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20 Of The Best Things To Do In Southern California This Week

A line of Playboy-style 'bunny girls', including Maureen Hayden and Marianne Hunt, at Paul Raymond's Bal Tabarin nightclub in Hanover Square, London, 11th February 1963. (Victor Blackman/Getty Images)
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What's going on this week? Nipsey Hussle gets a tribute at the Staples Center. Grand Park throws L.A.'s largest Earth Day celebration. New exhibitions include the photographs of Kwame Brathwaite, a Backstreet Boys tribute and a Playboy retrospective. The LA Art Book Fair returns. Film festivals screen Indian movies and classic Hollywood flicks. Last, but not least, KPCC kicks off its three-part series, SoCal Solutions, with a discussion on the cost of higher ed.

Through SUNDAY, MAY 26
Freedom is Key: A Playboy Exhibition
Beverly Center (8th Floor) -- 8500 Beverly Blvd., Beverly Grove
L.A.'s first official Playboy exhibition provides a peek into the brand's archives. Visitors can see how the magazine served as a "force for social progress and an advocate for free speech, civil rights, and gender equality." Expect iconic covers, cartoons, highlights from the Playboy Clubs and the evolution of the Playboy Bunny. The exhibit is PG but curated for adult engagement.

MONDAY, APRIL 8; 7 - 9 p.m.
Happy Hour History
The Phoenix (Back Patio) -- 8480 W. 3rd St., Beverly Grove
Women Who Whiskey L.A. presents the local premiere of the new web series that explores the connections between alcohol and major events in human history. Filmmaker and host David S. Mayne screens the first two episodes, which trace a cocktail's connection to a historical event. In addition to the screening, guests will enjoy two classic cocktails at the premiere and receive a digital copy of the first season when it wraps. This is a co-ed, 21+ event. No tickets will be sold at the door.

MONDAY, APRIL 8; 8 p.m.
Weirdo Night
Zebulon -- 2478 N. Fletcher Dr., Elysian Valley
Enjoy a screening of Garbage Castle, Dynasty Handbag's TV pilot starring Cole Escola and Maria Bamford, plus stand-up from Escola and Dynasty Handbag.

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Charles Olalia is serving up his Longganisa Burger at Ester's Wine Shop. (Photo: Jenni Hwang)

TUESDAY, APRIL 9; 6 p.m.
Guest Chef Burger Night: Charles Olalia
Esther's Wine Shop & Bar -- 1314 Seventh St., Santa Monica
Olalia -- of Ma'am Sir and Rice Bar fame -- draws on his Filipino heritage with the Longganisa Burger, featuring a King's Hawaiian bun with papaya, atchara and garlic mayo. The special, which comes with a side, will be offered starting at 6 p.m. and will be served until the kitchen runs out.

TUESDAY, APRIL 9; 6 - 10:30 p.m.
Beta Night
Two Bit Circus Micro-Amusement Park -- 634 Mateo St., downtown L.A.
Test new games and materials from several of the Circus's partners. The games are free to play and you're welcome to provide feedback. While you're there, take advantage of $6 drinks (21+) and happy hour specials.

Mark your calendars: It's Ben & Jerry's free cone day on Tuesday. (Photo: Courtesy of Ben & Jerry's LA)

TUESDAY, APRIL 9; 12 - 8 p.m.
Ben & Jerry's Free Cone Day
Los Angeles Union Station -- 800 N. Alameda St., downtown L.A.
The ice cream company plans to give away more than a million scoops of ice cream on Tuesday. The yearly tradition began in Vermont in 1979 and now takes place around the world. While many locations are participating, the Union Station location is collecting donations on behalf the homeless services nonprofit Go Be the 1.

TUESDAY, APRIL 9; 8 - 9 p.m.
Sex Vs Violence
Ruby LA -- 7518 W. Sunset Blvd., Hollywood
The feminist comedy theater and school presents an all-women sketch show that pokes fun at some of our fave topics including murder podcasts, HR violations and "that one guy in the office who is the total King of Interrupting." The show is in residence on Tuesdays in April.

Backstreet Boys: The Experience
The Grammy Museum -- 800 W. Olympic Blvd., downtown L.A.
Backstreet's back, alright! If you were #TeamBSB during the boy band era, check out this exhibition dedicated to the genre's top band. Featuring personal memorabilia, clothes, artwork and photography, the fan experience also includes interactive photo and video installations -- including a confessional booth that lets you record a message for the group.
COST: $13 - $15; MORE INFO

WEDNESDAY, APRIL 10; 7 - 8:30 p.m.
Higher education - a conversation determined by you
Tateuchi Democracy Forum at the Japanese American National Museum -- 100 N. Central Ave., downtown L.A.
KPCC In Person kicks off its three-part series, SoCal Solutions, with a discussion on higher education in collaboration with the National Center for the Preservation of Democracy. Community members pitched ideas for the event, and suggestions were then put to a vote. The program will focus on the cost of higher education and ways to make it more affordable. Hosted by KPCC's education correspondent, Adolfo Guzman-Lopez, guests include Lande Ajose, higher education senior policy advisor to Governor Gavin Newsom; Marvin Martinez, president of East L.A. College; and Michele Siqueiros, president of the Campaign for College Opportunity. Stick around for the post-event reception to continue the conversation.
COST: FREE, but RSVPs requested; MORE INFO

The Byron Bowers Experience
Dynasty Typewriter -- 2511 Wilshire Blvd., Westlake
Caitlin Weierhauser hosts a night of comedy headlined by Byron Bowers (The Chi) and featuring stand-up by Mitra Jouhari, Quinta Brunson, Emma Willmann, Dewayne Perkins and a special guest.
COST: $10 - $15; MORE INFO

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Celebrate Earth Day in Grand Park with activities and workshops for all ages. (Photo Courtesy of Javier Guillen for Grand Park/ The Music Center)

THURSDAY, APRIL 11; 9 a.m. - 2 p.m.
Earth Day L.A.
Grand Park -- 200 N. Grand Ave., downtown L.A.
The park partners with LADWP and the Music Center for huge Earth Day celebration. Learn how to live a greener lifestyle. Vendors and exhibitors will present info and products on healthy lifestyles, energy efficiency, water conservation, sustainable gardening, composting and electric and solar vehicles. There are plenty of workshops and performances throughout the event.

In this Kwame Brathwaite photo, Sikolo Brathwaite wearing a headpiece designed by Carolee Prince, AJASS, Harlem, 1968. (Courtesy of the artist and Philip Martin Gallery, Los Angeles)

Black Is Beautiful: The Photography of Kwame Brathwaite
Skirball Cultural Center -- 2701 N. Sepulveda Blvd., Brentwood
Brathwaite was an integral figure during the second Harlem Renaissance, combining politics and photography to bring about social change. The Skirball presents more than 40 of his images from the 1960s, featuring black men and women with hair and clothes that honored their African roots.
COST: $7 - $12; FREE on Thursdays; MORE INFO

Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles
Regal L.A. LIVE: A Barco Innovation Center -- 1000 W. Olympic Blvd., downtown L.A.
Ahrya Fine Arts Theater -- 8556 Wilshire Blvd., Beverly Hills
The festival showcases and screens more than two dozen narrative and documentary features and shorts from Indian filmmakers around the world. The opening night gala on Thursday takes place at the Ahrya Fine Arts Theater with a tribute to Indian actress Tabu. Her latest film, Andhadhun, will be preceded by a moderated discussion with the actress and followed by a dinner reception from Indian restaurant Spice Affair.
COST: $15 - $160; MORE INFO

Turner Classic Movie Festival
Several Venues in Hollywood
Watch classic and newly restored films as they were meant to be seen -- on the big screen. You can also attend "meet and greets" with TCM guests, shop for film memorabilia or listen to panel discussions about Hollywood history. The lineup includes a 30th anniversary(?!) Tribute to When Harry Met Sally, Mogambo, Gone with the Wind, The Umbrellas of Cherbourg, Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans, Do The Right Thing and The Bad Seed.
COST: Passes start at $299; individual tickets (when available) start at $20; MORE INFO

THURSDAY, APRIL 11; 5:30 p.m.
An evening with Bruce Talamon
Wallis Annenberg Hall at USC -- 3630 Watt Way, University Park
USC professors Josh Kun and Vanessa Schwartz host a night with legendary American photographer Bruce W. Talamon, who took masterful pictures of some of the greatest musicians of the 1970s and '80s. He tells the stories behind the images in his book, Soul. R&B. Funk. Photographs 1972-1982.

LA Art Book Fair
The Geffen Contemporary at MOCA -- 152 North Central Ave., downtown L.A.
After a hiatus last year, the LA Art Book Fair returns with nearly 400 exhibitors from more than 30 countries, showcasing the works of small press publishers, artists, collectives, institutions, galleries and antique booksellers. There are also more than 100 conversations, workshops, performances and artist-led programs scheduled throughout the weekend. The ticketed opening night festivities take place on Thursday from 6 to 9 p.m.
COST: $20 opening night; FREE Friday-Sunday; MORE INFO

A Space Odyssey
Segerstrom Center for the Arts -- 600 Town Center Dr., Costa Mesa
Richard Strauss' composition Also Sprach Zarathustra is best known as part of the soundtrack to Stanley Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey. It's part of a program that also features the world premiere of a Michael Daugherty work that celebrates the 50th anniversary of the moon landing and Mozart's Piano Concerto No. 23. Jean-Marie Zeitouni conducts the Pacific Symphony featuring Juho Pohjonen on piano. Get to the venue early for a preview talk with KUSC's Alan Chapman at 7 p.m.
COST: Tickets start at $25; MORE INFO

Zuma Residency at Inko Nito
Inko Nito -- 225 S. Garey St., downtown L.A.
Rainer Becker's Japanese robatayaki restaurant in the Arts District hosts a limited menu "residency" with its sister concept. Nosh on sushi, sashimi and sake from Zuma while enjoying staples like pork belly skewers and beef cheek and butter lettuce wraps. Supplemental menu items include Wagyu beef sushi and Santa Barbara sea urchin miso buns.

THURSDAY, APRIL 11; 7 p.m.
A Night at the Surrealists
Dynasty Typewriter -- 2511 Wilshire Blvd., Westlake
Author Josh Frank and special guests including Tim Heidecker, Dave Foley and The Sklar Brothers present a vaudeville-inspired variety celebration. The night of Surrealism celebrates Frank's graphic novel Giraffes on Horseback Salad: Salvador Dali, The Marx Brothers, and the Greatest Movie Never Made in Los Angeles. Expect scene readings, music and singalongs, and a multimedia journey that brings a lost Marx Brothers movie back to life.
COST: $15 - $20; MORE INFO

THURSDAY, APRIL 11; 10 a.m.
Nipsey Hussle's Celebration of Life
Staples Center -- 1111 S. Figueroa St., downtown L.A.
The L.A. community gets a chance to grieve and celebrate the rapper whose life was tragically cut short. This event is open to California residents only and there is a four ticket limit. Out of respect to the family, cameras and recording devices will not be permitted inside the venue. Guests may be asked to leave the event if found recording or taking photos. Tickets, which were available beginning at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, have sold out.

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