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Home / Life! / Fun things to do this week: Nov. 26-Dec. 5

Fun things to do this week: Nov. 26-Dec. 5

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Hopefully, you have some time off this Thanksgiving holiday to unwind and spend time with loved ones. Luckily, in SoCal there is no shortage of events to attend and places to visit. But if you’ve failed to plan any outings for yourself or your family amid all the cooking and shopping, don’t worry because we have you covered. This week’s list of fun things to do has magic, snow, LA history, cultural dances and multiple light displays, all with their own twist.

Dean Mora’s Latinaires

Cicada Restaurant & Lounge | 617 S. Olive St., Los Angeles, CA 90014 | Nov. 26 | cicadaclub.com

Dine and dance to Latin tunes — such as mambo, rumba and swing — from the ‘30s and ‘40s made famous by stars like Desi Arnaz and Xavier Cugat.

Santa’s Speedway Christmas Light Drive-Thru

Irwindale Speedway | 500 Speedway Dr, Irwindale, CA 91706 | Nov. 26-Jan. 2 | santasspeedway.com

This year, Santa is bringing five new displays, twice as many lights, three full light tunnels and his signature 110-foot Christmas tree to a whole new course at the Speedway.

4U By US Pop-Up

801 S. Raymond Ave., Pasadena, CA 91105 l Nov. 26 l eventbrite.com

This is a pop-up series based in Pasadena that provides opportunities to black business vendors. Go out and support.

Fang & Claw: A ‘Highly’ Magical Dinner Experience

Sacred Gardens | 2016 Fremont Ave.,Pasadena, CA 91030 l Nov. 27 l eventbrite.com

Join Chef Victor Aguiler, winner of Chopped 420, for a “highly” magical evening filled with a four-course meal, live music, art, comedy, and magic.

Jowell & Randy

Leonardos | 6617 S. Wilson Ave., Los Angeles, CA, 90001 | Nov. 27 | ticketon.com

One Blood Promotions presents Jowell and Randy for “Viva el perreo” with live music from DJ Cangri, DJ G-Omar, DJ Victor and DJ Rany.

The Artwalk

Leimert Park Village | 4343 Leimert Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90008 l Nov. 28 l eventbrite.com

Cruise down to Leimert Park for The Artwalk, a celebration of afro-centric to afro-futurism, youth, art and technology.

Happy Hour Paint Class

Wingwalker Brewery | 235 W. Maple Ave., Monrovia, CA 91016 | Nov. 28 | eventbrite.com

Unwind and relax before the hectic work week starts by sipping on some crafted beers and painting a holiday-themed masterpiece. Led by Taci Loving, paint a canvas of cheery snowmen you can display at home.

Make Cocktails Like An Expert

Bar Franca | 438 S. Main St., Los Angeles, CA 90013 | Nov. 29 | eventbrite.com

Learn the fundamentals of making cocktails, as well as the history of why we make them. Basics include how to use bar tools, cocktail terminology, and crafting two classic cocktails and two original ones. All tools and ingredients are provided.

Ideas Exchange x Book Club Event With Nikole Hannah-Jones and Kevin Merida

The California African American Museum | 600 State Drive, Los Angeles, CA 90037 | Nov. 30 | eventbrite.com

Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative journalist Nikole Hannah-Jones will discuss her new book, “The 1619 Project: A New Origin Story,” with Los Angeles Times Executive Editor Kevin Merida.

Ahmanson’s ‘A Christmas Carol’

Ahmanson Theatre | 135 N. Grand Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90012 | Nov. 30-Jan. 1 | centertheatregroup.org

Tony Award-winners Jack Thorne and Matthew Warchus offer a new interpretation of Charles Dickens’ classic tale starring three-time Emmy-winner Bradley Whitford as Ebenezer Scrooge; Tony and Emmy Award-nominee Kate Burton as Ghost of Christmas Past; and Grammy, SAG Award, Critics Choice, and Hollywood Critics Association Award-nominee Alex Newell as Ghost of Christmas Present/Mrs. Fezziwig.

Matisyahu: Festival of Light

Troubadour | 9081 Santa Monica Blvd., West Hollywood, CA, 90069 | Dec. 1 | troubadour.com

This is the first time Matisyahu’s Festival of Light shows in Los Angeles. Matisyahu’s mission, according to event organizers, is to “spread the Chanukah light and tradition in a way that is culturally relevant to everyone, of all ages, who want to experience something universal based on the transcended themes of peace and prosperity that reflects the Festival of Light.”

ANW’s ‘A Christmas Carol’

A Noise Within | 3352 E. Foothill Blvd., Pasadena, CA 91107 | Dec. 3-23 | anoisewithin.org

This merry holiday classic returns with all new music to enchant and inspire viewers with the story of Bob Cratchit, Tiny Tim and Scrooge.

No Duh

The Mixx | 443 E. Colorado Blvd., Pasadena CA 91101 | Dec. 3 | themixxclub.com

No Duh mixes the experience and energy of a live No Doubt and Gwen Stefani concert with nostalgic visuals, props and costumes.

Parks After Dark

33 LA County Parks | Dec. 3-4, 10-11, 17-18 | parks.lacounty.gov

Parks After Dark returns to transform your local park into a snowy play area with 40 tons of snow, crafts, filled holiday stocking for every child (while supplies last), hot cocoa, food giveaways and a visit from Santa.

How Magicians Think With Joshua Jay

The Masonic Lodge at Hollywood Forever | 5970 Santa Monica Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90038 | Dec. 3 | eventbrite.com

Opening the evening with some magic tricks, magician Joshua Jay will then read from his new book, “How Magicians Think: Misdirection, Deception, and Why Magic Matters.” The session will end with a Q-and-A.

Street Food & Yuletide Cinemaland Present: ‘Elf’

Heritage Square Museum | 545 Pasadena Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90031 | Dec. 4 | streetfoodcinema.com

Welcome the season at Yuletide Cinemaland with a special screening of “Elf.” In addition to holiday movies, Yuletide Cinemaland features Victorian home tours, a light tunnel, piano sing-a-longs, food trucks, a tavern barn, and photo opportunities, including with Santa. Presented by Native, the personal hygiene brand, audience members will also enjoy on-site embroidery and free products, totes and scratch and sniff stickers.

Downtown Arcadia Holiday Fair

Downtown Arcadia | First Avenue from Huntington Drive to Diamond Street | Dec. 4 | downtownarcadia.org

The street will be filled with free fun for kids, shopping booths, live music, beer and wine booths, DJ, Santa and raffles to win a one-night stay at Le Méridien with a $150 credit to Mélange, or a pair of tickets to the Lakers, Kings or Clippers. This is also an opportunity to donate food for hungry children, families, struggling seniors, disabled and unhoused individuals and pets.

Pico Rivera Holiday Festival

City Hall | 6615 Passons Blvd., Pico Rivera, CA 90660 | Dec. 4 | pico-rivera.org

The City of Pico Rivera marks the start of the holiday season by transforming the grounds of City Hall into a winter wonderland complete with a snow toss area and over 25 tons of snow. In addition to the tree lighting, there will be crafts, food trucks and vendors, a beer garden, Stan Express train rides, live music and fireworks.

The Great Wall of LA

Museum of Latin American Art | 628 Alamitos AvenueLong Beach, CA, 90802 | Dec. 4 | molaa.org

Missing that blissful feeling you had on a field trip day morning? Well, MOLAA is taking visitors on an exclusive field trip to see the Great Wall of Los Angeles in the Tujunga Wash in the San Fernando Valley for a walking tour led by Pete Galindo, director of the Great Wall of LA Institute.The Great Wall of Los Angeles is Judy Baca’s half-mile-long masterpiece documenting the history of Los Angeles and its’ communities. Learn about the history of this project and future plans to continue documenting LA history. Transportation will be included to and from Long Beach.

Belmont Shore Winter Village

Belmont Shore Business Association | 200 Nieto Ave 200BLong Beach, CA 90803 | Dec. 4 | belmontshore.org

A central stage location will feature local performers including high school bands, dance troupes, an eight-piece brass ensemble as well as a special holiday concert from Manuel the Band who will close out the evening. There will also be a visit from Santa.

Navidad Mestiza

Downey Theatre | 8435 Firestone Blvd., Downey, CA 90241 | Dec. 4 | downeytheatre.org

Danza Artes de México presents Navidad Mestiza, a  striking performance of traditional Mexican dances. 

Rasa Kalaa: A Bharata Natyam Margam

A Noise Within | 3352 E. Foothill Blvd., Pasadena, CA 91107 | Dec. 5-7 | anoisewithin.org

Experience Rasa (essence/sentiment) in Kalaa (performing arts) through a traditional dance repertoire. A Bharata Natyam (South Indian classical dance) “Margam” is a curated compilation of pieces that entertain and elevate through an artistic experience of percussive dance and theatrical story-telling that embraces mythology, drama, and the human experience.Tickets are Pay What You Choose, and to ensure equitable access to all, a limited number of free tickets are held for every performance.

Candlelight: Holiday Jazz and Soul Classics

Candela La Brea | 831 S. La Brea Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90036 |  Dec. 5, 9 | feverup.com

Enjoy dinner and drinks as talented performers play holiday classics like Ella Fitzgerald’s “Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas,” Louis Armstrong’s “Cool Yule,” Nat King Cole’s “The Christmas Song,” and Stevie Wonder’s “That’s What Christmas Means to Me,” among others.

Head Over Heels

Pasadena Playhouse | 39 S. El Molino Ave., Pasadena, CA 91101 | Through Dec. 12 | pasadenaplayhouse.org

“Head Over Heels,” fueled by music from The Go-Go’s, is finally premiering at the Pasadena Playhouse. The show follows a royal family searching for purpose, lovers in search of each other and a “kingdom in search of a beat.” The Playhouse is also transforming to create an experimental production allowing audience members to get in on the dancing as actors perform all over the theater.

GLOW

South Coast Botanic Garden | 26300 Crenshaw Blvd., Palos Verdes Peninsula, CA 90274 | Through Jan. 17 | southcoastbotanicgarden.org

The Garden Lights & Ocean Waters (GLOW) exhibit has been reimagined. Event organizers say visitors can expect a “better and brighter experience.” Grab a bite to eat, maybe a drink, and walk through thousands of lights as music plays throughout. This year’s exhibit also features interactive experiences and themed nights.

Enchanted Forest Of Light

Descanso Gardens | 1418 Descanso Drive, La Cañada Flintridge, CA 91011 | Through Jan. 9 | descansogardens.org

Live your fairytale dreams and enter the Enchanted Forest of Light, a one-mile walk featuring interactive light displays. New this year, Descanso Gardens has added an entire town of stained glass creations from sculptor Tom Fruin.

The Elf On The Shelf Magical Holiday Journey

Fairplex | 1101 W. McKinley Ave., Pomona, CA 91768 | Through Jan. 2 | elfontheshelfjourney.com

Returning for the second year in a row, The Elf on the Shelf’s Magical Holiday Journey is an outdoor experience featuring dazzling scenery, lights, ice skating, trolleys, walking paths, treats and a Christmas village.

Reindeer Road

Santa Anita Park | 285 W. Huntington Drive, Arcadia, CA 91007 | Through Jan. 2 | worldofillumination.com

Santa will have no problem finding this light display that puts even Rudolph’s nose to shame.  From World of Illumination, producer of the world’s largest drive-thru animated light show, this display brings families face to face with elves, reindeer, the world’s largest animated toyshop and Santa himself.

The Obama Portraits Tour & Black American Portraits

LACMA | 5905 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90036 | Through Jan. 2 | lacma.org

 Kehinde Wiley’s portrait of President Barack Obama and Amy Sherald’s portrait of former First Lady Michelle Obama have become iconic since being unveiled at the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery in 2018. As part of the five-city tour of the portraits, LACMA will present Black American Portraits in conjunction at an adjacent gallery. The tour will feature teacher workshops, tours and an illustrated book.

Winter Frolic

Kidspace | 480 N. Arroyo Blvd., Pasadena, CA 91103 | Through Jan. 9 | kidspacemuseum.org

Winter has arrived in Pasadena as Kispace transforms into a space where children and families can share the magic of the season. Winter Frolic features a no-ice sock skating rink, “ice fishing” in the Kispace Arroy Stream, and snowflake decorating.

Lightscape

LA Arboretum | 301 N. Baldwin Ave., Arcadia, CA 91007 | Through Jan. 16 | arboretum.org

Following a sold-out run in London, Lightscape will transform the LA Arboretum with a one-mile illuminated trail featuring thousands of lights in various attractions like the Cathedral of Light, the Star Tunnel and the Fire Garden.

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