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Weekend Planner: 20 Of The Coolest Events Happening In Los Angeles

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(Photo by Christine Ziemba/LAist)
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Here are 20 awesome events/things to do in L.A. this weekend...

FRIDAY, SEPT. 15

SOLVANG DANISH DAYS (Food + culture)
Solvang Danish Days takes place this weekend, Friday to Sunday, in Solvang. Now in its 81st year, the festival celebrates the Danish culture with food, drink, performances and more. The number one reason to drive out of L.A. for Danish days? Aebleskiver Breakfasts.

ROARING NIGHTS (Zoo party)
Roaring Nights, the L.A. Zoo’s summer music and party series, takes place Friday night from 7-11 pm with a special Battle of the Decades. DJ Richard Blade spins the ‘80s tunes and DJ Johnny Hawkes spins tunes from both decades. The party also includes 90s-centric live music from the Boombox Heroes; food trucks (including Baby's Badass Burgers, Pico House, Peaches Smokehouse, The Greasy Wiener, The Grilled Cheese Truck , Ragin Cajun , Lobsta Truck, Mandoline Grill, Kogi Truck, Joe's Pizza Truck, Border Grill, Austyn's Burger, The Paradise Truck, The Pudding Truck and Rice Balls of Fire), a game zone, bars, access to several animal habitats and pop-up zookeeper talks. Ticket prices are $20 and $17 for Greater Los Angeles Zoo Association members. This event is ages 18+.

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SON OF MONSTERPALOOZA (Scarefest)
Monsterpalooza’s fall show—Son of Monsterpalooza—is at the Burbank Convention Center from Friday through Sunday. If you’re into SFX for film, TV and themed entertainment, then this expo is for you. There are more than 150 vendors, presentations, makeup demos, celebrity guests (Kristy Swanson, Natasha Henstridge, Keith David, Steve Yeun, Linda Blair, Fairuza Balk, Lance Henriksen and others) throughout the weekend. Tickets: $25 per day or $60 for the whole weekend.

CITY AND COLOUR (Music)
City and Colour (aka singer-songwriter Dallas Green) plays the Wiltern on Friday night in support of his latest release, If I Should Go Before You (Dine Alone Records). David Bazan opens. Doors at 8 p.m., show at 9 p.m. Tickets start at $35.

LOST & FOUND AT THE MOVIES (Film + discussion)
Lost & Found at the Movies is the Library Foundation of Los Angeles’ curated film discussion series. The next installment of the series takes place on Friday night at 7:30 p.m. at the Central Library’s Mark Taper Auditorium. Stories from Latino L.A. features film and television actor Edward James Olmos who’ll discuss the breadth and diversity of Latino film culture in Los Angeles. Olmos will be in conversation with Sundance Film Festival Senior Programmer John Nein and Alejandra Espasande-Bouza of the Academy Film Archive. They’ll discuss the “emergence of strong, distinctive cinema that countered stereotypes and offered complex stories of Latino characters and communities.” Free, but RSVPs suggested.

BRAD’S STATUS (Film)
Brad’s Status tracks the life of a dad (Ben Stiller) who takes his son on college tours on the East Coast and meets up with a friend who makes him feel inferior about his life choices. The film is written and directed by Mike White, and the ArcLight Hollywood hosts a Q&A with White after the 7:30 PM show on Friday. Tickets: $17.75.

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HALLOWEEN HORROR NIGHTS (Scares)
If you like being terrified for fun, then Friday is your lucky day. That’s when Universal Studios Hollywood brings together four slasher film legends—Freddy Krueger, Jason Voorhees, Leatherface and Chucky—in two all-new “Titans of Terror” experiences. Halloween Horror Nights features mazes, Terror Trams that allow guests to walk along iconic sets, from the Psycho House and the Bates Motel to Steven Spielberg’s War of the Worlds. Ticket prices vary by days/times/experiences, but general admission starts at $65.

PALEYFEST PREVIEWS (Panels + screenings)
PaleyFest Previews of upcoming fall TV shows continue this weekend with screenings and panel discussions at the Paley Center in Beverly Hills. On Friday night, BET presents The Comedy Get Down with Cedric the Entertainer and George Lopez on the panel. On Saturday night, PaleyFest 2017 previews close out with EPIX’s Berlin Station with Bradford Winters, Richard Armitage, Ashley Judd, Keke Palmer, Leland Orser and others in person. Individual adult tickets start at $20. Several panels are sold out, but buy guests can still get in by buying a Fan Pass.

SATURDAY, SEPT. 16

TARFEST (Music + Art)
LAUNCH LA presents the 15th annual Tarfest, a music and arts festival at the La Brea Tar Pits, on Saturday from 2-10 p.m. The fest is free and all ages and features rising local artists, musicians and bands, curated by LAUNCH LA and Kevin Bronson of Buzzbands.la. This year’s music program includes a headlining performance by La Bouquet and opening acts Brainstory, Alina Bea, The Sovereign Artist and Love Ghost. Kid-friendly activities, a Lagunitas Beer Garden and Wine Bar and food trucks on site include Baby’s Badass Burgers, Meat the Greek, Rice Balls of Fire, The Deli Doctor and Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams. Free admission.

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CALIFORNIA VEGETARIAN FOOD FESTIVAL (Food)
California Vegetarian Food Festival takes over Raleigh Studios in Hollywood on Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. In addition to cutting-edge, plant-based food, the festival also has beer, wine and cocktails, a showcase of 100% vegan innovation and goods, live music, fitness classes, kids’ activities and more. Tickets: $20-$75 (VIP). Children 10 and younger are free.

COASTAL CLEANUP DAY (Nature work)
Join the Santa Monica Conservancy on Saturday from 9 a.m. to noon for Coastal Cleanup Day. Meet at Lifeguard Tower 20 (Bay Street & Ocean Front Walk), which is the site where African Americans challenged racism and structures, leading to the opening of public beach spaces for all. Further down the coast, they’re cleaning up along the Ballona Creek bike path in Culver City at four locations. Sign up for Santa Monica or Culver City clean-up events.

L7: PRETEND WE’RE DEAD (Music documentary)
On Saturday at 1 p.m., there’s a special advanced screening of the documentary L7: Pretend We're Dead at The Regent. There’s a meet-and-greet with the band immediate following the screening. The film is slated to be released worldwide on Oct. 13. Tickets: $10 in advance, $15 day of show. Ages 18+.

TRISTEN + JENNY O (Music)
Resident in DTLA presents an early, intimate show with with a great lineup on Saturday night. Sets by Tristen, Jenny O and Campus Security. 6:30 p.m. Tickets: $10-$12. Ages 21+.

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OPEN ARTS & MUSIC FESTIVAL (Festival)
Open Arts & Music Festival (OAM) is a free, all-day community event on Sunday from 2-10 p.m. in Downtown Glendale (200 Block of Brand Boulevard). Live musical performances Run River North, DUCKWRTH, Buyepongo, Wondem, Boogaloo Assassins, Yavaran, El Santo Golpe, Monalisa (DJ & Host) and a surprise guest. In addition, there’s an arts market, kid activities, a Dome Garden art installation, independent craft beer and more. Admission is free.

SAAZTOBERFEST (Drink)
Angel City’s brew house celebrates its newest release, SaazBerry, at Saaztoberfest on Saturday and Sunday from noon to 8 p.m. This “adult Candy Land-meets-Oktoberfest” event features a sweet treat themed Beer Bazaar, SaazBerry beer cocktails (such as the Fizzy Lifting Drink and Everlasting Gobstopper), live music by Munich Boom-Steiners and live mural painting by Cale (who illustrated the beer’s six-pack. This event is 21+.

SUNDAY, SEPT. 17

NAUTICA MALIBU TRIATHLON (Sports)
On Sunday from 5-11 a.m., the Nautica Malibu Triathlon takes over the sands of Zuma Beach in Malibu. The tri includes a ½-mile ocean swim, a 17-mile bike ride and a 4-mile run through Malibu with proceeds benefitting the Children's Hospital Los Angeles' Pediatric Cancer Research Program (www.chla.org). Some of the celeb participants expected are James Marsden, Jeremy Piven, Ellie Kemper, Karla Souza, Luke Hemsworth and others. Cheer the participants on as they conquer Malibu.

BACH AT JONES COFFEE ROASTERS (Music + coffee)
The Salastina Society performs at Jones Coffee Roasters in Pasadena on Sunday at 5:30 p.m. The classical music group performs Schweigt stille, plaudert nicht (Be still, stop chattering), Bach’s mini-opera that’s a satirical work about addiction to coffee. In addition to the coffee and treats included in the ticket price, Larry Jones discusses the history of coffee during Bach’s lifetime, and Mireya Jones leads a coffee-making discussion. Tickets: $50.

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There's a special Fort Point beer brunch on Sunday at Baldoria beginning at 11 a.m. (Image: Fort Point Brewing via Facebook)
FORT POINT BEER BRUNCH (Food + beer)
On Sunday beginning at 11 a.m., Baldoria in Little Tokyo offers a slightly different pre-fixe brunch special. Instead of bottomless mimosas or rose, the Fort Point Beer Company is taking over the drink menu. For $40, enjoy unlimited pints of Fort Point Beer’s KSA (Kolsch Style Ale), plus an entrée and a side. If you’re not hungry, then $20 will supply you with bottomless beer (no food).

SALMAN RUSHDIE (Books + discussion)
The Los Angeles Times Ideas Exchange and Skylight Books present New York Times bestselling author Salman Rushdie on Sunday night at 5 p.m. at The Theater at Ace Hotel. The celebrated author will be in conversation with Los Angeles Times' Patt Morrison
to discuss his writing and the parallels between current American politics and his new novel, The Golden House. Tickets: $25-$100.

PST: LA/LA (Art)
PST: LA/LA Free Day is on Sunday with complimentary admission to 50 museums throughout Southern California. The event celebrates the official launch of Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA, and includes some well-known institutions, such as MOCA and LACMA, and lesser-known venues. like The Mistake Room, Self-Help Graphics and others.

Want the 411 on additional events and happenings in LA? Follow @LAist or me (@christineziemba) on Twitter.