinner on Sunday. Reservations are required.
  • Chado Tea Room in downtown L.A., Hollywood and Pasadena offers an in-store Chocolate Celebration for 2 ($70) featuring tea-infused chocolate pairings for Mother's Day. If you’d rather sip at home, Chado also sells a tea sampler gift box ($65).
  • The Cat and Fiddle in Hollywood hosts a Mother’s Day tea from noon to 5 p.m. on the restaurant’s patio or to take home. Nosh on scones, small sandwiches, tarts and sausage rolls while you sip tea and champagne. The restaurant is also offering a Sunday Roast dinner from noon to 8 p.m. Reservations/pre-orders must be made by Saturday, May 8 at 6 p.m.
  • In Eater LA, Bill Esparza writes about Barbacoa Estilo Chihuahua, which serves up a slow-cooked, moist barbacoa de res on Sundays only. Get tacos, tortas, mulitas and burritos. Follow updates on Instagram or call 818-437-7395 for more info.
  • Pikunico's Family Basket, which serves four, includes Japanese-style chicken tenders with your choice of large coleslaw, fingerling potatoes and two ginger onigiri ($32). This Saturday and Sunday, it comes with a free Miso de Leche cookie to all celebrating mothers.
  • Rappahannock Oyster Bar offers a Mother’s Day brunch that includes a mimosa, three raw oysters and your choice of lobster Benedict or a lobster roll ($35/person). The restaurant will also serve a Mini Seafood Platter (2 oysters, 2 bay scallops, and 2 shrimp cocktail) plus a bottle of Cava for $55, available all day on Sunday.